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Autodesk Intros Mudbox 2009

Autodesk will release Autodesk Mudbox 2009 software for 3D modelers and texture artists working on entertainment and design projects this October. Mudbox combines an intuitive user interface with a powerful toolset for creating highly-detailed 3D models. The software gives artists the freedom to create without worrying about technical details. Mudbox has shaped characters in blockbuster movies and games, including JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH, THE MIST and MASS EFFECT.

Dave Cardwell, Mudbox product designer at Autodesk Media & Entertainment, said, "Our goal is to make early stage digital assets resemble their final 'on-screen' forms as closely as possible. Starting with accurate models makes the production process more efficient and provides a higher-quality end result. For example, you'd want to know early on whether a prominent brow will shadow a character's eyes. That's why Autodesk Mudbox 2009 has texture painting tools and on-target display features; these will help artists build and refine better 3D models."

"The introduction of Autodesk Mudbox 2009 sparks a revolution in computer graphics tools, bringing about a paradigm shift in how designers and artists do their work," said Habib Zargarpour, senior art director at Electronic Arts.

Dan Platt, modeler at Disney Animation Studios, said, "Time is money. An Autodesk Mudbox session begins with its artist-friendly, intuitive interface. This is sculpting at the speed of thought with the greatest of fidelity. In a business where new ideas with impossible deadlines are commonplace, Mudbox never lets me down."

A new, production-ready toolset makes it easy for artists to paint multiple diffuse, bump, specular, and reflection textures across multiple high-resolution maps on their models:

--Users can paint directly on 3D models to add detail precisely where it's required, regardless of UV distortion or surface complexity.--Reference images can be painted onto a model from screen space using the new Projection brush.--Users can paint multiple maps on multiple UV tiles simultaneously and assign multiple UV tiles on a single mesh.

Recognized for its ability to handle data-heavy models, the latest version of Mudbox offers greater interactivity while working on high-resolution meshes. In particular, camera manipulation and brush speed have been improved, enabling artists to work interactively with 3D models that are fully subdivided into tens of millions of polygons across the entire mesh.

Mudbox 2009 includes a host of rendering technologies that leverage the power of the OpenGL application programming interface (API) and today's powerful graphics cards. The software offers an accurate, on-target environment for real-time evaluation as the digital asset is manipulated, as well as for enhanced interactive presentations to clients and art directors.

Mudbox 2009 provides enhanced interoperability with Autodesk Maya and Autodesk 3ds Max software through improved matching of normal and displacement maps produced by Maya and 3ds Max. Mudbox 2009 continues to deliver a highly intuitive user interface that gives artists the freedom to focus on the art of 3D modeling.

For a complete list of new features and enhancements in Autodesk Mudbox 2009, visit www.autodesk.com/pr-mudbox.

Autodesk anticipates that Mudbox 2009 will be available in October 2008. Mudbox 2009 will be supported on the Microsoft Windows XP Professional and Microsoft Windows Vista operating systems. Autodesk suggested retail pricing is $745, although international pricing may vary.

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