Kaydara and Alias Announce MOTIONBUILDER 6


Los Angeles — SIGGRAPH (Kaydara Booth 1300/Alias Booth 1312) — August 10, 2004 — Kaydara Inc., and Alias today announced the forthcoming release of MOTIONBUILDER 6, the newest version of the company’s award-winning character animation software.

Alias and Kaydara announced at the Alias Global Users Association (AGUA) on Sunday, Aug. 8, 2004 that Alias has signed an agreement to acquire Kaydara. The purchase is expected to close within 60 days, subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions at which time MOTIONBUILDER will be rebranded Alias MOTIONBUILDER. Kaydara is a leader in character animation and motion editing solutions. Alias is the leading provider of 3D graphics technology and services for the film, video games, Web, interactive media, automotive, industrial design, education and visualization markets.

Heralded as the industry’s fastest 3D animation solution, MOTIONBUILDER 6’s improved usability, advanced keyframing capabilities and increased character animation controls make it the perfect solution for creating animated content quickly and easily for games, feature films and television series.

“MOTIONBUILDER 6 is our next logical step in building the best 3D animation software on the market,” said Michel Besner, president of Kaydara. “The new version includes many improvements that make it more powerful and easier to use, and is an ideal solution for even the most demanding keyframe artists.”

Kaydara MOTIONBUILDER 6 is a next-generation solution for game development, feature film pre-visualization and layout, and television series. With unique features such as “smart” character technology (HumanIK), 3D story-timeline tool and real-time photorealistic rendering, MOTIONBUILDER 6 allows 3D artists to easily create high-quality, visually compelling animated content using a true WYSIWYG environment and without having to master difficult tasks such as building custom rigs and complex character setups.

“MOTIONBUILDER 6 delivers an unprecedented level of flexibility and a powerful toolset that makes it easy to develop high quality character animation in significantly less time,” said Rémi Brun, senior motion capture supervisor at Attitude Studio. “We’re using MOTIONBUILDER on “Renaissance,” the first European fully motion captured feature film, and on our 26x26 TV series “Skyland,” and it is making a tremendous difference in our team’s ability to quickly and easily produce subtle and complex character animation - it’s a huge asset for our overall productivity and workflow.”

Exciting new features in MOTIONBUILDER 6 include:

Simplified User Interface includes a totally new customizable picking mode and toolbar, giving animators increased manipulation and workflow control, and a new screen layout that maximizes the size of the 3D viewer.

Enhanced Keyframe Animation Capabilities including improved IK/FK sync, autokey, animation path and trajectories, and MotionInspector: a revolutionary new way of managing motion curve dynamics.

Character Animation functionality includes multi-referential animation for characters and props; user defined character setups with built-in support for props; constraints and custom properties; and improved animation controls with degrees of freedom, pivots support and referenced properties.

Improved Story-Timeline includes increased flexibility and workflow, allowing users to easily edit 3D animation tracks in combination with audio, video and constraints. Independent camera track allows producers, special effects directors and 3D artists to work out camera shots and timing independently of the animation timeline for maximum flexibility.

MOTIONBUILDER 6 natively supports Kaydara FBX, an award-winning, platform-independent 3D authoring and interchange format that allows MOTIONBUILDER users to quickly and easily acquire and exchange 3D assets and media from a wide variety of sources. Kaydara FBX is widely supported by the industry’s leading software and hardware manufacturers, as well as film and game studios, including 2D3, 3Dwings, A&G Soluzioni Digitali, Alias, Apple, Ascension Technology, Autodesk, Darwin, Di-O-Matic, Discreet, Luxology, Maxon, Motek, Natural Motion, Newtek, NXN, Okino, Softimage, Strata, TurboSquid, Vicon and Virsys.

Pricing and Availability
Kaydara MOTIONBUILDER 6 will be available September 2004 on Windows XP Professional and Mac OS X 10.3. MOTIONBUILDER 6 Standard is priced at $995 USD; MOTIONBUILDER 6 PRO is priced at $4195 USD and includes 12 months support and upgrades. Prices outside of North America may vary. For more information on features, pricing and upgrades, visit Kaydara’s Web site at www.kaydara.com.



I think it’s really amazing how much Motionbuilder changes from version to version! All the interface changes look really great for version 6. I think it looks slightly Houdini-ish with that new bar of buttons running down the side of the 3D view don’t you think?:

And yay, ghosting, trajectories (I’m hoping editable, most likely they are), direct manilpulation (no more double clicking on everything I guess?), etc etc.



yeah, it does look a bit Houdini-ish :slight_smile:
but the channel box on the side looks a bit maya-ish aswell…which i like.

Anyway, i’m almost drooling reading about all those animation controls and features…very cool!:thumbsup:


My largest complaint in the review I wrote for CGNetworks was the interface.

This interface for 6 is leaps and bounds better than 5.


Nice features and UI.
Seems like a fun environment to work with for sure.:slight_smile: can’t wait and see what will come after some time of Alias management . The relationship between these 2 companies is a great thing for 3D industry indeed, and the MB software makes better understand all the importance of intuitiveness and power.

Incidentally i like to see the Proton’s Ninja in that image !! :smiley:


can’t wait and see what will come after some time of Alias management . The relationship between these 2 companies is a great thing for 3D industry indeed,

Hm, I am reserving judgement on that one. If MotionBuilder continues to be developed and extended so that FBX can continue to be the near-universal exchange format it has become then great. However, I can’t honestly see Alias doing anything other than integrating Motionbuilder’s capabilities into Maya…and then killing it off as a standalone product. That would be the obvious course to take from a commercial point of view :sad:


Awesome. New features look great. I noticed that it’s requirement is Windows XP – no mention of Windows 2000? Is this the way it is?


Win2k is due for end-of-life soon, meaning that MS won’t be supporting it after that point.


From a commercial POV I think it the opposite. It would be wiser to let artists taste MB as an separate app. Imagine. you’re doing wonders with MB but theres still the fact that things must be exported. Refined -exported, tweaked - exported…

Sooner or later you’ll give Maya a try. And once you taste fully integrated MB tools within an already admirable app like maya, it will be hard to go back.


I don´t know what Alias will do.
But integrate MB with Maya would take years… They are still suffering to implement Mental Ray.

I don´t have any experience with MB, but as I can see, the UI and the way of doing things is different from Maya…

I could only see it as a plugin running in his own window,
What do you guys think about?


I have to agree - I don’t think they will integreate MB into maya in the next time


Alias doesn’t exactly have the rights to the source code of Mental ray do they? Motion Builder on the other hand, they own. I imagine integeration will be alot smoother and quicker if Alias goes that route.


Hope they put a z-up option in motionbuilder. I wanted to use MB for the game I’m working on. Having all my characters import into Kaydara flat on their backs was a surprise. But damn, does MB have some bitchin’ tools!



Z up suxors.

I am so used to reading f-curves in standard “normal people use Y up” space that Z up curves confuse the heck out of me… :slight_smile:


Me too bentllama, I have to use Max at the moment (as opposed to beloved Maya) and it confuses me all the time!


implementing an integrated renderer is not the same.
It’s more difficult than integrating new character controls AFAIK.

Also Alias has access to the source code of MB, and kaydara
has access to the code of maya (I guess), but yes, we won’t
probably see MB seamlessly integrated in maya in a short time.
But the timing is ok. All stars are in the row.

The next gen 64 bit maya will be a joy.


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