Autodesk announces updates to VR and gaming tools for game developers and more… in Maya and Stingray.
SIGGRAPH 2016 is underway this week in Anaheim, Calif., And today Autodesk announced upgrades to its virtual reality capabilities and 3D animation tools for indie game developers at the show.
Still a popular vendor at the SIGGRAPH trade show, Autodesk today had important update information on key Maya LT 2017 products and Stingray, it’s new game engine technology that ultimately unfolds beyond of the games market. (see, Architosh, “Autodesk Introduces New LIVE Viewing Environment — Viewer for the iOS Platform,” July 25, 2016)
Maya LT and Stingray
Autodesk has unveiled the latest version of its 3D animation and modeling software for independent game developers (Autodesk Maya LT 2017), as well as Autodesk Stingray 1.4, the latest version of its powerful 3D game engine and solution real-time rendering.
One of the most important updates to Maya LT is the Time Editor, a new tool that helps indie game developers streamline the animation of complex characters. Additional updates include improvements to existing animation tools and a new way to organize tools and user interface (UI) in custom workspaces.
The main features of Autodesk Maya LT 2017 include:
- An updated graphics editor has many new features, including an updated UI / UX that simplifies day-to-day tasks.
- Improvements to the Shape Creation Tool in Maya LT give artists more control to create, edit, and fix animations in great detail.
- Viewport 2.0 enhancements speed up selection performance for scenes with a large number of nodes and scenes with hidden objects.
- Vertex order transfers and corrections make it easier to work between different game creation tools, without losing data when an asset moves through the pipeline.
Additional features of Autodesk Stingray 1.4:
- Stingray version 1.4 offers enhanced virtual reality capabilities and improved connectivity with Maya LT, facilitating a powerful art-to-engine workflow for game developers.
- Improved support for VR platforms includes compatibility with Oculus Rift SDK v1.3 and SteamVR SDK v0.9.19.
- Flow scripts for HTC Vive controllers provide a faster and more efficient way to add interactivity to VR experiences, while simplifying the process for designers to build and test their prototypes.
- Unique to Stingray, support for WebGL2 allows developers to test their projects on browsers supported by WebGL2.
- Level sync, with Maya LT, allows artists to link and export entire scenes directly to Stingray. This creates an easier way to create, iterate, review, and edit game levels and design scenes, without having to manually replicate layouts in two tools.
- Easier sharing of assets between different Stingray projects also benefits collaborative working environments.
- NavMesh improvements for better AI behavior.
- Editing the UV scale and offset values in materials exported from Maya LT allows users to continue editing the UV mosaic dataset in Stingray.