3DCoat 2023 Key Features and Improvements
SKETCH TOOL IMPROVED:
Enhancements to the Sketch tool make it more robust for quickly creating high-quality Hard Surface objects; including better performance and stability. There is also an option to have 3DCoat automatically apply curves over the edges of the newly created object, for additional effects (Bevel, Tubes, Run Brush Along Curve, etc). You can also work with larger sketch sizes (512p x 512p).
We introduced a new system for a Multi-Resolution workflow. It differs from the previous legacy system in that it generates and stores both higher and lower Levels of Subdivision rather than Proxy meshes. It fully supports Sculpt Layers, Displacement and even PBR Textures. So, for example, an artist may use Smart Materials or Stencils along with Paint tools, in order to both Sculpt and Texture Paint simultaneously, with a single stroke or click of the mouse/stylus (using the Fill tool) while working between the different subdivision levels.
Multi-Level Resolution sculpting will generate lower levels via decimation, by default. However, the Retopo mesh can instead be used as the lowest Resolution (Subdivision) level. 3DCoat will automatically create multiple intermediate levels in the process. The transition between the levels is very smooth and even large-scale changes on the lowest level translates accurately all the way up the stack, to the Top level. You can rapidly step up and down the individual Subdivision levels and see your edits stored (throughout all levels) in the selected Sculpt Layer.
TREE + LEAVES GENERATOR:
The recently added Trees Generator tool now has the possibility to generate Leaves, also. You can add your own leaf types, sculpt the shape if needed, and export all this as an FBX file. In CoreAPI you have the possibility to add textured objects into the sculpt scene (see the Trees Generator example).
A Time-lapse Screen-Recording tool has been added, which records your work at a specified interval by smoothly moving the camera and then converting it to a video. That allows you to record the process of sculpting by speeding up the process a hundred times and smoothing the camera movement. The feature can be enabled from the Tool tab in the Preferences panel (via the EDIT menu).
SURFACE MODE SPEED IMPROVEMENTS:
The subdivision of Surface mode meshes has been sped up significantly (5x at least, using the Res+ command). It is possible to subdivide models even to 100-200M.
We added a new tool to the Paint Workspace, called Power Smooth. As the name implies, it is a Super-powerful, valence/density independent, screen-based color smoothing tool. It is handy when the user needs a much stronger smoothing effect applied than the standard smoothing invoked by the SHIFT key. Paint tools were also added into Sculpt room to simplify painting over the surface/voxels.
Volumetric painting is a revolutionary new technology and first in the industry. It allows the artist to both sculpt and paint with Voxels (true volumetric depth) simultaneously and is compatible with Smart Materials. Using the Vox Hide option allows the artist to hide or restore areas that are cut, trimmed, degraded, etc.
Volumetric color completely supported everywhere, where the surface painting works, even light baking supported and conditions. Volumetric Painting also completely supported, including the correct transition of voxels to surface (and vice versa) that keeps the color/gloss/metal, color relaxing, correct functioning of surface brushes in voxel mode with the volumetric color. The Color Picker has been improved as well, allowing Multi-Selection of images (rather than just one at a time). Hexadecimal color string (#RRGGBB) is added and the possibility to edit color in hex form or just enter color name.
AUTO UV MAPPING
- Each topologically connective object now unwrapped separately in its own, best suitable local space. It leads to more accurate unwrapping of assembled hard-surface objects
- The quality of auto-mapping improved substantially, much fewer islands created, much lower length of seams, better fitting over the texture.
MODELING WORKSPACE IMPROVEMENTS
A new Lattice tool has been added to the Modeling room. Soft Selection/Transform (in Vertex mode) is introduced in the Retopo/Modeling workspaces. A new "To NURBS Surface" feature was added to the Modeling room. It includes options to smooth the model and merge surfaces. Please note that IGES export will require an additional license after the test period expires, because it is essentially an industrial manufacturing feature.
The Export of meshes in IGES format has been enabled (this functionality is available temporarily, for testing and then will be released as a separate Addon Module for an additional cost).
The Auto-Export toolset has been improved significantly and offers a really powerful and convenient asset creation workflow. It includes the following new options:
· Possibility to export assets directly to Blender with PBR textures.
· Centering assets if needed.
· Export multiple assets.
· Optional possibility to export each asset to its own folder.
· Better compatibility and optimizations for UE5 game engine.
· Possibility to set custom scan depth. As a result, Auto-Export becomes a really powerful and convenient asset creation workflow.
· Auto-Export (batched as well) can work in the background. Generally, all scripts now can work in the background.
· FBX export improved, possibility to export embedded textures (for UE)
· USD export/import support! Updated the USD libs for Python38.
· Import USD/USDA/USDC/USDZ and export USD/USDC under MacOS (export USDA/USDZ is still a Work in Progress).
- Possibility to auto-generate normal map from the color map for factures (heuristics), more factures, better thumbnails;
What are Factures?
ACES Tone Mapping
- ACES tone mapping introduced, which is a standard Tone Mapping feature in popular game engines. This allows more fidelity between the appearance of the asset in 3DCoat’s viewport and the game engine’s viewport, once exported.
- Pulled tangent vectors are snapped to curves as well (if enabled) whenever the curve is not selected. So you may control snapping.
- Better Curves rendering in Incremental Render mode.
- Voxel Color now supported in the Curves tool.
- Curve > RMB > Make Bevel over the curve allows creating the bevel instantly.
- “Split and Joints” tool can also use curves as cut surfaces - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRb0Nu1guk4
- New important possibility to split objects by curve (RMB over curve -> Split object by curve), see here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qEf9p2cJv6g
- Added: Curves->Hide selected curves, Stop editing and hide selected.
- Islands UV preview enabled even for large meshes/islands;
- A major UV/Auto-UV mapping update: faster, better quality, and an important “Join Clusters” tool added.
- Correct 3D-grid Snapping for 3D printing as well.
- Now snapping is not just snapping in projection, but true 3D space snapping.
- The profiles (box, cylinder) are now in the Sphere tool.
- Hotkeys engine improved essentially - now all items even in not current folders are accessible via hotkeys (presets, masks, materials, alphas, models etc), also curves rmb actions work with hotkeys (need to hover mouse over the curve).
- Support for colored voxels added.
- Updated: symmetry access API, primitives API.
- Primitives in Core API, it allows non-destructive programmatic CSG modeling, a lot of new examples, much better documentation with plenty of images!
- CoreAPI primitives management improved, much more convenient to create procedural scenes, additional samples included.
- Possibility to make your own tools, not just dialogs and functions. Documentation updated. Several examples included.
Possibility to pin some scripts in the scripts menu to remain on the top of the list.
General Toolset Improvements
- Voxel color applied to a wide range of tools - Blob, spike, snake, muscle, primitives etc.
- You can now sculpt and paint simultaneously with all Voxel Brush Engine-based brushes.
- The Tree Generator! It is a non-destructive, procedural tool. Even more important: it is a good mechanism created in 3DCoat to make procedural, non-destructive tools. Various other procedural, non destructive tools expected - arrays, fur, etc.
- Bevel and Inset tools improved. Union of Bevel Edge and Bevel Vertex.
- Render turntables improved essentially - better quality, convenient options set, possibility to render turntables with high resolution even if the screen resolution is lower.
- Possibility to create your own color UI themes (in Preferences > Theme tab) and recall them from Windows > UI color scheme >... The default and gray themes are included there.
- UI tweaked to be less "crowded" and pleasant looking.
- Wheel works only for focused drop lists/sliders, darker color for inactive tabs, larger size for Color Picker sliders, optional one-column mode for tools list, no dialogs flickering when you change values.
- Auto-retopo symmetry auto-detection completely rewritten, now it detects symmetry / absence of the symmetry very well.
- Smart Retopo: The algorithm of mesh-building is improved. For Rectangle patches only.
- Smart Retopo: The algorithm for pre-calculation of the Quantity of U Spans has been significantly improved. This greatly speeds up the artist’s work.
- Smart Retopo: Trimming of Splines is modified for building Boundary lines.
- Smart Retopo: Strip Mode is modified. Width field added and RMB clicking a Control point along the curve, will make it a hard/sharp-edged point. It will also have Bezier curve handles to adjust the orientation of the polygon edge. This is especially useful for creating loops around common areas such as a character’s or animal’s mouth, eyes, nose, etc., where they tend to be sharp in the corners.
- Smart Retopo: Default values changed: Weld Tolerance = 1; Snapping To Sculpt = false.
- Smart Retopo: Added pre-calculation of Quantity of U Spans. Added Render of Quantity of U Spans.
- Smart Retopo: "Show Open Edges" button added.
- Smart Retopo: Added possibility Editing Edges by Right Button Mouse. If you hold the CTRL key, it will activate the “Slide Edge”tool. If you hold the CTRL+SHIFT key combination, it will activate the “Split Rings” tool.
- Smart Retopo: Correspondence of Qty USpans/VSpans to Qty of Face. Check box for "Alternative Select" added.
- Smart Retopo: The algorithm of Snapping is improved.
- Smart Retopo: Symmetry is fully implemented. The Symmetrical copy of polygons was visible only in Virtual Mirror mode, previously.
- Smart Retopo: Strip mode is modified. Updating of Surface normal is improved. Added possibility editing Vertex position by Right Button Mouse clicking + drag of the cursor. Edges can have positional changes made in the same way, also. Hovering over the specific Vertex or Edge will highlight them, at which point RMB + dragging will move them.
- Smart Retopo: Welding is improved, including RMB + dragging a Vertex or Edge over another. 3DCoat will display a blue “Weld” indicator and weld them together once the mouse is released.
- Blender applink essentially updated:
(1) It is now maintained on 3DCoat's side; 3DCoat offers to copy it to the Blender setup.
(2) Sculpt objects covered by Factures can now be transferred to Blender via AppLink. This is a HUGE step!
(3) The direct transfer of 3DCoat to Blender works using the File to Open ... in Blender, it creates nodes for Per Pixel Painting /Sculpt/Factures (Vertexture). The one feature still missing - shaders are transferred from 3DCoat to Blender, but it will be implemented too (at least in simplified form) soon.
- Fixed various problems of the Blender applink, especially related to complex scenes with multiple objects and multiple Facture layers.
- New alphas included into the distributive (relatively lightweight). Better alphas import routine, it detects if RGB alpha is actually greyscale and treats it as the greyscale (it leads to better color).
- Use the environment variable "COAT_USER_PATH" to get rid of extra folders inside your "HOME/Documents."
- Possibility to protect your own 3DCoat extensions (3dcpacks) from being used in other packages without the author's permission.
- RMB properties/commands in retopo/modeling/uv can be turned off via preferences if you don't like it.
- Hotkeys, assigned to the global tool params line will not overlap the text.
- The checkbox "Use Soft Selection" in Retopo workspace, using the Select mode improves compatibility with the previous approach for the selection.
- The tools parameters (like for fill tool) do not disappear when the material editor is open
- Edit > Preferences > Brushing > Ignore double clicks from pen allowing one to start strokes with pen double tap.
IGES export introduced The Export of meshes in IGES format has been enabled (this functionality is available temporarily, for testing and then will be released as a separate Extra Module for an additional cost).
Moulding tool (this functionality is available temporarily, for testing and then will be released as a separate Extra Module for an additional cost).
- The preview of the molding shape bound box shown in the molding dialog.
- Much better precision of the partitioning line in the molding tool.
- Bas-Relief and undercuts algorithms are completely rewritten. Now the result is always clean regardless of the mesh complexity. It leads to the clean molding shapes without "small flying dirty pieces." Also, the molding tool received the option to flatten the mold outside the model whenever possible.
- The Molding tool was polished up…correct box preview, very accurate shape near the parting line, correct molding of noisy and thin surfaces, perfect bas-relief/undercuts.
volume order discounts on