The new version of Side Effects’ Houdini, one of the most popular visual effects software programmes out there, is out. The new version has a number of new features, including onion skinning, new shader building tools, crowd ragdolls, and Houdini Engine 2.0.
Here’s a complete list of the new features, courtesy of fxguide.com:
Modeling: New tweak edit workflow, edge sliding, soft selection highlighting and new tools such as PolyBridge and PolyExpand 2D, plus ability to draw on top of high-res geo.
Rendering: Mantra renderer improved with better checkpointing and render view feedback. New shader library, re-built Shade FX 2.0 menu, layered materials and cartoon shader. Includes implementation of Disney’s physically-baed Principled Shader. RenderMan 20 and RIS shading support is also fully integrated into Houdini 15.
Animation: Now includes onion skinning, pose library panel, improved character picker panel and dope sheet enhancements.
Gaming: Houdini 15 includes texture baking and viewport support for UDIM textures, world-space normal maps, UV mesh boundaries and overlapping UV regions.
Crowd ragdolls: Crowd tools in Houdini now feature ragdoll dynamics with limb detachment, fuzzy logic and crowd behavior enhancements. Agent Cam tool included.
Effects: New viscous fluids: Lava, Melt Object and Emit Steam. New adaptive PBD allows artists to focus gain simulations on particles involved in collisions.
Houdini Engine 2.0: Houdini Digital Assets can be opened in Maya, Cinema4D, Unreal Engine 4 and Unity. Now Houdini Engine 2.0 separates API front end from compute back-end, which means multiple sessions per host, multiple threads and greater stability. For eg, an indie developer Hideki Suzuki has completed a 3DS Max plugin.