Evening! No Sim news today but a couple of notes from the 3D world.

As some of you might be aware, Discreet, the makers of 3D Studio MAX, released a free version of their modeler called gmax. Unfortunately if you’re looking for a free modeler to create Sim objects, this doesn’t cut it. There is no exporting or loading/saving of files in anything but a propriatary .gmax format and regular 3DS plug-ins don’t work. You have to get a gmax game kit from a publisher to create content.

Well, Alias has jumped on the bandwagon for free 3D software and will be offering up a free personal edition of their great Maya software. This is the same software that is used in most movies for special effects (even more so than 3D Studio is) and was recently used for most of the effects in Lord of The Rings. Again, this is a non-commerical edition and will save in a special format. You can sign up for the free edition here (available in February).

However if you’re looking to get your 3D feet wet, both products are great examples of high-quality professional 3D packages so if you’re interested give them a try. The new blueprint isn’t Maya or 3DS but it will offer a lot of great 3D type features like vertex/face level editing, spline and patch based modeling, NURBS surfaces and other good stuff.