Sport & Auto
- About Future
- Digital Future
- Cookies Policy
- Terms & Conditions
- Investor Relations
- Contact Future
The clear leader in iOS 3D software, Autodesk delivers the most user-friendly, powerful 3D app anyone has attempted to create for the iPad in its newest offering, 123D Creature. It’s as capable as it is fun, taking unique advantage of the iPad’s multitouch interface and coming up solid as a rock – except for the occasional crash.
Autodesk designed 123D Creature primarily as a tool for creating models with bilateral symmetry and limbs, as the program is primarily geared towards making the process of whipping up articulated 3D characters – not easy for anyone except the most seasoned 3D artists. The first thing you’ll be presented with is a very basic body with two arms and legs – and that’s about it. In order to get to the next level of complexity, you'll essentially use highly intuitive tools to add joints and extremities, and bulge or taper things coming in and out of control points. While this might sound a bit abstract, you’ll quickly pick up the process by actually doing it, something that definitely sets this app apart from many desktop 3D tools we’ve worked with over the years.
The interface is really slick. Using your fingers to swipe anywhere but the model lets you quickly pan around your creation in 3D, while placing fingers on the actual model puts the program into edit mode, where you add, move, or reshape body parts. Once you’re done with the basic shape of your creature, the model is “baked” in order to get into the more detail-oriented 3D sculpting mode, which lets you paint 3D deformations onto the surface of your model. It's here that you can make brows, muscles, fleshy body extensions (keep it clean, folks!), skin textures, and other surface features.
A really responsive painting mode makes it effortless to color and texture your models. You can even import images to use as decals, with a very cool way to line up the graphics with the 3D surfaces, and paint on only the areas you actually want to transfer the image to. It’s all very fluid and easy, and must be experienced to be appreciated. The only hiccup we encountered: you’ll want to close every other app while using this beast, otherwise you’ll likely encounter random crashes. You can easily export the 3D creatures you make as OBJ files, which are supported by the vast majority of 3D modeling, rendering, and animation software. Another fascinating twist: 123D Creature has an in-app 3D printing service, allowing you to send your creation away to be made into a genuine 3D object.
The bottom line. This has to be the most fun we’ve had with 3D on an iPad, and for $7.99, it’s a tremendous value, as much fun as many games we’ve played.
iPad 2 or newer running iOS 6.0 or later
Highly intuitive feature set. Powerful 3D sculpting and painting tools. Robust output support.
It's a resource hog; you'll need to quit all other apps while using this one, otherwise expect crashes.