Nov 14, 2011

NewTek Unveils LightWave™ 11

3D animation software boasts powerful new features like instancing, flocking and fracturing tools, flexible Bullet Dynamics options, Pixologic™ ZBrush® support, and more.

NewTek, a worldwide leader of 3D animation and video products, today announced NewTek LightWave™ 11, a powerful new version of its Emmy® Award-winning, professional 3D modeling, animation, and rendering software. LightWave 11 fits into any studio pipeline seamlessly, offering support for Autodesk Geometry Cache and FBX, including pixel-perfect camera matching with Autodesk Maya cameras. It also supports the Unity game engine and Pixologic GoZ ZBrush workflow, making it ideal for all production environments, including smaller specialized studios and individual artists.

Expanding on the production-proven workflow of LightWave 3D® software, LightWave 11 is a complete out-of-the-box pipeline that puts award-winning modeling, rigging, effects, dynamics, animation, and final rendering at the fingertips of 3D artists. LightWave 11 was unveiled to guests of the NewTek "VFX Minds" event held at the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in North Hollywood on Thursday evening. Industry icon Ron Thornton ("Babylon 5" and "Star Trek: Voyager") attended the unveiling and sees many creative possibilities for artists working with LightWave 11 software.

"My career in television began by building physical models for the BBC's 'Doctor Who.' Thanks to LightWave's power and ease of use, I was able to quickly transition to the world of 3D for 'Babylon 5,'" said Ron Thornton of Red Earth VFX Studios. "LightWave is the one tool that allows artists to be artists instead of technicians. The advances in LightWave 11 are impressive and artists around the world have reason to celebrate."

About LightWave 11
LightWave offers groundbreaking technology, such as the Virtual Preview Renderer (VPR) for onscreen real-time rendering, Anaglyph Stereoscopic Preview for real-time interocular, 'red-blue' anaglyphic separations, and more. Some of the many new feature enhancements in LightWave 11 include:


Duplicate a vast number of objects in a scene with very little memory overhead
Create huge polygon groups with great detail while retaining reasonable rendering times
Scale, position, rotate, and surface randomly cloned objects for realistic detail


Animate realistic motion of grouped objects such as such as birds, fish, insects, animals, aircraft, spaceships, and more, using a new motion modifier
Calculate crowd avoidance of neighboring objects, target alignment, and cohesive attractions with the motion modifier


Pre-fracture objects that are ready for destruction with a new Modeler tool that is designed to complement Bullet Dynamics in Layout
Animate explosions with or without using dynamics
Control the density of fractures by applying weight maps to objects

Bullet Dynamics

Deliver physics-based animation with the Bullet Dynamics engine in Layout and the new Fracture tool in Modeler
Collapse buildings, create explosions, or quickly place objects in a natural-looking random pattern

Virtual Studio and Interchange Tools

Support for new controller types, including the Sony PlayStation® Move, allow users to easily control and record the item results with a LightWave channel
Import and export model and texture data to Pixologic ZBrush software with GoZ™ technology

Additional LightWave 11 features include powerful new render buffer capabilities, robust Python® scripting functionality, FiberFX enhancements, user interface improvements, and more.

LightWave 11 Pricing and Availability
LightWave 11 is expected to ship Q4 2011 for a suggested retail price of US$1495. Upgrade pricing from earlier versions of LightWave will be US$695. Educational pricing is also available.