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e-on Plant Factory Producer v2016 R3

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The Solution for Production Studios

Author fully animated 3D plants in concert with your production workflow. With expanded collaboration and compo­siting capabilities, advanced artistic control and dependable productivity, PlantFactory Producer is the perfect solution for demand­ing production studios.


Highlights

Create, Edit and Export High-Quality Animated 3D Plants

Procedural plants with unlimited control for special fx, architectural visualization and real-time environments

With Plant Factory you can:

  • Create any kind of vegetation, from simple grass to super elaborate hero trees
  • Create your vegetation by painting it, assembling simple building blocks, or completely graphing all plant properties
  • Generate procedural geometry and materials of unlimited detail
  • Animate all plant aspects using precise wind and breeze algorithms
  • Export your 3D vegetation to your preferred application as standard .OBJ, .3DS or animated .FBX
  • Render stills and animations for your compositing jobs or for use as billboards
  • Expand your plant library through a dedicated 3D plant model store

The Plant Factory is e-on software's revolutionary new plant modeling and rendering technology. This new technology represents the culmination of e-on software's decades of expertise in the field of digital nature and delivers unsurpassed realism and performance.
As a next generation vegetation platform, The Plant Factory incorporates four foundational elements:

  • Multi-Platform/Multi-Discipline – operates across all CG platforms including real-time, streaming, and offline rendering systems and caters to the needs of CG, SFX, Landscaping, GeoDesign, Architecture and Gaming communities
  • Botanical Coherency – allows the creation of more botanically accurate plant appearances and behaviors
  • Precise Control – users can create plants of any desired shape, appearance, and behavior using simple building blocks
  • Massive Populations – building on e-on’s leadership in EcoSystems™ to create landscapes containing millions of plants

Plants created using The Plant Factory technology can be exported to any 3D Application using multiple export formats such as FBX, 3DS, OBJ, etc. Plants are exported fully rigged, fully textured, with UV maps and displacement, etc.
Breeze or wind animated plants can be exported using a fully rigged mesh, or as a cloud of animated vertices (MDD style). That way, you can fine tune the plant animation to your needs, directly inside your preferred application.

Plant Factory is so powerful that it lets you create recursion loops inside your graphs, so that you can “program” iterative fractal behaviors directly into your plant species. This is achieved through a number of dedicated nodes: Repeat, Next, End and Iteration.
In short, the “Repeat” node will repeat the node(s) plugged into it a (user defined) number of times. Once this number is reached, TPF will then continue processing the graph onwards (what’s after the “End” node). This technique will prove extremely useful to quickly generate variations of the same plant at various ages, for instance. The above video shows how the simple Acacia plant easily creates an intricate branching structure thanks to the use of recursive modeling. Notice how the plant gets more and more detailed with the number of times the loop is repeated.

One of the key features of The Plant Factory is its ability to dynamically set global plant characteristics such as plant age, health, and seasonality. These characteristics can drive any node or set of nodes in the TPF graph to add more complete plant definition and realism. For example, the seasonality node can drive the presence and color of leaves by moving the slider as shown in the above video.

Plant Factory provides unprecedented control by letting you drive any parameter of your plant with a graph of nodes. As an example, we illustrate here how easy it is to add detail to the trunk of a plant by driving its displacement with a fractal. Drive displacement (or any other parameter) using fractals, and easily publish important parameters for later tweaks!

Plant factory integrates a Render Engine that automatically generates and saves three channels (Color, Alpha and Depth). You can also generate full G-Buffer and Multi-Pass information for each frame, for maximum compositing options. Plant Factory can save stills or animations in various file formats such as AVI, Mpeg 1, Mpeg 2, MOV or single frames for animations or BMP, PICT, JPG, GIF, IFF, PCX, PNG, PSD, TGA or TIFF for stills. Industry standard G-buffer information can be generated and saved in RLA or RPF formats for compositing in dedicated applications such as Combustion, Avid, Flame and After Effects. Finally Plant Factory provides extensive multi-pass rendering options. Virtually every rendering component, every layer, every material and every single asset can be assigned a separate pass and saved all together as a multi-layer Photoshop file.

The Plant factory modeling engine is so powerful that it can be used to model other kind of meshes, not just plants. While obviously not plants, the examples shown here illustrate the power and diversity of models that can be created using The Plant Factory procedural modeling technology. By combining various noise, fractal, and math nodes, an almost infinite variety of organic and geometric shapes are possible. We are not suggesting that TPF is a general purpose modeling tool, but it can be extremely useful for producing models that contain repeating/recursive shapes (such as the spiral staircase) or for adding organic geometries (like the tubes on the turbine).

With the Plant Factory, you can cause plants to grow at the surface of objects. This is ideal to create root networks, ivy or vines for instance. Vines can be created from any branch, by selecting the "Grow on object" parameter. This will force the plant to attach itself to any geometry it finds along its way, including the ground plane. Of course, all other branch growth parameters are retained (including sensitivity to gravity). The Plant Factory technology can operate as a standalone system or integrated into other CG systems. For example, when used in conjunction with e-on software Vue, TPF will fully integrate and expand the software, so that you can access the plant editing power of TPF directly from Vue, and use the Vue tools to affect the Plant Factory vegetation. Furthermore, when used inside of Vue, The Plant Factory technology creates unique vegetation – i.e. no two plants of the same species will ever look exactly alike. The Plant Factory plants also sway in the breeze, or twist and bend in strong winds. TPF plants will also automatically adapt their resolution with distance, through a dynamic LOD system, making them perfect for Hero plants, foreground, mid-ground and background placements in your compositions. The Plant Factory vegetation can be edited directly within the Vue Plant Editor. Specific parameters from the plant graph can be extracted to the Plant Editor to create simplified high-level controls and facilitate your plant editing process. Last but not least, like any Vue component, TPF plants will work seamlessly with the EcoSystem™ technology, to create landscapes containing millions of unique plants!

What's new in Plant Factory 2016 R3?

  • Advanced Pruning Algorithms
    • PlantFactory 2016 R3 adds a new Current Primitive node, that allows advanced control over branch growth and natural pruning effects. Additionally, a new set of pruning parameters are now available, such as:
      • Cut probability
      • Cut length
      • Radius Reduction
  • UX/UI Improvements
    • Major performance/responsiveness/stability improvements
    • All software titles are now available in English, French and German
    • Better wireframe display, and improved gizmo manipulator interactions
    • Improved geometry loading and previewing
    • Improved vegetation painting
  • Improved Geometry Transition Algorithms
    • Better handling of branch offset
    • Improved geometry continuity with highly distorted models
    • Displacement mapping now available on transition zones
  • Improved exports
    • New optional wind application to exported geometry
    • Improved export dialog interface
    • Improved PTex format export for plant materials

What's new in Plant Factory 2016 R2?

Stylized Meshing Mode

plant factory stylized meshing mode
Stylized Meshing Mode - Cycling through various Smoothing and Convexity quality values

The new Stylized meshing mode allows you to quickly and automatically generate a low polygon envelope version of your vegetation model.

This new option allows you to export your models with a small polygon footprint, yet retaining the actual vegetation visual volume. Load the envelope version of your model while working on your scene; switch to highest resolution mesh before rendering.

Envelope resolution, smoothing and convexity quality is user configurable, from none - to get ultra-sharp edged meshes, to ultra-smooth - for more balloony results.

Stylized Meshing mode can also be used creatively to produce non-photorealistic vegetation.

3-Axis Billboard Leaves Rotation

Using Billboard leaves is ideal when working for Real-Time engines, or, in an offline workflow, to create low polygon plants to be seen from a distance. (Billboard leaves are perfect for VUE EcoSystem populations for instance).

PlantFactory 2016 R2 now introduces 3-Axis Billboard Leaves Rotation.

Quick and easy to set up, this new feature is perfect to avoid any obvious linear visual pattern, by letting you add slight randomization to your leaves axis rotation.

Use this option to immediately add more realism to your vegetation models.

What's new in Plant Factory 2016?

Growth Simulation

  • Easily generate geometry using a biologically inspired growth simulation
  • Handles parameters such as growth, duration, shadow sensitivity, apical development etc.
  • Once applied, this basically becomes a "Grow me a tree" button

Preset Variations

PlantFactory 2015 introduced the concept of Presets. PlantFactory 2016 now introduces the concept of Preset Variations(3).

Preset Variations allow you to immediately include subtle differences to your plant (change the number of buds on a blooming flower, or its petal colors for instance).

This new feature allows you to easily add variety to create realistic environments with one single plant species!

Level Of Detail (LOD)

PlantFactory now offers the ability to configure the level of detail in a plant model(1).

Once you have set the number of LODs you need, there are 3 ways to configure them:

  • Let PlantFactory automatically decimate the geometry for you
  • Set the behavior of each node in your plant graph depending on the LOD
  • Use the LOD selector node to set a different plant graph per LOD

Global LOD options let you select the type of geometry for Offline rendering or Real-time engines(2) and control different aspect of your species LODs:

  • The number of LODs and their distribution rules (depending on plant size on screen)
  • The meshing type: Triangles, Quads or both
  • Manual, Automatic Adaptive or Uniform subdivision
  • Use LODs when rendering (the plant mesh used for rendering will be chosen using LOD rules)
  • Optimize your LODs for use in VUE's EcoSystems
  • And more...

Once set, you can export each LOD geometry independently to many standard file formats.

Finally, VUE, Carbon Scatter and Bentley LumenRT Connect Edition will automatically use the LODs set in your .tpf files, without requiring you to export the plant.

Additional Edition Parameters

Some new parameters were added in the Segment node to further help you customize your plant designs:

  • Minimum length
  • Branch distribution as absolute
  • Texture mapping applied from branch top
  • Interaction with ground

(1) PlantFactory Producer and Studio
(2) PlantFactory Producer only
(3) PlantFactory Producer, Studio and Designer

 

What's New in PlantFactory 2015

Geometry

  • Generate plant geometry as Quads (1)
  • Merge branch geometry using Subdivision Surfaces (requires Quad geometry) (1)
  • Multiple meshing algorithms using triangles or quads, with optional adaptive density and manual density control(1)
  • More control over mesh density of individual parts of the plant (1)
  • Use as second UV layer to add detail maps
  • Use double-sided materials, e.g. for the front/back of leaves

Content

  • 19 new plant species (1)
  • 44 simple tutorial scenes explaining specific settings(1)
  • Redesigned content, optimized for the new wind
  • Preset material library

User Experience

  • Redesigned interface and workflow for an improved "new-user" experience
  • Trunk, Branch, Twig, Stem, Leaf and Billboard framework nodes help you get going fast
  • Basic and Advanced workspaces, adapted for newcomers and power users
  • Edit the same parameter for several nodes simultaneously (1)
  • Simplified material creation using the new Basic Material Editor with standard channels for diffuse, alpha, normals and detail maps

Export

  • Export meshes using Alembic .ABC format (Ogawa v1.5 and HDF5 v1.0) (1)
  • Send portions of plant to ZBrush for sculpting, then back to PlantFactory (using GoZ) (1)
  • Export materials using Walt Disney Animation's Ptex standard (2)
  • Export plants as multiple meshes (i.e. one mesh per node) (2)
  • Clean exports thanks to automatic merging of duplicate points
  • Custom tailored FBX export preset for Unity 5

Animation

  • New ultra-realistic wind animation model
  • Standardized wind animation for both real-time and offline rendering
  • New optimnized "Leaf" Node to easily add animated leaves to your plants


Graph

  • New lightweight Simple Segment node for small branches and twigs; can be switched to Advanced Segment easily when necessary
  • New Random Range node to create random values depending on the plant seed (ideal to easily create diversity with one single plant graph) (1)
  • New Node presets for the Segment and Leaf nodes (3)
  • Automatic hiding of Control nodes in the graph, for improved legibility (3)

Content shown on this page is not necessarily included with the product. Some features are only available in certain versions. Please review the comparative chart.

(1) PlantFactory Producer and Studio   (2) PlantFactory Producer only  (3) PlantFactory Producer, Studio and Designer

2014.6 Update - What's New:

New and enhanced capabilities include:

Sharing:

  • The new EULA now allows selling or distributing static plant models created with PlantFactory
  • You can now easily send TPF models to a friend using the new integrated private sharing mechanism
  • It's now even easier to share plants with the community on the Cornucopia3D Exchange Area thanks to the new dedicated menu command

Export:

  • Improved exports to all 3D apps
  • New export presets (custom tailored for many apps)
  • New export options: embedded alpha, texture relative path, axis system
  • Improved export of material lighting
  • Drastically improved export speed
  • New FREE PlantFactory Exporter - unlimited resolution, full parametric control

GUI:

  • Two-level publication lets the artist decide what parameters are accessible outside of PlantFactory
  • New Input selector node

Updated Content:

The plant graphs of all samples have been redone for improved readability and easier understanding

Minimum System Requirements

PlantFactory is a 64 bits application only, designed for the Windows® XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10 as well as Intel Mac OS X platforms. A video board that is capable of running Shader model 4 is required. For better performance, a minimum of 1GB of video RAM is recommended (Video RAM should not be confused with system RAM. Video RAM resides solely on your video board).

Performance of the software is directly related to the power of the system running it. PlantFactory is optimized to make the best of all the processors/cores on your system. The power of your video board directly impacts the frame-rate of the plant preview.

Recommended System Specs

  • Windows XP/Vista/Windows 7- 8 - 10 64 bits or Mac OS X v10.6+
  • nVidia GeForce GTX 470 / ATI Radeon HD 6950 or better video board, with 1GB+ of Video RAM
  • Core i5 or more powerful CPU
  • 8+GB of free RAM
  • 4GB of free Hard Disk space.
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