3-D modeling/animation apps

Posts: 608
Joined: 2002.04
Post: #31
igame3d Wrote:Uh, Josh, do you think, if you are going to take the time to make an lame comment, even in jest, you can take the time to answer the question?

[more characters]
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Post: #32
Ingemar Wrote:That's one of the intentions, or at least dreams, to make games where the kids can be involved in the creation. I don't really believe that they will do the coding soon, but they can do other things...

...for example 3D modelling, if the program was really intuitive (back on the thread!)... but that would be quite a killer 3D modeller!

Something like this perhaps? Grin
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Post: #33
Oh damn, now I have to try and remember that other "kid friendly" 3D app.
wracking brains

This isn't it but its FREEDAZ Studio

Disney had a 3D thing a few years a back. Now if only Marvel could have an app like that.

Aha found it Curious Labs' MagicalSketch2 Not the greatest thing in the world, but its on that path of "3D even kids can do".

While googling for the last 30 minutes or so I found CYGAD a resource of much 3D stuff.
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Posts: 1,142
Joined: 2002.04
Post: #34
Ah, how did I miss this thread? And one of the "Gurus" pops up no less!

In Japan, one of the modt widely used 3D apps is Shade3D:

It comes in varous versions from "hobbyist" to "stuff you see in PS1/2 games."

The company went through some changes (was Expression Tools). Seems like they own Curious Labs now (E-Frontier). See: http://www.curiouslabs.com/

I suppose with the above M&A, they now truly support English (they use to support a English version "somewhat" from out of Japan). See this page:

If you happen to own Poser, then you can get some discounts, like $149 for Shade3D Standard:

I recommend you check out the free trial version of Shade3D Designer LE:

In a nutshell, Shade3D has always been known for (1) fast rendering (2) character modeling.

Next, I'd like to introduce you to another Japanese 3D app that has been around forever. It started as shareware, and back in OS 7 days, you could get a Mac version in English (http://www.shusaku.co.jp/hexa/index.html). Here is the Japanese page:
The Japanese name is "å…*角大王Super4". Can't recall who it is, but there is a BIG fan of this app some place in this community, perhaps Dan L.? What is way cool about the latest version of this app is how easy it is to make a (human) character. Now, that isn't such a big deal, since Poser has that covered. What is great is that the models are low-polygon count -- perfect for games!

There are a few ways to model, but one which is at the hearts is the "outline" mode. i.e. You draw the outline of the characters face and move on. See this page for some screenshots:

Coolf stuff.

Moving on to the US, I'd like to put a plug in (pun intended) for my "3D app of choice", Strata 3D.
I've been a user since Stratavision (yeah, the Myst app), endured the terrible Strata Pro 3D 2.x days, and now see Strata 3D CX doing great again:

What I like about Strata is:
* Learning curve on ALL 3D apps is steep -- Strata has always been more gentle though
* Good rendering (and fast)
* Good GUI

Of course it hasn't been always great at doing character animation. But, if I were to recommend a "Swiss Army Knife" of 3D apps, that doesn't cause you to sell a kidney, Strata 3D would be the one. One other cool thing is the community (http://www.stratacafe.com/), where you can find lots of nice textures/models for free. I don't mean low-quality junk either. Some really nice resources there! One other consideration is that you can get the Win AND Mac bundle for $795.00. That costs less than many apps in its class for just one platform! In summary, if you are time pressed, and need to bang out nice 3D app, take a look at Strata 3D.

Not sure if it was mentioned, but if you love Mac OS X, but want to do 3D, yet don't want to use a PC, you might want to look at: http://www.pixels3d.com/ I've been told it is kind of like using Softimage and 3D Max on the Mac. The developer donated to uDevGames in the past. I wish the winner of that prize would send us a review! Also, some of the uDevGames 2004 winners won iModeller. It sure would be nice if they would send me a review on this app! Also, some have won Carrara in the past, so it would also be neat to get some reviews on that app.


Carlos A. Camacho,
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Posts: 461
Joined: 2002.09
Post: #35
igame3d Wrote:One has to presume the Ingemar is Ingemar Ragnemalm. Who can be tracked down via Google

Not to dis' the guy, but in over 20 years of using the Mac I've not heard of him or any of his work before this thread.

That's ok, he's never heard of you either.


Measure twice, cut once, curse three or four times.
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Post: #36
Yep. Its me, Carlos.

I remember burning hours with it when it was Rokakku Daioh (sp?) They seem determined to make it impossible to buy in America though.


"Yes, well, that's the sort of blinkered, Philistine pig-ignorance I've come to expect from you non-creative garbage."
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Post: #37
Carlos Camacho Wrote:Also, some of the uDevGames 2004 winners won iModeller. It sure would be nice if they would send me a review on this app!

I am one of these people, though I haven't played around with it enough to give a whole review. My initial impressions after playing around for an hour are:
1) To take pictures, you have to get a tripod and do a bit of work setting things up, which at least is a one-time thing but fairly time-consuming.
2) It takes a really long time to clean up the photographs you take in order to get them turned into a model by iModeler. The image processing algorithms used to detect the object from the background are not great, and if you miss any tiny specks it will screw up your final model.
3) The texture generated is automatically mapped so there's no way you could possibly edit it if you wanted to use your own texture. You would need to re-texture the model in some 3D app, so there's some more extra time.
4) However, if you go through all these steps, the application does give very good representations of the original object you took a picture of. So it's really only worth it if you want to make a project with realistic models (and even then, you're screwed if you wanted to do something like bump-mapping, because again the texture is automatically generated, so you'd have to re-texture.)

Because of these limitations, I haven't played around with it extensively.
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Post: #38
Josh - funny, Id never heard of the GIYF acronym - so I googled it and voila.

Carlos - great links for a couple of interesting 3d apps I didnt know about. Thanks!
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Post: #39
>That's ok, he's never heard of you either.
I motion for that comment to be placed in our "Hall of Great Whit." I was on the ground, and lost my Point Of View, when I came upon that -- kudos to Matt for always making the mood light.

phydeaux, thanks for that quick run-down. Hopefully, once the site starts back up again, you can look at our past reviews of 3D apps and add one on iModeller.

I wanted to mention something, that "will" be related to 3D modeling, but at the moment is a tad OT. Today, I read this story on my webphone about a scientist that has created a "DIY Hologram" kit for about $300. If you Google, you'll bound to come upon. In a nutshell, you use a diode laser to create the hologram of an object, say a small model car. But you need to use the laser to also recreate the 3D hologram. This scientist, who lives an breathes holograms at his "real company", feels that hsi next step will be to use a different type film, so you won't have to use the 2nd laser to re-create youur hologram, which means you can take your hologram with you!

OK, so what does this have to do with 3D? Well, 3D scanners are wicked expensive, and the "arm-type scanners", while cheaper (ie, in the realm of prosumer), take time to input all the coordinates. I thought, if there was some way to feed that data from a low cost laser that creates a hologram into a computer, wouldn't it mean the common 3d modeler could then start to "scan" all sorts of objects at increable resolution (not to mention the time savings)!

This might be yesterday news, but I was pretty impressed. Grin

Carlos A. Camacho,
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Posts: 260
Joined: 2005.05
Post: #40
PowerMacX Wrote:Something like this perhaps? Grin
Teddy seems like great fun for the kids. With some effort I managed to make the jar version run under OS9, but not OSX. OSX Jar launcher complains that the jar file is "invalid or corrupt".

My 7-year-old son tried it, and it was an interesting journey between enthusiasm and despair. The user interface is slightly challenging for a child, but it truly gives results in no time! My son drafted a "potato man", and when things worked well, he was so happy, but he was frustrated when it gave unexpected results.

He finds the name a little bit disturbing though... His name is Teodor, and he doesn't like when his schoolmates call him Teddybear. Smile
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Posts: 78
Joined: 2002.06
Post: #41
For those that are interested, there is a new Blender (http://www.blender3d.org) release. For the mass of new features and info see http://www.blender3d.org/cms/Blender_2_37.496.0.html

Two small things that will help budding modelers/animators are the turntable mode (camera behaves like wings -- sensibly; you can turn this on in the preferences), and transform widgets which are visible and easy to use.
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