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Spotlight: Penguin

Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 10:50am

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Simon K Jones

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Rating: +18

Hot on the heels of the Flare news, here is a glimpse at another exciting AlamDV3 feature - the particle engine, affectionately known round these parts as Penguin.

Penguin power

AlamDV3 will mark our first proper foray into the world of particle systems. As with all aspects of AlamDV3, the core aim was to move away from pre-rendered animations and enable the user to create everything from scratch within the program. Creating our own particle engine was crucial to this goal and covers a huge range of visual effects.

What is a particle engine?
There are some things, both real-world and fantasy-based, that are prohibitive to replicate using standard animation techniques - smoke, sparks, fog etc. This is where simulation becomes useful: the computer determines the movement of hundreds of individual particles, based on various behaviour parameters.

What can it do?
Penguin is truly limitless. You need only look at feature films to see how versatile particle effects can be - check out the dust and CG squibs and debris in Black Hawk Down, or the Goblin's glider exhaust in Spider-Man.

AlamDV3 gives you fine control over your particle effects, meaning you can create elaborate animations and build up complex visuals. Colour, direction, size, speed, density, gravity - all these and more can be combined and alterered, resulting in one of the most versatile and exciting new features to debut in AlamDV3.

For those who want to get started straight away without having to fiddle with lots of options, Penguin will include a selection of presets that provide instant access to rain, dust, impact debris etc. The main drive with AlamDV3 was to offer vastly improved features and power but we didn't want to lose the friendly interface of the previous versions; Penguin is a good example of striking the perfect balance between power, speed and simplicity.

The Gallery
To the right you can see a few small preview effects from Penguin. These are only intended to demonstrate some of the essential technical abilities of the engine, rather than being showy visuals. They should give you a good idea of what it will be capable of in the hands of a skilled filmmaker.

Please note that these preview images do not use the hi-res textures that will come with the full program.

The Gallery



Big Gore


Gore


Small bullet impact


Standard comet


Smoothed comet


Fireworks, Gandalf!


Steam


Previewing particles


Rendered snow

Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 10:57am

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Katsu

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ARGH! Stop teasing us! o.O

But it looks great!
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 11:55am

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er-no

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A full screen of BIG GORE.

Can't ask for anything more really.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 12:06pm

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Xcession

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sweeet
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 12:42pm

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Pooky

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*lies motionless on the ground*
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 1:44pm

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tmaynard

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Pretty. I want. I need.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 1:55pm

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Waser

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hehehehe "Fireworks, Gandalf!"

I remember oh so long ago when I said I couldn't wait to see how the gore would look in Alamdv3. Well here it is. and I give it a yes/10
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 2:34pm

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MrShmoe

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Gimme, gimme, gimme
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 2:51pm

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Kyeju

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Looks very promising. It seems alittle bit like particle illusion.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 2:53pm

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Deepcoiler

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Jonne wrote:

Gimme, gimme, gimme
biggrin
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 3:44pm

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Redhawksrymmer

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I suppose this blast of Spotlights means AlamDV3 is just around the corner? Fantastic system anyway, can't wait to see the final product (or a pre-release, I don't mind that either biggrin).

Great Avatar, Tarn. razz
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 4:12pm

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TheRenegade

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Sweet. This is just another great reason for me to buy. Wow.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 4:41pm

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Xog2

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That snow looks really sweet I must say......
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 4:57pm

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Cypher

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Do you have any idea how much time and money you would have saved me if you released this before nov 6?

Actually, not much. I only paid for freight on the squib system as my key grip is keeping it. But it cost him a bit to make it in materials cost.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 5:28pm

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steelglass

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tarn, i bow to you
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 6:49pm

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Joshwa

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Redhawksrymmer wrote:

I suppose this blast of Spotlights means AlamDV3 is just around the corner?
Hope So!smile smile smile smile smile smile smile
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 6:50pm

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Brettsta

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this is too crazy!! didnt ever expect this much to come out of adv 3!!
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 7:31pm

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Andreas

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Rating: +1

steelglass wrote:

tarn, i bow to you
Bow for the whole team!
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 8:12pm

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hahoozhafax

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Thats purely amazing... biggrin
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 8:21pm

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Evman

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eek
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 8:28pm

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Hybrid-Halo

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Schwar yet again demonstrating the amount of hard work he has put into coding AlamDV3. This is awesome, awesome stuff guys. AlamDV3 is really pushing to be a professional level program at an extremely affordable price.

As I've said previously, this isn't an upgrade. This... is the good sh*t.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 8:32pm

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Joshua Davies

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Glad you guys are liking the new spotlights.

I would just like to state that everything you're seeing now (and will be seeing in the near future) is the product of the whole team. We're all working as hard as possible to get this stuff finished which has been quite a job as you all know.

Thanks for the positive comments - they keep us going when we're beginning to fall asleep.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 8:53pm

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Brettsta

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Hrmm... i wonder what that nifty flash thing will change to for the release of alamdv3.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 10:12pm

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Serpent

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WOAH.
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 11:08pm

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TimmyD

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*twich* *twich*
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 11:41pm

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averagejoe

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As I mentioned to Tarn is chat, it is amazing that anyone expected anything less than the spectacular.

This encarnation is sure to put CSB on the map as that upstart UK company that sales better products for less money.

Oh, wait I am sure "they" are already saying that biggrin

This is truly going to be a fun time in CSB's history. I have been here a long time and have learned to never doubt the potential and hardwork of you all. You really have got something GREAT here!
Posted: Thu, 16th Dec 2004, 11:54pm

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NickF

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eek ...wow.... better than i thought it would be

you guys have exceeded my expectations x10


JMSG
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 12:30am

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moby20004

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Wow! this is fantastic.... with all these new features being added will the AlamDV3 upgrade still be free to current users ?

You guys are doing a fantastic job wink

Moby20004
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 12:56am

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Hybrid-Halo

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moby20004 wrote:

Wow! this is fantastic.... with all these new features being added will the AlamDV3 upgrade still be free to current users ?

You guys are doing a fantastic job wink

Moby20004
Yes smile
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 12:57am

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Mantra

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It all looks excellent. With quality like this CSB will reap the rewards they richly deserve. Good luck guys, you keep making them and we (and whole lot of others) will keep buying them.

Have a great Christmas CSB.
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 1:00am

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Joshua Davies

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WOW, thanks for all the great comments guys.

AlamDV3 is still a free upgrade to people who purchased after 01/01/2003.

If we had known the level we were finally going to aim for with AlamDV3 and how long it would take we would have set this date much later - maybe even a year later.

As it is you guys get a great deal and we don't make hardly any money crazy
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 1:07am

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Waser

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which is why I'm not going to use my friend's alamdv3. I just couldn't do without my own copy smile
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 1:17am

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Hybrid-Halo

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schwar wrote:

WOW, thanks for all the great comments guys.

AlamDV3 is still a free upgrade to people who purchased after 01/01/2003.

If we had known the level we were finally going to aim for with AlamDV3 and how long it would take we would have set this date much later - maybe even a year later.

As it is you guys get a great deal and we don't make hardly any money crazy
Yeah, I think at the time the free upgrade was only intended to be relatively minor. As in the old ALamDV2 interface with a few extra throwins.
A year later and the product has entirely changed and a huge effort has been put into really making AlamDV3 a program to be respected in the visual effects market.

I have a huge amount of respect for the team here at fxhome that have literally slaved away for the past year and still offer to practically give it away to existing customers.

I for one, would like there to be some way for me to show my appreciation for this crazily huge scale of work, is there a possibility of something along the lines of a donation scheme or some form of optional upgrade fee?
If not, I'll be buying AlamDV3 regardless, even though I have the free upgrade. The work you guys are doing doesn't deserve to go unrewarded.
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 2:03am

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TimmyD

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Can I ask a question... Where did the name Alam com from?
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 2:08am

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Hybrid-Halo

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It's an Acronym for "Advanced Light and Magic".
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 2:08am

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Cypher

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Amateur Light and Magic
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 2:10am

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Hybrid-Halo

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Rating: +4

Cypher wrote:

Amateur Light and Magic
Not any more smile
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 2:38am

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Cypher

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he asked where it CAME from wink
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 3:06am

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jetaimaster

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looks awesome
continue what ure doing
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 3:31am

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ben3308

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OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!! I might just have to purchase another copy of Alam just so I don't fight atom for use of Penguin! AWESOME!
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 3:37am

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Steeb

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Will it be possible to create lightning (ie Force Lightning) with Penguin? Even if it won't, this is exciting.....
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 3:47am

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Amadeus0

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If AlamDV has motion Blur you could. Also if particles have attraction then you could create a stream with each emitter. Which brings up a question in my mind: Can you edit individual particle motion paths? You know...when that one particle just wont stick to procedure.

AmadeusZ.-
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 4:28am

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Serpent

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schwar wrote:

AlamDV3 is still a free upgrade to people who purchased after 01/01/2004.
Fixed. Right?


Even though some users who purchased it in late December made the free upgrade deadline, like me. smile
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 5:34am

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cantaclaro

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Now the true question is where CSB came from...

Cantaclaro ponders

Canta unsure
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 5:49am

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tmaynard

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I do believe that you guys do deserve some kind of payment for your hard work. I will donate as much as I can. I do agree you guys deserve something for this large of a upgrade.

I can't wait guys. You have amazed us all. Don't stop.
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 5:53am

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Aculag

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feelthapain wrote:

I do believe that you guys do deserve some kind of payment for your hard work.
It's called "Buying the software".
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 6:38am

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Redhawksrymmer

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schwar wrote:

AlamDV3 is still a free upgrade to people who purchased after 01/01/2003.
Even if I would have bought it after 1st January 2003, I would have payed the full retail price to sponsor you. I am willing to pay the full price even if i get an upgrade discount.

Only to sponsor you. smile
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 7:53am

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sidewinder

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Looking nice, but I've gotta see what magic I can work with it first. smile
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 10:58am

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jimsteele

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I look forward to AlamDV3 for this particle engine probably more than any other reason. I think it's going to be very useful.
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 1:16pm

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MrShmoe

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Redhawksrymmer wrote:

schwar wrote:

AlamDV3 is still a free upgrade to people who purchased after 01/01/2003.
Even if I would have bought it after 1st January 2003, I would have payed the full retail price to sponsor you. I am willing to pay the full price even if i get an upgrade discount.

Only to sponsor you. smile
Me too! biggrin Except that I did buy it after 1st Jan 2003.
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 1:41pm

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TheBrightForce

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No words of mine will ever speak over that...

.....nice.....
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 1:54pm

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tmaynard

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Aculag wrote:

feelthapain wrote:

I do believe that you guys do deserve some kind of payment for your hard work.
It's called "Buying the software".
I bought AlamDV2 and I get the free upgrade. I was stating that CSB should still get some sort of reward from the people that recieving AlamDV3 for free. Schwar said it him self that they aren't going to be making much money because of it. I just wanted to help them out.

They seem to have put a lot of work into it. Much more then they thought they would anyway. So they should be rewarded.
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 2:00pm

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Cypher

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I'm too cheap to pay again if I don't have to...but that doesn't mean I don't know alot of people in my program that are into film (as its a um...image arts).

Unless of course clients would like to add a bit more money to my budgets razz
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 2:04pm

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Klut

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If they want more money from me they have to release digigrade!
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 2:15pm

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pboniface

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Well, It looks promising I'm sure youve been working damn hard.

Will is support the ability so create and export/import presets so that the community here can share our particle generator systems with everyone else (Much as Wondertouch do) ?
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 5:39pm

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Joshua Davies

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It is the aim that all the final applications should support save/loaded presets for all their tools and filters which can be shared on FXhome.com
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 8:24pm

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Evman

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I would pay extra or something, but my parents control the credit card, and im sure they won't let me buy something I already have, or send money to people they don't know over seas.... oh well... maybe when Im old enough to pay with my own credit card, I'll give you something. lol.
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 8:52pm

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xbreaka

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wait a little bit i got a debit card/visa at 14 but of course i have to populate the account with funds
Posted: Fri, 17th Dec 2004, 9:45pm

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ssjaaron

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man these are awsome! its like particle illusion or somthing. i really cant wait now! tehehehehehe razz
Posted: Sat, 18th Dec 2004, 12:27pm

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Joshua Davies

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Rating: +4

Just a couple of notes to people making comparisons between Penguin and Particle Illusion.

Although we're very happy with where things are going with Penguin we're not saying its as hardcore as Particle Illusion which is a great dedicated particle program but also nearly 3 times the cost of AlamDV3.

Although we do have gravity and loads of tweenable options its not on the same level of complexity as Particle Illusion. We also don't run everything in your graphics hardware so don't have PIs realtime previews.

Where Penguin does score is quality and ease-of-use. We've spent a lot of time making Penguin good at all the things its built to do while also keeping it really easy for you guys to play with. It also helps that Penguin sits within an interface specifically build for video work taking care of issues like interlacing and aspect ratios. Within that same interface you can also make amazing lightswords and muzzle flashes and many more great effects.
Posted: Sun, 19th Dec 2004, 5:20am

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Marek

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No ... words
...
Should have sent
...
A poet
Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 3:18am

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Waser

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Rating: +1

A haiku for Penguin

Blood and flame move well
In my movies they will be
Let the penguin move
Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 3:44am

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mediamaffia

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ALthough it's not intended to be as advanced as Particle Illusion - it is still WAAAAY advanced as to what ALAM 2 was and much much more than I ever dared imagine it would be!

It's beautiful guys - you are all so clever and talented!

Thank you thank you thank you.

So much hard work! AND we still have digigrade to come! You really are amazing poeple! And I really hope you get your reward/revenue that you soooo deserve!

x
Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 4:41am

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Waser

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mediamaffia wrote:



So much hard work! AND we still have digigrade to come! You really are amazing poeple! And I really hope you get your reward/revenue that you soooo deserve!

With all the talk about AlamDV3 about, I forgot about Digigrade......Oh my lord....The TRIFORCE!
Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 5:11am

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The Artur

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Waser wrote:


Oh my lord....The TRIFORCE!
BEHOLD!

Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 6:32am

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Waser

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all you need is a picture of my screaming face in the middle and that picture would be complete
Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 6:43am

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Slick

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Looks great guys, I especially like the snow.

Sign me up for a free copy.
Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 7:07am

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The Artur

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Waser wrote:

all you need is a picture of my screaming face in the middle and that picture would be complete
you asked for it :

Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 7:15am

Post 69 of 75

Waser

Force: 4731 | Joined: 7th Sep 2003 | Posts: 3111

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holy hell..........thats just.....wow....
Posted: Mon, 20th Dec 2004, 7:45pm

Post 70 of 75

Greybro

Force: 670 | Joined: 18th Apr 2003 | Posts: 195

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Those preview clips just blew me away.

I have to say that the particle effects are an unexpected but most welcome bonus. I’m glad the upgrade is still free for recent purchasers because of the longer wait. But, if Penguin is as smooth as it looks, I’m sure many folks, myself among them will have to buy a copy of Particle Illusion, even if it is 3 times the price. That’s still peanuts as far as good software goes.
Posted: Tue, 21st Dec 2004, 5:17pm

Post 71 of 75

Mellifluous

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Hey, the Penguin engine looks great...the gore effect will do away with tons of requests for Kill Bill blood spatters, anyway! The software is definitely going beyond what anyone thought & I really look forward to being able to play about with it when it comes out. Having saved presets will be cool too


I was just wondering if the new software (either updates to Chromanator, or AlamDV 3's particle engine) will be able to do stuff like when Clark Kent is doing his laser vision stuff like in Smallville. It's like when he is staring something & the vision path is all displaced, kind of like a displacement mapping effect or like the effect you see around cars & planes (hard to describe).

If one of the programs could do a version of this effect that could be altered for a range of things that would be awesome.
Posted: Tue, 21st Dec 2004, 9:25pm

Post 72 of 75

Serpent

Force: 5426 | Joined: 26th Dec 2003 | Posts: 6515

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Like this? http://tarn.fxhome.com/displacement.avi

If so, yes.
Posted: Tue, 21st Dec 2004, 9:45pm

Post 73 of 75

Waser

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The sollthar predadtor strikes (spanks) again!
Posted: Wed, 22nd Dec 2004, 10:23am

Post 74 of 75

Mellifluous

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I saw that before I posted, but I mean an effect that's concentrated within frame rather than taking up most of it...I guess I'd have to play about with that effect to see if it does what I mean
Posted: Wed, 22nd Dec 2004, 11:12am

Post 75 of 75

Simon K Jones

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That example is concentrated within the frame because it is taking the distortion data from the infamous Sollthar greenscreen clip (or the 'spanking' clip, as Andreas calls it), and the greenscreen has been removed. Hence only the actor is affecting things.