I've uninstalled iClone after... 3 days!



  • It's one of these odd cases that when you try a program you swiftly realize it's not for you, not because of any inherent flaws in the program, but because of a deeply limiting and in my view flawed business model.

    I still think the program is awesome; it has a ton of functionality that I can only dream of in Poser, and an ease of use for animation that leaves one water-mouthing. But then I swiftly realize all that is a hook in the end of a very long line intended to catch and pull you as fish. Every single darn content is a preset of some kind, and the only way to add to that preset is to buy another package.

    So one can't do anything without Content Creator, and then once one gets Content Creator I deeply suspect won't be able to do anything with clothes without Super Whatever Pack #1, and then once one gets Super Whatever Pack #1 I deeply suspect won't be able to do anything with hats without Hyper Other Pack #1, and once one gets Hyper Other Pack #1 I deeply suspect won't be able to get any animation blocks created with whatever else they will try to sell me.

    I vehemently hate sales by parts and I strongly resent being treated like dumb fish that one attracts with a lure. I believe in one sale, a full sale, and that sale is final, end of story. I don't believe in buying a house for 1/5th of the price just to find you bought only the kitchen, and if you want the bathroom that's another 1/5th, and if you want the bedroom that's another 1/5th, and so forth.

    I understand in having different software levels for added functionality, but c'mon... paying $600 just to be able to import and export OBJ???? OBJ is the simplest 3D file format in the whole history of the universe; when a 3D software don't include that, it's a sign to me of the vendor treating customers as dumb fish, and is offering a 12 hours flight for $50 just so that they will be able to sell water onboard for $100 a cup.

    iClone is still awesome, but now it's definitely in my black list.



  • Oh great, micro-transactions in creative software as well now. It's beginning to feel like there's no limits to the software publishers' greed. This is a bubble that really has to burst.



  • You guys act like you've never heard of DAZ. ?Getting you to buy more content is what they DO! So IClone has adopted the same business model.



  • @eclark1849
    Not quite. IClone content is only sold through their store, whereas DAZ content is sold at other sites in addition to DAZ.



  • @Deecey So no one is allowed to make IClone content except Iclone?



  • @eclark1849 said in I've uninstalled iClone after... 3 days!:

    You guys act like you've never heard of DAZ. ?Getting you to buy more content is what they DO! So IClone has adopted the same business model.

    I was actually going to cite DAZ in the post, but then I thought it better as DAZ's jabberwocking on this is not as egregious as iClone; as far as I know, one can rig a toon in DAZ and import/export OBJ, so for that I removed it from my post.



  • @eclark1849
    Anyone can make content for iClone, but it has to be SOLD through their store.



  • @Deecey That sounds contradictory to me. Not saying it is, but...



  • @eclark1849 No Earl, it's not the same model at all. IClone is a premium price product from which they are withholding basic functionality in order to sell you THEIR OWN plug ins to make it a complete product.
    DAZ Studio is a free product with an extensible architecture that enables anyone to sell plugins.

    This is a massive issue in the games market at the moment. The general sentiment is that premium priced games should not include micro transactions or day 1 DLC because these should have been included in the base product. Free to play games however, operate on the business model that a small percentage of consumers will purchase upgrades and ornaments and that's what pays for development.

    The vast majority of plug ins for DAZ Studio are neither made by, nor commissioned by them. They make their profit as brokers.



  • Of course that is your opinion the program is incomplete. The question is does the basic program do what it says it is suppose to? Just because you want to do more then the basic program allows does not mean it is incomplete. Should all cars have to come with all options installed instead of the customer selecting those they want?



  • @eclark1849
    I don't see how it's contradictory.

    Anyone can make content for Poser, DAZ Studio, or iClone.

    If you want to SELL Poser content, there are several places to sell it.

    If you want to SELL DAZ Studio content, there several places to sell it.

    If you want to SELL iClone Content, you have to sell it through their store. That doesn't contradict that anyone can make content. It only means that there is only one option on where it can be sold, instead of multiple (Content Paradise, DAZ, Renderosity, etc etc) for the other programs.



  • @richard60 said in I've uninstalled iClone after... 3 days!:

    Of course that is your opinion the program is incomplete. The question is does the basic program do what it says it is suppose to? Just because you want to do more then the basic program allows does not mean it is incomplete. Should all cars have to come with all options installed instead of the customer selecting those they want?

    I don't question the program quality. I question the business model from iClone. A 3D program that purposely doesn't come with the most basic 3D import/exports, so that they can charge extra for them, that is a very sneaky business decision.

    It's similar to offering a car for half the price, but then you find the car comes with the trunk always shut, and the only way to get the key to the trunk is to pay an extra. And the passenger seats are folded down and locked, and the only way to unfold them is another extra. And then when you see you end up paying twice for the basic extras.

    I understand having extras, but calling simple basic functionality a paid extra is a huge no-no for me.

    After all an OBJ file is just a series of vertex coordinates and then a list of vertex indexes for the faces... there's no justification on having OBJ import/export locked away.



  • @Deecey It sounds contradictory to me because what they're basically saying is you need our permission to make something for IClone. Yes, you can make something for IClone, as long as you're the only one using it, but if you want to share it with anyone, you need our say so. That was one of the reasons why I first stayed away from Marvelous Designer. They wouldn't even allow you to give away freebies. This sounds like the same deal with IClone except even more restrictive.



  • @eclark1849 Or it could be seen as ensuring only the highest quality of products are sold for your program which ensures the greatest user experience.



  • @richard60 said in I've uninstalled iClone after... 3 days!:

    @eclark1849 Or it could be seen as ensuring only the highest quality of products are sold for your program which ensures the greatest user experience.

    Exactly. That's my take. Consistency in features, etc.



  • @fbs7 said in I've uninstalled iClone after... 3 days!:

    I understand having extras, but calling simple basic functionality a paid extra is a huge no-no for me.

    After all an OBJ file is just a series of vertex coordinates and then a list of vertex indexes for the faces... there's no justification on having OBJ import/export locked away.

    Hear hear!



  • I totally feel you... I had essentially the same reaction after using v4 for a bit. Let me tell you why I haven't completely written it off yet...
    First thing, I don't know if you are referring to the cost of iClone+3DXchange with your "$600" price, or the high price of the "pipeline" version of 3DXchange. That said, here's how I think they see their users:
    People who would use just iClone likely have no modeling skills, no desire to make their own content for personal or commercial use. Similar to what seems the majority of Poser's main competitor's user base. They simply want to drop in items and create who knows whatever.
    For these people the business model makes sense. You aren't expected to own everything. Yeah, there are some things you think you will be able to so something with and they end up being limited. But for a specific category of user it might be really handy to preview content you do not own and add things à la carte. The expectations of digital storytellers is quite high now. People want entire worlds in their stories, and selling them these things in small bundles and collections is probably the only way to make that practical.
    People who use iClone and 3DXchange likely have custom content, or legacy content they want to use. I didn't buy iClone as a replacement for Poser, but as a companion to it. I wanted a higher quality viewport and greater use of GPU than Poser provides. But to use Poser with iClone one needs to go through 3DXchange. It's just a way they could sell people no more than they need, even if it does obfuscate the investment needed to use the program for specific purposes.
    The pipeline license isn't for getting your content out of iClone, but rather for exporting iClone content out to a game engine. In addition to Pipeline's higher price, on must pay the higher cost of the export license when purchasing the content. You don't need this if you aren't exporting, and you don't need this if you aren't incorporating their content in your scenes. It comes down to time vs. money... Is the time it would take you to make something worth the cost of licensing the content?
    I'm not a fan of the way things are going with micro-payments and subscription models either. But look away from the content you can't use and the escalating cost going up their product ladder and you may see there is actually quite a bit of product there for the cost.



  • I understand your points, and appreciate them.

    I don't complain about iClone having an accessory system for import/export (the 3DXchange). I understand that part. I complain that it requires all that accessory system to import/export OBJ. Even I, a complete noob in graphic programming, can write a basic OBJ import/export in a few minutes, as the file is so simple. So they made a point of closing that down to force users to buy a Super-export/import thingie that costs much more.

    Now, it seems they have another promotion now: iClone+3DXchange+Character Creator for $250. Seems like a good deal, and I could have the OBJ import/import plus character rigging!!

    But then I can't shake the feeling that's just another bait, and that's because the Curve Creator Plugin thingie costs $400... and I have no idea if I need the second package to build an animation. And then Animation Pipeline+Curve Creator Plugin costs $650, and again I don't know if I need this or not. And 3D Head Creation Suite (plus some face mocap thingie) then costs $1,500.

    I don't get it! Why do I need a Curve Creation Plugin? Do I need it? Do I not need it? Is there some very basic and simple and useful feature in iClone that is locked shut just so to force me to buy the Curve Creation Plugin? So when I have a lot of questions I start to see a lot of risk on my $250 purchase. Given that I have proof that iClone all by itself is just bait (you can't really do anything with just 4 toons or so), I have no idea if iClone+3DXchange+Character Creator is a workable environment or just another bait.

    I don't know if iClone is a huge sales hit or not, but their whole sales strategy is just too suspicious for their own good. And these are the times that I praise Smith Micro for having just two versions of Poser, and not 23.



  • Oh, and I also praise Smith Micro for having, I don't know, maybe 100 figures right out of the box in the simplest Poser version - plus clothes, and hairs, and I don't know what else, plus several useful imports and exports right out of the box.

    It's an entire zoo - you get realistic adults and children, several cartoons, a penguin, two dogs, several animals, robots, teddy bears, etc... It integrates well with Blender, SketchUp and Marvelous Designer without any extra cost, you can change any figure to a prop and any prop to a figure, can rig your toon, can make a dynamic cloth out of anything including donuts, and can make a soft simulation out of hair.

    I don't mind paying $600 for a software, but I do hate surprises enormously, and the fact that SM didn't turn a surprise trick on me on Poser for the last 15 years or so is why I've been using it for 15 years - I say cheers to that.



  • @fbs7 Yeah, I do have to agree... I forgot all about the curve editor. Also, they don't make it clear (intentionally?) if one can even upgrade from say Pro to Pipeline...
    But for users who do want to make the bulk of the content they use, aside from figures of course, the combination of iClonePro+3DXchange Pro still seems to me pretty powerful. I might knock the way they price it and the whole a la carte model, but I do still think its a versatile and competently designed combo.


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