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Project E Previous Developments





This page is an ongoing thread about Project E. Check the FAQ for basic info about Project E

Latest news: So far, so good!

(Change in design, mesh and philosophy! Last development stage commenced. No ETA yet.) 












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Brief description

There are two Project E's: Mesh4 Mesh5. Mesh5 is the latest in development and is intended to be made available in the near future. Read on for more details.



Project E.mesh4 is a proprietary figure I created and use in my comics. I created it to be independent of the current spastic figure market, which is hard to keep up with while making comics. PE.mesh4 is compatible with V4 content. This was done purely for practical reasons. Mesh4 is very high resolution and served as a learning platform for me to design Mesh5. Obviously Mesh4 will not go on sale for legal reasons.

Project E.mesh5 is a completely new design and is intended for the figure market. It is a totally new mesh, rig, UV (texture) map and morphs. Her mesh will be designed for bending and detail.Development commenced mid November 2015 and will be completed a.s.a.p. Her polycount is on parr with V4. She is intended to start off where V4 had brought us, providing more detail in the more relevant places without any subdivision necessary. Of course, if required, more detail can be attained with the new subdivision morphs tech in Poser 11. 

Obviously, since I do intend to use her myself, I would like to make the transition from V4 to PE as painless as possible, regarding conforming content, like hair and clothing, and obviously also textures. However, compatibility with V4 for now is a secondary objective as it is vital to first get a completely unique and independent mesh going. 

Although it was not my intention to compete with existing 3D figures out there, to get a "piece of the pie", so to speak, it might well go that way. Still, I am not interested in this 'figure fever', for me Project E.mesh5 will be a tool that you can choose to use or not. The plan is to make her base mesh free, with a few morphs, so that you can evaluate if she is fo you or not. Thereafter, if all goes to plan, you will be able to purchase your own desired set of morphs for her. 


Below are renders of Mesh4, not Mesh5, but they are still and example of the bending and detail I strive for with Mesh5. 



Attention: some of the characters you see representing Project E here, like Lali, Eveline or Vanya, are Comic Characters which will not be for sale. PE will come with plenty of options to create your own characters, obviously. 

Also: Many of the renders on this page will be of Project E at various stages of development, so the one might have better bending than the other.








Do you have a problem with detailed gens? Please read paragraph on "Detailed Gens" below. __________________________________________________________

CURRENT STATUS (Aug 2015): 
Waiting for Poser 11

Current figure state:
  • 4th mesh (all quads), moderate to High res.
  • Polygon flow designed with natural shearing and folding zones in mind
  • Mesh has its own head, but using V4 head temporarily
  • same joint centers as V4, different WM
  • animated joint centers possible to fit G2F and G3F content
  • separate head, torso, limbs UV maps
  • UV map seams down the sides (away from the inner thighs)
  • high poly hands, face, breasts and genitals
  • internal reproductive organs (probably optional)
  • Poser WM for now, looking for a solution for DS
  • temporary supporting JCMs in development, waiting on software updates.
Once software has been updated, I will proceed with the following a.s.a.p:

  • Mesh improvements
  • New head mesh
  • New WM, UV maps.
  • New JCMs
  • V4 UV map version (so that you can use V4 maps)
  • All the basic FBMs and expressions
I am discussing her development with a few vendors to make sure it is as vendor and artist friendly as possible. I'm patient, I just want to get this girl right.
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May 2015 - Things are seriously looking up. I'm not going into a lot of detail but it looks like V4 texture compatibility may after all not be such a problem! Off course PE will ship with her own maps, but it looks like I will be able to provide one with full V4 compatibility. A requirement might be that you'll need to own an actual V4 first, for legal issues. But we'll see. 


I will maintain that PE is a specialist tool, and not like those other figures out there that can turn into a cave troll at the swing of one dial. Its main purpose is to provide artists with a well-defined, more-or-less realistically bending human female figure with enough polys in the right places to cater for those little details that only a true admirer of the female form can appreciate, and I'm not just talking about gens. (Yes she will come with very detailed genitals, but I'll provide a version with less detailed gens).

Right now Project E is Poser exclusive, but there might be hope for DS. Because DS has decided to go down a different route than Poser, the DS is not 100% compatible with Poser figures anymore. However, Poser WM does seem to work in DS, as well as the associated JCMs and morphs, which is good, but DS doesn't quite understand how Poser extends its WM to bodyparts that lie further down the skeletal hierarchy. So we'll have to do some trickery to get it to work in DS somewhere down the line.


Detailed Gens?

I have heard that the fact that Project E has detailed genitals and that she's getting made by an erotica artist makes certain people reluctant to consider PE a viable option in their runtime. To those people, I can say: don't let this whole erotica thing deter you from using a figure that can work very well in non-erotic situations. About 75% of my work is non-erotic, in fact I plan to start making more mainstream comics in future. The only reason Project E has detailed genitals is because when I do want to make an erotic scene, I want it to look realistic, and I don't want to fiddle with clumsy props. Also, it seems a bit disrespectful towards women to not include a good vagina, yet all 3D male figures get their pendulous dangling penises, with glans, testicles and nice textures. Doesn't make sense to me, sorry.

Edit: I've heard that DAZ's G3F has made for room for a possible more detailed female gens in their new package. Good show!

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April 2015 (outdated) - I have decided that Project E will have her own maps. I've given up trying to make it work with V4 and V6 maps. It is way too much work and a waste of time. DAZ's UV maps are crap, have seams all over the place, and thus terrible to work with too. It is also pointless for me since I make my own textures anyway. I have other stuff I'd rather be spending time on. My (your) only hope is that someone makes a texture converter for Project E, otherwise you'll have to learn how to make your own textures. You can convert V4 textures to PE using Maya or zBrush. Off course, I'll probably supply PE with some standard textures to get going, and who knows maybe some vendors will help out and make some extra textures!


When PE comes out it will be mostly to cater for those artists that need a detailed female 3D figure in their scene, and/or those artists that are capable of making their own textures (and morphs). Sorry for this change in attitude but I need to get on with it and make comics.


Older info below...
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In the world of 3D figure art there are many female figures currently suitable for all kinds of purposes: for a hobby; for fun; I can make trolls out of them with one swing of the dial; and given the right addons, fixes and extras, I can even use them professionally. But most of them have some issue: either they lack finesse, or detail, or they are unsupported, or software-biased, or too low resolution, unstable, or sexless, but the bending of the joints almost always seems to be an issue. And if you're a comic artist working on these figures 7 days a week, like me, it becomes tedious, and very time-consuming to think of workarounds to make it look better... in other words: if they won't do it, I might as well do it... 

So, for my comics, I need a female figure that bends realistically, folds realistically, has realistic bodyparts, just looks fabulous without having to buy all sorts of addons and corrections, has extra polys in the right places, and can wear all my V4 content. Project E is well on its way to achieving that.

I emphasize: my first priority is to make a flexible detailed figure I can use in my comics (I am a comic artist, not a content artist). The store is second priority. This is in your own interest too, as that is the only way I can guarantee any form of quality. 

Be warned: she is slightly higher res than V4, has a load of interoperating JCMs, and therefore requires a decent computer to run her. Also, I am building her for my system, namely Poser 10+ (Pro 2014). Off course, when I can start thinking about putting her in the store, I'll try to get it to work for Poser 9, maybe 8, depending on what the internal dependencies will allow. Concerning DAZ Studio, well... that's going to be a tricky one! Poser WM does work in DS, but DS doesn't quite understand how Poser extends its WM to bodyparts that lie further down the skeletal hierarchy.


Once (and if) it comes out, I will leave customer service to a hired team of people. I have been struggling immensely to keep up with Lali's Bits Customer Service while trying to get on with my comics.


Facts:
  • Project E is an entirely new 3D figure
  • What 'E' stands for will remain a secret until I feel I can release her
  • Fits all V4 content (maybe even Genesis)
  • Rigged with the same diligence as seen in Lali's Bits
  • It is slightly higher res than V4 in areas: hands, torso, breasts, buttocks, face and fully integrated genitals
  • Currently only works in Poser, we'll have to see about DS once it's up and running.
  • Pricing and sales will be made known once the figure can be prepared for the store.
  • It is still in development, so be patient! (and I'm the only bugger doing it!)





Rough timeline:
  1. mesh development
  2. UV mapping
  3. Rigging / JCMs / essential morphs
  4. testing / debut in two comics
  5. hopefully warm up some vendors to the character
  6. Once development tools have been improved, redo JCMs
  7. find a way to transfer V4 textures to PE (either make a transfer utility, or get blacksmith to do it)
  8. make unique FBMs for customer use
  9. prep for store...
All of the above are subject to change. All pictures below are W.I.P!! The figure/mesh changed a lot! Recent change was November 1, 2014.

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Pictures below are test JCMs, not the final ones.








The text and pictures below are outdated, I've left them there FYI.

Status Sept 2013:

I have been forming an idea of what Project E is going to be. The current idea is that it will compensate for where all other existing figures are lacking. We have a lot of good working figures out there with different qualities, some of which cater for most 3D figure artists. But there are many that want more detail and versatility from their figures.

It is a balance of many things, low-poly to high-poly in certain areas, more abdomen bones or not, making a new concept UV map but making the transition from V4 easy, and making it directly compatible with V4 without getting my ass sued to Kingdom Come by DAZ.

I don't intend to make the next standard figure out there, there is too much variation in the demands! But judging from what I've picked up, I wouldn't be surprised if that would be the case anyway. In any case, I want to make a very nicely working, morphing and detailed figure resulting from Project E.


Here is more info:





I make comics. I love telling a story, and with the latest 3D CG technology, you've got almost all the tools available to make the story as compelling as possible. If you've ever made a comic before you'll know that it is a lot of fun to do... but also a lot of work!!! You'd want to make every possible part of comic making efficient, and you'd want to shift from one pose to the next and get on with storytelling.


However, despite all the advancements, in the land of 3DX (as it is called) strangely enough there are hardly any 3D figures with integrated genitals, forcing artists like myself either to spend hundreds of dollars buying, experimenting and testing various genital props, options and attachments, of which most of them just don't look convincing, or just don't integrate well with the body. Thus artists like me end up fidgeting on one scene for hours, to make everything fit and look realistic and erotic. 




The other thing is that figures nowadays seem to come out in bits and pieces, forcing you to spend money on stuff that you don't know will really help. 

If I manage to complete Project E properly and I feel satisfied with the result, I'll release her along with a whole bunch of essential morphs to get going... no I mean I'll seriously be generous. You should be able to get any woman out of her straight out of the box. From thereon I can release specialist morphs, for really detailed or maniacal work.


Also, I find that every time a figure comes out, we end up seeing all of the same thing for months until people get bored and then start reshaping her... and even then it doesn't really vary. I will try to provide dials and morphs to make your own, completely unique and different woman. In fact, maybe I'll DEMAND it of you when you buy it, that you make your own lady haha!





On top of that, despite our processing power increasing, everyone is making low poly figures, hoping that this subdivision will sort out everything. Subdivision IMO is very pointless because it also subdivides the areas that don't need subdivision. Also, it is just another thing to have to integrate into a workflow, plus it is hard to morph something properly and in detail, you'll need GoZ or something... pff nevermind.


I want none of that. I just want an all-in-one figure that loads, and just works, has a pussy, fits all my clothes without any fidgeting. A couple of dials to adjust the leg length, torso width, fatness, boobs, smile... and off we go.




Lali's Bits was my first step in trying to ease the pain, but it was stuck to V4. The only thing wrong with V4 in my opinion is that it doesn't have enough polys here and there. For the rest it is a good mesh, it has hardly ever let me down. Lali is a V4 and she's doing fine. She's probably breaking more hearts than V5 did in her short career. In the end it doesn't matter what mesh you use, it just depends on your adaptability, your innovation... and you can make V4 into a star. Buying V5 or V6 isn't solving anything, V4 can do the same thing if you want it to (speaking of which, with all due respect, I find it confusing that 'certain developers' claim that the abilities of their new figure is an improvement on V4, which is just a load of crap because, given the right rigging and morphs, V4 can do pretty much anything. As far as I can tell, IMO, no 3D figure yet represents a significant improvement over V4).

And there's one more thing: people I have been asking me whether I will make another bits for V5, V6, Dawn, Roxie... eh... while it it very flattering to see that people have such confidence in me in what I can do to improve certain 3D figures, I don't feel responsible for cleaning up every time some company comes out with something without a vagina. Lali's Bits for V4 was tough enough.



BUT, now imagine a 3D figure that had polys in all the right places, one that fits all your V4 shit (maybe even all the other figures), and has a nice detailed set of genitals!






'Project E' could be the answer to that. It is not V4, not V5 or V6, nor is it Dawn or Roxie. Why re-invent the wheel like everyone else? No, I want to make something useful. 


This is not an ego thing, nor is it a protest. I just want something useful for a change. This is not DAZ or Hivewire bashing. Those companies are good at what they do, they have years of experience and manpower behind them. But they never make what I want, what I REALLY want! I will never claim to make anything better than them. Off course I wouldn't say it wasn't possible ;) but I will say that I am going to make something that will suit me just fine!


I want to be careful not to raise expectations because this is a first for me. I've already made two meshes, discarded the first, I made a few JCMs, did the UV mapping, but I still have a LOT to do. At first I wanted to keep quiet about it, but I've always been open about my work with you guys. It is a big project, and I am first going to do it for myself, because if I follow conventions and / or legal restrictions I might just get frustrated and give up. I am no professional at this, I might make a few mistakes (trust me, I already made plenty! and corrected them too), but you've all seen what I do, and that I want to make interesting and fun pictures, that look convincing and sexy. It will be developed in context, in action, guaranteeing that it will be useful and sexy, unlike certain other factory produced figures, or chaste dollies with the same old crappy smile.




In short, this is not me blowing the war trumpet on DAZ or Dawn, they're good at their stuff, and they can do what they want, but I'm making my own plan and creating something useful for a change! I'll keep you posted along the way. I do maintain that my first priority is comics, but I'll desperately need this Project for them! So whatever happens, it will come.


Cheers

E.





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Hey, because of a sudden influx of spam, I need to moderate comments from now on, unfortunately. I'll try find a work-around in the meanwhile. Cheers!