8 Free 3DS Max Scripts/ Plugins you need to know about

I've been using 3ds max for over 9 years now. To me its the to go to program for all my 3d modeling needs. The program is not perfect, but man its powerful once you start to understand it. And when it lacks, be confident you will find a script or a plugin to make it work.

3DS max has a huge amount of scripts and plugins and they all perform very specific tasks. I'm going to share with you the ones that I use the most.

  • the Clone Modifier by Itoosoft, is pretty  much the Array tool BUT as a modifier. Love it.
  • Debris Maker by Aaron Dabelow, this is the magic "make art" button
  • Slide tool NormalThief by Slide London mostly used for foliage to control normals
  • Misc Box by Fajar my favorite feature of it is the Copy/Paste mesh from one Max to another (without having to "save selected" as then "Import/merge")
  • Fracture Voronoi and Vorofrag for all your destruction needs

Here are few more that are worth mentioning: 

  • Get Baked looks like an interesting tool for all your RTT needs within Max(works with Xnormal)
  • TexTools by "renderhjs" i used to use it a lot, but the Max UV Unwrap has finally caught up
  • Bend of Brothers seems like a neat plugin but I haven't actually got a chance to take it for a full road test.

I use these because they specifically work with my workflow, Also, check out http://www.maxplugins.de/ and http://www.scriptspot.com/ for more of these.

 Let me know what your favorite ones are in the comments down below!

Wishing you the best success in your career.

Mouhsine Adnani

Tips and tricks in 3D Max Series -Tip #3

Tips and tricks in Max Series


Tip #3 Edit Poly Magic!

This is a recent little trick I've discovered in 3ds Max, which tells me there are so many other things that I don't know about this program...

This little trick in 3ds Max is very handy and is a very good way to have a non destructible workflow.  You might end up with a "few" modifiers, but then its up to you to collapse and leave the ones that you feel could be useful later to tweak your model.  

Having said all this, this only works with Edit Poly modifier (NOT editable poly!)

I'll keep this simple for the sake of presentation, and I'll let you experiment with it more.

Lets use a simple cube, and add an Edit Poly modifier on top. (Notice the Edit Poly Mode with the <No current operation>)

Next is, make some kind of Edit to the model. But before, and this is the crucial step here, make sure you select "Animate". All I'm doing is selecting some random polys and beveling them. Now for organization purposes, rename your modifier by right clicking it and selecting rename. I've renamed mine "Edit_PolyBevel_01"

Note: for this to work, make only one operation per modifier OR just remember that Max will only take in consideration the last one you've done ALSO note that where it said <No Current Opperation>  now says "Bevel Polygon"

Next, apply another Edit poly and then make another modification to your model. I'm selecting some of the edges and chamfering them (Make sure you have animate selected again). Rename your modifier. I'm renamed mine to "Edit_EdgeChamfer_01"

Feel free to add more modifiers, but I'm going to stop here for this demo. 

Here is where the magic happens, go back to the first "Edit_PolyBevel_01" and click on settings. This now will open up the Bevel option box that we used earlier and give you the option to change those setting WHILE taking in consideration the modifier on top (You can also completely change that to another operation BUT it might mess up your end result).This way you are not really committed to a change you've done and have the opportunity to play with different looks.

This technique works great if you are adding edge controls around your mesh (for high poly modeling) but not sure how tight the result would be, by using this method you can go back and control the "tightness" of your mesh. Try and keep you modifier stack clean though, because things can get out of control pretty quick. 

Voila! I hope you have learned something from this little trick.

Thanks for stopping by, and keep on learning !

Tips and tricks in 3D Max Series -Tip #1

3D Max is my primary software for 3d work; I’ve been using it for over 7years now. It is full of gems that lots of people don’t know about. So in this series, I will be sharing with you some of the ones I use on a daily basis.

Tip #1

The first tip is actually a command panel that is hidden under Edit. It’s so useful that I have setup a keyboard shortcut for it (I’ve set it to “N”)

This awesome command panel is called Transform Toolbox. I'm only going to cover the buttons that I use the most. You can explore the rest, and share in the comment how you use them :)

1-It offers a quick rotate that is dependent on your viewport. so depending on how you are looking at your object, Max will rotate it for you accordingly. You can set up the rotation angles as you like, or use the drop down menu that comes with some presets.

2-The little “R” button there is GOLD! What it does, is Reset the Xform for you and then collapse the stack all in ONE single click! I use it all the time.

Transform Toolbox

3-I use to spend so much time manipulating my pivot manually (or with snaps) to make it align according to what I needed…and then I discovered “Align Pivot”. This little tool rocks !

It allows you to manipulate your pivot so easily. All you have to do is set whether you want it on Min/Man/Center/Origin and then click on the access(X,Y,Z) that you want to be moved. Center will center your pivot to your mesh, and Origin will put the pivot in the origin of the world.(PRO TIP: You can also have multiple meshes selected when manipulating the pivot)

Keep in mind that it is using the bounding box of your mesh, so make sure you have reset your xform before.

4-The last one is Center which will move your mesh to the origin of the world and then Qclone which I don’t use as much but is a pretty nifty tool. Kinda works like the Rotate tool, but instead this one will clone your asset according to how you are looking at it on the viewport. (Hold shift to make an instance or hold Alt to make to 2 instance copies)

This will wrap it up for this first tip and trick series on 3D Max. Let me know what you think in the comment below, or if you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask !

Thanks for stopping by, and keep on learning !