Foundry ships Modo 14.2
Friday, November 13, 2020 | Written by Jim Thacker
Foundry has shipped Modo 14.2, the latest version of its 3D modeling, animation and rendering software and the last of the three linked versions of the Modo 14 series.
New features include Rig Clay, a nifty new system for posing characters by clicking directly on the mesh rather than rig controls. USD export; and native support for Cryptomatte when rendering.
The expanded viewport, Modo's modeling and UV toolkits, and the mPath renderer have also been updated.
The new Rig Clay system lets you depict characters directly by clicking and dragging
The most noticeable feature in Modo 14.2 is Rig Clay, a new system for posing characters by clicking and dragging directly on their geometry rather than on a controller.
It's an intuitive and currently trendy workflow that is also supported in Rumba, the special next-generation character animation software from Mercenaries Engineering, which was also shipped this week.
In Modo, artists can designate portions of the surface of a character model as command regions.
These can then be made to deform the mesh by assigning a mouse gesture and the deformer it triggers in Modo's schematic view, as shown in the video above.
New USD exporter for VFX and animation pipelines
Support for the Universal Scene Description format, which is now widely used in VFX and animation pipelines, has also been expanded. In Modo 14.1 a USD exporter was added to the USD importer.
It supports many of Modo's key features, including Networks, Instances, Replicators, Group Locators, Shared Animations, Cameras, and the Principal Material Type.
Lights that are not based on geometry can be exported, but portal or mesh lights cannot. and character rigs may need to be restructured before animations work properly in other software.
For details on what is and what is not supported, see the online documentation.
Native Cryptomatte support and option to pause and resume rendering in mPath
Modo now also supports Cryptomatte, the open source system for generating ID mats that is widely used in VFX pipelines and supported in many other renderers.
The software's new mPath render engine can now also save and resume running renderings and supports template mapping to speed up rendering of objects such as leaves that use transparent areas in textures.
Incremental updates to the modeling and UV tools and the expanded viewport
Modo's other tool sets are incrementally updated, with direct modeling tools seeing further changes to the new Edge Chamfer tool added in Modo 13.2 and updated in each subsequent release.
The embossing and procedural vertex map generation features added in Modo 14.0 are also updated.
Other changes include a new preset for the extended viewport for retopology work and better support for real scaling in the UV tools. For a full list, see the links at the bottom of the story.
There are also some significant performance improvements: component selection is now "up to 200% faster" and Boolean operations are now "up to 38,000% faster" with "dense polygons and complex shapes".
Prices and availability
Modo 14.2 is available for 64-bit Windows 10, RHEL and CentOS 7.6+ Linux and MacOS 10.13-10.15.
New perpetual licenses for the software cost $ 1,888. The rent is $ 62 / month or $ 629 / year.
For a complete list of the new features in Modo 14.2, see the online release notes
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