View Full Version : OT: Fur Plugin for XSI Foundation/Essentials

04 April 2006, 07:32 PM

I just thought I post this here for the people who are using messiah with XSI Foundation or Essentials:
Ben Rogall released a Fur plugin for XSI that is available for only 50.-$ !!!
It can only do straight hair currently, but you can create quite nice fur with it.
It works with all the hair-shaders that are available for the Advance Version (muhHair f.i.)
Learn more here:

My first test:

If you wonder what that object may be: it is an advanced tooth brush for the international space station to make tooth care easier in free fall...

Ok, just kidding ;) :p


04 April 2006, 08:13 PM
Very interesting :)

mmh is there anyone who can do this for Messiah at same price ? ;)


04 April 2006, 09:47 PM
yeah that is pretty sweet. id love to see hair in messiah, but for that you need some solid dynamics, especially SBD collisions, i imagine collisions with hair might use the same principle.

04 April 2006, 02:10 AM
Didn't Taron "hint" at fur for the next release?


04 April 2006, 05:26 AM
lets not fantasize, that would be ****ing super.

Gene Williams
04 April 2006, 05:27 PM
Rendered using standard hair preset in XSI and styled very
minimally but more styling tools on the horizon!

06 June 2006, 02:57 PM
There is a long-hair version now, for just 85.- $

See the thread on XSIbase:;action=display;threadid=25527;start=0

This is the cover image done by Ben Rogall:


06 June 2006, 11:23 PM
Looks pretty slick. You should introduce the guy who wrote it to Messiah! It would be cool to add another developer. You two could work on adding hair to your THLPro thing. Yee Haw!

06 June 2006, 01:09 AM
Well there you go! XSI Foundation can do long hair now ... Nice. Would be entertaining to see if the developer would be interested in the messiah market.

06 June 2006, 10:20 AM
Guys, stay realistic:
For an external developer to create Hair in messiah, there are about 75% of the options missing from the SDK that you would need for that. Beginning with the ability to create custom on-screen-controls (Armatures don't cut it for styling hair) or OpenGL preview-representations to the basic creation of geometry etc. An external Shave and a Haircut approach could be possible but only for volumetric rendering of the hair which creates a lot of trouble and often is rather slow.
And external is a pain.

In XSI this is 100 times easier since Mental Ray already knows a "Hair Primitive" and all the needed features are there. Bens plugins mostly have to deal with the creation and styling, but little with all the other aspects of Hair.

I rather look forward to the implementation that pmG hinted on for a long time...



06 June 2006, 04:25 PM

So the SDK doesn't allow us to create any new geometry. But there are those primitives. The sphere, cube etc. But I guess they were hard coded in and no one has access to them.

Man thats a real bummer.

I have to say I would much prefer an actual geometry solution. Sasquatch. . . while powerful in some respects is such a pain to use due to the fact that it only casts certain types of shadows from certain types of light. Shadowmaps. <shudder>

Well I can still hope can't I?

06 June 2006, 04:39 PM
Aren't they doing it in Blender by stringing lines of particles together? Isn't. . . that something you have access too? Messiah's new particles are pretty slick and do seem to cast "normal" shadows and fit in with the rest of the package.

06 June 2006, 07:46 PM
Well, your best hope is pmG.
I am just not interested in Hair ;)

The particles can be accessed for things like position, but for hair you would need a special kind of particle geometry - strings - and so you're back to field one...


06 June 2006, 08:29 PM
But. . . don't lots of sub-pixel volumes make up a string? I mean thats how polygons work. Lots and lots of triangles make up a surface. Wouldn't lots and lots of little spheres strung together make a strand?

06 June 2006, 08:39 PM
You are free to code that ;)

Sounds like a horrible way to do it. How do you tackle smoothness along the hair and a nice shiny surface? Are you that desperate?

Thousands of spheres for one hair - Bazillions for a haircut?

06 June 2006, 08:45 PM
No. . . :-)

I'm just thinking. .

From what I have read that is how the Blender guys are doing it. It SOUNDS horrible but it seems to be starting to work for them.

06 June 2006, 01:06 PM
Na, in blender the hair strands is a render feature of blender.

in short:
Hair strands are small polygons, which are extruded to follow the direction of the static particle line, but whose width is exactly perpendicular to the viewing angle and precisely 1 pixel wide. This ensures that for any distance the strands will render without alising problems.

06 June 2006, 04:08 PM
I was thinking more of user definable particle "precision" meaning each hair segment consists of two ends, each end is a particle and the distance between the two ends is user definable. A hair strand would then consist as many of these segments as necessary. each particle can have physics and collisions applied as long as it stays within the prescribed distance from corresponding particles in the chain. to render a hair spline is generated to connect the particles... it is smoothed of course. This way you can have the same result with far fewer particles (most hair doesnt kink at a sharp angle). Also during render time each particle chain is actually used as a guide in messiah and multiple hairs can be derived from this chain to generate volume without calculating every hair... of course some variation can be introduced procedurally to make things more random...

we have particles already, now we need a way to setup a higherarchy as described and calculate collisions and figure out a way to render them... no small feat but oh so useful...

06 June 2006, 05:31 PM

I really liked this one, I mean it could be used for other stuff to especially in more abstract motiongraphics stuff.

06 June 2006, 08:06 PM
stooch: Now your talking. :-)

Does. . . Sasquatch have collisions? I don't think it does. It has dynamics but the manual talks about using Motion Designer and even Messiah to work out collisions with the guides you model yourself. Can't see much wrong with that myself. . .

Of course us non-programmers talking about this is about like my Grandmother trying to describe what I do to her friends at Bingo. We don't really have much of a clue do we. :-)

Oh well. . . its fun to talk.

06 June 2006, 12:02 AM
hey ive dabbled enough in 3D programming to have a general idea... but i only dabble in this stuff so i can only hypothesize at best.. Performance wise though i feel that this is probably one of the best routes, by the way sasquach does have collisions! its just the demo one that comes with LW is so limited...

also what i described reminds me alot of the existing bone chain animation in messiah! i wonder if we could bone long polygon chains that are painted with alphas to appear as locks of hair and then animate the chains. wonder how fast it would work... hmmmmm....

06 June 2006, 03:28 PM
I have the full Sasquatch Stooch. Have used it fairly extensively. It does have Dynamics. . . but I'm 90% sure it does not have collisions. You have to use guide hairs and some other method of collision on those guide hairs if you want them to behave like long hair when it comes up against something.

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