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14. August 2019


Today we are checking out akeytsu by Nukeygara.  This is a commercial 3D rigging and animation software providing a quick and simple workflow for setting up and animating characters.  Simply import your character in FBX format, create a rig or use the existing Unreal or Unity rigs then paint skin weights.  Once your character is configured, or if you imported an already rigged character, it is time to begin animating.  If you are used to Max, Maya or Blender’s animation workflow, you will find akeytsu’s approach to be much more streamlined.

It is available on a fully functioning 30 day trial available here.  There are perpetual and subscription based pricing options for both professional and indie (>100K revenue) studios, as well as education licenses available. 

Learn more and check out akeytsu in action in the video below.

Art


10. August 2019


With the release of Blender 2.8, there is a ton of interest in using Blender 2.8 with Godot.  The process of importing/exporting has always been one of the biggest challenges for game developers and the newest version of Blender 2.8 is no exception.  We already created a step by step tutorial on creating, texturing and animating a model in Blender 2.79 and successfully import it to Blender.  This video is slightly different, in that we are going to be looking at the options available to export from Blender 2.8. 

There are three primary options available, each with their advantages and disadvantages:

  • COLLADA
  • glTF
  • FBX

In this video we look at the process with each format when using Blender 2.8.  For this example we use the model Laiku freely available on Sketchfab, that is non-trivial, fully textured and simply animated.  Please also note that FBX import to Blender requires Godot 3.2 which is as of writing in development still.  If you don’t want to build Godot yourself, you can get nightly builds here.

Art Design


6. August 2019


Today we are checking out the web based tool, the Universal LPC Sprite Sheet Character Generator, a free tool that enables you to quickly and easily create multi angle animated character sprite sheets.  The LPC in the name stands for Liberated Pixel Cup a contest/organization on OpenGameArt for creating open source 2D pixel art in a consistent style.  You can browse the entire content of LPC assets right here.  The assets on LPC and generated by this tool are available under split open source licenses, the CC BY-SA 3.0 and GPLv3.


The Sprite Sheet Generator enables you to quickly compose characters by selecting a male or female base sprite, then customizing dozens of attributes and accessories, such as eyes, hair style, clothing and weapons.  While the UI isn’t amazing, the process is remarkably straight forward, as shown in the following video.

Art GameDev News


5. August 2019


Sketchfab, the online 3D model repository, just got several new features this year at SIGGRAPH.  Major new features of Sketchfab include:

Unfortunately the Sketchfab Blender plugin (previously featured here) hasn’t been ported to Blender 2.80 yet.  Learn more about the update and see the huge data set visualization in action in the video below.

Art GameDev News


1. August 2019


Autodesk have announced new Indie version of their popular 3DS Max and Maya DCC applications.  These are full versions, not subset’s like Maya LT, their other indie focused offering.  They do however come with some strings attached.  The new version (3DS in this case) is described as follows:

Autodesk 3ds Max Indie is the same industry-standard product used by professional studios, at a price point accessible to those who are just starting out. If you are a recent graduate or freelancer with less than USD$100,000/year in revenue, you can get started now. Please note that this is a limited-time offer.

The revenue limit is not the only limitation:

  • Your annual gross revenue from design work must be less than USD$100,000/year
  • Only one license can be used per user or organization
  • Offer is only eligible to those based in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK or the US

There is also one very big gotcha people should be aware of:

Note: In order to avoid an automatic renewal at the full subscription price of 3ds Max, you must turn off the automatic renewal once you subscribe to 3ds Max Indie. In order to turn off the automatic renewal setting, you must go to your Autodesk Account, and follow the instructions posted here. This offer is subject to certain restrictions.

So, if you do not turn off automatic rebilling, you could get hit for a VERY nasty surprise on your credit card in a years time, as you get charged for the full, non-indie version of Max or Maya!

It is a huge savings for those that qualify and it will be interesting to see if the deal expands to other markets or is offered beyond this year.  Have Autodesk noticed a new market between students and full professionals, or are they facing pricing pressure for alternatives like Blender?  Or perhaps it’s a bit of both?

You can learn more about the programs here (3DS Max) and here (Maya).

Art GameDev News


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