Autodesk Launches New Versions of Entertainment Content Creation Software

The software developer will bundle Maya, 3ds Max, Softimage, MotionBuilder and Mudbox.

Autodesk’s media and entertainment unit has announced 2013 versions of its widely-used entertainment content creation software.

Slated to begin shipping in the spring: new versions of Autodesk’s Maya, 3ds Max, Softimage, MotionBuilder and Mudbox. The company also introduced an "Ultimate" package that will bundle all five tools.

A key goal is greater inter-operability. In particular, the company emphasized improvements to the integration between animation software Maya and 3ds Max, as well as live character streaming between virtual production tool MotionBuilder and Maya.

Autodesk also announced a 2013 version of its Flame Premium software, which combines visual effects, finishing and color-grading capabilities.

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Underscoring many of the issues currently facing the visual effects community, Marc Petit, senior vp of Autodesk Media & Entertainment, said: "Entertainment companies are seeking out new ways to standardize and optimize their workflows, better manage increasing project complexity, and take full advantage of globally distributed production resources. Autodesk is working closely with the leading studios in the film and games industries to develop and package workflows that address these challenges."

Autodesk, which additionally develops design and engineering software, is also keen to create cloud services for the media and entertainment industry. Speaking to the press on Tuesday, Autodesk president and CEO Carl Bass called the cloud "an infinitely scalable resource."

During the conference, Kevin Ballie and Ryan Tudhope, co-founders of VFX house Atomic Fiction, illustrated that point as they discussed how they are already using pay as you go cloud rendering capabilities to operate more efficiently.

Atomic Fiction’s current work includes Flight from director Robert Zemeckis.