Updates?



  • I was excited to read about Saola, but HTML5 export is only available at the $299 license level. And I'd miss all of Motion Artist's comics-specific features (like zooming in on panels).

    So while I'd be happy for some competitor to release a comparable product (like Tumult's Hype for Windows, which will never happen), my ideal would be for SmithMicro to put some resources back onto this program.

    (Likewise, why is there a Japanese version 1.6.6 of ClipStudio available while the English is stuck at 1.6.2?)

    I also looked at DragonBones. They have a nice page and graphics showing that the program can make motion comics, but once you download and run it, there's no obvious way to do such a thing -- it's very oriented to making game sprites -- and there are no demonstration videos, either. The example pictures on the motion comics page don't have links attached to them.

    So, again, MotionArtist, long in the tooth as it is, is still the best option here. Does SmithMicro figure that more development would be good money after bad, have they gone through heavy restructuring, or... what's going on? From a customer perspective, it makes me worried for these programs I like and depend on.

    I'm just happy Clip Studio is, in reality, handled by someone else, because I use it to do all my work.



  • EDIT: Sorry, I was wrong. That's for another product. Saola has a $39/year perpetual subscription fee (ugh) or a lifetime fee of $99. (I don't trust many technology companies' "lifetimes" as being especially long.)

    I've had a quick look at Saola, and it doesn't have .PSD import, which I use a lot with MotionArtist -- not to mention that MA recognizes folders as frames to zoom in and out of. It's pretty basic in general -- a lot like Google's Web Designer (which is free).

    Saola's interface is clean and modern, though.



  • @hamishmacdonald Yeah, I hear all that! It's very new, but they are inviting suggestions for improvements (which makes a refreshing change), and when I think of animation, for example, I compare their sprite sheet approach to the horrible compromise used in MotionArtist and it's no contest. So, early days, but it already makes MotionArtist look old-fashioned and clunky. I agree that subscriptions are a terrible idea; I'd have to go with the lifetime fee if I was to buy it, and hope the lifetime is longer than a hamster's!



  • Been trying out Saola over the last few days, and the more I use it, the more impressed I am. MotionArtist has better control of panels, but in all other respects Saola is superior. In the next week or so hope to have something to show...



  • @jahnocli
    Gave Saola a quick look but I'm still digging into after effects. Looking forward to your some of your examples.



  • @jahnocli I'm looking forward to seeing what you create! And I've re-downloaded Saola to give it a second look.

    I tried to use MotionArtist for a project two days ago, but so many things didn't work (like applying a link to an image), and I had to rebuild the project from scratch three times (changing the original Photoshop file at all completely borked the MotionArtist's referred images, even though all layer names remained the same).

    I built my website in Xara Designer 365 (or whatever it's called today), and decided to see if I could achieve what I was going for right in that program. Sure enough, it has a "presentation" feature -- like HTML5 PowerPoint slides -- that did the job.

    The presentation is even responsive, and you can use touch to slide forward and back in it. I'm happy with the result, but disappointed that this means I probably won't try to use MotionArtist again.



  • Hrm. Saola's animations don't scale responsively.

    What about Hippani? It hasn't been updated this year and doesn't have Saola's nice 'Material'-type design, but it seems to have a well-developed feature-set.



  • I just installed Hippani. Yeesh, its interface is harsh -- like something made for teachers in Flash or Java several years ago. The (many) control panels are stuck docked in one window, which would make it pretty difficult to work on a large project.

    Still, it does have a lot of features, and it produces scalable animations.

    I just want it all in one package, y'know?



  • @hamishmacdonald said in Updates?:

    Hrm. Saola's animations don't scale responsively.

    Yes, that is annoying. But then neither do MotionArtist's...



  • I have no idea if Vecteezy might be a suitable replacement or not. I expect there'd be a LOT of work involved adapting a comic into this format. Also see AlternativeTo Saola Animate.



  • @laura.seabrook Wow, it's amazing what people can accomplish in a browser window now. It looks like this is a vector drawing application, though; I don't see any animation functions.