Wishlist for Blender 2.8+

Blender features I’m personally looking forward to the most are:

  1. Sculpt Mode improvements, particularly a perfected OpenVDB Remesh modifier implementation, putting it on par with ZBrush Dynamesh (but non-destructively).

And a really effective quad-poly auto-retopologizer like ZRemesher would be a true game-changer for Blender.

  1. Eevee and Cycles improvements:

I think Eevee requires too much hassle at the moment, having to fiddle with separate objects for GI and proper reflections, and adjust a heap of rendering, material, lighting and shadow settings. I’d love Eevee to become more straightforward, like Marmoset Toolbag.

Cycles should become more optimized for GPU, like E-Cycles, and preferably get a bidirectional path tracer for better caustics and GI in difficult areas of a scene.

  1. More procedural textures, such as a procedural scratches texture.

  2. A (short) fur shader, like an advanced velvet shader. This would allow you to skip the elaborate and rendertime-intensive particle-generated fur route.

  3. Everything Nodes, hopefully leading towards a Houdini-like non-destructiveness in modeling and other areas.

  4. I still miss some essential modifiers from 3ds Max, such as a UV mapping modifier that allows you to easily and non-destructively assign animatable and transformable UV projections (spherical, cylindrical, box, triplanar, planar, etc.) to one or more objects.

More examples of desirable modifiers:

  • Convert To Mesh modifier, so you can keep adjusting closed curve shapes or metaballs, non-destructively auto-convert them to a mesh, and add mesh modifiers on top.
  • Curve To Mesh modifier (so you can non-destructively auto-convert a curve to a mesh and add subsequent mesh modifiers).
  • Cap Holes modifier (would be great to auto-cap meshed curves), ideally including cap shapes, such as rounded.
  • Lattice modifier automatically creating a fitting and locally oriented lattice.

I would love as many modifiers as possible to have their own automatic influence cages and center pivots, in stead of having to separately create and assign a dummy object to a modifier.

  1. An object creation mode like 3ds Max Autogrid and ZBrush Insert Mesh, enabling you to easily create new objects on the surface normals of existing objects.

Now let’s hope that one or more of these wishes might reach Blender developers. :slightly_smiling_face: And you’re welcome to discuss.

8 Likes

My list is:

  • Materials: The ongoing update to the voronoi generator.
  • Materials: New math operators for convenience (lerp, linstep/smoothstep/smootherstep, normalizewithpreview, remapvalue, gain, bias).
  • Materials: Ability to create random value and assign material ID to new faces created by modifiers.
  • Materials: Object Reader node, whose purpose is to obtain information about a specific object, i.e. texture coord can only obtain object coords, but not position, orientation, scale etc.
  • Materials: Mapping Remap node, to easily create spherical, cylindrical, disk, box (similar to what we have now), triplanar mapping (more advanced features), cone, and pyramidial mapping coordinates from cartesian. Having an extremely limited function of this for image nodes is ridiculous, as you can’t manipulate coordinates going into them.
  • Materials: Anisotropic (or Tangent shifted) Velvet shader. Light angle dependent as now (meaning it has to be shader based, can’t be faked), but ability to change the direction of the nap based on tangent perhaps? Fabrics need some love.
  • Materials: Thinfilm shader.
  • Materials: Metal shader. Support for all current distributions, anisotropics, with colors based on simple color with edge fade, artistic two color control, or physical with n/k fresnel values.
  • Materials: Similarly, maybe glossy and anisotropic should be merged?
  • Materials: Update fresnel node with toggle for single-sided, and a roughness input to approach how PBR setups use it without having to use a bunch of nodes/node groups.
  • Materials: Update layer weight/fresnel so that the fresnel value is the same as specular value for Principled. Currently 0-1 means completely different things, very unintuitive.
  • Materials: Ability to set the sensitivity for value nodes.
  • Materials: Improvements to the presentation of exposed values in a group node.
  • Materials: Checkboxes, radiobuttons, dropdown lists, boolean operations.
  • Materials: Warp and Weft generator. For fabrics (weave, twill patterns).
  • Materials: Pile generator. For fabrics (nap patterns).
  • General: Color selector should be able to choose color in blackbody and wavelength mode, since these nodes are not available to Eevee.
    See thunderloom for Maya for what this is all about.
    Research papers, mostly for devs I guess.
2 Likes

Thanks for the extensive additions, @CarlG! Sounds very good.

Yes please! Preferably including a transformable visual gizmo in the viewport, so you can visually change and animate the UV orientation, offset and scale.

Sounds good too. An advanced velvet shader could hopefully also be used as a short fur shader, so you could skip the elaborate and rendertime-intensive particle fur route.

Vote for any about Everything nodes, Procedural, Houdini-like, Non-destructive, and eeve.

5 Likes

this is not much of my wishlist but what i think devs might focus on for the 2.8x series.

Asset Manager.
Overrides system.
merging the Sculpt branch.
more UI/UX refinement.
GPU Accelerated OpenSubdiv.
undo/redo improvement.
EEVEE and Grease Pencil improvements.
UDIMs and USD.
first glimpse of Everything Nodes with modifier nodes.
& maybe the plan of the mysterious project animation 2020 and the whole character pipeline.

my only wish too is a robust Auto,Semi-Auto and Manual retopo tools that work smoothly with dense meshes which i think it’s already on their radar.

7 Likes

UV toolset, as much as I enjoy doing my UVs in Blender, its set of tools is sub-par compared to others. A proper UV alignment tool, packing algorithm and synchronicity between UV and 3D window is a must to be taken seriously.

A more robust cut tool would be very welcome, with more snapping features and interactive slicing.

3 Likes

Cool topic! For me it’s -

  • improved edit mode performance
  • improved undo performance
  • faster import-export
  • drag and drop and import/export of multiple files at once
  • UDIM’s
  • more user friendly layered texture painting
  • UV tools
  • UV based vertex position transfer
  • UV based mesh/surface deform
  • live shape keys
  • more user friendly shape key UI
  • topological mesh mirror
2 Likes

For animation, I’d like a button in the graph editor to flatten bezier handles. Right now it takes [click->hover menu->hover menu->click] or [R-click->hover menu->hover menu->click]. Maybe it’s just me, but I’d love a big button on my graph editor header that i can tap to do this.

1 Like

I really would be happy if all modifiers can invert vertex groups and track theirs name changing. Also want proper remesher, “Mesh-fusion” analog and maximum of multithreading, especially for physic sims. Now we have lots of cores ( thanks to Ryzen CPU’s) which stand idle most of the time

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I would like to see a convenient implementation of things like parallax occlusion mapping and tessellation.

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I think the most important thing is handling large scenes. Blender has trouble with scenes that contain lots of objects and with manipulating large meshes.

Other than that I think the second most important thing is a decent particle system.

7 Likes

Better hair&grooming system like Xgen…

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You’re not talking about going from bezier to linear, you’re saying that the bezier handles are aligned horizontally with the main point (y=1, y=1, y=1), correct?

I’m thinking that your request is so very edge-case. Do you flatten bezier handles a lot? I’m trying to imagine what kind of animations require flattened bezier handles. I’m not saying it’s never done but maybe one case in 100 needs flattened curves…? Maybe you could enlighten me/us?

I made this video to help explain, but maybe there’s and easier way that I just haven’t learned about yet.

Aren’t you looking for the Auto-clamp mode?
It flattens everything that has the same value out. It’s the standard to avoid unwanted overshooting.

2 Likes

Hopefully not a merge of the sculpt branch because the dev said it would be best to build a new data system from scratch for the sculpt mode which will take longer but will be better otherwise your list is great

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Hey! I just tried that with the file i showed in the video and it did all the work for me. :grin: Thanks, I literally hadn’t found out about that feature yet and I appreciate the help. You made my day!

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  1. AOVs… option to put valuse/colors directly from material node as separate layer in output EXR
  2. and better support for OSL features: scene objects information query, point clouds, etc
  3. Floats in vertex colors (without gamma correction) and 3rd axis in UV (for custom data)
  4. OpenVDB remesher and OpenVDB support from bpy (like BVH/kdtree)
1 Like

Great suggestions guys, keep ‘em comin’! :+1:

Out of curiosity: How would that work? If you say 3rd axis, i guess you mean the W-axis from the UVW-coordinate-system, which would be collinear to the face normal, right?
But how to assign any meaningfull data along that axis? Using a volume-texture mapped to UVW-space?
Is there some other concept I’m missing here?

On behalf of the topic of this thread:

  1. Overhaul of the baking-system, including support for baking vector-displacement maps
  2. Compositor overhaul, deep compositing support etc.

greetings, Kologe

3 Likes