Adobe acquires Allegorithmic

I don’t recall ever having this particular discussion with you regarding Adobe and the software as a service business model, or what caused it. The reason there is often no resolution is in large part because you add words and meaning where non existed in the first place, which in turn create new straw men arguments over and over again.

For example, you just claimed I said “Adobe and its customers are ruining software today”. No where did I even remotely make that claim. You took a tongue and cheek comment which flipped “software solutions” to “software problems” and correlated that with absolute ruin. That is not a logical conclusion to come to.

I never claimed Adobe or even its customers were ruining the industry. In fact I never even referred to the customers (from which I used to be one) at all, you added that straw man. I referred only to Adobe and Allegorithmic.

There is no end to debates or responses when people twist and distort what was said in order to create straw men they feel comfortable attacking, then move the goal post or flee when pressed for specifics on the subjects that were mentioned. Of course it never ends. (rolls eyes)

On that note, there is a lot of dislike for Adobe and now Allegorithmic for a reason. Their videos on the Susbtance 3D lineup are overwhelmingly voted down, and nearly 90% of the commentary is negative. The fact remains the direction Allegorithmic through Adobe has gone is visibly not liked by a large part of their (current and former) user base.

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Chiming in from an Adobe perspective (I’m principal product manager for 3D at Adobe). At this point we know that whatever we announce or do, we will get some form of backlash simply because we’re part of Adobe. There is a big emotional and affective factor at play and the fact is when we address the concerns of our (vocal) community members 1 on 1, most of them simply care a lot but ultimately are well intended and like where the tools themselves are going.

I’d like to clarify that everything you see coming from Substance is the sole decision and initiative of the Substance (ex-Allegorithmic+ Mixamo) teams. There are no Adobe overlords dictating what we should and shouldn’t do and the leadership at Adobe trusts us to do the right thing, that’s why they wanted to bring us on board in the first place

I’m also not sure where the “Adobe is killing software” is coming from, there are alternative to pretty much every Adobe tool out there and that’s fine.

Anyway, I think a lot of you will like what we have in store in terms of announcement for GDC next month.

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Some backlash? I’d say 80% down votes and nearly all negative comments on your youtube video’s is hardly “some backlash”, its quite a bit of backlash actually. (referring specifically to the recent uploads for Substance 3D…etc)

Do you think Allegorithmic’s substance would have gotten to where it is today, if you announced at the very beginning your goal was to get acquired by Adobe? I have met you guys in in person, including you Jeremy, and I know that you know that a lot of your software’s support came from users who valued your independence, for not being Adobe or Autodesk.

What do you think a poll would have looked like if you asked, “should we become an Adobe product (now service)?”.

The fact is you guys knowingly did something you knew most of your user base opposed. You can defend that decision by saying “good intentions”, but track record for “good intended” acquisitions is abysmal and the user base knows this.

Anyways, yes, there are absolutely alternatives to adobe acquired products (er, services now) and Substance Painter as a texturing solution was one of those until it became part of Adobe, which in turn drove demand for other alternatives. Its ironic that Quixel ends up detaching itself from Adobe Photoshop and gets positive attention for it, and Substance which was praised for being away from Adobe is now part of it.

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I was confused on where all the announcements left Adobe Dimension. Can you tell me if Dimension will still be supported and part of the regular Adobe Creative Cloud?

Brave soul…lol

I appreciate you coming here to chime in. I have been using both Adobe and Substance products for a number of years.

Looking forward to what is next at GDC!

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Dimension is still available in CC All Apps but will not receive significant updates going forward. Stager is where the action will be at.

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Sure, I can appreciate all of that. And I apologize if I misunderstood or misrepresented anything you said.

Jerc- will the Substance tools become part of the “main” Creative Cloud (like Illustrator, Photoshop, etc.) or is that a separate toolset? The reason I ask is because we use CC at work and it has Dimension in there, so I figured it will either go away or become the Substance version.

Well this is embarrassing.

Chad Ashley on Twitter: “I don’t know if I’m flattered or pissed that @Adobe @Substance3D used @GSG3D materials and assets to sell THEIR own suite of materials and assets. I’m leaning towards😡 Original Video: https://t.co/Pty88U8vHQ Get Plus & the MSMC materials here: https://t.co/cwjsRk6vyx https://t.co/XTppXeDVHw” / Twitter

and

Greg Zaal on Twitter: “https://t.co/ps2AAAr3Eu Neat tool, but beware false marketing. They show automatic removal of tripod from an HDRI, but this is one of mine that has no tripod already. The “perfect result” they show is not the tool output at all, it’s the original. Don’t trust any of these results” / Twitter

This crap is why people hate Adobe.

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@SaintHaven These stemmed from unfortunate mistakes where the agency that was in charge of these videos sub-contracted some shots to a freelance who used 3rd party content rather than ours, and we unfortunately didn’t notice the mistake in the midst of crazy deadlines… We apologized to the creators impacted and are re-rendering new replacement videos.

@Safetyman No plans for the Substance 3D apps to be integrated to Creative Cloud at this point. They remain entirely separate. Dimension will stay in CC All Apps but will not receive any more major update going forward. Stager is where the focus will be.

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I get that such face palming “mistakes” can happen, especially when you go with the Adobe way of doing things, which is outsource and use ad agencies to make your advertising content. Content which ends up missing the mark by a long shot. It could have easily been avoided.

They must know a very large segment of the target audience does not like them. So why get sloppy and validate that dislike? With the artist you have on hand, why not keep it in house, the way it used to be? Why not find well known Substance artist to make your advertising material? Why use Adobe’s generic advertising and marketing approach? Stick to your own.

I would think this kind of mistake would have never happened when you guys were independent and kept to your core audience. With Adobe using “advertising agencies”, whose marketing departments are quite frankly dumb and don’t understand (or care about) the actual software or its audience, you end up with marketing material that follows generic trends, rather than speak to the primary user base of said product. You could take out the “substance” logo at the end and swap it with a Nike or itunes logo and it would not feel out of place.

Even the rebranding is worse, in the same horrible Adobe fashion. It just does not look like you guys retained much control, either that or you gave up your own way of thinking for Adobe’s which is what you originally claimed would not happen. Instead of changing Adobe for the better, its the other way around, which is what almost always happens.

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You know I see a lot of talk how “Adobe” does this and that but really we (Allegorithmic) are Adobe now, and all the marketing you see, it’s the same team that’s been doing the Substance marketing for years.

With this release, we are presenting our tools to a whole new audience. Millions of Adobe users who for most of them have no idea how 3d creation works. Those videos were aimed at this crowd, and were outsourced because our teams of amazing artists were busy creating tutorials, documentation and all sorts of visuals for the release, on top of doing QA on the apps.

We produced tons of content for the core users including a 1h Keynote with details and demos about all the new features.

Unfortunately I think we underestimated the impact of the new icons and those videos. It seems like a lot of people got hung up on those details and didn’t or barely got the message about what was actually added in these new updates.

A launch like this was a first for us and we’re learning :slightly_smiling_face:

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Marketing is tough. And I share a lot of sentiment with previous user comments.

I don’t use any of Allegorithmic product but I am very much aware of them and planning to use in future. Yet I am following Allegorithmic journey and subjectively I believe merger with Adobe was a terrible mistake.

I don’t know what forced you to move to Adobe. It’s probably money. And I’m not saying it in a negative way. I’m perfectly well aware that businesses need money to grow in a stable and predictable way and have funds for RnD.

But you couldn’t have chosen the worst partner!

I’ve been using their products for years and Adobe is the worst on delivering user requested features. If they can do something wrong they’ll likely do it. There’s also a lot of drip feeding “innovation” with their products and catering to amateur users. Developing stuff that is not needed for production while essential features are missing etc.

There is such a baggage of negativity and worse practices with this company and they make barely any effort to fix it. And they don’t need to because they have a strong monopoly on some markets they totally dominates.

I saw a different pattern from Allegorithmic so far. At least it seems from the outside that you care about your users and tries to deliver good value for the money.

Unfortunate, when you joined Adobe you took all their negativity by association. And the more you integrates into their ecosystem the more you vanish as a unique brand. I know you believe you have a strong culture in Allegorithmic but corporate culture of Adobe will eventually win. It might not happen today or tomorrow, but it’ll happen. Adobe has a good track record of ruining unique companies/products and leaving them the bland soup of CC products. Even you rebranding is a first step in that direction. This is why people reacting so strongly to it. Because they are very well aware where it leads to and you’re giving them strong sings. Willingly or not is the second matter.

I lot of people I know are trying to find an out of Adobe ecosystem. In 3D you were such a company for a certain niche of task. And I think people are looking for an out of Allegorithmic products now too.

You might not feel it now but as soon as there is a good enough alternative with fair pricing and licensing options you’ll feel it. The recent example could be DaVinci vs. Premier. From what I see people are very happy with the move to DaVinci. There is also Affinity products but they are not fully there yet to compete at professional production level in some areas.

I believe you as a business made a bad decision long term going with Adobe. If there is a way out for Allegorithmic from this contract I’d strongly recommend to consider it. Users will support you with both hands.

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Looking forward to seeing developments coming. You guys have been moving fairly quickly through adding a lot of features that my team and I have enjoyed so far.

We also use a lot of Adobe products.

Mixer is on the rise but it is still not competition yet… lol

But we are watching it closely. :wink:

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They’re not partners. Adobe bought Allegorithmic. They are Adobe now, this is just one more step of the subsumption of Allegorithmic into the machine that is Adobe.

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Companies are happy to play the long game (See facebook and Whatsapp (bought back in 2014)). For now they may give you free reign, but all it takes is a slip up here, a missed target there and they will tighten their grip.

With competition on the horizon waiting for any sign of weakness it may help keep Adobe honest, but only time will tell.

For clarification, I have no strong feeling towards Adobe.

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As long as the core Allegorithmic team continue to work on their products I’ll be happy. I have no issues with Adobe’s products. I’ve used Photoshop for about 25 years. There’s a reason why most professionals continue to use Photoshop when there are seemingly alternatives. I preferred Corel’s Painter to Photoshop for 2D art and illustration but I’m in a minority there as the vast majority of 2D artists seem to love Photoshop for that too. Same with Indesign. I worked in a newspaper production department for 21 years and when we switched over from a doomed proprietary DTP platform to Indesign it was a gamechanger.

My only gripe with Adobe is with their licencing arrangements and the whole Cloud thing. I miss the days when you could just simply buy a piece of software and pop the box on your bookshelf. Realistically I need: Photoshop, Indesign, Illustrator, Acrobat and at a push Lightroom. Additionally now I need Substance 3D Painter (Designer and Sampler not so much).

I have absolutely no need for: Premiere Pro, After Effects, Media Encoder, XD, Premiere Rush, Fresco, Dreamweaver, Animate, Character Animator, Audition, InCopy, Prelude and whatever else lurks in the Creative Cloud. Yet I’m paying a lot of money for all of that.

I just wish that Adobe would break down all the Creative Cloud applications into bundles and offer us what we need for a lesser price. A good starting point would be the classification categories they already use in the CC app: Photo (Lightroom, Lightroom Classic and Photoshop), Graphic Design (Illustrator, Photoshop, Indesign), Video (Premiere Pro and Premiere Rush), etc., etc. Or just offer customers more customisation than asking them to pay the full amount for a whole bunch of stuff they’ll likely never install or use. I must be honest… I’d actually have been happier (and better off) if the Substance stuff had just been lumped into the main CC package.

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I think some of that criticism is fair, but seeing things from the inside now and interacting with many other teams at Adobe, I know everyone is working their ass off to deliver great updates. It’s definitely harder for flagship apps like Photoshop to make everybody happy when you have a user base of millions, spread across an infinity of industries and use cases and with a 30+ year legacy.

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I get what you’re saying and I hope I am wrong about the future of Allegorithmic team.

There is no doubt the development team is talented and passionate about the product. It’s the execs who worries me and I have no trust in Adobe execs. There are countless examples in game dev and software development when bad executive decisions tanked great products.

I wish you my honest best though.

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I agree that this has happened. I don’t see this as happening to Adobe nor Substance at all. I could unpack that statement a lot more. But I am going to try to keep it concise.

It is not always the case that what is good for a corporation is bad for individuals.

And bad horrible decisions can be made by small independent teams. Just look what happened to Messiah Studio Pro and LightWave.

EDIT:

I still find the notion that NewTek was touting. “We will never offer or go subscription”… because we know our user base…etc etc etc. to be particularly foretelling.

All the wile the debates had raged on about how Autodesk and Adobe are going to go down in flames because they did not listen to their customers.

However in how many years now this has never happened? Meanwhile LightWave is nowhere to be found.

The two facts may not even be connected. But then that is pretty much the point I am making.