Ok, I am a maya user and have been working in maya for quite some time. Before that it was max, lightwave and strata. Needless to say, I have been working in 3D for a long long time. Ive always known about blender and have always known it was a capable piece of software able to do everything the heavy hitters can do only is free.
What I want to know is simple though. Why did YOU choose blender and why do you stay with it? I would love to know the reasons… the more specific and less fanboy the better. I also have to ask… is it because it is free? If blender cost the same as another software package (ie:modo, maya, LW etc) would you still choose blender? I am just curious.
1- Because I like it.
2- Because I use OSS if I can. I also use Krita and Gimp for exemple, even tough I run windows on my PC and not Linux.
3- I’m too poor to buy a license for 3DS Max or Maya for what amount to a hobby for me.
I’ve been working in 3D for 8 years now, across Maya, Max, SI, and Blender, with limited experience in Modo, C4D, and Houdini. If Blender cost as much as the others, I’d still use it for modeling. It is hands down the fastest modeling suite I’ve ever used. It has a steep learning curve to get to that point, but once you’re there it flies. It also has robust sculpt tools only bested by niche packages (ZB, MudBox, 3DCoat) integrated right in, which is a huge help for certain work. I still jump into ZB for tiny detail work, but Blender is sufficient 95% of the time. Cycles is an exciting advancement as well, but even if it’s not your cup of tea, Blender interfaces fairly well with most big packages, and is even beginning to get official support from some bigger players (Thea, Octane, VRay).
More than anything, though, I stick around for the community. The people who work with Blender are great, helpful, and generally not as rude as those in other communities. I can talk directly with the development teams (and not just because I’m part of one), we get weekly status updates of the software as a whole and its progression, and most bugs will get ironed out within a week not “whenever the patch comes out”.
This isn’t to say that Blender isn’t rough around the edges. There are some orphaned areas, and places that still need a lot of love to get where people would like them to be, but on the whole, Blender is an excellent package on par with some of the big boys out there.
Like m9105826 said – Blender has a very fast modeling workflow – the fastest I’ve ever used going all the way back to 3Dream Designer in the mid-90’s. As a longtime Lightwave user, I started using Blender about 4 years ago full time. The free part of it was attractive at that time, but don’t let that fool you – Blender can do anything in the hands of a skilled artist. Maya/Max/C4d etc all have tons and tons of modeling tools that work really well, but I’ll put Blender’s ease of use and speed up against any of them. If you’ve used other packages for a long time, the learning curve really isn’t that big of a deal and is blown out of proportion most of the time, so try it out for yourself and see what you think – don’t let people who’ve never used it tell you what you should do.
1: Free. I can learn on my own time, have access to all the features, and if I create somethign worth sharing, I can do so legally.
2: Powerful. It has a rich feature set which allows it to be a single-app platform for modelling, texturing, rigging, animating, simulating and rendering. While some areas are comparatively weak, they are present and…
3: Evolving. There’s an active community adding features and functionality all the time, and the Open Movie project ensures that they have an eye to usability.
4: Mac Compatible.
As a hobbyist, like me, you can not afford to skip Blender. It has almost everything you would want in a modeller, compositor, render, etc., etc. Like others have said, it does have some rough spots, but it keeps getting better and better every new version.
That is not to say that I wouldn’t purchase software even though I am a hobbyist. I have purchased Pfhoe ($200 - bad decision), Octane($130), Octane plugin for Blender($130), and 3D-Coat($90), including software from long ago, Sculpt 4D, Aladdin 4D, etc. My personal cutoff for the maximum I will pay for software is $200. Any more than that and I will not purchase it, I just can’t justify it for a hobby.
Easy to carry around or download and use. It’s also very light - doesn’t take gigs on hd. I can use it on any computer, by keeping it in my USB drive. No need to install or register or anything. It just works. I love that in software.
It’s comfortable to use. It’s mostly in my taste. I really like the interface, though it has it’s flaws. 2.49 had a great gui concept, but the execution was terrible. 2.5+ is pretty darn awesome. Modelling is just so comfortable and fast… Tried other software, there was just to much clicking around…
Fits almost all of my needs. From sculpting to uv mapping, it can do almost everything i need for my 3D work. Has it’s limits, for example, no openCL, no cycles deform motion blur, no GPU SSS and etc, but it’s sufficient in most cases.
its true. However I am looking for why users of Blender like the software of their choice. Of course it will be biased, but it will also be true. Trust me, I hear plenty of bias against blender. Im also listening with a very careful ear (eye in this case). I also think people are more truthful than you are giving credit, none of the answers given so far seem to me to be overtly biased. Besides, even biased opinions are of value… Hell, I am completely biased to Max and Maya but I do find blender intriguing at the least. I was really just personally interested in personal experiences.
I was checking out your game litterally yesterday… haha. Originally I was interested in Blender for game dev so its kinda interesting to me that my research on blender led me yesterday to your DeadCyborg site and today you answer a post. Now i get the feeling that your post above is JK post. If is is so bad, why use it to create a game as complicated and challenging as the one you produced. I am working on my first personally produced game and the blender game engine has me intrigued. Ive worked on a bunch of other indy titles before, but for my first personally created one, I am doing my research before jumping in deep. Its one of my motivations for this question being posted in the first place. Like I said, I am a max / maya guy right now and I like them both well enough… Ive been trying out MayaLT which is pretty sweet and fairly cost effective but I am a bit behind on where exactly Blender rates with it’s users. In the past if I asked the same questions I would have had a mixture of “Blender sucks” and maybe “Blender is good enough but its not a “pro” tool”. The above posts today show otherwise. Seems like a lot of the problems plaguing blender in the past have eradicate. I wanted to understand why.
I just like the lack of stress associated with when the next version will come out, what kind of new DRM/license horror the company will inflict upon me and how much they’ll raise their price. The new version is out every day, the DRM is nonexistent, the license is GPL and the price is free. While there is no formal technical support, in a bind you can pop into IRC and ask the developer. Can’t beat that.
Also, I like the UI. It seems awkward at first but it really grows on you.
cycles is a path tracer so yes its a render engine… abc123 is the troll around these parts
i belive blender is developing faster now than it ever has… each release has game changing new features and optimizations. i spend more time watching blender development and learning all the news than i do using it