Monday, January 23rd, 2017 Posted by Jim Thacker

Fabric Software releases Fabric Engine 2.4

Fabric Software has released Fabric Engine 2.4, the latest update to its platform for developing custom tools for CG pipelines, integrating the Kraken rigging framework, and adding native support for curves.

Kraken rigging system now included as standard
One major change in Fabric Engine 2.4 is that Kraken is now included by default.

Developed in-house at Hybride and first released publicly in 2015, Kraken is an open-source framework based on Fabric Engine intended to enable artists to create portable, modular character rigs.

Rigs created using the framework should give consistent results across the DCC applications supported by Fabric Engine, which now include Maya, Softimage, 3ds Max and Modo.

Kraken provides a standard node-based visual programming system for creating rigs, and – as of last year’s 1.2 release – menu commands to help automate the process of setting up biped characters.

Native support for curves, UI and performance improvements
In addition, Fabric Engine 2.4 adds support for curves, including linear, Bézier and NURBS curves. Curves can be open or closed, and native curves from Maya and the Alembic file format are “properly handled”.

The video above sets out a range of possible use cases, including, at 02:00, a custom fur system.

There are also a number of UI changes, particularly to the Canvas visual programming system, including the ability to marquee-select a group of nodes and have Fabric Engine wire them up automatically.

Other new features include support for namespaces in the underlying KL programming language, and performance improvements to Fabric Engine for Maya. You can find a full list via the link below.

Pricing and availability
Fabric Engine 2.4 is available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. Pricing starts at $2,000 for one interactive licence and five headless licences, with a range of packages and rental options available.

In addition, individual artists get their first licence free, while studios can get the free ‘Fabric Fifty’ package of 10 interactive and 40 headless licences free for a year.

Read a full list of new features in Fabric Engine 2.4 on Fabric Software’s blog