For many years now Massive has owned the crowd sim market space, especially at the high end of VFX. Of course some of the larger post-houses have written their own tools, but the availability of any other commercially viable product has been limited.
So what of Massive? Well for those companies wanting to recreate the type of look The Mill created for the Sony Playstation's advert "Mountain" - Massive is the best proven solution.
We have recently noticed a couple of other products coming to the market. If you have not seen any of these products, it may be worth taking a look at – Miarmy is going to have a set of plugins for Maya and seems to be one of the more interesting technologies around. Although I don’t know how it will handle large sims if it is from within Maya... Guess we’ll have to wait and see..
Check out the Miarmy video here
You also have Golaem Crowd another Maya plugin, it would be interesting to hear from anyone who has used this and any of the other tools.
And Autodesk are making their own attempts with Project Geppetto, although this is for 3ds Max
It’s an interesting time for ‘tools’ in VFX. It’s been a little quiet in recent times but we now see many renderers fighting for a slice of the limelight. Siggraph should be interesting this year. Now all we need is a competitor to Autodesk on the 3D side to really spice things up…