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11. December 2019


Although it has a misleading name, Godot Game Tools is a very cool Blender addon that makes working with Mixamo animations in Blender 2.8x extremely easy.  This includes the ability to easily import and merge multiple animations from Mixamo, an otherwise frustrating task.  Features of Godot Game Tools include:

- Batch Animations Bake In A Single File

- Character Armature Clean and Fixes for Better Export

- Animations Testing

- Add Automatic Root Motion For Model Export

- Automated NLA Tracks Insertion

- Animation Rename

Godot Game Tools is available as a free download on itch.io.  See GGT in action, including how to install, in the video below.

Art


10. December 2019


Autodesk have just released their annual update to Maya, Maya 2020.  Detailed release notes are currently unavailable so all we have to go off right now is the press release features:

Maya 2020 highlights include:

-- Over 60 animation features and updates to the graph editor and time slider.

-- Cached Playback: Experience faster animation playback and more predictable results with new preview modes, layered dynamics caching, and more efficient caching of image planes.

-- Animation bookmarks: Mark, organize, and navigate through specific events in time and frame playback ranges.

-- Arnold GPU: Access Arnold 6 for production rendering on the CPU and GPU.

-- Bifrost for Maya: Significant performance improvements, Cached Playback support, and new MPM cloth constraints bring even more power to the visual programming environment.

-- Viewport improvements: Interact with and select dense geometry or a large number of smaller meshes faster in the viewport and UV editors.

-- Modeling enhancements: Spend more time modeling and less time cleaning up your models, with new Remesh and Retopologize features.

-- Rigging improvements: Simplify rig and character TD work with matrix-driven workflows, nodes for precisely tracking positions on deforming geometry, and a new GPU-accelerated wrap deformer.

While not currently updated, you will eventually be able to download a 30 day trial of Maya 2020 here.  Additionally Autodesk have released a short 4min feature video for Maya 2020 available here.  You can learn more about this release in the video below.

Art GameDev News


27. November 2019


Humble are running a new bundle of interest to game developers, specifically 2D animators.  The Humble Software Bundle: 2D Animation is based around two key pieces of software, Crazytalk 8 Standard and Crazytalk Animator 3 Pro, both from RealIllusion.  As always the bundle is broken into tiers, the tiers of this bundle are:

1$

  • Face Filter 3
  • Makeup PRO

18$

  • CrazyTalk 8
  • Dress Up Show Time
  • Dress Up Work Wear
  • Stylized Classic Avatars
  • Garry Pye’s Comic Faces

25$

  • CrazyTalk Animator 3 PRO
  • G3 Animals Dogs
  • G3 Human Motions – Smooth Moves
  • G3 Animated Props – Fun Stuff
  • G3 Elastic Motions – Come and Go


With Humble Bundles you can decide how your funds are distributed, choosing between the developer, Humble, charity and if you so choose (and thanks if you do!) to support GameFromScratch if you purchase using this link.  Check out the video below for more details on the bundle.  Stay tuned for more hands-on content with CrazyTalk and CrazyTalk Animator in the near future!

GameDev News Art


21. November 2019


Only a few months after the massive Blender 2.80 release, the Blender foundation have just released Blender 2.81.  Blender is an open source 3D application that is gaining a ton of traction in both film and games media.  The 2.81 release brings several new features including several quality of life improvements such as outliner and file dialog modernization as well as excellent new features like vastly improved sculpting and grease pencil brushes.

Highlight features of interest for game developers in this release include:

  • Massively improve sculpting with new brushes, masking support, better usability and more
  • Poly Build tool for rapid polygon creation and editing, excellent for retopology
  • Quadriflow and Voxel remeshing
  • Improved and more powerful mirroring support
  • UI improvements including:
    • Outliner selection improvements, easy to select, multiselect and deselect objects
    • Modern file browser that opens in a floating dialog window
    • Powerful regex powered rename feature (F2 key)
  • Grease pencil improvements including several new brushes
  • Denoising improvements
  • NVIDIA RTX support for realtime raytracing in Cycles
  • and much, much more.

You can learn more about the release in the Blender 2.81 release notes available here.  Additionally CGCookie have put together a nice introduction to new features in this article.  Blender 2.81 is available for download here.

If you want to see Blender 2.81 in action, including the new Poly Build, sculpting tools, file dialog, outliner and more be sure to check out the video below.

Art GameDev News


15. November 2019


Tiled, the open source map editor, the open source map editor just released version 1.3, the first major release in almost a year.  Details of the 1.3 release from the release notes:

Scripted Extensions

The biggest change in this release is the introduction of the scripting API, which allows you to extend the functionality of Tiled with JavaScript. Scripts can implement custom actions, custom editing tools and add support for additional map or tileset formats.

Almost everything that can be modified through the UI can be changed through a script as well. Scripts can also connect to certain events to automate actions, for example on loading or saving an asset. Any changes made by scripts automatically create appropriate undo commands, which can be grouped together using the Asset.macro function.

Scripts can be grouped in folders to make it easier to share them with others, for example by cloning a git repository into the extensions folder. Tiled automatically reloads the scripts when it detects a change to any loaded script file.

Issues View

A new “Issues” view was added, where reported warnings and errors are displayed persistently and can be searched. Many of the issues reported here can also be double-clicked to jump to the relevant location for fixing the issue. The error and warning counts are displayed on the status bar to make sure they don’t go unnoticed.

While Tiled may encounter many issues of itself, for example when AutoMapping or exporting to certain formats, issues can also be reported through the scripting API. This could be used to add sanity checks to make sure your map won’t trigger an error in your game.

Configurable Keyboard Shortcuts

The keyboard shortcuts of most actions can now be changed from the new Keyboard tab in the Preferences. Shortcut schemes can be imported and exported and potential conflicts are marked in red.

New Update Notifications

Tiled now features a native up-to-date check, which displays an unobtrusive notification in the status bar whenever it detects that a newer version is available. This replaces the previously used 3rd-party solutions Sparkle and WinSparkle. For those who don’t want it, it can be turned off in the Preferences, in which case you can still manually check for a new version by opening the “About Tiled” dialog.

The new system does not automatically download & install the new package. For automatic updates, I recommend installing Tiled through the itch.io app.

Be sure to check the full release notes for an in-depth change log.  You can learn more about this release in the video below.  Additionally we have done a complete tutorial series that will get you up and running with Tiled.

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