Updated sculpting software introduces new game-changing tools

The ZBrush Summit 2014 – a three-day event that took place in Los Angeles, California, and streamed live online at the start of August – was the ideal platform from which to introduce ZBrush 4R7. ZBrush veterans Paul Gaboury and Joseph Drust took centre stage to demo the new features in the 4R7 release.

During the presentations, Joseph created a very quick container, then an old stone bridge complete with earthy surrounds, loose boards and nails, and was able to transfer this geometry to be rendered by KeyShot in a matter of seconds.

As well as the technical demos, the summit featured presentations from studios including Disney, Legacy Effects, Ubisoft and Hasbro, covering ZBrush in TV, film, games, 3D printing and toy manufacturing. Attendees could see exclusive characters developed with ZBrush from Ubisoft and RedStorm Entertainment for the studios' Far Cry and Tom Clancy titles, while HBO's character modellers offered some wonderful examples from Game of Thrones.

A radical update

The new update introduces game-changing tools:

  • New dynamic subdivision mode: This feature enables artists to work on the subdivided mesh and see the changes on the fly.
  • New box modelling: ZBrush now enables artists to box model. Now you will be able to speedily cut holes in objects and join them together.
  • New Nano-particles tool: This new feature will enable you to auto populate a scene with hundreds of clones of a single modelled object at low polycounts.
  • 64-bit version of ZBrush: Pixologic will be releasing a public beta of a 64-bit version of ZBrush 4R7! ZBrush 5 will be fully 64-bit.
  • Bridge to KeyShot: The live link to Luxion’s KeyShot renderer supports all of ZBrush’s materials.

Pixologic beta tester Thomas Roussel created this image using the updated version and KeyShot

Pixologic beta tester Thomas Roussel created this image using the updated version and KeyShot

For more information on the ZBrush Summit look out for issue 187 of 3D World magazine, on sale in the UK on 9 September, where you'll find more coverage.

Words: Paul Hellard

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