Friday, July 13th, 2012 Posted by Jim Thacker

Autodesk Labs rolls out Project Geppetto 2

Autodesk Labs’ latest update to the Project Geppetto 3ds Max crowd-simulation system builds in character-generation technology acquired from Evolver last year, enabling users to build characters from pre-designed parts.

Autodesk Labs has updated Project Geppetto, its work-in-progress crowd simulation system for 3ds Max.

Project Geppetto 2 incorporates tech Autodesk acquired with avatar-creation firm Evolver last year, enabling users to build characters by mixing and matching from a ‘virtual gene pool’ of pre-built body, face and clothing parts.

The update also builds in a new motion-synthesis system that takes source data from motion clips or keyframe animation and interactively generates variations: an approach Autodesk calls ‘Ocean of Motion’.

According to the dev team (via Autodesk product specialist Jamie Gwilliam’s blog) the system supersedes “simple blending techniques that result in the awkward and implausible motions used in videogames”.

Working towards a commercial release
Couple the new features with the basic path-following and avoidance behaviours Project Geppetto has had since its original release, and you’ve got something that looks far more like a working product than a tech demo.

As ever with Autodesk Labs projects, there’s no guarantee when or if the technology will make it into a commercial release of 3ds Max, but you can try Project Geppetto 2 for free until 15 January 2013.

The latest update also builds in support for 3ds Max 2013.

Read more about Project Geppetto on Autodesk Labs (Includes download link)

Read more about the update on Jamie Gwilliam’s blog