It is with great pleasure that I announce the release of Hard Ops 0079. The intermediate release on the road to Hard Ops 8 and the last of the 007 series.
It was intended to be a small bugfix but has become a very nice release.
I’ll start off talking about the most exciting part added.
I even made a whole video about it.
This was a feature I had dreamed about for the longest and it was made possible via your friendly neighborhood Python.
Plus he recently updated Animation Nodes!
In case you weren’t familiar, there was a UV unwrapping script made by PLyczkowski that was being used in Hard Ops.
Previously there was Punwrap and Cunwrap. However that might have been overkill and not clear so they have been combined into a new unwrapper called the X-Unwrap.
It does the functions on both of them however its just a quick and dirty unwrapper for hard surface meshes. We have also made some additional improvements for ngons and cstepped meshes. Which is where this thing really shines. Sometimes you just want to unwrap and move on. Especially with pieces that aren’t the forefront. It really exists just to make it easier for people using texturing suites like Quixel or Allegorithmic.
In other news there is also a Pro mode for Hard Ops now. It can be enabled in preferences and is disabled by default. This isn’t a pro mode as much as it is a way to keep Hard Ops under control.
I personally tend to take clicks, double clicks and repeated clicks into consideration. So some of the parameters exposed are my way of testing alternative ways of doing things however they may not be best for new users and users not familiar with my way of working. To new users coming to Hard Ops it might be overwhelming and confusing especially since most of the things done are under the hood.
Hard Ops without pro options is pretty straighforward. It is as direct as I can simplify the menus at this time however I am looking into ways to having the operators act differently as well.
So you can see all the additional options that are enabled. These aren’t used by most people however now it can be a choice and we can make a cleaner Hard Ops. I might begin polling to see how people are handling functions and which ones they like and maybe a vote for revamps or something.
Speaking of revamps. AR in the shadows always improving things, has improved the Tthick to an amazing level. Previously the Tthick was adding a solidify however I wanted to use this as a tool for robot workflows by being able to shift the thickness offset and rim primarily to get a very specific and interactive solidify.
During Tthick you can press 1,2,3 to toggle -1,0,1 offsets on the solidify. This was a very exciting feature and I did a whole series of robots as a result.
So did everyone like the modifier helper? I hope so. It’s one of my favorite additions to Hard Ops. Thanks to MKB, AR, and everyone else it has been expanded! Now in additions to modifiers you can also adjust materials on a basic level. It’s still a work in progress but I didn’t want to hold up the release on a material panel.
The material helper is part of my lifelong dream to use blender with no UI until I need it. The power of python astounds me repeatedly when I keep telling myself I’ve seen it all. Blender and its expand ability and customization is top notch compared to other software and I hope the spirit of 2.8 is still that same power in the hands of the users. Everyone should code something in some way. It’s the best way to understand this dragon called Blender.
Radial array is also added in the preliminary stages. I want to have it be less destructive on the meshes being rotated but it’s a nice start. Jyri wrote it a version ago and I forgot to enable it! It might be added the the Q Array as an additional functionality but that’s for the future. Atwist 360 is also still available. However this might replace it once it comes to fruition.
Some of the additional options are status override and status reset. These two are under pro options but are a fun time when you get to using them.
The 3 options at the top of the Q menu change according to mesh context. There is also a panel to change the context of the mesh manually basically allowing you to override your workflow with Hard Ops. This sounds boring in context but in usage is quite exciting since you can force the mesh into different workflows.
So being able to work like this opens up new possibilities for me however when going from cstep to csharp you will want to use a larger angle than 30 degrees for recalculating bevels in order to prevent ruining your mesh.
Inside of meshtools is the status override we discussed previously. However there is also the status reset. This is the most used part of status overide. Just reset it back to undefined. By doing this I can start over at any point on the mesh and use the basic options to work.
If you need help spacebar >> learning >>
The tools are just as important as being able to teach people how to use it effectively. I read a review where they said there wasn’t enough training. So I took it to heart and tried to fix it for new users or those who could use a helping hand. Same goes with criticism and comments. I take it all into consideration. Negative or not and try to find what information can be used to improve the user experience. People get passionate about their buttons… I understand.
There’s many more improvements and resolutions for previous glitches not to mention new ones added. I’m sure I am also missing more new features but I’ll leave that for the users to discover.
So I hope everyone enjoys this latest update from TeamC and thank everyone for reading this and your support. It keeps this product alive.
Also if youre making awesome stuff with Hard Ops let me know! I’m always looking for more operatives to add to the gallery!