News

Golaem Crowd 2.3, new effects, enhanced usability

Golaem Crowd 2.3 introduces the Geometry Behavior, enabling a myriad of new effects, as well as the Character Maker,  a revamped tool for converting & editing characters skeleton & motions. Bug fixes & usability improvements have also been made based on users feedback.

 

Geometry Behavior

The Geometry Behavior let you assign a baked animation to a crowd entity. While being very simple, it enables a lot of new effects on the crowd characters: facial animation, multipeds, baked clothes (flags, capes...), rigid shapes (cars, ships...), parasite motions, level of details...
 

 

Character Maker

The new Character Maker enables to convert custom rigs & motion capture/keyframe motions for Golaem Crowd. It has been revamped in order to enable checking the result directly in the Maya viewport, thus enabling to chek or edit motion capture or keyframe motions very easily (offset cancellation, loop creation...).

 

Usability Improvements

Based on users feedback, many aspects of the rendering process have been improved: 

  • 3Delight Proxy: Render your 3Delight scenes directly in Maya
  • Check Settings: Check your scene before rendering
  • Batch Render: Render scenes on the farm, with a streamlined process
  • Kill list: Remove characters from your shots

For more information about Golaem Crowd:

 


Golaem Crowd 2.2, supporting Solid Angle’s Arnold

Golaem releases Golaem Crowd 2.2, facilitating distributed rendering and supporting Solid Angle’s Arnold. 

Arnold support

Procedural rendering is now available for Solid Angle’s Arnold, hence enabling lightning fast rendering and simulation independant geometry and shaders diversity. 
 
Golaem Crowd was used together with Arnold by Mikros Image Montréal for the feature film “Astérix and Obélix: God Save Britannia” to create stadium spectators, village inhabitants, walking armies, flying romans, and even knocked-out ones!
 
 
 

Easier deployment for farm rendering

Golaem Crowd 2.2 introduces Golaem Crowd Render, encapsulating all Golaem Crowd rendering proxies in a single installation package for easier deployment on render farms.
 
Procedural rendering plugins and proxies are still free to use on an unlimited number of rendering nodes. 

 

Procedural Shaders & Multitexture

Golaem Crowd 2.2 includes new procedural shaders for automatic diversity generation in crowds. They are available for Arnold, Mental Ray, Renderman and V-Ray.
 
All procedural rendering plugins have also been enhanced to support multitexture, opening the way to sophisticated texture variations in crowds.
 
 


For more information about Golaem Crowd:


Golaem appoints VP Sales M&E and VP Marketing

To understand and meet its users needs more closely, Golaem recently appointed industry experienced VP Sales M&E and VP Marketing.  They both come from the field and have been personally involved in using or developping artists tools for years.

Nicolas Verley, VP Sales Media & Entertainment

Nicolas has been in the animation industry for almost 20 years. 

He started computer animation as a CG artist in 1993, then moved to Netherlands at Motek to become a motion capture specialist.

Back in France in 1995, he joined the Softimage company as a technical support engineer and pre sales. For more than 13 years he succeeded year after year in various positions: 3D animator, demo artist and technical support engineer, product specialist and Softimage trainer, technical account manager. He finally became the country manager for the whole Softimage product range.

In 2008, he became a CG consultant focusing on customer needs and projects expectation for various product and services such as Toonz, a 2D software platform for traditional animation, and Damas, a digital asset management software solution for animation studio.

As a VP Sales M&E at Golaem, he will be in of charge of all the sales and distribution channel management activities for media & entertainment market.

 

Alexandre Pillon, VP Marketing

After graduating in mathematics applied to computer sciences at INSA, Alexandre spent two years in Japan discovering how finance was ruling the world, then he secretly studied how to shape chaotic code in usable products at night.

He started working on behavioral crowd simulation from 2007 to 2009 as an R&D software engineer at the INRIA.

Alexandre co-founded Golaem in 2009. From 2009 to 2012, he was in charge of a crowd simulation project where he developed and tested what would eventually become the Golaem Crowd Behavior Editor.

He now leads the marketing effort, listening to customers and translating their needs to the developers dwelling in Golaem cave.
 

Alexandre and Nicolas will work closely together to bring even easier to use and powerful products to artists in the M&E market.


Golaem Crowd 2.1 Unleashes Crowds Rendering

Golaem releases a new version of its plugin for Autodesk Maya : Golaem Crowd 2.1, including new rendering proxys for Maya, optimized rendering performances as well as bug fixes.

Lightning Fast Rendering

The new Maya rendering proxys will enables artists to quickly test their crowd rendering, launch distributed renders from Maya and design their crowd shaders directly in the hypershade. 
 
  • Renderman Maya Proxy: load your crowds .rib file and render them
  • V-Ray Maya  Proxy: easily render crowds .vrscene
Golaem Crowd rendering performances have also been optimized. Particularly, the Mental Ray rendering plugin is up to 10x faster while being less memory consuming.
 

Mental Ray Plugin performances comparison on Intel Core i7 X990 (1 character = 5590 triangles)
 

Behavior Editor Improvements

Golaem Crowd 2.1 improves collaboration by enabling to easily share behaviors or reuse them in different projects.
 
  • Behavior Templates: export behaviors in a shared template directory and import them in any scene. 
  • Triggers Handles: get an easy access to the behavior triggers by using the triggers handle and easily share conditions between multiple triggers.

Behavior Editor improvements: Custom Behavior Library (bottom left) and trigger handles

 

For more information about Golaem Crowd:

 


Golaem Crowd Siggraph 2012 Demo: Fortress Assault

If you could not make it to Siggraph this year, maybe you missed our new Golaem Crowd demo: Fortress Assault.

This demo includes 5 500 soldiers attacking & defending a huge fortress, and demonstrates the features of Golaem Crowd 2.0, released on the first day of the exhibition.

All modeling, rendering and compositing have been done by our in-house artist: Axel Domenger.

The success of this demo is really the result of our collaboration with great partners.

Pixar & Greenbutton

We partnered with Pixar and Greenbutton in order to render our scene with Renderman on Demand (using Microsoft Windows Azure) using the last beta version of Pixar's Renderman ProServer 17 (which improved tremendously our processing time!).

If you are wondering about the rendering stats, you can have a look at our presentation on Pixar's booth.

Intel Partnership

Golaem Crowd 2.0 optimization and multithreading made thanks to Intel tools really helped speeding up the production process.

A lot of details are given in this nice Intel Software Adrenaline article, included in the Siggraph Edition.

You can also take a look at the presentation we did on the Intel Theatre and get more details about the results.