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slipster70
07-27-2006, 04:48 PM
It is used so much in the game industry in comparison to LW.
Why?
(Not trying to start a flame thread here, just wondering why Max would be SO superior to LW for gaming pipelines.)
Most people who use both seem to prefer LW's modeler.
Does it come down to the uv mapping?
Or edge selection?
(Which I know LW9 now has but... edges w/ no chamfer tool??)

Thanks!

slipster70

ThirdEye
07-27-2006, 05:01 PM
UV editing, poly modeling, lots of plugins available, normal maps generation, CAT and Character Studio, Reactor for the dynamics and it's already present in many pipelines.

Gwot
07-27-2006, 05:16 PM
Max was there offering solutions to game developers years ago, and yes, tools like character studio and cat are a major reason why it dominates games today. The very first implementation of the skeletal animation system for the unreal engine was built around character studio's biped. That stuff has been there for years now as the fastest and only solution of its kind, so naturally developers have built their pipelines up around them. This iis probably a huge reason why Avid bought CAT recently.

LW is only just now getting proper edge tools - something max has had since version 1 and LW still lags behind in many important areas like UV tools and rigging/weighting and animation workflows. It's pretty clear why the the games market is dominated by apps like that. It has always been about the basic core tools in games work and not about rendering - that's what our game engines are for. Sure, you can still use LW for that stuff, but it's not about whether you can or you can't. Game developers only care about how fast it lets you get things done.

Not here to flame either. Just to state the obvious. Having worked the first half of my career using max, I had many issues with using LW for games work in comparison when I moved over to it.

Buzzoff
07-27-2006, 08:24 PM
Another reason was that everyone and their dog had a pirated copy of Max. That gave you a huge talent pool to pull from with no need for training. Along with the other game related feature of the program. I still can't believe how entrenched it was since it was a bastard step-son of Autocad at the beginning and a crappy 3d program. It has grown up pretty good.

richcz3
07-27-2006, 08:43 PM
Many many years ago (late Lightwave 5.6 era) we had a meeting at the LA Lightwave users group. A developer (Mark?) from Interplay showcased an upcoming Star Trek title that was produced using Lightwave. Everything from the cinematics to the models in game. Aside from extollling all the positive sides it appeared to be the last time I ever heard that a game was produced almost entirely with Lightwave.

Looking back that was a time when Lightwave still had a notable grip on a number TV productions and there were many a small studios producing for a variety of shows. Maybe it's too easy to chalk up to NT's indifference, but most of the more notable studios have long since closed as have the TV shows they were once producing.

On a side note there is http://www.beyondvirtual.com/
The game engine uses Native LWO and LWS. Bones, Weights, motions and more.

yog
07-27-2006, 09:09 PM
Don't forget, it wasn't to version-6 that UV mapping was introduced into LW, and it was very basic at the time (even more basic than now). Add to that, no edge tools till LW-9, and the (grudgingly admitted) excellent Character Studio for MAX, and there has till now been a major gulf in basic tools until reciently.
As mentioned elsewhere, once a company has an established pipeline built around a main 3D program, it is not good enough for the competition to be "as good" to provoke a change, or even just slightly better, it will need to be much better to justify the considerable outlay in software and the R&D needed.

Another reason was that everyone and their dog had a pirated copy of Max. That gave you a huge talent pool to pull from with no need for training.Whilst undoubtably true, it is nowhere close to being as important as the lack of game related tools in Lightwave pre-LW6.
As games and modding is a major attraction to the majority of those who would likely look for cracked software, would Lightwave not have been more pirated if it had been the de rigur game creating software for the industry, because I know there have been cracked versions of Lightwave for as long (if not longer) than MAX has been in existance.

Sbowling
07-28-2006, 04:23 AM
It is used so much in the game industry in comparison to LW.
Why?

Simple answer... It's better.

RobertoOrtiz
07-28-2006, 04:36 AM
Thanks to all who have keep the discussion on track so far. The following rant is for those who are not playing square.

<<FORUM LEADER HAT WAY OFF>>

Ok credentials first:
I love Softimage, Started leaning Maya at the University of Maryland when it was in version 1.0 and I am learning Zbrush right now and I have gone to every AGWA meeting since 1998. Anyone in ANY OTHER FORUM in cgtalk will tell you I am application agnostic, not only in my plugs, but in my moderation.


Ok having said that...



Right now in the LW CG talk forum we have 2 kinds of people:

Those who actually do come here to share, look for feedback and try to improve the program (Hell even complain about it)
An example of a great thread on this vein is :Your LW 9 Reviews / Feelings (http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?t=383978)
And those who have provided a smart discourse in this thread so far.
And those that I call the "Hit and Runners" that throw Molotov cocktails into a forum to see what burns. usually they have a BIG axe to grind with the program.

See previous post for a perfect example of category II. (Hell, while there take a Polaroid)
I mentioned a while back in another thread the concept of TONE for the forum.
Tone is the kind of thing that kills forums very quickly. Don't believe me? Ask anyone about how this forum was a year and a 1/2 ago.


Honestly to the molotov throwers, what the heck do you want?


Guys, if you like another program, just GO, and leave the forum alone.
Shade01 who is one hell of a good mod, said it best on this thread:

Do I Really Need To Say This? (http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?t=162171)
-R

duke
07-28-2006, 07:16 AM
It seems like new features in Max, pre-5/6 (veered more towards TV and film related requests) were answering the call of mainly game-related feature requests, where Lightwave catered towards the TV crowd, so it's more due to the nature of the features of the two programs aswell as history more than anything else.

Was it 3dsmax4 that came out the same time as LW6? Let's see, with LW6 we got (I'm rusty on remembering features of a single release here so feel free to add):

-completely new interface
-radiosity + renderer improvements (48bit vs. the 32bit LW5 I think)
-volumetrics
-UV mapping

3dsmax4?:
-new or first version of character studio
-integration of DirectX shaders and other viewport tweaks aimed at the game dev crowd
-new UV tools (the automatic flatten/atlas mapping type thing)

Again, I may have this wrong according to these specific versions, but my point remains the same - new features of both programs were aimed at different markets, which only served to strengthen their presence in that particular market.

mlmiller1983
07-28-2006, 07:29 AM
Lightwave had been used in the PS2 game "Shadow of the Colossus". Check out this link: http://www.dyingduck.com/sotc/making_of_sotc.html

Eclyps19
07-28-2006, 11:36 AM
I'm pretty sure LW was used to create Doom3 as well. Not sure how much it was used, but it was used for atleast modeling and animating the monsters... i think... i'll look into it.

ThirdEye
07-28-2006, 01:16 PM
I'm pretty sure LW was used to create Doom3 as well.

yes, i heard that too

Gwot
07-28-2006, 02:34 PM
Max 4 saw a major rewrite of its bone and IK system. Character studio had been around since at least version 2 if I remember correctly. Before that I was using Bones Pro so it gets a little hazy for me beyond that. But as of version 4 and up there was definitely a significant focus towards game tools.

Chaduke
07-28-2006, 02:34 PM
A big part of it is game engine support for your 3D application, ie. pipeline. I've evaluated several 3D engines and very few have direct support for Lightwave models. In many cases you'll have a plug-in or script that a member of the community has written to export the models to the engine's native format, and most of the time the most complete, stable, and feature rich version is the one written for 3ds Max. Or quite often the engine developer has written a 3DS Max exporter from the start because they figured the most people who are creating game models are using Max anyways so that's what they focused on. If you really want to use Lightwave you'll either have to write the exporter yourself or wait for someone in the community to do it.
This is not always the case but it represents the majority of what I've seen. The way that it could change is if either Newtek itself or a group of programming capable Lightwave enthusiasts make a concentrated effort to develop good support for new game engines as they appear. Now that Autodesk owns both 3DS Max and Maya I would imagine there would be even more of a reason to support Max since it looks like they're going to be pushing Max more in the games direction and Maya more in the visual imagery direction, so less programmers would be working on Maya exporters, but I could be way off on this. Maya actually has some pretty nice tools for creating game models in its current state.

A great example of a company/program moving in the right direction for games is Avid/Softimage. They appear to be going very much out of their way to support game developers.

Kruvi
07-28-2006, 04:30 PM
I'm pretty sure LW was used to create Doom3 as well. Not sure how much it was used, but it was used for atleast modeling and animating the monsters... i think... i'll look into it.

Yep, as far as I know it used LWO for every static object, not sure if weapons/characters were modeled in LW.
Animating was Maya though.
I know I messed around with it myself quite a bit - Getting objects ingame was really easy because you could just drag and drop basically, but in other areas you still needed to put in quite a bit of work (don't forget doom3 also used high res versions of each ingame object for normalmapping)

I know Deus Ex(which is one fantastic game if I may add) used quite a bit of Lightwave as well.

But as already previously said. It hasn't really managed to get into it in a large scale after 3d max provided so much for the overall community and pipeline.
I'm sure a lot of it is just down to traditions and the fact that changes are always difficult.
Just as so many people use the Ipod? (okay this is probably an awful comparison)

I do believe lightwave can have a great workflow in many areas. But it's the ones it lacks in that make developers still choose 3d max. You know how it works and you know what it can do. Changing the program for the production pipeline can be a step into the darkness.

I'm sure there will be more titles in the future applying a bit more of lightwave now - especially if Newtek actually started working a bit more thowards it themselves as well (plugins, more support and other improvements already brought up previously)

My .2 cents anyways :thumbsup:

PetterSundnes
07-28-2006, 04:56 PM
As far as i know all the Burnout games by Criterion was done in LW, both in-game models and cinematics. Regarding Doom3 and LW I got the impression that it was used by some subcontractors to supply normalmapped models to Id Software. Microwave was used for generating normalmaps from high-res models. I think its really strange that LW hasnt been used more than it has for low-poly work, seeing how 3ds-co-workers struggle with invalid geometry and corrupted modifier stacks. In LW a polygon is a polygon regardless of how many "-gons" it is. Right now i think it is important for LW to open up and support industry standards such as collada and full script access to any element, based on allready available script engines such as javascript and python. Snapping in Layout and XML formats all the way and it might get even more attractive.

peteb
08-10-2006, 01:09 PM
Burnout was done in Lightwave. The last I heard EA was going to force them to use Maya but that was last year and I think it's all changed again. Funny enough they might be moving to Max.


Pete B

PetterSundnes
10-08-2006, 09:47 PM
I just came across this on gamespot:

http://www.gamespot.com/pages/gamespace/index.php?pid=935941

http://image.com.com/gamespot/images/2006/275/935941_20060921_screen019.jpg

http://image.com.com/gamespot/images/2006/275/935941_20060921_screen020.jpg

ztreem
10-09-2006, 09:46 AM
I think every model in Doom 3 was made with Lightwave. Other games made with Lightwave is Black and Serious sam 1 & 2 and I also think Massive entertainment(Ground control,World in conflict) using Lightwave for games( or have used Lightwave before). If I remeber right I think the intro movie for Killzone was made with Lightwave aswell. Look at this trialer, I think it's made with lightwave or partly done with LW.http://www.worldinconflict.com/trailer.html

Rod Seffen
10-09-2006, 11:28 AM
THis doens't require any discussion, it's quite a simple answer - LW has long been a better modeling app than max, but max is better at everything else required for game asset creation.
This is why when LW is used at all in games, it is used only for modeling (Serious Sam, UT, Doom 3)
There are usally never any export plugins available for layout when it comes to modding for game engines, while a lot of game engines can use the lwo format directly.
In short, game developers have long been happy with modeler and lwo, but they hate layout, it's quite telling that huge game companies like Epic and id have bought Lw just to use modeler, and the reason more game developers have not used modeler as well, is because they probably don't feel it's worth buying LW just for modeler, so they do the modeling using whatever app they're doing everything else with.
If only layout had been up to standard with character animation and rigging, easily using mo cap etc, Lightwave could have been a big player in the gaming scene.

webhead
10-09-2006, 04:17 PM
Here is the Project List from Newtek's own site which lists, among other things, games in which Lightwave had a part in to one extent or the other:

http://www.newtek.com/lightwave/projects.php

alex-7
10-09-2006, 06:34 PM
Massive entertainment(Ground control,World in conflict) using Lightwave for games( or have used Lightwave before).[/url]

yes that's right they used LW and modo , Modo for 90% modeling!
and they used LW's particles also :)

I think they rendered in LW.

but they still use LW and Modo for level designing.

for more read this
http://www.architosh.com/news/2006-08/2006a0825_modo-wic-game.html (http://www.worldinconflict.com/trailer.html)

and this discussion
[url]http://forum.massive.se/viewtopic.php?t=6967

:beer:

Cageman
10-10-2006, 07:08 AM
yes that's right they used LW and modo , Modo for 90% modeling!
and they used LW's particles also :)

I think they rendered in LW.

but they still use LW and Modo for level designing.

for more read this
http://www.architosh.com/news/2006-08/2006a0825_modo-wic-game.html

and this discussion
http://forum.massive.se/viewtopic.php?t=6967

:beer:

Pretty much correct!

The Cinematics-team have used LightWave, Modo, Motionbuilder and Maya but have ditched LightWave in favour to Maya. LightWave was, until recently, the main lighting/shading/rendering solution. The reasons for the switch are simple; there aren't enough talanted LightWave-artists around, and people who have learned XSI, Maya etc have genarally a hard time grasping the way LightWave works.

alex-7
10-10-2006, 09:40 AM
Hi Cageman ,

good to see one of Massive Entertainment guys here..

yeah the bad is there aren't enough talanted LightWave-artists.

I have a question please, what renderer did you used for the game trailer , LW?

alex-7
10-10-2006, 01:46 PM
Hi Cageman , glad to see you here

there aren't enough talanted LightWave-artists around

yeah that's right , many of them left or will leave LW , so bad.
LW cummunity is too small compared to Maya , XSI and others.

I have a question please , did you guys rendered the game trailer in LW or used another renderer for it?

Cageman
10-10-2006, 05:10 PM
This (http://www.worldinconflict.com/trailer.html) trailer was mainly rendered with LightWave. Some, if not most, of the smoke and fire effects were done in Maya. Most of the models were done in Modo, as I understand it (I didn't work here when that trailer was made).

Another thing to point out: Due to heavy use of special effects (which are done in Maya), it was troublesome to move data between the two packages (LightWave and Maya). Alot of things to troubleshoot rather than being creative. This is another reason to ditch LW, but Modo is used as the main modelling package (not without problems though).

Some other quirks about LW (Note: LW 8.2 was used) and before I had the chance to improve things alot... :(

*Displacements didn't work at all
*Normalmaps that sometimes rendered, sometimes did not
*Rendering was a pain to setup, esp. if rendering multipass
*Ambient Occlusion-plugin wasn't stable and crashed alot when rendering
*Bad motionblur

Having said that, we all know that LW has it's bad moments, but Rainmaker, Flash Film Works and several other companies continue to prove that LW is a good tool. But it seems that it is not for everyone...

We now have two MEL-scripting "robots" ;) that solves most issues in Maya pretty fast. If it weren't for them, we would possibly be in some serious "work-around-this-limitation" trouble later on. They have made some fantastic scripts that really have helped us, and will continue to help us further.

Ohh.. and I am a Happy LW-user on evenings and weekends... :)

T4D
10-11-2006, 02:35 AM
apart from Game intro's clips ( which LW is still playing apart )

the reason Max and maya and XSI ( in a small way) now playing a bigger part then LW
is the fact all those developers when targeting the game indusrty
really did Change AND develop real working tools directly for the game industry.
and gave exsamples of content & Level design export plugins showing the system working.
newtek have not done this at any stage. ( i even remeber a NT game modeling tutorial but it left out the issue of exporting the model ?? )

I know for while a developer here was using Maya then just used Max to get the data in the game engine, afew months of that,.. a programer finally sat down and wrote they own maya plugin after viewing Alias doc's on the subject.

It seem NT hears the story "game developers just write they own export plugins" stop.

which is not true, XSI and Max i know have a service for this isssue and Maya has a few pdf files about it too. this clearly shows it can be done so users will spend time doing it themself or pay for it.
when your spend major $$$$ on a game project the tools need to work together and have a track record.

apart from modeling and intro renders. what has LW or Newtek done for the game industry ?

Hey they may be techicial issues as well, i know my commercial Wad and Map & Direct X export plugins all have issues. all find bigger issues as polygons and point count go up.

the fact the Dstorm own direct X plugin is a buggy and about a usefull as spam !!
must tell a developer somethink about LW ? when checking it out
man you should see XSI's direct X plugin and I read some users not liking it !!
but coming from LW it's pretty good.

but really the main fact is LW has major character animation issues,
why would you want to develop high level CA content in a package that isn't really good at it.?

alex-7
10-11-2006, 03:52 AM
Some other quirks about LW (Note: LW 8.2 was used) and before I had the chance to improve things alot... :(

*Displacements didn't work at all
*Normalmaps that sometimes rendered, sometimes did not
*Rendering was a pain to setup, esp. if rendering multipass
*Ambient Occlusion-plugin wasn't stable and crashed alot when rendering
*Bad motionblur

there were a free update to 8.5 it's more stable than 8.2.
and now LW9 can do these things without problems .. IMHO

alex-7
10-11-2006, 04:00 AM
ATTACK ,, ATTACK from T4D :D

why would you want to develop high level CA content in a package that isn't really good at it.?

I will say one thing buddy , just remove LIGHTWAVE from your list (signature), but if you love Lightwave it's your choice :)

T4D
10-11-2006, 04:28 AM
ATTACK ,, ATTACK from T4D :D



I will say one thing buddy , just remove LIGHTWAVE from your list (signature), but if you love Lightwave it's your choice :)

:twisted: :D

I'm still happy make $$ using LW 9 render and fprime
On my current job i found LW 9 camera 50% quicker to render then the old lw 8 one
when rendering a 127 meg OBJ.

lightwave has some joy for me, as long as i don't animate with it, I'm happy :thumbsup:

alex-7
10-11-2006, 07:49 AM
you make happier now , :)
and best luck with rendering :thumbsup:

CaptRuss
10-11-2006, 09:43 PM
Hoo Boy. Most of the answers here are mostly on track.....mostly. But the real reasons lie deep in the past. Try Max 1.1 and 3DStudio DOS. when I entered the game industry in 1992, 3D was a buzzword still. The only 3D aps worth their salt at the time, other than the way too expensive Power Animator and Wavefront, was 3DS DOS and Lightwave 2 or so.
No bones, no UVs. Very few games had true 3d, most were faking it with voxels.
Plus consoles just didn't have the power. Then the Playstation was announced and 3D engines on the console level became possible. Due to lightwave's existence still more or less on the dying Amiga and requireing windows 3.1 (crashy McCrasherson) we (at the time) used 3DS dos to start developing models and so on for the PSone. Then 3DS Max 1 came out. All the programmers flocked to it, because unlike before, it had a well documented SDK, and was highly extensible. Out came an endless supply of new plugins, especially those that would send data right to the dev. station's format.

That year, lightwave got...bones.

While Max 1 and 1.1 were the most crash prone applications I've ever worked with, the fact that the project coders could whip up tools that would plug into their process cemented it as the permanent choice for game development, despite the art department proffessing our preference for Lightwave. I'm sure similar scenes were played out across the entire industry in similar timeframes.

erikals
10-12-2006, 10:51 AM
+Surface Baker is buggy, needs an update. (Camera Baking isn't quite the same, lacks the old options)

angel
10-12-2006, 01:51 PM
Interesting thread, however, I'm surprised no one has said that educational institutions also share part of the reason LW isn't used much in games, granted they try to teach what it is used in the industry but my experience is that most professors do have an axe to grind or are flat out ignorant (not saying ALL professors dom just the ones I have talked to).

I have heard of the following:

-is LW still alive?
-who uses LW these days?
-You can see polygon edges when upclose... (couldn't belive this guy was teaching)
-LW can do that?
-I thought LW was sold to Luxology

the list goes on and on

I'm not trying to defend LW or NT shortcomings, just bringing to the table that Autodesk can afford deep discounts to educational institutions, in exchange they get a userbase that will feel uncomfortable using anything else. Students tend to use what they have learned in college. They see no reason to use anything else.

chikega
10-12-2006, 03:40 PM
I agree with Angel. You can them hooked when they're young.

Here where I live, SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design) is the largest art school in the nation (7,300 students) and it's pretty much an Autodesk breeding ground with a little Houdini thrown into the mix.

Lyr
10-12-2006, 04:39 PM
While Max 1 and 1.1 were the most crash prone applications I've ever worked with, the fact that the project coders could whip up tools that would plug into their process cemented it as the permanent choice for game development, despite the art department proffessing our preference for Lightwave. I'm sure similar scenes were played out across the entire industry in similar timeframes.

This the main reason right here why a package will get used for a game project. It has to be extensible enough to build an effecient and robust pipeline to the target application on the target hardware. Game development is software development, so you need software development tools. Lightwave is less suited for software development due to it's obtuse SDK, this may be changing but I doubt it is anywhere near the level of Maya or Max. Now this isn't to say you can't develop games with Lightwave, you clearly can. Just remember it's not really about what the artist wants to use so much as what the programmer can get out of the application with the least amount of hassle.

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