Virtools, a provider of interactive 3D authoring tools, has announced the availability of the new Virtools Exporter for Softimage|XSI animation software. This exporter allows developers working on real-time 3D games, websites and VR/simulations to export characters, scenes, objects and animations into Virtools Dev 3.0.
Softimage|XSI software provides 3D animators and digital artists the tools needed to make professional animation, visual effects, and media for games, motion pictures, websites and more. With the Virtools Exporter, developers can convert data from Softimage|XSI to the Virtools NMO file format, for efficient interactive 3D production.
Virtools Dev 3.0 export settings are now stored in a scene and set once, enabling the use of the export plugin in XSI Batch Mode to optimize the 3D content creation process. Material properties can also be defined with both OpenGL and DirectX RealTime Shaders to allow the use of multiple channels, multiples UVs and RenderMaps in meshes.
Virtools has also announced it has joined the Xbox Tools and Middleware Program for next generation Xbox platform. This partnership will ensure early compatibility with the next generation Xbox platform.
Support of the next generation Xbox platform puts Virtools in the list of the upcoming video game middleware industry. Virtools solutions help game studios deliver 3D titles that meet the high-definition experience into the next generation consoles.
Finally, Virtools has also announced the launch of the Virtools Authorized Game Developer Program with its first five members.
Many large developers and publishers already use the Virtools technology for proof of concept and prototyping, but they need to externalize some short-term game developments, either for the downloadable game market (PC, Mac, Xbox Arcade) or traditional retail budget PC/Xbox titles.
The first 5 authorized game developers have been carefully selected. They experienced extensive training and have developed several games with Virtools solutions. However, the goal is to have a network of over 10 authorized game developers around the world within the end of 2005 and a growing network for the next years.