New: iToo Software Forest Pack v8 is Now Available
iToo Software has released Forest Pack v8 with lots of new features including a powerful container plug-in and new ways to link Forest objects. The new version is available immediately to any user with an active maintenance plan.
What’s new in Forest Pack 8
There’s plenty to try out, including a brand new help plugin called Forest Sets that has the potential to revolutionise how you share assets between multiple Forest objects. There’s also the ability to link to areas and surfaces used in another Forest Pack object, support for areas when using surfaces in UV mode, a new collection of autumn leaf presets, big improvements to Forest Effects, the ability to scatter hierarchies and much more!
Forest Set is a brand-new helper plugin used to create a multi-purpose container for scene objects. A Forest Set object can be added to a Forest object as a collection of geometry, surfaces, references, or areas. Multiple Forest Objects can share a Forest Set, making it simple to add or remove areas, geometry, or surfaces and update several scatters from one easy-to-edit location. Even better, the contents of a layer can be dynamically linked to a Forest Set, making it easy to update scatters using familiar scene organization tools.
Linked Areas and Surfaces
To further expand the options for creating interdependent scatters, Forest Pack 8 adds the ability to link to areas and surfaces used in another Forest Pack object.
Using this approach you could have a single parent Forest Object that controls all of the areas for several children, without the need to assign the spline multiple times. Parameters that are specific to each type of area are inherited but common parameters such as include/exclude, falloff etc. are local and can be modified per Forest Object for some incredibly flexible setups. Combining Forest Sets and linked areas makes it easier than ever to create huge flexible interlinked ecosystems.
Areas support in Surface UV mode
Forest Pack 8 also introduces some often-requested features to Surface UV mode – making it much more flexible. In previous versions, to use UV mode you’d have to sacrifice the ability to use any other types of areas. In version 8, you can now use Spline, Object, and other areas in combination with UV surfaces by projecting them along 3 axes using the new Area->Projection Axis parameter. Edge mode is also supported when using spline areas.
A new preset library of high-quality photo-scanned leaves for those chilly autumnal renders. The presets are logically organised by colour and supplied as both individual leaves for detail work and patches for filling large areas.
Forest Effects Improvements
Forest Effects have been expanded with the ability to reference splines that are independent of distribution areas, opening this feature up to a whole new way to work. Using these features it’s possible to modify just the parts of a larger scatter by enclosing them inside a path that has no impact on distribution areas.
Spline inputs are added using the Effects Editor’s Parameters rollouts. There are several new functions to support the new object, all of which work in 2D using the XY local plane:
- insideSpline(spline, pos): returns 1 if specified position is inside the Spline, 0 if not. It is useful for applying some change to a scattered item based on whether it is inside or outside a spline.
- distanceSpline(spline, pos): returns the nearest distance in 2D from position to the spline. Useful for creating falloff effects based on a scatter item’s proximity to a spline.
- nearestPosSpline(spline, pos): returns nearest point from position to the spline. Useful for attraction effects where you want to translate the scattered items toward the nearest point on a spline.
- nearestTangSpline(spline, pos): returns the tangent of the nearest point from position to the spline. Useful for orienting scattered items to follow the direction of a path.
It is also now possible to read the material ID from surfaces, and splines when using path distribution mode. This is supported using two new attributes:
- surfMatID: Material ID on Surface.
- splineMatID: Material ID on Spline. Only works in path distribution mode.
Filter Forest Effects
Forest Effects can now be filtered so that they only apply to a subset of the geometry list, allowing you to refine individual types of plants using the powerful effects system.
New Forest Effect presets
To illustrate the benefits of the new Effects improvements, several new sample presets are available, including the ability to rotate objects to follow splines, tilt objects to follow splines, scale by proximity to splines or within an area, limit by spline material ID and much more.
And much more
A full changelog of all the features, fixes, and improvements can be found in the documentation.
iToo Software Forest Pack
The Scattering tool for 3ds Max
Forest Pack is the world’s most popular scattering plugin for 3ds Max®. Capable of rendering nearly limitless geometry, it provides a complete solution for creating vast areas of objects, from trees and plants to buildings, crowds, aggregates, ground cover, rocks, and more. If you can model it, Forest Pack can scatter it.
Countless studios rely on Forest Pack’s production-tested algorithms and native shaders to render scenes with virtually unlimited numbers of objects and polygons, all without putting a strain on computer resources.
Simulate natural distribution patterns and get the most out of your assets using advanced mapping and randomization tools, or fine-tune your scatters with granular control over every aspect of the plugin.
Create without restrictions using forest pack and take your renders to the next level.
iToo Software Forest Pack + RailClone Bundle
Get the best of both plugins
RailClone is the world’s most powerful artist-friendly parametric modeling plugin for 3ds Max®. Forest Pack is the world’s most popular scattering plugin for 3ds Max®. Its unique array-based approach to asset creation is fast, efficient, and easy to learn. Purchase both Forest Pack and RailClone 3ds Max plugins with this bundle. Get the best team to speed-up your 3D workflow.
Posted by Kim Sternisha