As part of Microsoft's GameFest, Softimage has released SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6 Mod Tool, a free 3D modeling and animation software package for indie and aspiring game developers to create new or modify existing games, with full XNA Game Studio integration.
Softimage says its XSI Mod Tool comes with an enhanced user interface and training videos from Noesis Interactive, which is says makes it a perfect environment for newcomers to 3D game content creation.
The package contains the SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6 engine, Microsoft XNA support to integrate natively with the XNA Framework Content Pipeline, Half Life 2
mod support to export 3D characters and assets that can be used in Valve’s Half-Life 2: Episode Two
, and the enhanced interface built specifically for first-time 3D users.
The package is restricted to non-commercial usage, and mod tool files cannot be used with the commercial XSI packages. It also has a 64,000 triangle export limit (per mesh), and no rendering capabilities, as its assets are designed specifically for consumption in a game engine.
Said Softimage marketing manager Leonard Teo, “Softimage and Microsoft are committed to nurturing the next generation of game creators. With the free SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6 Mod Tool and XNA Game Studio Express, anyone can download these tools and learn how to make games. Students, enthusiasts and aspiring game creators now have a similar toolset used by professional game companies to make their first games. Game publishers also have a way to extend the life of a game title by supporting the SOFTIMAGE|XSI 6 Mod Tool, providing their communities with the most powerful, free 3D toolset available to mod games.”