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View Full Version : LW blast from the past! The FIRST version of LW for PC!



DonJMyers
09-20-2018, 01:28 PM
I work at Flash Film Works ( http://www.flashfilmworks.com ) and we are bringing out a video game originally shot in the 1990s. Yes SHOT. It is a live action game called MAXIMUM SURGE starring Baywatch babe and former cokehead Yasmine Bleeth ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maximum_Surge ) and the models for it were made in LW around 1996-8. Amazingly, ALL the models easily converted to LW 2018! Some haters say LW is old and has been around too long. Not only do I disagree, I want to remind the naysayers that being able to pull in a twenty year library of assets is incredibly powerful! Cost savings cost savings cost savings.

Here is one of the upgraded models made 20 years ago but now sporting LW 2018 textures and volumetric lights and motion blur.

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I was making these models before some LW animators were even born! It is really wild looking at the "modified dates" on objects and seeing the last update as Dec. 12, 1998! Also, I would whine about something amateurish about the models, such as "It is not using layers!" because THERE WERE NO LAYERS IN OBJECTS at that time. I wanted to yell at the modeler, but he might be dead for all I know! It was a great opportunity for me to criticize my own work from decades ago :) Live and learn.

While we were snooping through the assets I found a copy of Lightwave beta for the PC! The archive included it so we could always have the ability to edit the scenes. It was the first version migrated from the Amiga and it appears to be a beta copy of LW 3.75 or 4 which was registered to Foundation Imaging (Babylon 5 show https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babylon_5) at the time.

Talk about coming a long way baby! Every LW user should run this single executable file and see where we have come from.

Obviously, my posting of this file is a kind of piracy. However, there is no modeler included. You can't load objects into it unless you have them in the proper ancient format. There is also no video buffer so you can't see renders. The copy is essentially neutered. But it is amazing to see anyway. I wanted to message SDBowie to see if it was okay to post, but I am unable to send private messages for some reason, probably censorship. (All my posts are monitored before seen by the public).

I had forgotten what life was like before OpenGL and you had to think in x-ray wireframes for everything except a final render.

FTP EXECUTABLE FILE LOCATION: http://donjmyers.com/ftp/

Download the windows file PCLW375.exe - no installation necessary. Mac users out of luck.

Interestingly, when I worked on THE GUARDIAN ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Guardian_(2006_film)) at Flash Disney demanded that the studio be given a fully working computer with all the licensed software used to make the movie as well as all the scene/data files and final rendered frames. That way the studio could store the Windows machine with the original negatives of the film and later rework scenes if necessary (such as in 3d conversion). I thought that was very smart of them. But I do wonder if a computer sitting on a shelf for decades would still work years later if they wanted to do something. And I'm sure my boss did not enjoy paying for all that hardware and software licenses for a computer that would probably never be used.

Tim Parsons
09-21-2018, 07:05 PM
Cool - Do you have Modeler too? :)
I started with LW5.5 - this even seems archaic to that as best I can recall.

DonJMyers
09-22-2018, 12:08 PM
Cool - Do you have Modeler too? :)
I started with LW5.5 - this even seems archaic to that as best I can recall.

No sorry I don't this is our archive and it's only one file. It was when LW was still looking like the amiga version.

erikals
09-22-2018, 01:05 PM
Awesome!    https://i.imgur.com/tJGL61i.png



did load LW5.6 object files just fine. Neat.

Imageshoppe
09-23-2018, 07:24 AM
I still have an intact Amiga 3000 with 040 accelerator board, we modified the case to take the Toaster, and an Amiga 4000 with a DPS PAR unit, you've inspired me to dig them out of storage and see if they will still fire up!

My first PC to run LW was a custom build Pentium 100 unit, with a massive 5" 1 gig harddrive for data, and the whole thing cost 4 grand if I remember right, along with a 17" monitor. 4 grand buys a WHOLE lot of computer today...

Thanks Don, fun trip down memory lane... I have scads of DAT backup tapes from that time period (followed by EXABYTE tapes a few years later), but no tape backup device to retrieve the data... in those late Amiga, early PC days a 1 gig DAT tape would usually backup your main harddrive a couple times over for 10 bucks... ah, the "good" old days... all my old Computer Cafe projects, early Shasta commercials, NBC promos for Caroline in the City, good times!

erikals
09-23-2018, 07:43 AM
i miss my Amiga 500

https://i.imgur.com/pWmMPnl.gif

ToMar
09-23-2018, 07:53 AM
The About box says "Lightwave 3D x86 3.75c ... ...by Allen Hastings"

And you can check the "show rendering in progress" box. Surface samples also render. But render to file outputs nothing.


Do we have an "Alphabetize List" in todays surface editor? Can't remember if I used it in LW 5.6 / 6.5, to create ships for the Star Trek Klingon Academy game, for all the predetermined surfaces, that explode or vent plasma, with its color and volume coded in the surface name.

erikals
09-23-2018, 08:00 AM
Do we have an "Alphabetize List" in today's surface editor?

not afaik

there is a search function though
https://docs.lightwave3d.com/display/LW2018/Surface+Search

DonJMyers
09-23-2018, 11:34 AM
I still have an intact Amiga 3000 with 040 accelerator board, we modified the case to take the Toaster, and an Amiga 4000 with a DPS PAR unit, you've inspired me to dig them out of storage and see if they will still fire up!

My first PC to run LW was a custom build Pentium 100 unit, with a massive 5" 1 gig harddrive for data, and the whole thing cost 4 grand if I remember right, along with a 17" monitor. 4 grand buys a WHOLE lot of computer today...

Thanks Don, fun trip down memory lane... I have scads of DAT backup tapes from that time period (followed by EXABYTE tapes a few years later), but no tape backup device to retrieve the data... in those late Amiga, early PC days a 1 gig DAT tape would usually backup your main harddrive a couple times over for 10 bucks... ah, the "good" old days... all my old Computer Cafe projects, early Shasta commercials, NBC promos for Caroline in the City, good times!

I kept my Amiga 3000 under my bed for ten years till I looked at what they were worth on ebay!

DonJMyers
09-23-2018, 11:38 AM
The About box says "Lightwave 3D x86 3.75c ... ...by Allen Hastings"
.

Yes but the title bar of the program says "LW 3D 4.0 beta foundation imaging version" so it was an early PC version BEFORE 4.0 went final and was being tested by the late foundation imaging ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foundation_Imaging ).

Reco
09-23-2018, 12:25 PM
I remember this time as well. I started with Lightwave 4.

And I remember your work on Deep Blue Sea and The Guardian.
As far as I recall, you animated the ocean mesh in The Guardian manually, using a Master and Commander as a backplate. Or is it more correct to say as a reference?
Anyway, it was very good and very convincing.

Reco

ToMar
09-23-2018, 02:29 PM
Hang on, Check... ehm... Walter Koenig was in this game? I mean i kind of like Yasmine Bleeth, but Walter gets more attention on this Forum, I guess.

JamesCurtis
09-23-2018, 11:23 PM
I started with the very first Amiga and then graduated to the 2000, 2500, 3000, 4000, and finally went PC when it went there. Boy did I spend a lot of money!!

But, no sweat, I made money over the last 33+ years!!

Imageshoppe
09-24-2018, 09:09 AM
Thinking back, I remember when I got the first version of LW that actually had anti-aliasing, vs the brute force method of rendering 2X larger images that were scaled down to the Toaster buffer size and how excited I was watching it work. That was the first moment LW could compete with the Alias crowd for some jobs.

Does anyone remember that dodgy "jail break" dongle device for your copy of LW that allowed it to run on the Amiga solo before it was officially sold separately from the Toaster? I remember meeting the guy who sold it at NAB one year and then wondering how I would get that black hunk of metal passed airport security! You still had to own Lightwave, but this removed the burden of having to have the full Toaster hardware/software installed.

DonJMyers
09-25-2018, 12:23 PM
I remember this time as well. I started with Lightwave 4.

And I remember your work on Deep Blue Sea and The Guardian.
As far as I recall, you animated the ocean mesh in The Guardian manually, using a Master and Commander as a backplate. Or is it more correct to say as a reference?
Anyway, it was very good and very convincing.

Reco

No the water was animated procedurally in LW or generated with realflow plug in program. Disney also did Master and Commander and had some GREAT storm at sea plates. I don't know how they shot it without dying in the storm! Disney pulled those images from their morgue and gave them to us.

We used them as the backgrounds for certain shots and wave pools for the fgnd. Other times the background was lw and the foreground was the wave pool. Then we blended the layers well although it sticks out like crazy for me since I made it. The give away is that the wave pool had fresh water in it and fresh water does not "foam."

There was also one clip art practical wave that all the compositors kept using and it apparently shows up every two seconds in a shot if you know what to look for!

TRAILER:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6y9fQXRKawg

DonJMyers
09-25-2018, 12:24 PM
Hang on, Check... ehm... Walter Koenig was in this game? I mean i kind of like Yasmine Bleeth, but Walter gets more attention on this Forum, I guess.

Yes he plays the villain Drexel.

DonJMyers
09-25-2018, 12:26 PM
Does anyone remember that dodgy "jail break" dongle device for your copy of LW that allowed it to run on the Amiga solo before it was officially sold separately from the Toaster? I remember meeting the guy who sold it at NAB one year and then wondering how I would get that black hunk of metal passed airport security! You still had to own Lightwave, but this removed the burden of having to have the full Toaster hardware/software installed.

Not only do I remember the jailbreak but I remember how somebody hacked the jailbreak so LW could be pirated to ANY amiga without a dongle or video toaster.

THAT is how I learned LW from the pirated version because there was not a "learning/demo version" like the have for unlicensed copies today.

At the time I was just out of college and had no money and an amiga and a video toaster cost about $5000 which was a steal for what it did at the time, but I just wanted LW.

Imageshoppe
09-26-2018, 10:25 AM
I totally understand and sympathize. In fact, I may or may not have had a copy of that first anti-aliasing version of LW before it was officially released :)

Owning the Toaster as the LW dongle had one good benefit as it forced me into actually using the Toaster and get more into video production on the desktop in general. Before that I was begging/borrowing time at a local post house to on-line my short films and free-lance work. For a good while I'd use that really cool serial port cable and software to dump my LW renders via the Toaster buffers to BetaSP tape frame by frame... what was that called, Personal Single Frame Controller or some such? Then came the glory of Exabyte tapes and going to and fro the high end Abekas disk recorder in full bore full spec 720 by 486 at the post house... after that was the era of the PAR/PVR and for me the other DPS/LEITCH/HARRIS products that truly made the work we do independent... :) All that time was filled with such a pioneering spirit with guys like us using an "underdog" software at the highest level we could. Good times...

BeeVee
09-26-2018, 04:10 PM
My first version of LightWave was a pirated copy of 2 and then I was involved with trying to create a PAL version of the Toaster with TBC cards (you _could_ do it, but it doubled the cost, halved the inputs and also the final quality, so we gave up) for MicroPACE UK. I was so pleased with the versions of LightWave that I got to try that I bought that dodgy dongle version - Industrial Might & Logic made it - and I think I spent about 800 bucks on it...

B

Qexit
09-27-2018, 06:02 AM
It never ceases to amaze me just how much jun.....er...classic memorabilia I have lying around my house :) I stumbled across this Amiga Lightwave box at the weekend still filled with floppy discs and manuals from the first release of a PAL version of Lightwave for the Amiga:

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Please note the authentic tea cup rings on the manual :D

DonJMyers
09-27-2018, 04:39 PM
It never ceases to amaze me just how much jun.....er...classic memorabilia I have lying around my house :) I stumbled across this Amiga Lightwave box at the weekend still filled with floppy discs and manuals from the first release of a PAL version of Lightwave for the Amiga:


I used my Deluxepaint IV box as a place to stash my marijuana for years afterward until it fell apart! (much like my lungs)

Qexit
09-28-2018, 07:14 AM
I used my Deluxepaint IV box as a place to stash my marijuana for years afterward until it fell apart! (much like my lungs)Hm, well I never did own a copy of Deluxe Paint IV but I do still have this gathering dust on one of my shelves:

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:)

Rayek
09-28-2018, 11:18 AM
Hm, well I never did own a copy of Deluxe Paint IV but I do still have this gathering dust on one of my shelves:

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:)


Run Deluxe Paint V Amiga like a regular app on Windows (no installation, just download, click the icon, and it runs!):
https://thecompany.pl/game/Deluxe+Paint+5.2

erikals
09-28-2018, 12:27 PM
fun stuff :)

Rayek
09-28-2018, 01:10 PM
fun stuff :)

Still have my broken A1200, an A600 (merely a shell), and the still working original A1000 (safely tucked away under my desk somewhere).

I love those keyboard-style all-in-one designs from the 80s and 90s. Always wanted an Enterprise 128, and almost decided to get one (had one in my hands in a computer store at the time), but did not. Still regret that decision till this day :-)

http://www.upl.co/uploads/amigas1538161017.jpg

raymondtrace
09-28-2018, 01:30 PM
I believe the 1000 had the production/development team's signatures etched inside the case. Pop the top and enjoy.

https://www.google.com/search?q=amiga+1000+signatures&safe=strict&source=lnms&tbm=isch

wyattharris
09-28-2018, 01:55 PM
Wow, as a gamer I actually remember the ads for Maximum Surge. Because you know, topless Yasmine. But I seem to remember it was toward the tail end of the live action game genre so I didn't consider it much.

Still remember buying the VT User mags because I couldn't afford a Toaster myself and then one day I got invited into my church's video control room and (ahhhhhhhhhh) there it was, the 4000! After how many tutorials I'd read I was able to sit down and start working immediately in LW. The church brought me on as the '3D' guy. Only worked weekends or after hours because of my full time job but man was it fun.

Rayek
09-28-2018, 01:59 PM
I believe the 1000 had the production/development team's signatures etched inside the case. Pop the top and enjoy.

https://www.google.com/search?q=amiga+1000+signatures&safe=strict&source=lnms&tbm=isch

Yes, I admired those for the first time back in the 1987 when I added a kickstart switcher hardware hack.

BeeVee
09-28-2018, 02:21 PM
It did have the signatures and also a paw print ;)

B

Rayek
09-28-2018, 02:29 PM
Mitchy was Jay Miner's dog's name.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a1/JayMiner_Mitch.jpg

raymondtrace
09-28-2018, 03:10 PM
The thing that impressed me was that the signatures were likely intended to be seen by fellow tinkerers.

...or maybe they were to provide some humanity so that when you took the thing apart to repair it, you wouldn't be blindly cursing. You'd know there was somebody that put themselves into the product. With that in mind, perhaps Lightwave's "About" window could default (optional) as the splash screen at each startup. :)

DonJMyers
09-29-2018, 02:12 PM
Still have my broken A1200, an A600 (merely a shell),

I am an Amigaholic (I freely admit that) and I had never even heard of the A600! How did you get it and why is it just a shell?

DonJMyers
09-29-2018, 02:18 PM
I started with the very first Amiga and then graduated to the 2000, 2500, 3000, 4000, and finally went PC when it went there. Boy did I spend a lot of money!!

But, no sweat, I made money over the last 33+ years!!

To say nothing of getting an A-list education in 3d ANIMATION THE MINUTE IT WAS POSSIBLE! Take that unaffordable college, self-education is mighty fine!

DonJMyers
09-29-2018, 02:20 PM
At about the same time the Amiga was recording the signatures in plastic (aka forever in some landfill some day) the Mac team did the same thing, including Steve Jobs and Macpaint/hypercard author Bill Atkinson.

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DonJMyers
09-29-2018, 02:27 PM
Hm, well I never did own a copy of Deluxe Paint IV but I do still have this gathering dust on one of my shelves:

142929

:)

Can you imagine a time back then when the author of Dpaint had a cartoon of himself on the cover of the manual? Just try writing photoshop with one person now. In fact, software does not come in boxes or with physical manuals any more! Good for the trees, not for the collectors. It would be nice to see a computer or software come in a box with the creator's photos on it would it not?

Rayek
09-30-2018, 10:54 AM
I am an Amigaholic (I freely admit that) and I had never even heard of the A600! How did you get it and why is it just a shell?

The A600 was originally meant to be called the A300 and sold at a very low price for those users with a low budget. The hardware was identical to the A500, but was converted to SMD. Commodore marketing decided to add more stuff which increased the price too much, and it flunked. It was the first Amiga with the PCMCIA expansion connector, though.

It's the smallest Amiga model, and the reason why I got a shell of an A600 off ebay (for $10) is because I want to use it for a project like this one: https://amigalove.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=636

...if I ever find the time, that is. I would have to give it a paint-job as well: as you can tell from the above photo, the casing has quite yellowed over time.

Read up on the A600 at the Amiga Museum: https://theamigamuseum.com/amiga-models/amiga-600/

The hardware scene for native Amiga hardware is still going strong, amazingly enough.

As for obscure Commodore computers, many people aren't aware of the existence of the C65, the follow up model of the famous C64:

https://i.kinja-img.com/gawker-media/image/upload/s--iKUue9t3--/c_fit,f_auto,fl_progressive,q_80,w_636/cpxjtu55qynjzdurzrte.jpg

Only around 50~200 still exist. One got sold at $25.000 a couple of years ago. You know, I just read that the C64 actually had a new VIC chip that could display 256 colour at 320x200! But still the old 8bit CPU running at 3.5mhz.

The demo disk that shipped with C65 included a demo with a topless blond woman clutching her breasts to show off this mode. Weird times indeed. I didn't believe it until I watched this C65 demo video:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kP46zIzbLpI

jbrookes
10-02-2018, 03:57 PM
Well, if we're posting pictures of Amiga computers, I suppose I should add a link to some pics of a brand-new Amiga 500 that I pulled out of storage a couple months ago:
https://www.blitter.com/~nebulous/AmigaPhotos.html

And for anyone who needs a refresher on using an Amiga, here's a 14-part series (perhaps a lead-up to getting the ol' Toaster or Flyer system running again?):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdxgRtRP71E

gdkeast
10-22-2018, 02:40 PM
Thanks for sharing this. It's interesting to see how far the program has developed. I remember my first computer from the early 1990s and I thought I was something special with 4 MBs of RAM. LOL.

roboman
10-22-2018, 07:28 PM
If you still like the C64, check out what a guy is doing with a VIC
http://forum.6502.org/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=5315

pming
10-27-2018, 02:42 AM
Hiya!



My first PC to run LW was a custom build Pentium 100 unit, with a massive 5" 1 gig hard drive for data, and the whole thing cost 4 grand if I remember right, along with a 17" monitor. 4 grand buys a WHOLE lot of computer today...

Holy Cow! Sounds like my first computer: ASUS motherboard, Pentium 100 (I remember having to wait two weeks for them to hit market), 1.02gb Connor HD, 17" NEC monitor, Fujitsu 104k FKG4700 series Keyboard (iirc...hold on...yup; and yes, I still have it!), NEC 4x CDROM (with 'caddie' for CD's), ATI Mach64 +2MB (iirc), AWE64 Gold for sound, and, brace yourself, 32MB RAM (yes...I splurged...what's $1500 for 32 MB of ram?). Oh, and the whole thing was SCSI as well! :) Man. That computer was the top-of-the-line model. It was touted as the "best" computer in the entire city (Whitehorse, Yukon)...and I tend to believe it because the company and guy who owned said company built it for me. His company was the primary computer dealer for our city and the entire Yukon Government.

I think I paid $5200 for it all. Or rather, my parents did.

I also remember hitting the yearly trade show that year and seeing a guy (can't remember his company name) who was, as far as I know, the ONLY guy in town doing 3D. He was running a DX66 or something. I talked to him for a half hour or so...he told me and showed me all the animations he does (guess?...yeah...'flying logos', pretty much exclusively). His weapon of choice? ... ... Lightwave! :) I couldn't afford Lightwave so I decided on a somewhat newcomer to Windows; Caligari trueSpace2. And the rest, as they say, is history.

shrox
10-27-2018, 12:53 PM
I gotta admit, I didn't know what the Toaster was when I was offered one. Oh well...

raymondtrace
06-13-2019, 11:53 AM
As this topic has persisted without redaction, I assume NewTek is okay with the discussion and sharing of vintage LW. I just stumbled on to this other option...

https://archive.org/details/LightwaveForPlayStation

The installer is useless on modern systems but the program can run portably, without installation.

As someone who still uses a USB dongle, even for LW2019, I was surprised to see that this old LW4 is still fully functional (including file saving & rendering) when my USB dongle is plugged in. I don't recall my dongle was ever associated with LW4 (it was a parallel->USB trade when I upgraded LW5 to LW7).

Of course, NewTek, if you have issue with it, please send a DMCA notice to archive.org.