Free Giveway: iClone



  • Folks, check this out:

    https://www.giveawayoftheday.com/

    today's giveaway is iClone. That's pretty amazing I think.



  • It's downloading now, but I expect that's the version that enables the user to play around with existing rigs, but doesn't allow them to create new rigs or morphs. I also expect it to not be the 30-days trial version (I hate trial versions and avoid it as heck).

    I think that was such a smart move from these guys. The 3DXchange version that allows for rigging and morph creation costs $400; so if they get say 10,000 downloads of that (temporarily) free version, and end up with 10% of these liking the software and wanting to upgrade to the higher version, that's $400K of easy money that they otherwise wouldn't get. Even if only 1% want to upgrade that's still $40K easy money.

    Brilliant, I say.



  • @fbs7 I've been subscribing to GoTD newsletters for years, and saw that this morning. In this case I wasn't interested, so didn't bother.

    IIRC, any software they offer for free has everything enabled. You just don't get support (in most cases), or any automatic updates. I've never used iClone, so have no idea if those facts are true in this case.



  • @fbs7
    Just a heads up. The version of 3DXChange that comes with the $399 price doesn't support OBJ export. So if you want to export the Iclone characters to any external program (via FBX, BVH, OBJ, or Alembic) you have to get the Pipeline version, which is $698 list price. That's twice the list price of Poser Pro 11, FWIW.

    Add to that that you won't have anything that does face photo fitting like the face room. For that, you'll also need to get Crazy Talk 8, also probably the pipeline version which will import and export your avatars from/to iClone, which will add another $199 list to the pricetag.



  • What's the deal with iClone? Why do people like it?

    I can see why someone who is doing previs might like it, but for a finished animation product... why? I haven't seen a lot of examples, but the ones I have seen kind of look like Poser 6 OpenGL preview window renders.. Which, I may add, people used to use for quick animations.

    So, for $1000 or so, what does someone who would be using this to produce a finished product, itself, gain? "Easy to use?" Is that enough for $1k?



  • @morkonan I have seen some pretty amazing animations done with it. However I won't purchase a program in which if I use their rigging system and want to sell my content, I may sell it through their online store only.



  • @meshbox said in Free Giveway: iClone:

    @morkonan I have seen some pretty amazing animations done with it. However I won't purchase a program in which if I use their rigging system and want to sell my content, I may sell it through their online store only.

    Oh... I didn't know that. That's pretty sneaky!



  • @morkonan said in Free Giveway: iClone:

    What's the deal with iClone? Why do people like it?

    I can see why someone who is doing previs might like it, but for a finished animation product... why? I haven't seen a lot of examples, but the ones I have seen kind of look like Poser 6 OpenGL preview window renders.. Which, I may add, people used to use for quick animations.

    So, for $1000 or so, what does someone who would be using this to produce a finished product, itself, gain? "Easy to use?" Is that enough for $1k?

    I have used it only for a little bit after install, and then I had to go through a fast tutorial as I couldn't get the default toon posed (the basics of it are different than poser).

    But I can see it does have some pretty amazing things -- even if that's wrapped in a commercial model that seems intended at extracting every dollar they can from the customer.

    For one thing it seems to do cloth and hair dynamics on real time; you click on Play animation, and it takes a few moments, say 1-2 seconds, then the animation plays with the dynamic clothes simulated. That's very amazing, as the same thing takes like 10-15 minutes to calculate in Poser. The hair simulation that I got isn't really the strand-based hair, but seemed like conforming hair with springs to make it work like soft body.

    Then you can pose in real time; that is, grab whatever manipulator you want for the body part (say hip translation), then press space - if you move the hip as the animation is playing it automatically records that; I tried that for a bit, and that's a real time saver. Same thing for face expression. Also they have auto-blinking by itself, I didn't have to do anything, that's a parameter of the actor.

    I also liked their instance generator; you add a tree via Object / Add, and it comes as configurable object (for tree type, height, etc...); then you click a button and you can multiply that tree with random variations all over the place; same thing for Object / Add / Grass. I was just playing around, then suddenly I had a whole forest with trees, grass and bushes all over the place, it was pretty amazing.

    Finally it does have a pipeline to import G6/G7 characters directly from DAZ Studio, including rigging, morphs and textures, although textures need adjustments after import.

    But then again everything is closed, so it does feel like doing a pact with the Devil to spend time in there knowing up front you'll be locked, tied, gagged and caged if you use it.



  • @fbs7 said in Free Giveway: iClone:

    But then again everything is closed, so it does feel like doing a pact with the Devil to spend time in there knowing up front you'll be locked, tied, gagged and caged if you use it.

    Yeah, I could see that after reading about it for a little while.

    But, with all those features and all that stuff... is there anything actually decent that has been made with it? It looks great for visualizations made by people who aren't really worried about end-product quality or producing a "finished" animation that is of excellent quality. Doubly so for those not familiar with more advanced 3D rendering/animations. It's probably great for certain serialized esoteric kind of stories, where the consumer isn't really put off by the poor graphics.

    What's "the best" that's actually created with it? I guess it could be part of a pipepline, somewhere, but I can't see justifying the price of a complete package necessary to really support it for end-product production.



  • @morkonan said in Free Giveway: iClone:

    @fbs7 said in Free Giveway: iClone:

    But then again everything is closed, so it does feel like doing a pact with the Devil to spend time in there knowing up front you'll be locked, tied, gagged and caged if you use it.

    Yeah, I could see that after reading about it for a little while.

    But, with all those features and all that stuff... is there anything actually decent that has been made with it? It looks great for visualizations made by people who aren't really worried about end-product quality or producing a "finished" animation that is of excellent quality. Doubly so for those not familiar with more advanced 3D rendering/animations. It's probably great for certain serialized esoteric kind of stories, where the consumer isn't really put off by the poor graphics.

    What's "the best" that's actually created with it? I guess it could be part of a pipepline, somewhere, but I can't see justifying the price of a complete package necessary to really support it for end-product production.

    Oh, yeah, it will definitely look great. It comes by default with 2 G5 toons and 2 G6 toons, both from DAZ, so they look awesome, plus 2 default iClone toons, which look ok. I downloaded something like 4-5 GB or additional content, but didn't install that yet; I can speculate it will have something more in there too. These are the default toons (2x G5, 2x G6, 2x "CC"), with a plain stock environment:

    0_1509050424294_test1.jpg

    The big "if" there... actually not a "if"... the big "when" is when we say this "Oh, that looks nice! Now, how do I add a giant rabbit to that scene?"... then the user will find that he'll need to pop $50 for the giant rabbit...



  • @fbs7 said in Free Giveway: iClone:
    ...>

    The big "if" there... actually not a "if"... the big "when" is when we say this "Oh, that looks nice! Now, how do I add a giant rabbit to that scene?"... then the user will find that he'll need to pop $50 for the giant rabbit...

    Does it lock everything behind proprietary formats and such? IOW, if I wanted to create my own content, is that easy to get into the program or am I stuck with a "pay to play" library?

    I have no plan on buying it, since I don't have a use for it and, honestly, am not very impressed as far as its ability to produce a quality, finished, product that's worth the money. (Though, it certainly has a market, I'm just not in that market. :) )

    But, it's interesting to see how they manage to survive and/or thrive with such a product.



  • @morkonan said in Free Giveway: iClone:

    @fbs7 said in Free Giveway: iClone:
    ...>

    The big "if" there... actually not a "if"... the big "when" is when we say this "Oh, that looks nice! Now, how do I add a giant rabbit to that scene?"... then the user will find that he'll need to pop $50 for the giant rabbit...

    Does it lock everything behind proprietary formats and such? IOW, if I wanted to create my own content, is that easy to get into the program or am I stuck with a "pay to play" library?

    I have no plan on buying it, since I don't have a use for it and, honestly, am not very impressed as far as its ability to produce a quality, finished, product that's worth the money. (Though, it certainly has a market, I'm just not in that market. :) )

    But, it's interesting to see how they manage to survive and/or thrive with such a product.

    At the "standard" level that I got, everything is absolutely locked. Everything that you can open, import, export or save (except for textures) has to be an iFace, iAvatar, iHair, iLittleFinger and so on.

    I guess that at the higher levels with the Content Creator, 3DXchange and Pipeline add-ons one can import/export in many more formats, although I (without any proof) expect it to have some additional hooks and catch nets around them too.

    For example, say you want to buy a hat from their content store. You get the hat for say $50... but if you pay $70 you get an "export" version of the hat. I have no information what it has for the $20 extra, but I guess is the ability to export...



  • @fbs7 said in Free Giveway: iClone:
    ...

    For example, say you want to buy a hat from their content store. You get the hat for say $50... but if you pay $70 you get an "export" version of the hat. I have no information what it has for the $20 extra, but I guess is the ability to export...

    An... "expert" hat? I lol'd!

    "I am sorry, sire, but we have determined that this particular hat is beyond your simple capabilities to use. We do, however, have a very nice looking pancake that you can try."

    https://farm1.static.flickr.com/3/5414660_8716bf615a.jpg

    :)


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