Want to model low-poly organic 3D shapes? Organica 1.0 (Windows) is an old but still perfectly-workable application from some years ago. Designed as an intuitive organic “blob balls” (aka metaballs) modelling package that anyone could use, it’s now available free in an unrestricted version from the makers Imagine 3D (formerly Impulse). I can tell you it runs fine on Windows 7, and the .3ds files it exports are low-face (less than 3,000 for the mesh in the picture) — and they import quickly and easily into iClone’s 3DXchange. The Organica download page is deeply uninspiring, but as you can see from my screenshot…
…the application is just as simple as I remember it was, it’s fun, very intuitive (I seem to remember it was designed for use by children?), and is able to quickly form complex organic shapes using a simple clay-like modelling process. The clay blobs kind of glom onto each other, and as they do so they automatically form nice seamless blends. But each blob can still be positioned and deformed separately. Selective mesh reduction can make “dents” in shapes. Right-click on the top-right window to get a range of extra options including view-rotation. It comes with a 77-page color manual in PDF form.
If you’re fed up with working with blocks in 3D, and need to quickly make a complex organic base-shape (eg. a big mass of twisty tree-roots) without spending a fortune in both time and money, have a look at Organica.
* Running the finished model through the free MeshLab should offer various smoothing and face-reduction options, if needed.
* Organica’s .3ds export has a 65,000 face limit, which actually seems like quite a useful back-stop if you’re making base props destined for iClone.
* It installs in C:/Organica but if you want to keep a tidy Windows directory structure, just copy the folder to C:/Program Files — it’s a self-contained app and still launches happily from there.
* Keep in mind that 3DXchange has a nice mesh shoothing function, which should smooth out any anglar faces.