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Autodesk release Maya LT; "indie" friendly version


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#1 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5578

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Posted 27 August 2013 - 08:51 AM

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Basically Autodesk have released a version of Maya aimed at indie ( read, poor ) game developers.  Priced at 800$, or 50$ a month, 125% a quarter on a rental basis, this version has some serious limits.

 

First, it can only render sprites, making pre-rendered cut-scenes or even composited stills impossible.

Second, there is a 25K polygon cap on FBX export, making it nearly useless for level design and high detail work.

Third, no plugins or Mel.

 

 

For many developers, especially ones working on sprite based or low(er) polygon realtime mobile titles, those limitations wont be a big deal and the savings from the full version ( about 2800$ cheaper ) are huge.

 

For others... hey, ever tried Blender?



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#2 apatriarca   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1742

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Posted 27 August 2013 - 09:32 AM

I think it's incredibly expensive for something with so many limitations.. If all you are doing is rendering small sprites of low polygon models, why using what basically look like a trial version of Maya instead of the other cheaper and more flexible alternatives?



#3 FLeBlanc   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 3109

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Posted 27 August 2013 - 10:05 AM

Even for sprite work I'd rather use Blender. I just don't see this "deal" as anything at all to get excited about, and I doubt it's seriously going to make any kind of significant impact.



#4 osiris_dev   Members   -  Reputation: 275

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Posted 27 August 2013 - 10:36 AM

Even for sprite work I'd rather use Blender. I just don't see this "deal" as anything at all to get excited about, and I doubt it's seriously going to make any kind of significant impact.

 

Absolutely agree. Last version of Blender much better then last buggy versions of Max and Maya.



#5 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5578

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Posted 27 August 2013 - 11:21 AM

I have a few beefs with this.

 

First, I remember when Maya and Softimage were trending down in price, to the point you could get Softimage Foundation ( which is LESS gimped than this! ) for 499$ and Maya had a version for around 1000$.  Then Autodesk purchased them and raised prices across the board.  So in some ways, this is salt in the wounds for people with longer memories.

 

Second, as others have said, Blender is nearing feature parity and is better in some regards.  It is certainly more stable!  With the final integration of previously 3rd party features ( BMesh, Cycles, Freestyle, etc... ) and a focus on polishing, Blender 2.6 is waaayyyyyyyyyy better than 2.5.  It is certainly improving at a faster rate than Max or Maya, both of which are going backwards in some regards.

 

Third, they gimped the wrong things.  25K polygons makes it useless as a level design tool, sprite only makes it useless for cinematics or complex stills while no plugins makes it off limits to many engines, such as Project Anarchy.  ( Granted, PA has an FBX importer in the works ).

 

 

All told, this will appeal to a very limited community.

 

 

 

HOWEVER, the source of this information ( Tom's Hardware ) is now showing a 404, so it's possible the information is wrong or has changed.  More likely though, they jumped the gun on a press embargo, which explains the lack of other sources.



#6 ShadowFlar3   Members   -  Reputation: 1258

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 04:54 AM

Autodesk is digging their own grave with this pricing. 800$ for basically a trial version of the product. Who will that appeal to when you look at the competitors?

 

With the huge steps Blender is taking it's increasingly hard to justify ever learning Autodesk. From what I can tell it seems to be only something you might need to "appear" professional to get a job and that's only because game industry is so accustomed to the old state of things. When game development companies and whole industry rethinks their pipelines and finally wake up to take a look at the alternatives they will regret staying in the pricey Autodesk camp for so long.



#7 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5578

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 09:26 AM

I got the opportunity to interview Autodesk for a bit more information.  Interview is below the official press release.

 

Interestingly, Maya LT is its own product ( based on 2014 ) with its own development path ahead.  They are aiming at a creating a tool for sprite sheet generation and model creation, and quite obviously are targeting Unity, so they chose Maya as the base, as its their only cross platform app.  Plugins are in fact removed, but 3rd party plugins related to game development may be whitelisted to work with Maya LT.






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