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Griff
06-20-2004, 05:20 PM
XSI has followed Alias and is bundling a learning version of its 3D software with a major PC game for creating content. Maya PLE LE is bundled with Unreal Tournament 2004. XSI Softimage EXP is bundled with Half-Life 2. Both versions of the software come bundled with tutorials (the Maya stuff is DIVX video).

Welcome to the new world of 3D marketing. I'm sure the next up is 3DS Max. I doubt we'll ever see Lightwave taking this approach, which is okay as long as Newtek figures out how to shore up its own customer base with new users from other segments of the market.

--Scot

Signal to Noise
06-20-2004, 10:09 PM
Originally posted by Griff
...
Welcome to the new world of 3D marketing. I'm sure the next up is 3DS Max.
...

Err... discreet have already and it's called gmax (http://www.discreet.com/products/gmax/). Lots of games have shipped with gmax on their CD. It's a "poor man's" max but good nonetheless.


...
I doubt we'll ever see Lightwave taking this approach, which is okay as long as Newtek figures out how to shore up its own customer base with new users from other segments of the market.

--Scot

NewTek should have shipped LW Discovery Eds with every copy of Jimmy Neutron and a plethora of other movies.;)

Griff
06-20-2004, 11:27 PM
Cool! I had heard of gmax but I'd never seen it bundled with anything (and I buy almost every major game). Now I have that, too! Cool.

--Scot

JamesCurtis
06-21-2004, 10:02 AM
This is all fine and dandy, except for the fact that all these learning edition suff is exactly that - for learning. For commercial work they're useless IMO!!

I work commercially and don't give a hoot about game modding.

06-22-2004, 10:43 AM
And that's why they are shipping with GAME TITLES, since gamers, being likely candidates for mods and other free, non-commercial endeavours are their target audience, not established professionals or production houses.

Don't let that mislead you though. This is a powerful marketing approach, and it DOES get future customers by giving access to people with the desire, but lack of resources, access to the software for personal use. I know it works because I just became an XSI customer by trying out the EXP version for HL2.

As a professional, I'm already a Discreet, Kaydara, and NewTek customer. I definitely appreciated the free access to XSI so I could truly see what a difference it will make to me and my work without a major investment first.

It's never been so easy to obtain and learn high-end packages like xsi, houdini, and maya LEGALLY and without having to sell your organs or kids on the black market.

Griff
06-22-2004, 08:06 PM
JamesCurtis,

Glad to know that you work "commercially" and that game modding is beneath you, but you are missing the point entirely. You've already purchased your 3D software and made your commitment. The next generation of commercial 3D modelers haven't, and most of them are likely to come from the game industry, including the game modding community that supports it.

Regardless of whether you get a 3D tool for free or you pay for it, you are going to spend a lot of hard hours learning to make it do what you want it to do.

If you have the opportunity to learn a 3D tool for free (instead of paying hundreds or thousands of dollars to figure out if you can even understand it) and there is the implication that there is a built in commercial base who is using that software, why WOULDN'T you focus your attention on learning that software? If you build your skills on the learning edition, you may NEVER have to buy the commercial version because your employer will do that for you. Even if you do wind up buying the commercial version, which is not an easy decision, at least you will have the benefit of knowing that you've made a safe bet.

Yes, LW has its DE, but it is not bundled with anything, and certainly there is no apparent endorsement by any major player in the gaming or movie industry. As a result, these other 3D apps are becoming the de facto standards, and LW is threatened with being consigned to the pile of quaint 3D apps like Carrara Studio/RayDream.

The bottom line is that, if NewTek wants to maintain its current community of users and, better still, continue growing it, NewTek is going to have to start getting creative and get some brand recognition. Your may not care if everybody stops developing plugins and supporting LW, but I do.

--Griff

Signal to Noise
06-22-2004, 10:40 PM
Originally posted by JamesCurtis
...all these learning edition suff is exactly that - for learning. For commercial work they're useless IMO!!...

No kidding, Sherlock! That's why they are called "learning editions". They were never meant for commercial use!
:rolleyes:

Griff: Well said.:)

Darksuit
06-23-2004, 06:38 PM
as for versions and getting the word out. I do believe that New Tek has been working on it. Just because you may not see it really mainstream at this point doesn't mean that they are not trying.

Softimage and Maya have been doing the learning editions for a while and New Tek longer than both combined. I have learning editions of Lightwave dating back to 5.6 When you render out there is a Checker Pattern of the Renders.

Last three were bundled with 3D World Mag.

http://www.3dworldmag.com/

Last month had the XSI exp version budled with it.

Truthfully one of the things that is on our shoulders as a community is the task of demanding that the game companies put out the tools or information for us as lightwave modelers, animators and all around artists. New Tek can only do so much, the rest is up to us.

In this case the Squeaky wheel gets the plug-ins =)

JamesCurtis
06-24-2004, 07:20 AM
I'd like to appologize if my post sounded rather "narrow minded". I only meant to say that learning editions couldn't be used for professional output to video tape, DVD, etc. which is what my paying clients need.

Learning is great and we all go through it. These editions do allow users a chance to try out apps for free. In fact, I've tried the learning editions of gMax and Maya, but found them rather difficult to grasp. It probably has to do with the fact that I've been using LW since the first Video Toaster version oh so long ago. BTW, I do intend on trying XSI out.

Once again. I wish to appologize!

Gwot
06-24-2004, 08:32 AM
Demanding game companies provide tools for apps they may not even use in production doesn't generally work either though. Most of the best game tools (if you discount the recent major package bundles with a few AAA titles come from the mod community. I broke into the game industry this way, starting out with tools like q2modeler, npherno's skin tool, etc. Most developers are on tight enough time/money budgets as it is.

The current trend seems to be to release whatever plugins you developed that enable artists to feed the content pipeline. This definitely was not always the case up until very recently. It would be awesome if we could devote enough resources to supporting all apps for the end user. I really believe that the extra effort here would be worth it - not just for the user but for the devs too.

Signal to Noise
06-24-2004, 08:37 AM
Originally posted by JamesCurtis
... I only meant to say that learning editions couldn't be used for professional output to video tape, DVD, etc. which is what my paying clients need....

Clarification (again): If you have paying clients then you shouldn't be using learning editions to begin with.