Discreet has begun shipping its smoke 6 system on the Intel-based IBM workstation running Linux. The smoke 6 editing and finishing system is already available on the Silicon Graphics Octane2 and Silicon Graphics Tezro visual workstations. The addition of Linux workstation support and new pricing ensures that the smoke 6 system is accessible to broadcasters and the growing segment of mid-range post-production facilities.
Bauhaus Software Inc., a leading provider of products and technologies for the digital vfx market, announced support for Leitch Technology's Velocity and VelocityQ NLE platforms in its flagship Mirage product line. Using Leitch's Reality and Quattrus hardware, respectively, to act as a frame buffer for Mirage allows broadcasters and post-production professionals to view the results of their work in real time on an external NTSC/PAL monitor.
Bionatics, a leader in plant modeling software solutions, has been embraced by Gusto Games, the recently formed Oxfordshire-based development studio. Gusto has adopted the natFX package as their plant modeling reference tool.
Tokyo-based Robot Communications relied on Discreets 3ds max to create the introductory cinematic opening sequence for ONIMUSHA 3: DEMON SIEGE, the final installment in the critically acclaimed game series from Capcom. The game, running on Sony Computer Ent.s PlayStation 2 platform, has been available in Japan since February 2004, and is expected to be available April 2004 in North America.
Kaydara Inc. has announced its first middleware solution for game developers, HumanIK | Middleware, a character animation and rigging technology. With HumanIK | Middleware, game developers will now be able to easily embed the character animation technology found in MOTIONBUILDER directly into their game engine. The new product will be available in the second quarter 2004.
Alias announced that U.K.-based game developer Blitz Games is moving its entire game development pipeline to Maya after extensive research of the industry's top game development tools. Blitz has successfully moved two of its five teams to its new Maya software pipeline and is currently utilizing Alias custom Maya training for the remaining teams, in preparation for a switch of its entire pipeline, to be implemented as each new game project begins.
C.O.R.E. Feature Animation-- the newly launched division of C.O.R.E. Digital Pictures -- will deploy BlueArc Corp.'s leading Titan SiliconServer on its first computer-animated feature, THE WILD, a joint project with Disney and San Francisco-based Hoytyboy. As a result, C.O.R.E. Feature Animation is using more than 50 terabytes of storage across three Titan systems to save valuable rendering time and simplify storage management, allowing quicker delivery.
Kaydara Inc. announced the release of MOTIONBUILDER 5.5 Professional, the latest version of the company's popular realtime 3D character animation software. With added support for Python scripting and CgFX shaders, MOTIONBUILDER 5.5 Professional allows 3D animators to create complex character set-ups and animation sequences in minutes instead of the days and weeks required by other systems.
Softimage Co. announced that Los Angeles-based Pandemic Studios, creators of three upcoming console titles, FULL SPECTRUM WARRIOR, MERCENARIES and STAR WARS BATTLEFRONT, is standardizing its entire 3D pipeline with SOFTIMAGE|XSI, the leading nonlinear 3D production environment. The three phase transition, which will take place over the next six months and also includes the purchase of multiple licenses of SOFTIMAGE|XSI software, will replace all competitive 3D tools currently used at Pandemic Studios.
Pixologic Inc. has announced the upcoming release of ZBrush 2, the newest version of its award-winning 2D/3D digital-art creation software, on March 31, 2004. Modeling, texturing and painting features have all benefited from code enhancements and new tools and options provide even more versatility in all areas. Medium- to high-resolution models respond instantly to sculpting actions, constantly rendered and shaded in realtime.
cebas Computer GmbH has announced the release of finalShaders for finalRender Stage-1. finalShaders is the first of many upcoming finalRender Stage-1 material and shader plug-in collections. finalShaders works with finalRender Stage-1 Service Pack 2a or higher. Owners of finalRender Stage-1 can upgrade to Service Pack 2a for free by sending your serial number to firstname.lastname@example.org. finalRender Stage-1 is available for 3ds max4.X, 5.X and 6.
The materials found in finalShaders include:
Eovia Corp., developer and publisher of leading 3D software, announced the immediate availability of TransPoser. TransPoser is a full-featured plug-in to dynamically import animated Poser 4 and 5 figures into Carrara Studio 3.
NXN Software, the leader in digital asset management solutions, recently acquired by Avid Technology, will introduce alienbrain Studio 7 at the Game Developers Conference in San Jose, California, on March 24-26 (booth #423). The new generation of the award-winning alienbrain Studio is designed to allow creative teams to significantly improve their performance through process optimizations, enhanced usability and innovative feature upgrades, including new change management functionality.
Cambridge Animation Systems has announced that the forthcoming Animo version 6.0 software will feature compatibility with Plastic Animation Paper (PAP), the acclaimed tablet-based animation application from Krogh Mortensen Animation (KMA) of Copenhagen, Denmark. The links from PAP into Animo covers all stages of the 2D animation process from drawing to output. Animo 6.0 is scheduled for release in spring 2004.
Rtzen Inc., the new company dedicated to empowering 3D artists, today announced the Pre-release of its advanced visual 3D editing tool, RT/shader. Designed to unleash the creativity of today's game development production artists, technical artists and programmers, RT/shader is the first software that makes developing realistic hardware 3D shaders quick and easy.
Sony Pictures Imageworks has added CINEMA 4D to its matte painting production pipeline. The award-winning software is used for modeling, animation and rendering in the computer animation environment. Imageworks chose MAXON's software after testing CINEMA 4D in the production environment.
The latest version of Joe Alter's famous hair plug-in for 3D artists, Shave and a Haircut, is now available to CINEMA 4D users. Shave and a Haircut 2.5 for CINEMA 4D boasts a slew of enhancements. In a nutshell, the hair looks better than before and renders faster to boot.
The hair looks more lifelike than in previous versions thanks to a string of enhancements such as improved antialiasing, smoother soft shadows and a completely new look for frizz and kink that is closer to the real thing.
NXN Software, a leading supplier of asset management solutions for creative teams, announced increased market momentum in Asia for NXN alienbrain Studio. New NXN customers in 2003 included game developers such as NCSoft, Hanbitsoft and DR-Interactive in Korea, and CAVIA, Namco, Sonic Team, Think and Feel, Grandprix and Tose in Japan.
DigArts Software announces the release of their new collection of paints for artists using Painter, Paint Shop Pro or Photo-Paint.
"Grains & Grasses is the newest in our series of paints for art professionals working with foliage and nature," said Dennis Berkla, president of DigArts Software. "This set paints grains and grasses with unmatched speed and detail, even at high resolutions. These paints are ideal for graphics, architectural illustration and fine art because they work in a range of sizes and for a variety of media, including print, video and 3D."
RTzen announced the arrival of RT/shader, a visual shader, editing tool for production artists, technical artists and programmers. RTZen believes it represents the next milestone in realtime hardware shader development, since artists return to the role of primary author of shaders for realtime applications. RT/shader, which will officially launch at GDC for $1,995, uses a patent-pending technology to automatically create high-level shader language code while the user assembles the shader from standard visual components such as texture, reflection and brightness.
Project Dogwaffle, the award-winning paint software program, which recently launched v.2, has now announced a 2.0b patch with more speed, mouse caching, new plug-ins and bug fixes. The patch requires Dogwaffle 2.0 already installed on your PC and checks for its validity.
It is a free patch. The size is about 1.25 MB.
Go to www.thebest3d.com/dogwaffle/freebies/2dot0b.html for downloading instructions.
NVIDIA Corp. announced the immediate availability of its MAXtreme 6 accelerator, a custom tool that increases the performance of Discreet 3ds max 6 software running NVIDIA Quadro by up to 74%. This free, fully certified productivity boost is now available on the NVIDIA Website at http://www.nvidia.com/object/maxtreme_6.html.