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Plugin News  –  February 2018

Wednesday 21 February 2018 - 14:21


Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v2.88.06 are:
- Adds the ability to batch export 3D files to Proxy
- Adds the ability to merge models as SmartRefs
- Adds the ability to specify a Max version when saving models from scene to library
- Changes to the interface for saving models from scene to library
- Merge as xRef objects now uses the Max settings for merging models
- Fixes a problem creating proxies when both Redshift and Octane are installed simultaneously
- Fixes a bug with extremely slow object placement using the 'Object Place&Paint' tool
- Placing on the HomeGrid is now always allowed
- Adds the ability to switch the view of models between 'Display as Box' and default view
- Fixes an issue with placing merged objects on scene objects
- Fixes an issue where the user can place a merged object too far from the origin
- Updates the default render-presets
- Adds default presets for Final Render, Octane, Redshift, Fstorm and Arnold renderers
- Adds a 'Fit to Dummy' option to the render settings
- Objects are now more accurately fitted to the view when rendering
- Adds the ability to render thumbnails with references
- Adds the ability to render previews for Substance shaders using sbsrender.exe
- Fixes an issue when rendering previews for models without studio
- Fixes a crash bug if the studio doesn't contain the 'SceneDummy' object
- Adds the ability to generate PDF files from items in listview
- Treeview navigation is now faster
- Fixes an issues with add/remove custom extensions to display files in the 'Models' category
- Fixes an issue with set custom view for rendering previews defined in the drop-down 'View'
- Fixes an issue with displaying the Max version for some Max files
- Fixes an issue with interactive rendering of some IES files
- Fixes a scaling issue with BVH files during interactive rendering
- Drops support for 32-bit Max versions
- Fixes some issues with archiving scenes
- Fixes a minor issue with removing links from scenes
- Fixes an issue with disabling and removing xRef objects on the 'Asset Files' tab
- Fixes a minor issue with renaming asset links
- The 'PostScriptInfo' API has been deprecated
- Fixes a bug in FStorm Render when Max crashed on trying to access Bitmap FStorm properties
- Some other minor changes and speed improvements

Project Manager is available for Max 2012 to 2018 and costs $75. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v1.71 are:
- Fixes the bug where the .jsx script caused an error in AE CS5 when exporting light sources
- Fixes the bug where the .jsx script caused an error when no planes were exported

AE Transfer is available for Max 2012 to 2018 and costs $5.

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v5.1.01 are:
- Fixes bugs in the Skip Every Nth script that affected Max 2016, 2017 and 2018
- Changes the UI of the Skip Every Nth script

miauu's Script Pack Volume 2 is available for Max 2009 to 2018 and costs €17.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.09 are:
- Disperse is now done and is a full release
- ForenSic has been heavily optimised and is much faster than previous releases
- UNDO now works for nearly all features in ForenSic
- Adds 'Delete NoteTracks' to ForenSic
- Adds 'Delete Animation Layers' to ForenSic
- Adds 'Delete MotionClips Layer' to ForenSic
- Adds 'Delete Retimers' to ForenSic
- Updates missing plugins in ForenSic
- ForenSic can now find missing files
- The ForenSic UI now scales with large resolutions
- The transformation system in Jumble has been reworked
- Jumble no longer resets to the same position when a random transformation is applied
- The Jumble UI now scales with large resolutions

SiNi Software is available for Max 2014 to 2018 and costs £180 per year. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Particles / Animation

Changes for v3.10.00 include:
- Adds variable viscosity for the FLIP solver (Sources, Grid Texture and Mapper)
- Default RGB color for Initial Fill Up (simulation) and Initial Liquid Fill (interacting geometry)
- You can now use texture RGB color to shade particles in the Particles Shader
- Implements looping and direct frame index option for the Ocean Texture
- Implements caching of Simulator frames in order to speed up the Phoenix Particle Flow operators
- Adds an option to delete PFlow particles exiting the Simulator grid when using a Force Operator
- Adds support for XForm modifiers in Volumetric render mode for the Simulator
- Adds the Flip Y/Z option to the Input rollout in Max
- WetMap particles are now able to stick to deforming and fast moving geometries
- Improves the thread loading of the FLIP solver
- Adds a Fill Up for Ocean option
- You can now render negative Fire from caches imported from FumeFX
- Speeds up rendering of scenes with Simulators and Particle Shaders in volumetric mode in Max
- Renames Cache Start to Cache Origin and Play Start to Timeline Origin
- When the current render is V-Ray RT, the Optimize Big Volumetric Grids option is ignored
- Vertical Fade Level and Fade Above Velocity displacement options can now be used simultaneously
- Adds a hidden cache stretching parameter used to fill air pockets in imported Houdini VDB caches
- Optimizes the Ocean Texture
- FollowPath direction / attraction can now be reversed using a negative Follow Speed or Pull Speed
- Environment variables in Phoenix paths are now resolved during rendering and not during export
- Adds multithreaded writing and loading of AUR caches
- Merges the OpenVDB DLL into the Phoenix plugin
- Adds UI options for using the Timeline beginning/end as the simulation start/stop frame
- If the Max connection to the license server is lost, it now automatically tries to reconnect
- Allow providing custom motion blur start and end frame times through the Phoenix SDK
- Drops support for Max 2013
- And much more... a full list of changes and fixes can be found here

Phoenix FD is available for Max 2014 to 2018 and costs €600. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Animation

Changes for v1.0.4 are:
- There is now a new license request code which fixes the script parameters being deactivated
- Fixes a problem with deleting the Path spline which affected the chassis controls
- The 'Mass' parameter has been simplified and fixed

DriverMaster is available for Max 2012 to 2018 and costs $50.

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v1.7.3 are:
- Adds a checkbox to enable showing / hiding of the clipping planes in the viewport
- Fixes a bug which caused an incorrect FOV when a Corona Camera used the Tilt or Shift settings
- Adds a legacy checkbox for the Tilt and Shift settings in the Corona Camera

Corona Renderer is available for Max 2012 to 2018 and costs €24.99 per month. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for Beta 1.07 are:
- Adds a load of new node graph editor features
- Renders now respect the camera's scale
- Bitmaps are no longer forced to screen-space environment mapping when used in a render

New Plugin: Animation

This MCG controller gets rid of the flipping problem that can occur with the default Path Constraint. It also allows the constraint to be based on an axis of a controlling object.

MCG PathConstraintAxis is available for Max 2016 to 2018 and costs $5.

New Plugin: Modelling

This commercial MAXScript adds weld patterns to selected surfaces of your geometry.

Welding Shop is available for Max 2014 to 2018 and costs $12.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v8.6.19 are:
- Fixes a bug where 'required by pool' allocated nodes in the wrong way
- Fixes an issue with the web interface not showing certain templates selectors
- Fixes an issue with SSL connections where the web server was failing job submissions
- Fixes the behaviour of the chunkGet function in the console API
- The pools filters now show the selected pools
- The system events sent to Unix systems (Linux/Mac) are now configurable
- Fixes a regression bug with the logged user not being detected correctly

Muster is available for Max 6 to 2018 and costs $85 per node. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Modelling / Texturing

Changes for v6.0.0 beta are:
- Adds support for V-Ray Next beta 1
- New memory management system increases scattering performance to 150% with large distributions
- Improves stability with V-Ray IPR
- Faster loading of V-Ray and Corona proxies
- Updates the UI
- Adds new Distribution modes (available from the Distribution rollup)
- Adds Effect attributes for Particle Flow distribution: particleAge, particleSpeed
- Adds a generic Effect property to the items in Tree Editor: User ID
- Adds new Effect transform attributes: fpItem.xrotaxis, fpItem.yrotaxis, fpItem.zrotaxis
- Adds new Effect parameter types: texture maps and curves
- You can now have multiple effects per Forest object
- Adds new Effect attributes for new paths mode: distPathPos, distPathTangent
- When fpItem.geomID is greater than max ID, the result is now the remainder, not the max value
- Adds 30 Effects to the library
- New iToo Software Update Manager for downloading, installing and managing Forest Pack content
- Surface parameters are now imported from Library presets
- Adds a new starter library - 23 new trees in 11 species
- Adds new grass presets designed to work in layers - 26 variations
- Adds new vertical walls presets
- Adds 13 new distribution maps
- Raises Distribution->Max.Density default value from 20 to 40 million
- Improves viewport performance with Camera features
- Adds MAXScript function getSelected() to return indices of items selected in Custom Edit mode
- Removes the Material->Forest Shader parameters from the interface
- The source name is now appended to Library objects imported in the 'forest_templates' layer
- Renames 'Tree Editor' to 'Items Editor'
- Adds Display->Point-cloud Style: Small or Large Dot
- 'Camera->Limit to Visibility' and 'Look-at->On' are now off by default
- Moves main Forest folder from 'C:\Program Files (x86)\' to 'C:\Program Files\'
- Removes 32 bit versions and legacy plugins (Forest Pro 2.x)
- Fixes items dissapearing when using Undo/Redo in Custom Edit mode
- Fixes items being invisible in the viewport while using Interactive Render (V-Ray and Corona)
- 'XRef Material->Override' option is no longer ignored when building the Forest automaterial
- Changes in the Geometry List now modify existing items in Custom Edit mode
- Fixes an updating issue with Color Swatch controls in PBStore
- Fixes the behaviour of Forest Lister when the order of rollups is changed
- Fixes several issues with General->Presets
- Geometry->Color ID now supports Copy/Paste
- Fixes a crash loading nested library objects
- Items with high random Translation values are no longer placed outside of its area
- The Effects Editor can now load JPG thumbnails
- Fixes both Point-cloud and mesh being drawn when Display->Render->Mode is set to 'Meshes'
- Tree Editor->Add no longer inserts multiple items for LOD objects
- User toolbars using Forest actions are no longer reset when Max is loaded
- Fixes a crash loading scenes with LOD linked to an XRef
- Camera in Deadline render jobs is now updated when using 'Camera->Auto assign to active view'
- Fixes a missing references issue when a library item is used both in the main and an XRef scene
- Fixes a warning when a Controller Parameter is linked to a rotation control
- Fixes errors in constant values in expressions if the system doesn't use '.' as decimal point
- The Z value of fpItem.areaIncNearest and fpItem.areaExcNearest now matches the item's Z position
- Fixes Parameter->Default range being limited to 0-100 for real and integer types

Forest Pack Pro is available for Max 2010 to 2018 and costs €200. A demo version is available here.

New Plugin: Import / Export

Verge3D is a real-time renderer and toolkit for creating interactive experiences running on websites. Thanks to the underlying WebGL technology, 3D content can be viewed with a standard web browser and doesn't require installation.

The content is authored inside Max, from which it is converted to a web-ready application to be deployed either online or offline. You can use standard or PBR materials of any complexity, environment textures, lights, cameras, groups, animation, etc. Content can be previewed directly in the viewport or in the browser with the Sneak Preview feature, and exported for Verge3D in glTF 2.0 format.

Interactivity can be easily added using a visual scripting environment. You can build a full-blown 3D web application without writing a single line of code, or you can use the vast Three.js-based API to integrate Verge3D applications into an existing or planned infrastructure.

Finalized 3D web applications can be either self-hosted or deployed on the Verge3D Network, a cloud-based storage and CDN powered by Amazon servers.

Verge3D is available for Max 2015 to 2018 and costs $290. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Particles / Animation

Changes for v6.6 are:
- New APFields are powerful volumetric operators for creating and manipulating forces in 3D space
- APField volumetric field data can be cached in a format based on the industry standard Open VDB
- Adds a new 'Sum Helper' math helper node
- Adds a new math helper operator 'InitialState'
- thinkingParticles now has an installer option to use an offline help file
- The math helper node now renames itself according to the mathematical operation it performs
- Adds new math functions to the math helper node: Deg2Rad, Rad2Deg, Collide and CollideDeflection
- Adds new vector/float operation 'RollMatrix' to the math helper node
- The Counter helper now has a new Input to reset its value for each sub-frame sample step
- The GeomPoint helper has a new Input and Output connection
- Adds a new Position input connection to the GeomParticle helper
- Adds a new Position input to the Shape helper
- AlembicExport can now export objects by material
- Rigid bodies now show much better buoyancy and interaction with fluid simulations
- Transfer of momentum between fluid particles and rigid bodies is now much faster and more accurate
- Adds broad support of vertex velocities throughout thinkingParticles operators
- Standard Max force fields (space warps) no longer need to be bound to the tP helper object

thinkingParticles is available for Max 2016 to 2018 and costs €540 per year. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v5.0 are:
- Smart Loop Selection can now expand the selected edges to the nearest already selected edges

miauu's Script Pack Volume 2 is available for Max 2009 to 2018 and costs €17.

New Plugin: Modelling / Animation

VECmap tools is a new toolset to paint and use vector maps inside Max. The tools allow you to paint vector maps directly onto your meshes and use them to drive particles, UV or mesh deformations, Vray Fur and other things as well.

VECmap Tools is available for Max 2016 to 2018 and costs €29.75.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v0.39.0 are:
- Fixes a crash when exiting Max while the exporter form is open
- Fixes plugin loading in Max 2018
- Updates the samples
- GLTF alphaMode default value is now exported as 'OPAQUE'
- Ensures faces are exported to babylon in the same order between a mesh and its morph targets
- Fixes GLTF morph target positions, normals and weights
- Adds a multimaterial morphed cube to the samples
- Fixes morph target and multimaterial combo
- Positions, rotations and normals are now altered at object level
- Updates the conversion from left to right handed coordinate system
- Adds a default light if none is present
- Removes camera from the samples
- Fixes how to get mesh from parent transform
- You can now export cameras as FreeCameras
- Adds a reference to GLTF entities as shared project from Max
- Externalizes GLTF entities from Max

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v1.068 are:
- Fixes some problems with regular distribution on splines

MultiScatter is available for Max 2010 to 2018 and costs €200.

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v2.5.56 are:
- Fixes installation issues on macOS for Houdini and Cinema 4D
- Adds C4D support for HiDPI displays to the RenderView in OSX
- Improves the C4D ShaderGraph Editor to display the ShaderNode type in the node header area
- Fixes a C4D crash when the RenderView was docked in the startup layout
- Fixes a C4D issue where background renders could affect the RenderView
- Houdini can now randomize the FrameID used in 'Randomize Pattern on Each Frame' render option
- The randomize noise pattern feature now also works in the Houdini IPR/RenderView
- Fixes the Houdini docking problems with the RSRenderView
- Fixes the Houdini MPlay OCIO functions in the images rendered from Redshift
- Fixes a Houdini IPR crash if an instancer is updated with 0 instances
- Fixes a critical Houdini bug in the multi-thread packed geo extraction feature on Linux/OSX
- Fixes a new spot-light fall-off curve control bug (it had very little effect previously)
- Improves accuracy of non-inverse-square decay lights (makes way for C4D global scene scale)
- Adds a new legacy option to revert to old non-inverse-square light decay math
- Fixes a recent instability when rendering proxies containing shaders with curve data

Redshift is available for Max 2013 to 2018 and costs $500. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.3.0 are:
- LE and Pro are now combined in one binary, no need to re-install when going from LE to Pro
- Optimizes the database to improve performance, especially for databases with many presets
- Adds support for network connections through a proxy server
- Adds an option to filter local/online/Vizpark presets
- TeamWork mode now uses a PostgreSQL database backend for improved performance (PRO)
- Fixes some minor bugs

Material Manager is available for Max 2013 to 2018 and costs €99. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Animation

Changes for v3.062 are:
- Fixes a trailer animation bug affecting Max 2017 and 2018

MadCar is available for Max 2009 to 2018 and costs €200. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v4.0 are:
- SMRoad tools can now use the face selection to smooth the road
- Adds a new SMRoad tool, SMRoad(Diff), which can separately smooth each side of a road
- Adds an 'Auto load' option in UIMan to choose if TerrainAxe is started when Max starts
- Adds a 'Left drive' option in RoadLineSys to create road marks for left-hand drive countries

TerrainAxe is available for Max 2012 to 2018 and costs $217. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v1.7 are:
- Adds a Default Preferences button to set and save preferences for permanent use
- Adds a Guess Export Range checkbox to link the Start / End frame values to the render settings
- Some minor improvements

AE Transfer is available for Max 2012 to 2018 and costs $5.

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v1.7 are:
- Pressing the [CONFORM] button now creates the spline in the same layer as the selected object

miauu's Spline Deformer is available for Max 2009 to 2018 and costs €7.

Site News: Calling all freeware plugin developers

If you are a plugin developer with source code for plugins that you don't develop anymore, it would be great if you could get in touch with me. I would be glad to recompile as many old plugins as possible to stop them from disappearing for ever. Just mail me to let me know what sort of stuff you've got.

On a side note, this is how the Messiah:studio plugins got recompiled for Max 9 to 2012, as well as all of the Sisyphus plugins, so it's worth sending stuff my way :o)


Site News: News Archives

The news from previous months can be accessed by clicking on the 'Plugin news archive' link in the menu.