Alas, my predictions were too optimistic and thus wrong, but well, perhaps I need to change that flickering light bulb in my crystal ball. The cat’s out of the bag and the new features for Cinema 4D R17 have been announced and it’s pretty lackluster, if I may say so. A lot of stuff like the new color picker or the Take system feel like they had a very close look at modo, Maya and even Lightwave and that variation shader and the material override just scream “modo (shader tree)!”. Made me laugh.
Same is true on some level for that Houdini Engine stuff. It’s kind of sad and lame if you have to make it a selling point to integrate a system from a competing company, even more so since you are still going to need a full version of Houdini to create your own assets, if the stock ones from their store don’t cut it. It just leaves a bad taste in my mouth, as much as I appreciate how welcome it may be to the 10% of users who actually want it in their pipeline on big projects.
I kinda like the new spline stuff, though I probably never would create these kinds of complex layouts in a 3D program. Drawing such stuff in Illustrator or any 2D CAD/ drafting program and then importing it makes more sense to me and is quite likely a lot less confusing. And to insert the inevitable modo pun again: The conform tool reeks of background constraint all too obviously, does it not?
Overall this is yet another hum-ho release and I’m kinda glad that I let that ship sail when I did. It’s that same situation like it has been for years where I would continue to use R13/R14 just to evade some bugs/ quirks/ changed behaviors that would get in the way and only occasionally fire up those new versions when I needed a specific feature. Perhaps not the most sensible investment of 600 Euros…