Enhancements Include Maya-Like Navigation Features Intended to Make Flame Easier for Newcomers to Use

Autodesk announced the extension 1 release of Flame 2017 products at IBC. The new release includes 3D scene navigation features borrowed from Autodesk Maya that Autodesk hopes will make Flame more accessible to novice users.

Also new in this version are enhancements to collaborative workflow with other Autodesk products as well as third-party 3D software, improved EXR handling, improvements to render quality, and the ability to render Lustre batch effects through the background reactor. 

"With this Flame extension, we've added intuitive navigation for artists who are new to the product, along with a host of features to make navigating 3D scenes much simpler and in line with Autodesk Maya 3D workflows," said Autodesk VP of Film and Television Marc Stevens in a prepared statement. "Many other new features, including better color management and batch tools, are a direct response to some of our most popular user requests."

Here's Autodesk's description of the biggest changes in extension 1.

•    New “Maya inspired” 3D scene navigation and manipulators to make action more fluid for modeling, selecting geometries and modifying complex scenes.
•    Improved compatibility with Autodesk Maya and third party 3D animation software through a new .FBX scene export feature. Flame artists can now export complex projects – including geometries, deformed surfaces and textures as well as object animation and timing – facilitating more collaborative workflows.
•    Enhanced pipeline integration for color management, pipeline compositing and multi-channel clips, simplifying the user experience and strengthening the versatility of Flame products. 
•    Upgraded action render quality enables artists to texture and light 3D scenes with creative flair and technical accuracy. Extension 1 combines the latest techniques in physically based rendering (PBR) with core lighting and texturing tools and includes a new package of 60 algorithmic substance textures.
•    Improved EXR handling for upgraded pipeline compositing. Multi EXRs can now be imported, conformed, cached and archived – while maintained as a single clip.
•    Connected color workflow improvements for finishing artists. Batch effects applied in Autodesk Lustre can now be rendered through the background reactor, and tangent ELEMENT panels are now automatically switched to the focused application. 
•    Batch setups are now “project independent” and contain all metadata to re-import content or transfer assets from remote workstations.