Discreet Announces 3ds max 7Designed to Streamline Character Animation and Next Generation 3D Workflow
Latest Version of Acclaimed 3D Modeling, Animation and Rendering Software Will Equip Customers to Meet the Evolving and Complex Production Demands of Growing Game Development, Character Animation, Film & Television Visual Effects, and Design Industries
Montréal, QuébecAugust 2nd, 2004Discreet, a division of Autodesk, Inc. (NASDAQ: ADSK) and a leader in digital content creation, management, and distribution tools, today announced 3ds max® 7the newest version of its acclaimed 3D modeling, animation, and rendering software. Discreets 3ds max 7 software will be shown for the first time publicly at the international SIGGRAPH Exhibition in Los Angeles, CA (August 10th -12th). With over 280,000 registered users worldwide, and a 19% increase in sales revenues in the last year, 3ds max is clearly the most popular professional 3D modeling and animation application available today.
Responding to the ever-increasing industry need for powerful yet approachable non-linear animation tools, Discreet is integrating its award-winning advanced character motion toolset character studio® into the core feature set of 3ds max 7. With a unique constraint-based non-linear animation mixer, highly scalable behavioral crowd simulation capabilities, and extensive motion capture filtering and editing facilities, character studio brings industry leading price/performance capabilities to the existing 3ds max character toolset. The result of the integration of character studio and 3ds max is the democratization of character animation functionality, which up until now has been found in solutions costing two to three times more than 3ds max.
3ds max 7 also offers a wide range of newly developed core functionality including industry-first Normal Mapping, a workflow accelerator for gaming; and Edit Poly Modifier, designed to improve ease of use and speed of animation (a more comprehensive feature list is included below). Such groundbreaking features as Normal Mapping continue Discreets legacy of cross-pollinating innovative technologies between market segments, where features originally designed for one market segment such as games can have a significant impact on other segments such as film or design visualization.
“NVIDIA and Discreet have worked together for years to deliver the highest performance graphics creation solutions for professional 3D animation artists,” said Jeff Brown, general manager of professional graphics at NVIDIA. "With Discreets acute focus on high-end real-time shading in 3ds max 7, it takes a powerful professional graphics solution with true 128-bit floating point frame buffers and Shader Model 3.0 support―like the NVIDIA Quadro® FX workstation graphics solutions―to unleash its full potential. Together, Discreet and NVIDIA have ensured that the full power and feature sets of our respective products give 3D game developers and visual effects artists a sophisticated, but approachable hardware and software duo that optimizes productivity.
3ds max 7 is designed to deliver the optimized performance required for the large data sets of todays increasingly complex 3D production environments, said Marc Petit, vice president of product development, Discreet. Major innovations in
3ds max 7 focus on delivering the most productive and customizable workflow to date, support for next-generation PC/console and mobile platforms, as well as powerful new creative tools. Furthermore, the integration of advanced character animation capabilities as a part of the core functionality of 3ds max will provide fast, efficient, and intuitive character tools for the benefit of all 3ds max 7 users.
Built in conjunction with industry artists and facilities, 3ds max 7 isaimed at boosting facility productivity and meeting the demanding production requirements set by todays highly competitive environment.
We’re always excited to be part of Discreets development process, said Greg Zeschuk, Joint CEO of BioWare. With 3ds max 7, we are seeing some great improvements in performance. The character animation advancements have reaffirmed our commitment to 3ds max 7 as our core development platform. Discreets advancements for improved visual feedback have paid off in a significant way giving us the ability to handle larger amounts of polygons as well as more objects than ever before. Ray Muzyka, Joint CEO of BioWare also added, "As we are in the home stretch for bringing Jade Empire - already an award winner at E3 - to market in the first quarter of 2005, we will definitely be utilizing all of the features of 3ds max,both to ensure Jade Empire is visually stunning and also to help us get the artwork done quickly and efficiently; we’re confident that Jade Empire will be BioWare’s best game yet!
Additional major new features in 3ds max 7 include:
[li]Normal Mappingindustry first revolutionary workflow developed for gaming adds extreme detail to low-polygon models with high resolution maps and with complete rendering support normal mapping brings great time-saving benefits to film production and cinematic visualizations[/li][li]mental ray 3.3enhanced integration in 3ds maxwith accelerated performance and better memory efficiency. Improved Global Illumination, new support for Render to Texture and Normal Mapping, and Sub-Surface Scattering that disperses light for amazingly realistic skin and dense translucent object rendering[/li][li]Parameter Collectora new, unified interface that improves efficiency when animating multiple parameters for any character setup[/li][li]Parameter Editoran enhanced, more powerful version of the Custom Attributes feature with new data types and functionality[/li][li]Edit Poly Modifier significantly increases the rapidity and ease at which complex polygonal surfaces can be created, modified and then animated - improving the creative process[/li][li]Skin Wrap Deformergreatly improved character animation workflow with easy application of props and clothing to pre-skinned 3D models[/li][li]Snapping Workflowimproved accuracy and viewport feedback for the underlying snapping system in 3ds max[/li][li]Paint Selectionsan intuitive and interactive method for building selections with a brush-based interface[/li][li]Enhanced Interactive Performance and Scalabilityan ongoing program to enable 3ds max to scale to very large datasets including smart object culling for high performance manipulation of large numbers of objects[/li][li]TurboSmootha highly optimized smoothing algorithm for increased performance of high resolution models[/li][li]Mobile Gaming Development Toolsnative mobile 3D asset creation with new JSR 184 exporter and per camera diagnostic tools[/li][/ul]Discreet 3ds max was used to generate 3D visual effects in motion pictures such has The Day After Tomorrow, The Alamo, The Last Samurai, The Triplets of Belleville, Xmen-2 and the majority of award winning PC and console games including Spider- Man and Spider-Man 2 The Game (Treyarch); Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Jade Empire (BioWare); Prince of Persia, Tom Clancys Splinter Cell and Rainbow 6 series (Ubisoft); the ever-popular Grand Theft Auto III series (Rockstar); Halo and Halo 2 (Bungie); and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Electronic Arts).
Pricing and Availability
3ds max 7 is expected to ship in fall 2004 for US $3,495. Localized versions are planned to be available later in 2004 and 2005. Upgrade pricing from 3ds max 6 is US $795; and 3ds max 5 US $1,295. Discreets Subscription Program benefits customers with access to new software feature extensions, patches, upgrades, and e-learning content for an annual fee. For more information, visit www.discreet.com/subscription/ and resellers.