Softimage Introduces XSI 6.5 at SIGGRAPH

Softimage Co., a subsidiary of Avid Technology Inc., today announced SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6.5 at SIGGRAPH in San Diego, Calif. In addition to providing details on the latest version of its widely used 3D animation software package, the company unveiled plans to repackage its Essentials and Advanced versions of SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6.5 software to meet the specific needs of artists and studios, respectively, and also announced SOFTIMAGE|FACE ROBOT 1.8, which will offer enhancements for facial animation in game development pipelines.

Both the SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6.5 Essentials and Advanced software packages will include more than 30 enhancements that were developed for such key customers as Lionhead Studios, Valve, Electronic Arts, Animal Logic, Nerdcorps, Pandemic Studios and NCSoft. Intended to improve production efficiency and meet the specific workflow needs of the game development, visual effects and visualization industries, the new features include HDR (high dynamic range) rendermap support, additional SDK APIs, UV editing enhancements (2D image data on a 3D model) and greater audio support.

In addition, the Essentials version now includes Hair & Fur, and Syflex Cloth capabilities. The manufacturer suggested retail price for Essentials will increase to $2,995. Maintenance remains unchanged at $799 and upgrades hold steady at $999. The package will only be available to new customers and customers on active maintenance.

SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6.5 Advanced includes everything in the SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6.5 XSI Essentials package, plus Behavior, a crowd and behavioral simulation system, as well as five additional XSI Batch rendering licenses. The price will decrease to $4,995 and maintenance will decrease to $1333.

SOFTIMAGE|FACE ROBOT 1.8 is an advanced software package designed to deliver life-like 3D character facial animation for use in games, film and television, offering greater speed and control than other commercially available solutions. Specific new features of the release include Crosswalk, MOTOR (motion transfer), delta referencing and animation layers, all of which are built on the SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6 core. Other features include a new shape rig export system that allows users to export entire head blend shapes for use in XSI and Autodesk Maya software, an improved game export pipeline and hours of new raining materials. For pricing, contact your Softimage sales representative.

SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6.5 and SOFTIMAGE|FACE ROBOT 1.8 will be demonstrated at SIGGRAPH and are expected to be available for purchase this fall. For more information on all of the company’s SIGGRAPH plans, go to