Thursday, April 26, 2012

Not just a Bmesh update, but that is the coolest part!

Here comes Blender 2.63, chock full of all sorts of fun new features, and more specifically: The mesh editing system has been upgraded to Bmesh! On the splash of course, we can see evidence of the mango team already at work (as well as in a some release notes), and even a couple fixes and features for the video sequencer, which I hope is just a taste of what is to come. Almost fifty developers, some submitting patches to bugs, new features, and some commiting like crazy (think Campbell Barton with more than 700 commits!) have put this build together. In the next few hours 2.63 will show up for downloading. So what's next?

While the main focus of this release was Bmesh, there was also lots of improvement to the Cycles renderer and the motion tracker, not to mention the new sculpt hiding feature which will definitely improve performance for artists working on high poly sculpts. There were also lots of other smaller features and bugfixes, and work in the addons department. However, the work doesn't stop there.

Bmesh still has work to go into it, although it is an improvement over the old editing system. Now that it is part of the Blender trunk, work can go into porting some of those old editing features from 2.49 (remember that?) like the bevel tool which wasn't stable enough to make it into this release.

According to the roadmap, 2.64 will be dedicated to improving the VFX pipeline as part of the Mango open movie project. It will be really exciting to see them work through the difficulties they are sure to face while trying to integrate live footage with 3D. Although lots of hard work is going to be happening in the next month, the results will be more than worth it!

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