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Autodesk launches 3D Studio Max 8

Autodesk has announced the release of 3D Studio Max 8, the latest version of its award winning 3D modelling, rendering and animation development tool which is widely used throughout the games industry.

Autodesk has announced the release of 3D Studio Max 8, the latest version of its award winning 3D modelling, rendering and animation development tool which is widely used throughout the games industry.

According to Autodesk, the new version has been created to address the growing 3D pipeline complexity, providing advanced data management, character animation and performance tools. The latest version includes a wealth of additions and enhancements, which will, according to its creators, "address the needs of animators tasked with meeting the demands of more sophisticated effects projects, next-generation game consoles, and photo-real design visualisations."

Studio Max software has been widely adopted by developers in the games industry, including Unreal Engine creators, Epic Games. The company's Unreal Engine 3 has been licensed by Sony for development of titles for its next generation PlayStation 3 console, and Epic are keen to promote the benefits of the latest Studio Max software.

Epic Games' president, Michael Capps, said: "When our artists got their hands on the 3ds Max 8 beta, there was no turning back. The time savings from silver-bullet features like Pelt Mapping meant that we immediately put the beta in production for Gears of War and Unreal Tournament 2007."

"We've been working with the 3ds Max team since the Microsoft DOS days, collaborating on ways to make the Unreal Engine's content pipeline more efficient. We dream up a few crazy features, and they turn around a new version in no time," he added.

3D Studio Max 8 software is now available worldwide. The suggested retail price is GBP 2,695 (EURO 4,250). Subscription options are available, for around GBP 295 (EURO 450) with the added benefit of software updates, product extensions and learning materials.

Autodesk recently announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire Alias, who created rival 3D development software, Maya. If the acquisition completes as planned, Autodesk intends to continue development of both products, although a gradual cross-over and merging of product lines would be expected in the future.

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