MAX News Archive

Archived Plugin News  –  August 2003

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v1.09.03j are:
- Fixed the MAXScript parameters of the VRay material
- In VRay Advanced for Max 5 only, added a shortcut to the quad menu for the VRay object properties dialog
- In VRay Advanced for Max 5 only, added an initial version of a scene converter that takes all Standard and Cebas finalRender Stage-1 materials in the scene and converts them to VRay materials

Plugin Update: Atmospherics

Changes for v3.1 are:
- Particle Flow support added via PFlow-ABurn operator
- Documentation updated with Particle Flow information
- New fully automated authorization process DCPFLICS

Plugin Update: Modelling / Animation

Changes for v2.1 are:
- Dynamics bug fixes
- Dynamics - Move 'CG' to Pivot Point option
- Engine Space Warp bug fixes
- Sky - Enabled Scattering for 2D clouds
- Sea Material - Full Raytracing that respects opacity
- New fully automated authorization process DCPFLICS

Plugin Update: Render Effects

Changes for v1.1 are:
- Adds 'Restore Normal', 'Restore UV coordinates' and 'Restore Velocity' functions

Plugin Update: Animation

Changes for v1.5 are:
- Support for Hercules, Di-O-Matic's upcoming musculature plugin
- Improved vertex color support for more intuitive selections and visual feedback
- New Float licensing scheme
- New parametric controls to restrict with more precision your selection's influence
- More clusters being displayed in the user interface

Cluster-O-Matic is available for Max 3 to 5 and cost $149. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v3.0 include:
- Dramatically improved image quality by using Anisotropic filtered maps
- Object size culling for an improved performance
- Shape thickness and number of sides are now exported and rendered
- Introducing visibility track for an optimal control over object visibility
- Publish your VR4MAX model, the VR4MAX Render Engine and an extreme user friendly GUI into a single VR4MAX Exhibitor executable
- Render the contents of the 3D View window to an AVI file or a sequence of stills
- Record and play back complete VR4MAX virtual reality sessions
- VR4MAX Navigator Pro now also supports passive stereo
- Use XRef models for a better real-time performance and optimized work flow
- Insert VMX-files as an XRef into the current model
- HUD (Head-Up Display) Element objects allow you to display 2D messages and add 2D buttons to the 3D View
- Model Plan objects allow you to add a 2D plan of your model to the 3D View in which the current position of the avatar and/or other objects is displayed
- User-defined messages and events
- Compound actions allow you to combine multiple actions
- And more...

VR4MAX is available for Max 3 to 5 and prices start at €1500 (ca. $1650). A demo version is available here.

New Plugin: Texturing

GroundCrew is a plugin for creating many different types of procedural ground textures. GroundCrew ships with a total of 48 presets contained within a single procedural map. GroundCrew comes as a procedural map for Max 4.x and later. Because it is a procedural material map, it can be used in any part of a material that supports maps. So, even though GroundCrew is designed for creating various ground materials, you can use it in any way your imagination can take you. For example, use GroundCrew to create rust on an object or add bump mapping.

GroundCrew is available for Max 4 and 5, and costs $150. Digimation are offering it for $135 for a limited period of time.

Plugin News: psd-manager demo available...

cebas Computer GmbH have made a demo version of psd-manager 1.0 available for download. It works with Max 4 and 5, and can be downloaded here.

As a bonus for all Max 4 users it also contains a free copy of the cebas PSD importer. This importer supports all the latest Photoshop files with which the Max 4 PSD importer has trouble. It also loads PSD with many layers much faster. Max 5 doesn't need this PSD importer as it already has an improved one.

Plugin Update: Texturing

Changes for v1.01 are:
- Adds support for network rendering

Registered users can download the update from the User Page.

Plugin Update: Materials

Changes for v2.52 are:
- I've got no idea, but if I find out, I'll post it.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.1.9 are:
- Fix: Fixed a couple of major crashes
- Re-enabled 'Use Max's GUI colors' option
- Further enhanced dataview spinner behaviour
- Fix: On node delete datatree for that node now automatically closes
- Added option to turn off the datatree's auto-sizing algorithm
- Added an option to have all items auto-expand on refresh
- Added an option for a confirmation request before linking is performed through drag'n'drop
- Removed unnecesarry ParamBlock2 structures from datatree

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.1.8 are:
- Fixed l-button inside dataview crash
- Added interactive update while dragging spinners
- Fix: Dataview tree now resizes on expand/collapse of items inside it
- Added all common SE-Tree properties to Dataview trees
- Added object parameter list to the dataview
- Added better dataview spinner behaviour
- Added undo to dataview spinners
- Fix: Crash on open files that have missing bitmap/world unit change dialog
- Added 'Invert selection' right-click menu option
- Added undo to layer delete (refresh required)

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v2.0 are:
- Support for palm trees
- Trees with even smaller polygon counts
- Completely re-written foresting tool

SpeedTree 2.0 ships with a library of approximately 36 different tree species, each in 2 or 3 different resolutions and polygon counts to get you started. It is available for Max 4 and 5, and costs $295 until 31st August 2003, after which it will cost $395. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Paralelo Computação have updated all of their Fly3D import and export plugins to work with Release 2.04 of their Fly3D game engine.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.1.7 are:
- Added interactive spinners to all float-controllers for fast manipulation of data inside dataview
- Fix: Major crash fix when opening dataview after using it in another scene
- Fix: On group hide/freeze toggle, all nested groups are toggled as well
- Fix: Rotate icon displayed instead of scale icon in controller view
- Closed groups now have a square around the icon, open groups don't
- Grouped objects now highlighted with yellow color
- Max's UI colors are adopted for main window face, tree-background and tree text colors
- Added an option to auto-detect layer properties after layer manager is refreshed

Plugin News: Introducing Character Animation Toolkit...

Character Animation Technologies Ltd. have released information on their upcoming plugin Character Animation Toolkit (CAT).

CAT is a character animation system for Max 5.1 capable of rig creation and editing, parametric walkcycle generation, freeform animation, and motion capture import. Different animation tracks are combined and edited globally in an intuitive, non-linear animation system.

For more information on the feature set, take a look here. There is also a demo video here. A demo version will be available for download in a few weeks.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.1.6 are:
- Added filter by layer
- Fix: Filter selection now updates interactively
- Fix: Crash in dataview on double-click
- Added icons for different controllers
- Removed 'missing' controllers from RC menu
- Fix: added properties arrow to default layer
- Groups now stay open on refresh, with an option to stay closed in settings panel
- More space added to the layer panel's top
- Added filters to main menu
- Fix: Selected items stay selected after refresh

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.1.5 are:
- Added basic data-view structure option to each item as a separate hierarchy
- Added option to toggle data-view on/off from settings panel
- Added group members highlighting

Plugin Update: Modifiers

Changes for v1.2 are:
- Fixed isolated vertex crashes
- Support for AF Loft objects

Plugin Update: Texturing

Changes for v1.1 are:
- Fixed transition edges problem
- Support transition edges for any type of textures (Bump, Self-Illum, Opacity etc)

AF Pseudo Reflect is available for Max 3 to 5 and costs $14.99 A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Texturing

Changes for v1.1 are:
- Brick offset parameter
- Ignore disabled sub-materials

AF Tile is available for Max 3 to 5 and costs $24.99 A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Texturing

Changes for v1.1 are:
- Disable correction checkbox

AF Material Correct is available for Max 3 to 5 and costs $14.99 A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Post FX

Changes for v1.2 are:
- Fixed V-Ray rendering crashes
- Support camera clipping

AF Export Channels is available for Max 3 to 5 and costs $34.99 A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.1.4b are:
- Fix: Scene open, object create crash (major fix!)

Plugin Update: Post FX

Changes for v1.1 are:
- Optimized for pentium 4 extensions, so it is now roughly 2 times faster on Pentium 4 machines
- Now also works in combustion, Adobe Premiere 6.5, Adobe After Effects 5.x, and Digital Fusion 3.x/4.x
- Now allows sharing of your license between different platforms (eg Max and After Effects)

Fractal Flow is available for Max 4 and 5, and costs $195. An introductory price of $150 is available until August 31, 2003. Owners of Fractal Flow 1 can upgrade for $50. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.1.4 are:
- Added 'Edit material...' right-click menu option that opens material editor with current object's material
- Added selection filter that only filters objects that are currently selected and keeps them in SE window as long as they exist and the filter isn't turned off
- Added wildcard search engine
- Filters now applied to both- main tree and the layer manager
- Added status-bar info on object's name, material name, and polycount
- Implemented better middle-button scrolling algorithm
- Added select-by layer and object selection in layers, as well as an option to toggle this feature on and off
- Added 'Group to point helper' right-click menu option that creates a point helper and groups selected objects to it
- Fix: Faster selection in SE
- Fix: The information floating toolbar is now dockable to the left vertical toolbar
- Fix: Unhiding/unfreezing objects during hide/freeze filter will add those objects to SE
- Fix: Automatic update after material assignment
- Fix: Crash on item drag out of SE window
- Added properties menu option

New Plugin: Connection

BodyPaint 3D Release 2 offers hundreds of new features to give your objects the perfect outfit. The RayBrush-mode is a kind of its own. You can paint in 3D in a rendered image - but not only with a simple color. In combination with the MultiBrush you can paint in up to ten texture channels with just one brushstroke and see the results in the same moment you move the brush.

BodyPaint 3D's Projection Painting tool makes distortion-free painting a snap. This quick and easy tool lets you paint across UV seams or even multiple objects in a scene.

Two plugins, one for Max and one for BodyPaint 3D, offer a perfect connection between the two programs. Create your model in Max and apply a material. You may set up UVs in Max as well or use BodyPaint 3D's sophisticated tools to create UVs as perfect as the model you've built. The Setup Wizard in BodyPaint 3D now does the job for you of creating all the necessary texture maps and if desired automatically generated UVs with just three mouse clicks. This even works for multiple objects, groups or even hierarchies just the same. Now you're all set to start the paint job.

The complete layering system, tons of painting tools and filters and a fully featured rendering engine to see all your efforts in realtime makes texturing with BodyPaint 3D a pure pleasure.

BodyPaint 3D Release 2 is available for Max 4 and 5, and costs $695. A demo version is available here.