Software

Step in Character Layout with Golaem 7

Golaem releases Golaem 7, the latest version of its crowd simulation and character layout software. It brings a new Character Layout Tool, including a DCC agnostic nodal editor and more capabilities, as well as a live link to Unreal Engine.

After winning a Technology and Engineering Emmy® Award in the Cost Effective Crowd Simulation Tools category, Golaem builds on its experience with many animation studios (like Dreamworks Animation, Blue Sky Studios, Ilion Animation Studios, Mikros Animation, Blur Studio, Digic Pictures…) and delivers a new way to populate scenes faster, easier and funnier.

A new Character Layout Tool

Born as a retake tool for Golaem simulations, Golaem Layout is now evolving as an independent tool for procedural character layout, enabling artists to easily populate shots by using Population Vignettes they can place in their scene and quickly edit them to fit with the shot direction.

A Population Vignette is similar to a proxy for characters and their animations which can be edited thanks to directable layers such as automatic feet adaptation to the ground, look at, duplicate, controllable geometry and shading variations, animation retiming, IK autorig to retake animation… Artists can then adapt the scene very easily to frequent changes in directorial intentions or environment changes. For example, taking into account a new ground geometry can be done in one click.

Population Vignettes edits are non destructive, and performed using a new nodal editor which makes it easy to copy edits to others characters, rearrange modifications, test different stacks of modifications and so on. The new Layout architecture also makes it possible to drive edit with locators, or to keyframe their values using the standard Maya tools.

Population Vignettes can be layouted manually or scattered in the scene thanks to the Golaem Population Tool. Thousands of them can be animated in real time without slowing down Maya or making the scene file longer to open.

Golaem Layout has been unanimously acclaimed as a huge time and money saver by all its customers.

Round trip link with Unreal Engine

Golaem 7 introduces a new plugin for Unreal Engine allowing to load Population Vignettes and layout them.

Unreal scenes can be refreshed instantly to take modifications done in Maya, and the Layout
modifications can be edited directly in Unreal, and reloaded in Maya. By avoiding things such as baking alembic caches and loading them in Unreal Engine, which wastes time and is always a pain to keep things in sync, this new workflow really facilitates the work of the team. It has already been used efficiently in production by Waterproof Studios and IGG Inc. for their in-game cinematics.

This new plugin takes advantage of Golaem C++/Python APIs which allows to quickly load Golaem simulation caches and layout in any platform (one of Golaem customers has implemented an Isotropix Clarisse integration in a few weeks). It also embeds the new Golaem Layout editor, which is independent from Maya, making it possible to use in any platform which supports Python.

The Unreal plugin source code is now available to customers so that they can compile their own Unreal Engine version with it, and contribute their developments.

Golaem 7 has been beta tested for several weeks by Golaem biggest customers and their feedback has already been integrated inside!

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About Golaem

Golaem helps artists populate TV shows, films and games in minutes. Integrated in Autodesk Maya, Golaem make it fast and affordable to populate worlds with directable digital characters, from a few to thousands. Artists from all over the globe use Golaem tools to bring life to commercials, episodic productions, feature films and games.