Pixologic ➔ Maxon ZBrush

Pretty interestng…

[Moderator note: modified the title to turn this into a general, ongoing thread about Maxon ZBrush]


Wow. Didnt expect that.


Here it comes… a new subscription service for you.


Seems like a good opportunity to invest more dev power into blender sculpt mode. People are most likely not gonna want to put up with maxon shit after decades of free upgrades


yup! more reasons to embrace blender fully! I abandoned Maya for ZBrush when I bought a license few years ago and was passionate about it. I started learning blender for super basic modelling (since I was so comfortable with ZModeler), riggin and animation. Now it seems that I will have to gladly go full Blender :slight_smile:

I’m afraid so too. :slightly_frowning_face:

I’m quite surprised. Always thought that Pixologic was pretty solid, continuing to head in its own direction.

Having said that I did wonder the last few years how they would keep up with Blender’s unstoppable expansion, including its improved Sculpt Mode.

It makes me a bit sad, as to me Pixologic was one of the few other tool developers next to Blender that managed to keep my sympathy through the years. I really hope Maxon will not dissolve that love.


I’m usually not surprised by acquisition announcements, but I didn’t expect this one at all.


If it works for you, great. I fear it doesn’t work for everybody (me included).

Hope for the best and prepare for the worst - as they say. I am leaning more forwards the worst kind of scenario.


Hmmm… :thinking:

Joseph Eager is already putting together all of the building blocks for a true, next-gen sculpting experience in Blender. Since the BF continues to get more funds, they need to bring him into the core team as a paid developer.

If they can get Pablo back as well to do all of the usability stuff, then we will have everything needed to get artists past this sudden turn of events.


we believe this will be great for all of the artists…

Always the same boring lies. This is never true.

PS Sorry Romanji, didn’t mean to reply specifically to you.

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"Will perpetual licenses continue?

Yes, we are anticipating that perpetual licenses will continue."


I’m sceptical. If I remember it correctly, Maxon switched Redshift to subscription-only not long after they purchased it.



That is a very carefully chosen word.


Here it comes… a new subscription service for you.

I don’t use ZBrush but I was always amazed by their business model. Both in a good and a bad way. It was great to see they provide free updates for years. But I couldn’t understand how it was viable business wise. So it’s not a surprise for that they sell to another company. Especially since Blender most likely put serious pressure on them by stealing all the new blood who doesn’t have a license yet.

Now they will have an excuse to go full subscription in a year and they’ll blame Maxon management for that. But I am sure it’ll be a relive for them to get rid of this burden where they need to change their business model themselves.


Yeah, I also never understood how they could stay alive without ever charging for updates.


The change to subscription only will happen. There is no doubt about it. The only question is how soon and how extreme this change will be.


I’m afraid so too.

Personally, I would not run away from a hybrid C4D + ZBrush package that offers an affordable indie license for small freelancers. If ZBrush would seamlessly interact with C4D for rendering, rigging and animation, that could be quite interesting. But I doubt that’s going to happen. So if Maxon announces subscription-only for ZBrush as we know it I will fully go for Blender + Quad Remesher, but saying goodbye to ZBrush will bring some heartache.


I’ll tell you how it’s going to go if they don’t need to improve cash flow immediately.

After the merger they’ll confirm that nothing is going to change except that ZBrush now has more resources for the development thanks to Maxon support and users should await new amazing and innovative features.

Close to next big ZBrush update cycle they’ll present these new features. Hopefully making them really good to soften the blow from the announcement that they discontinue perpetual licenses.

Starting evaluating next year they’ll see if they have good subscription numbers. If not then by another update cycle or sooner they’ll find a way to break update cycle for perpetual license users under some artificial pretense to push them to switch to subscription.

Third year it’ll be pretty critical to see if their strategy worked out to guarantee stable subscriptions cash flow or not. Then of not all kind of scenarios are possible in the coming years.


You forgot the part where they make you sign up for an account in their new and much improved online presence and now you can’t download installers or activate licenses on existing versions any more.


How did they even manage to keep the updates free for so long ? Hear this, Zbrush 3 licenses are still being upgraded at no cost… (obviously you know this, but putting it here for emphasis)
Frankly I’ll refrain from judging before we see what results this buyout yields. I don’t know Maxon too well, but I’d surprised they’d do any harm to the golden goose that is Zbrush. I mean… nearly the entire animation and effects industry depends on it for surfacing ! Let’s see.

If Ofer himself sees this as good… (from the quote in the article)