So how do you feel about Houdini Indie?

Someone on this forum has following statement in the signature: “Houdini for $200, no need to use blender anymore” or something like that.
So now i want to talk about Houdini weaknesses, whats disappointing you in such a great software?

Here is my thoughts:
-navigating - “meh…”, when you moving an object not with an arrow (x,y,z) but just dragging it in viewport, it snaps to the grid. For example, when u have an object in 0,0,0, then you drag it up-left and it appears like in the back corner of a scene, cos all its happening not in a viewport space but in grid-space instead. There is some workarounds with additional grids, or u can just grab arrows, but still - big minus goes to SideFX.

Frequent selection bugs. Like you box-select bunch of points and houdini constantly select one point like 2 cm out of the box.

-modeling. Actually it sucks for hand-modeling (procedural modeling abilities still very versatile) even compare to maya, compare to blender its just sky and ground.

-Rigging. 2015, you still skin with envelops, no good autoweighting like blender has. Few built-in constraints, rest you should create by yourself (compounds or writing code).

-character animation. Just big “-”. You actually can, but you shouldn’t. Please dont…

-Cloth. SLOW AS HELL! Blender’s cloth is not the fastest, but Houdini is still like 10 times slower. Facepalm. Even old and advanced houdini users say its just not useable.

That my point on aspects i’m interested in. I believe Houdini is good in other things, like particles and stuff, but i cant confirm that, since its not my field of interests.

program might be ace but annual licences are a big turn-off same with renting programs.
want me interested? either offer ‘rent to own’ or ‘perpetual licences’.

those Limitations on the indie version have to go!

  • It is restricted to 1920x1080 when rendering out animations
  • Houdini Indie does not work with third party renderers.

the Eula of Houdini Indie has even worse things in it. -snippet;

  • License Relocation
  • Licensee may relocate the License from the dedicated Computer to another Computer (in which case such Computer would then be the dedicated Computer) only (A) within the Territory, and (B) within a one hundred (100) kilometre radius of where the dedicated Computer was located when the License was originally installed. A maximum of one (1) such relocation is permitted without paying the applicable relocation fee to Side Effects. (*)


keeping it short;
Reading Eulas is mandatory and in this case they are imo contradictory to the needs of the modern artist.

I don’t see the appeal of paying 600$ for an upgraded version of blenders fluid system.

You don’t get Houdini for modeling or animation. You get it for the simulation tools (which blows pretty much everything else out of the water) and the proceduralism.

If you dismiss Houdini while also dismissing it’s strengths then frankly your are missing the point.

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Stick with Houdini Apprentice until you really learn it and find a good enough reason to buy it. I’ve been playing with it, it’s clear that it’s powerful, but I’m not that impressed with it’s interface.

The UI for the nodal system, is really dated and clunky. Also, I preferred Softimage’s ICE system in which every node has it’s pins exposed that you could plug variables into or derive values out of it for almost every option inside of each node. In houdini, to plug variables in, you have to copy out references from one nodes channel box (text), and then paste it in (with any additional math/scripting) to another nodes channel box, and the entire system for doing this, is awkward and clunky inside of H14 (the newest Houdini release).

If Blender ever wanted to do Procederal Nodes for everything (modeling, rigging, FX, etc.) then really some combination of Houdini’s top down modifier stack approach to nodes, combined with Softimage’s ICE or UE4 style nodes with exposed pins for every drive-able parameter, would be way more ideal, then you would get the best of both worlds.

^^ Oh when I read something like this.

This thread was not intended to be neither “Houdini vs Blender” battle, neither insult of houdini-folks. I thought some discussion or
enlightenment to be here. That was just my first impression of the software, but now for example, i’v found out that Houdini has metaball-base muscles, which is pretty good, also some other cool rigging stuff, so now it seems at least not so bad for rigging.
But some of you guys, instead of throwing some more info about Houdini, just chose another way.
NinthJake, you s… so bad…

If you were only interested in the modeling and animation tools then it is as you say. Houdini is not good in that regard but you wanted a comparison between Blender and Houdini but only compared Blender’s strengths with Houdini’s weaknesses, which is not a fair comparison at all. I only tried to point that out, not trying to offend you in any way. Not like you calling me out personally and saying that I suck for answering your question…

Look at this tutorials (you don’t have to actually watch them, just look at the titles)

Almost all of them are for simulation and procedural effects; if you’re not interested in that, then Houdini is not the tool for you as @NinthJake said.

Just try to replicate the one with the lava in Blender and you’ll see where the strengths of the software are. :slight_smile:

one of the best programss on the market i love it and i use it with blender :slight_smile:

It’s more an FX engine than anything else.

Back on houdini Indie licensing, i totally agree with myclay about those limitation.
Would add another one about Mantra tokens (limited to 3 (+3with engine)) which is too limited (even for fx freelancer)
but I think this version is more oriented for independant game artist (which could explained this limit).

houdini indie was design for the one men shop or a small team. so the restrictions a fair the limits for only 3 houdini engines is also fine because when you have got more computers you will have enough money to buy the big houdini version. you don’t use houdini on a old machine. bear in mind houdini comes from the big studios so it can handle big scene’s and supports all the current file formats like alembic and openvdb. it’s also nearly the only commercial tool that has a daily build.

the ICE System is more like the houdini VEX system.

houdini’s main targets are:

  • simulation (fluid, smoke, destruction)
  • procedural modeling
  • scene’s assembly
  • crowd (new in h14)
  • hair system
  • rendering complex scenes (example:

when you combine it with blender you will get a solid solution for more complex projects so think like a add-on tool.

btw. the main cost of houdini isn’t the software it’s the learning time and when you know houdini there will be no limitations :slight_smile:

Houdini is powerful but it was a different tool, as other have mentioned. Modo Indie is more of a competition to Blender than Houdini. I purchased it last summer sale (rent for 6 month). but haven’t touched it yet because I’m busy preparing for Oracle exam. and also, Ramadhan. so hobby come last for this month.

–of topic–

Happy Ramadhan!