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1. December 2015

 

Autodesk just announced the release of Extension 2 for 3ds Max 2016.  Extensions are interim updates between major releases.  Extensions 2 adds the follow functionality:

  • With fundamental improvements in the Max Creation Graph (MCG), users can now animate accurate simulation data like Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) data or other data inside their 3ds Max scenes. 
  • With the new built-in “Send To” Autodesk Print Studio button, users can quickly export and 3D print any of their 3ds Max creations. 
  • The new Texture Object Mask modifier allows users to position and animate textures on an object using other objects in the scene. 
  • The new TextPlus feature, introduced in Extension 1, now has the ability to use text strings and shapes to be used as a material map, creating material decals in your scene.  

They have created a video showcasing the new capabilities:

Read more at the official announcement.

GameDev News ,

27. November 2015

 

Quixel just released version 2 of their suite of products.  Quixel Suite is composed of:

 

You can currently purchase the entire suite for $99 on an indie license or $409 on a commercial license, which represents a 25% savings.

 

As to what Quixel actually is, it’s a texturing solution that bring PBR (Physically Based Rendering) to Photoshop.  Their own promo video probably illustrates it best… just turn your speakers down before pressing play!

If you are thinking to yourself, hey, that looks a heck of a lot like Substance Painter that you just looked at, you'd be right. They provide basically the same functionality for a very similar price, but Substance is a stand alone application while Quixel integrates within Photoshop.

GameDev News, Art

26. November 2015

 

A new beta release of the Krita drawing package; mostly an under the hood revision to add animation support on the road to Krita 3 release.

 

From the release post:

Today we are happy to announce the long awaited beta-version of Krita with Animation and Instant Preview support! Based on Krita 2.9, you can now try out the implementation of the big 2015 kickstarter features!

What’s new in this version? From the user point of view Krita didn’t change much. There are three new dockers: Animation,Timeline and Onion Skins, which let you control everything about your animation frames and one new menu item View->Instant Preview Mode (previously known as Level of Detail) allowing painting on huge canvases. For both features, you need a system that supports OpenGL 3.0 or higher.

For people who previously installed Krita, to get Instant Preview to show up on the view menu, delete the krita.rc(not kritarc) file in your resource folder(which can be accessed quickly via Settings->Manage Resources->Open Resource Folder) and restart Krita. Or just use the hotkey Shift+L.

But under these visually tiny changes hides a heap of work done to the Krita kernel code. We almost rewritten it to allow most of the rendering processes run in the background. So now all animated frames and view cache planes are calculated in the moments of time when the user is idle (thinks, or chooses a new awesome brush). Thanks to these changes now it is possible to efficiently work with huge images and play a sequence of complex multi-layered frames in real time (the frames are recalculated in the background and are uploaded to you GPU directly from the cache).

 

A tutorial featuring Krita 2.9 animation features in action:

GameDev News ,

24. November 2015

 

I don’t often announce Kickstarter campaigns unless they are specifically about the creation of game development tools but for this one I am making an exception as this project looks high quality, is game developer focused and Krita itself deserves a great deal more exposure.  The campaign is called Create Professional 2D Game Art: Krita Video Training and it walks the user through the process of creating 2D art using Krita, a completely free cross platform 2D painting tool.  Depending on the level of success with the campaign it will result in tutorials on side view painted style art, isometric view cel shaded art and top down pixel style art if all goals are met.  The ultimate outcome will create a course hosted on Udemy.

 

At the end of the day, there really aren’t a ton of 2D art tutorials available, I can personally only think of a handful, most of which I linked in my getting started in game art guide.  There are even less focusing around using Krita itself.  Finally, I like the guys art style, so I would like to see this go somewhere.

 

Anyways, here is the Kickstarter pitch video.  If you are looking for 2D art instruction, check it out.

Art, GameDev News

24. November 2015

 

It’s hard to believe that GIMP (General Image Manipulation Program) has now been around for 20 years.  To go along with the 20th anniversary, they also released version 2.8.16.  The following from the GIMPrelease announcement:

 

New Releases and The Future

To celebrate the 20th anniversary, we released an update of the current stable version of GIMP. Newly released GIMP 2.8.16 features support for layer groups in OpenRaster files, fixes for layer groups support in PSD, various user interface improvements, OSX build system fixes, translation updates, and more changes.

Our immediate future plans are to release first public version in the unstable 2.9.x series that will feature fully functional GEGL port, 16/32bit per channel processing, basic OpenEXR support, vastly improved color management implementation, new tools, on-canvas preview for many filters, and more. This release will encompass over three years of work and become the first milestone towards 2.10.

Following v2.10 release, we shall complete the GTK+3 port that is required to bring back state of the art Wacom support for Windows users. When it’s done and GIMP 3.0 is out, we shall finally be able to get started on some very exciting and much anticipated features like non-destructive editing. Please refer to Roadmap for more details.

 

Well then, happy birthday GIMP.  Head on over here to download it now.

GameDev News, Art ,

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