3DS Max vs Maya

Sage
Posts: 1,066
Joined: 2004.07
Post: #1
As of now, for Macs we must use Maya because there is currently no 3DS Max for Maya. My first question: is there any information pointing to a possible Mac version of 3DS Max? Second, who has used both of these programs and which one, in your opinion, is better for making video game content?
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Moderator
Posts: 916
Joined: 2002.10
Post: #2
there is VERY little chance of 3dsm coming to the mac, also, lightwave is another high end solution that is pretty good.
the models in DOOM 3 and Halo 2 were done in Maya.
but in all reality, I would stick to cheap software packages if you are just starting out.
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Post: #3
I haven't heard even a whisper of a hint that 3dsMax will ever be available on the Mac. I haven't used 3ds Max but I have used the learning edition of Maya extensively and read a lot of documentation on it and I can say it's the bomb! When I have a few grand extra laying around, I can guarantee I'll buy it.

As for which one is better? Well, I found a list a couple of years ago of who uses what and I found a list of game companies looking for employees and the qualifications break down roughly like this:

10% require Lightwave experience
50% require 3d Studio Max experience
40% require Maya experience

For other statistics I seem to recall - probably a good third of them required experience with more than just one of them. Another third mentioned familiarity with more obscure packages like Cinema or Strata. But mostly everyone was looking for 3d Studio Max for games with Maya coming in a close second. That was a couple years ago when I researched that so things could be quite different now.

After researching the rendering capabilities between the two back then I came to the solid conclusion that Maya was really the better product all around. 3ds Max has been around longer but it was astonishing to me the flow of customers willing to switch to Maya in the short time they had been around.

[edit] BTW, and totally offtopic. For those of you who may be reading your local newspaper here in the US, a new study was published that ranks El Paso as the least literate city nation wide. I just got back from McDonald's and I can personally vouch for the accuracy of that report! Mad
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Sage
Posts: 1,066
Joined: 2004.07
Post: #4
Right now I'm thinking about using Cheetah3D or Blender (if I can figure it out) to make 3D content. Why is there little chance of a Mac version of 3DSM? I think Halo 2 content was made in 3DSM (according to Discreet's website) but that's just a minor detail. I'm just curious because I tried a 3DSM demo when I still had windows and I have a Maya demo on my Mac and 3DSM seemed to be better for characters because of the ragdoll scripts and character studio. If I'm wrong or mislead please let me know.
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Member
Posts: 715
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Post: #5
Studio Max would need a total re-write to come to Mac, and Lightwave, Cinema4D, Strata and Maya have the market cornered at the high end, 3DSM would fall on its face.

If you get TurboSquid emails you will see that everything you ever wanted to do with 3DSM is an additional $500 to $1000 plug-in. It gives me the impression that the application is useless unless you've got unlimited funds.

Look into what Kaydara is offering as far as file format. Adobe, Intel, IBM, etc, etc are planning a universal 3D format (yeah another format) from application, to games, to web , etc.

One thing is for sure, if you want a game dev job, you have to know some software that you can't learn without spending alot of money, or resorting to crime (as so many 3DSM PC users do)
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Sage
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Post: #6
Are ragdolls possible in Maya without going through joint by joint and testing and trying out angles for limitations (I know. I'm one of the laziest people.)? My problem with it is just the time consuming process of figuring out the angles and then setting them.
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Post: #7
I don't know how ragdolls work in 3dsm but the character animation tools in Maya are quite extensive. If you have the demo then find the tutorial pdf and look towards the skeletal animation section. I haven't messed with it in a long time so I don't know how much of it has changed but I assume it's still in the tutorial. The mesh deformers, joint constraints, and skin weights are very easy to use. Latice deformations are also possible for facial animations. As I recall, there wasn't much they left out. The animation tools are incredible.

Another thought about these programs. One of the biggest problems with the bad-boy programs like Maya and Max is that as developers we often need access to their underlying scripting and plug-in systems to decide wether or not we can use them. I know that's why I ultimately decided against finally purchasing Maya. I didn't have the opportunity to work with the Maya API to see how hard it would be to use it with my own engine because they don't allow that in the demo. Ultimately, this restriction may cost Alias a sale unless I get lucky with a wad of cash falling in my lap. In reality, we as developers spend a large part of our time finding ways around reliance upon financially restrictive options like Maya and Max. Like iGame3d pointed out, we often don't have unlimited supplies of cash at our disposal. Kind of reminds me of Bill and Ted. "To be a successful band we need a righteous video, and we need Eddie Van Halen to make a righteous video, but we have to be a successful band to get Eddie Van Halen!"
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Sage
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Joined: 2004.07
Post: #8
So to slightly change the original intent of the thread, when looking at Maya, is Unlimited worth the extra 5-6 thousand dollars (when making games)? Sure, hair, water, fur, and cloth are nice but are they need when making a game?
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Post: #9
Not unless you have a massive budget and you expect to make greater that $50K on the games you make with Maya within the first 12 to 24 months.
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Member
Posts: 157
Joined: 2002.12
Post: #10
Maya is pretty solid, when I try 3ds I felt the interface was very bad and not intuitive.
I'm not an expert on 3ds, but I heard they have a lot of plugins good for game dev.
I guess you have to try each one and see which you feel more confy with.

I use cinema 4D great tools, good price, and very easy to use.
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Post: #11
Maya Unlimited? Depends on what five or six grand is to you. I know people that make fourty grand a month and they fart in the general direction of worrying about such annoyances, they'd just buy it and worry about its worth later.

Really though, I don't know if it's worth it for game dev. Maybe for making bitchin' cut scenes, but somehow I doubt the usefulness for low-polygon count scenes. Hard to say, I don't have that kind of cash to find out. Do you? If I was going to take out some sort of loan to start a game dev house I wouldn't lean that way if that's what you mean.
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Member
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Joined: 2003.04
Post: #12
Yeah Anark has a special offering combining
Cinema4D and Anark Studio for one price, pretty good deal if you've money to burn.
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