3d Character Models Software Programs for Designers: Our Top Picks

3d character modelsCharacters are the lifeblood of any game. They are our avatars, our medium for being transported into a world full of fantasy and fun. 3D characters have become extremely important in the gaming world because they are more realistic than their 2D counterparts. As a game developer, it is very important to be able to create 3D characters that are interactive, graphically stunning and realistic – even if those 3D characters happen to be a pink and purple talking dinosaur. Speaking of dinosaurs and monsters, if you would like to learn to create your very own monsters, the Lightwave 11.5 Modeler Tools- Project Giganotosaurus course is for you. This course will teach you how to model dinosaurs and creatures in Lightwave 3D. You will learn various advanced modeling techniques and your will learn the art of Sub-D modeling using Lightwave. This course is a step-by-step guide to creating a 3D model in great detail. You will learn to set up backdrops for your models and images. You will learn box-modeling concepts, you will learn how to create complex geometry starting from basic shapes. You will learn about redirecting program flow, mesh prepping and much more.

There are a number of different software packages available that make the creation of 3D character models really simple. Let’s take a look at the top four available packages and what they have to offer in terms of creating 3D character models for your applications and games:

·         Lightwave

·         Maya

·         3DS Max

Lightwave

Lightwave was developed by NewTek and the software is still wholly owned by that company. It has been around since the early nineties and was released as a standalone application in 1994. If you have seen Jurassic Park, Titanic, Babylon5 or Battlestar Galactica, then you’ve seen the effects that can be created using this innovative software package.

Lightwave has been used for television, motion graphics, the film industry, visual effects, architectural visualizations, music videos and virtual productions for years. The software offers a powerful rendering engine to ensure graphics produced are the highest quality.

Lightwave is equipped with three dynamics to ensure character development can be done at the highest level. It includes hard body dynamics that allow for collisions and hard body dynamics. It also includes soft body dynamics that allow for the creation of fat or jelly like substances and it includes cloth dynamics that allow for the flowing of clothing, for example. Lightwave also offers a number of different material shaders and textures to be applied to characters created using the software. These shaders are equipped to help you create realistic skin textures for your creations, as well as allowing for the creation of metallic, reflective, transparent and other types of surface materials.

According to most reviews, Lightwave is fairly simple to learn and experienced Lightwave users can create extremely high quality work using the software.

Learn to create extraordinary 3D character models using Lightwave by enrolling in the Lightwave 11.5 Modeler Volume 1 course. This course will introduce you to the creation of models using Lightwave. It will teach you the theory and types of polygons available and show you how to use primitives and how to use the move tool. It will also show you how to use the axis translate tool.

Maya

Maya is currently considered as one of the best 3D animation software packages available on the market today. It is considered the leader in terms of character animation film production. If you’ve seen Finding Nemo, Up, Frozen or Monsters Inc., then you have seen Maya in action. Maya has also gained market share as a leader in video game development.

Maya allows for powerful character creation and animation. It offers dynamic creation and simulation of hard body or rigid objects, for soft body objects, for fluids, cloth and hair. These dynamic features combined with the powerful scripting language offered by Maya, means that programmers can really create powerful 3D environments for their projects.

Maya offers artisan brush-type tools that allow programmers to sculpt and shape their objects using painting-like techniques. This technique also allows programmers to add trees, grass and other elements by simply “painting” the objects into the scene.

The downside to Maya is that due the size and capabilities of the software, Maya can be a complex application to master. Programmers often find that learning Maya requires a steep learning curve, but the creations often prove that they are worth the effort.

If you want to take on the challenge of creating 3D character models in Maya, check out the Learn Creature Animation with Maya course now. This course offers students a comprehensive look at animating a creature in Maya. You will learn to animate an awesome raptor model. The course will teach you about the rig overview, and show you how to create the scene. It will take you step-by-step through the animation process and then show you how to polish your raptor animation.

3DS Max

3DS Max is the top choice for a lot of programmers and designers who want to create 3D characters. 3DS Max is a 3D computer graphics program for creating animation models and images for the use in film or games. 3DS Max is sold by Autodesk. Movies and animations created with 3DS Max include Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Planet of the Apes, the X-Men movies and Alice in Wonderland, to name a few. For 3D modelling purposes, 3DS Max offers a number of features that allow designers to create 3D models simpler and faster than in other applications.

The point cloud support feature allows designers to import, visualize and render cloud data sets to create models based on real-world references. The ShaderFX feature in 3DS Max allows for real time visual shading. The character animation and rigging tools allow designers to create realistic characters in less time using the sophisticated animation and rigging tools. Plugins like Character Studio, allow for models to be animated using different biped skeletons.

If you would like to learn to harness the power of 3DS Max to help you create realistic characters and animations, enroll in the 3DS Max Tutorial. Learn The Art of Modelling and Animation course and join thousands of students who are learning to create animations. This course offers over one hundred and fifty lessons that will introduce you to the art of modeling, animation and rendering in 3DS Max. The course is designed with the beginner in mind and does not require any previous design experience. The course will teach you how the tools work and where to find them. It will teach you all about objects and how they work. You will learn to create them, move them, name them, extrude them and how to animate them. The course will teach you about materials, lighting and mapping and how to operate the cameras within 3DS Max. You will learn how to render and add special effects to your models.

Let Your Imagination Run Free

Learning to create 3D character models can really turn your dreams into reality. Of course, once you’ve developed your frightening, realistic monsters, then it will be time to develop some heavy duty weaponry to take care of those monsters.

Sign up for the Next-Gen Weapon Modeling in 3ds Max course and learn to create state of the art weaponry to annihilate those creatures. The twenty-seven lessons in this course will teach you how to use the tools within 3DS Max to create the perfect futuristic weapon. The course includes lessons on edge extrusion, techniques for speeding up workflow and how to polish your weapon for today’s gaming environment.