Wednesday, August 12th, 2020 Posted by Jim Thacker

Check out neat new procedural tree toolset GrowInfinite

Fx Mode – aka artist and tools developer Mojtaba Oriuee – has released GrowInfinite 1.0, a collection of Houdini Digital Assets for creating and animating procedural trees.

The collection of “about 37” HDAs is designed for generating close-up growth animations of a range of tree types, including broadleaved and conifer species, with leaves, bark and flowers.

The toolset could also be used in other DCC applications and game engines with integration plugins for Houdini Engine, like 3ds Max, Cinema 4D, Maya, Unity and Unreal Engine.

Generate growth animations of detailed procedural trees
GrowInfinite 1.0 consists of a set of HDA files intended to generate detailed CG trees suitable for use in growth animation effects.

Users can control the form of the trees generated using procedural controls for branch density, distribution and bending, plus “lots of fun gravity styles”.

UVs and displacement maps are generated automatically as the trees grow.

The HDAs can also generate vector colour information based on growth parameters that can be used to modify the growth of the trees, driving “forces like gravity, noise, bend [and] displacement”.

As well as generating the branch network of a tree, GrowInfinite includes “instance-friendly leaves and bark growth tools”, reducing the total geometry count of the assets created.

Includes video tutorials and instructions for optimising the assets for lower-spec machines
There doesn’t seem to be any written documentation for GrowInfinite online, but the download includes a three-hour video tutorial showing the process of creating a fir tree from start to finish.

It also comes with example Houdini scene files showing a fir tree and a broadleaved tree generated in GrowInfinite, and shaded using OctaneRender.

Oriuee notes that the base HDAs are designed for “cinematic close-ups” and may be “a bit heavy” for low- to mid-spec workstations, so the introductory tutorial also includes instructions for optimising them.

Pricing and system requirements
GrowInfinite 1.0 is available for Houdini 17.5. A perpetual licence costs $500; rental starts at $20/month.

The HDAs could be imported into other DCC applications and game engines that have integration plugins for Houdini Engine, SideFX’s toolset for using procedural Houdini content in other software.

Read more about GrowInfinite 1.0 on Fx Mode’s Gumroad store