Introducing Softimage 2011.5 With LAGOA!!

Posted by Mark Schoennagel, 8 September 2010 5:00 pm

It has been just 5 months since Softimage 2011 shipped and here we are again with Autodesk Softimage 2011 Subscription Advantage Pack. Now that is a bit of a mouthful so from now on we will refer to it as Softimage 2011.5

We added a few items which did not quite make it into the last release, as well as addressed some key cutomers requests.  Notably: "Stereo" support and "make ICE more friendly for artists to get into".  There are of course some unexpected treats like Lagoa and Polygonizer, we could not pass the chance up to work with these guys on getting their stuff integrated.

By now, we have all no doubt seen Thiago’s "Lagoa Multiphysics" teaser video, if not there is a link below. It shows what amazing fx can be achieved using Lagoa in Softimage. All the compounds that went into building those fx have been incorporated in Softimage 2011.5. Below are a few videos (put together by Chinny) outlining the principles on how Lagoa works. They only cover particles for now, so hopefully soon I can post a few more videos on some of the other Lagoa areas: Mesh Advection, Cloth and Transform Constraints.

Check out the feature list at the end.  Anyway, all in all this release has been a lot of fun for me to play with - I hope it will be for you too.  It should be htitting the streets in a couple of weeks or so.


UI Additions











ICE Module Menus



 And now some Lagoa...

Lagoa Multiphysics 1.0 - Teaser from Thiago Costa on Vimeo.



Lagoa Main Material 




Lagoa Materials




Lagoa Pressure




Lagoa Collisions




Lagoa Liquids




Lagoa Sticky Blobs




Lagoa Granular



Here is the list of new features and changes in 2011.5. There might be one or two small things missing, (including what’s changed in the SDK) but this is what I have so far:

ICE for Artists
Lagoa Multiphysics
Polygonizer meshing
Stereo Cameras
Match Mover

Scene compatibility with Softimage 2011
• New features only found in the 2011 Subscription Advantage Pack will be removed on load in Softimage 2011

• Revamped Main Shelf
• Improved Panel Switcher
• Updated Layouts
   o PPG instead of MAT tab
   o Preset Manager added
   o One new Dual layout
   o No ICE Layout
• Viewcube
• Isolate Selection enhancements
   o Add or Remove objects from Selection

• Film Gate
    o You can now see outside scene camera frustrum
• Stereo Rig
    o Includes camera display options and display modes

• Object View Changes
    o New option to "Hold last Selection"

• New "Polygonizer" to mesh point clouds, objects, nulls, strands and curves
    o Point cloud meshing can be tweaked using Lagoa Fluid Shaper.

• Infinite lights now support raytraced soft shadows
• New Render Tree compounds
    o Age Percentage
    o Basic Fire
    o Cigarette smoke
    o ICE Sprite
• Material Presets
    o Basic_Fire
    o Basic_Strands
    o Bubbles
    o Cigarette_Smoke
    o Falling_Leaves
    o Growing_Strands

Data Management
• Caching
    o nCache support - Reading and writing of particle and geometry caches
    o new Baked Animation - All Transforms option on the Write tab in the Cache Manager lets you cache the object’s point positions in global space.
    o Particles > Simulation > Save Cache on Simulation and Load Cache on Selection options for Lagoa simulations
• Reference Models
    o Share layers and partitions on model import
• Crosswalk
    o Updated to version 5.5
    o FBX
       Plot and export point positions as a geometry cache
       Import geometry cache

Match Mover
• A high-quality professional camera tracker

Softimage Composite
• HDR compositor with support for stereoscopic productios; Include advanced keying, color correction, tracking and 3D compositing tools


ICE Module Menu
• ICE for Artists!
    o A new ICE module menu toolbar facilitates building common ICE effects: particles, deforms and kinematics. Using the menu structure, artists can see nodes and compounds connect automatically in the ICE Tree, and create or modify Lagoa Multiphysics materials and other preset effects.
    o Create and edit Particles, Lagoa, Deformations, Strands, Kinematics. All the menu items are too long to list here.

Lagoa Multiphysics
• New samples scenes
    o Lagoa_Basic_Emission
    o Lagoa_Emitting_Liquid
    o Lagoa_Flexible_Structure_01
    o Lagoa_Flexible_Structure_02
    o Lagoa_Inelastic_01
    o Lagoa_Inelastic_02
    o Lagoa_Mesh_Hanging
    o Lagoa_Simulate_Mesh
    o Lagoa_Soft_Body
    o Lagoa_Transform_Constraint

ICE Models
• Found in install path AddonsICEFlowBuilderDataModels
    o Asteroid Impacts
    o BasicFire
    o Candle
    o Cigarette
    o Dynamic Hair
    o EmitFromPosition
    o EmitFromSurface
    o Lagoa Flexible Structure
    o Lagoa Inelastic
    o Lagoa Mesh Hanging
    o Lagoa Simulate Mesh
    o Layered Fumes
    o Particle Spawning Fireworks
    o Particle Strands Fish
    o Particle Strands Seaweed
    o Polymesh to Dust

ICE Tree
• New option in ICE Tree Root context menu to "Insert simulation root"
• Backwards connecting between ICE nodes and compounds now possible

ICE Basics
• The following conversion nodes now support arrays:
    o 3D Vector to 3x3 Matrix
    o 3D Vector to 4x4 Matrix
    o 4D Vector to 4x4 Matrix
• Matrix Labels on the main diagonal only now display the label “Diagonal”
• Material Properties
    o ICE now properly sets various color parameters on material shaders.
• ICE Interoperability for Maya Users
    o The “Send to” commands let you transfer scene elements from Maya to Softimage, and then use ICE to create particle or deformation effects
    o You can transfer data back and forth as often as you like as you tweak the results.

ICE Kinematics
• New ICE Toolbar Commands
• New Turret Constraint
• You can now use Particles to Transform Objects

ICE Deformations
• New ICE-based Deformations
    o Bend
    o Deform by Curve
    o Sculpt
    o Smooth
• ICE Toolbar Commands
• Deformer Template
    o A quick and convenient starting point for creating your own ICE-based deformations.
• Dual Quaternion Skinning
    o A new Use Blend Input option has been added
• Get Cluster Attributes
    o The Get Cluster Properties compound gets various cluster properties on the self object.

ICE Compounds
New or Updated compounds and files

• Particle Compounds
    o A new Simulation Root compound is “central station” for ICE simulations, upon which the new ICE Module Menus are built
• Conditionals
    o Test Visibility From Camera
• Curl Noise
    o Add Potentials
    o Apply Curl Noise
    o Curl to Force
    o CurlNoise Framework
    o Directional Flow
    o Distance and Normal to Boundaries
    o Match Solid Boundary
    o Perlin Turbulences
    o Potential to Curl
• Emitters
    o Emit Blast
    o Emit from Geometry
    o Generate Points
• Modifiers
    o Kill Particles
    o Randomize Around Value
• Orientation
    o Billboard Orientation
• Point Cloud
    o Remove Initial State
• Presets
    o Basic Strands From Curve
    o Basic Strands From Geometry
    o Basic Strands From Null
    o Basic Strands From Position
    o Dynamic Strands
    o Growing Strands
    o Lagoa Setup Basic Emission from Null
    o Lagoa Setup Cloth Particle Mesh
    o Lagoa Setup Jello from Grid
    o Lagoa Setup Jello
    o Lagoa Setup Pouring Liquid from Volume
    o Lagoa Setup Sticky Paste from Volume
    o Lagoa Setup Throw Breakable Structure from Grid
    o Lagoa Setup Throw Elastic Clusters from Grid
• Setters
    o Set Particle RBD
    o Set Segment Size Mode
    o Set Size relative to Emitter
    o Set Strand Length
• Spawning
    o Spawn Particles
• States
    o Simple State
• Strands
    o Create Strands.2.0
• Deformation Effects
    o Bend
    o Deform by Curve
    o Deformer Template
    o Sculpt
    o Smooth
• Deformation Getters
    o Get Cluster Attributes
    o Get Particles Transform
    o Transform From Array
• Polygonizer
   o SubFrame Deformation From Cloud




Posted 10 September 2010 6:53 am

looks great, looking forward to it!


Posted 10 September 2010 8:25 am

amazing update


Posted 10 September 2010 11:53 am

wow..stunning update, great job guys!!!
thanks Thiago, Eric and Autodesk!


Posted 10 September 2010 1:27 pm

Awesome!!! Can't wait! Lagoa, Polygonizer, Composite... Excellent update!
The only one feature i don't like is viewcube... ;-)

eternal art

Posted 10 September 2010 2:04 pm

outstanding update .. really amazing effort .. thank autodesk .


Posted 10 September 2010 3:58 pm

oh god stop teasing us and tell us when!! BTW this is prolly the best update since 7.0!


Posted 10 September 2010 4:06 pm

Can't wait! This really represents quite a lot more than a simple point update, IMHO. This really gets my blood going on a Friday morning. I think they have added just about everything I thought was missing from Soft, which wasn't much, I'm telling you.

Glad I kept up my subscription with Softimage. I'm betting on this horse, and feeling good about it.

VFX Media

Posted 10 September 2010 7:10 pm

You can tell right away this point release signifies a platinum achievement of the hard work and dedication from Thiago Costa, Eric Mootz, and the entire SI Engineering team has put into making Softimage an amazing and mind-blowing application. This thing is now such a beast that the SI abbreviation should really stand for Softimage Intimidator! This is truly a stunning example of how real "shock and awe" is done.

It's evident that Autodesk is investing serious time and effort into making Softimage the best it can be. A super applause and awesome job goes to everyone at Autodesk! Softimage could not be in better hands and we are very happy!


Posted 11 September 2010 9:26 am

Simply awsome! Fingers crossed


Posted 11 September 2010 10:06 am

I do not believe
This really big event
SoftImage taken
Autodesk you extraordinary... Very very Thanks


Posted 12 September 2010 4:19 pm

Good Good ,very good.I like this upgrade


Posted 12 September 2010 11:18 pm

Oh boy, oh boy!!!

Softimage kicks some butts again!!!

Now major studios that bet for Maya are going to regret it. Back to the learning path of Softimage. After watching the videos I think that even Realfow was hit with this one.

Standing ovation for Softimage!!!!

Can´t wait to see the other videos.

steven palomino

Posted 13 September 2010 1:56 am

I wonder if this softimage composite is like Max's composite or if it's the built-in compositor.. anyone know?


Posted 13 September 2010 2:31 pm

GREAT STUFF!!! (apart from the lame viewcube
really awsome release, makes one wish for subscription...

got the same question as steven... what about this compositor? is it toxic?

VFX Media

Posted 13 September 2010 5:44 pm

Re: gustavoeb and steven,

Yes the compositor is former Toxik renamed to Autodesk Composite, or in this case Autodesk Softimage Composite. Autodesk Composite is a powerful node-based app. that has some serious ability. Both Digital-Tutors and cmiVFX have some recent courses on Autodesk Composite.

Re: Viewcube - It's better to have choices. Some people like Viewcube and others don't, but it's really a non-issue as you can change the opacity level or turn it off completely. Here's a tip: Viewcube is faster and does look slick transitionally when demoing work-in-progress scenes for your clients.


Posted 13 September 2010 10:04 pm

curious about the sculpt ice deformer

steven palomino

Posted 13 September 2010 10:27 pm

What about the built-in compositor? Surely it won't replace the compositor.. just be an extention right?

VFX Media

Posted 14 September 2010 12:52 pm

Re: steven

The built-in compositor is Softimage Illusion and should remain (haven't heard anything to the contrary yet).

The kicker is that having a built-in compositor like Softimage Illusion (with core Fx tools) still has a convenient speed advantage in adjustments/correction. So hopefully Autodesk retains consideration for that progressive idea as they plot future initiatives.


Posted 15 September 2010 1:56 am

Looks great! Is it possible to upgrade from Softimage 7.0


Posted 15 September 2010 4:03 pm

Everything is nice, but what about Nvidia cuda and physX gpu accelerations? Iray?


Posted 16 September 2010 1:06 am

Maybe Next Limit will have to rethink about their Real Flow pricing... Real Flow is 3995$ and softimage with Lagoa will be 2995$! So a thousand dollars less for a product that not only does water wayyy faster (it seems) but also does a lot more!


Posted 16 September 2010 1:13 am

By the way does anyone knows when the 3ds max entertainement creation suite will be available (that's 3dsmax packaged with softimage!)


Posted 18 September 2010 6:55 pm

Great update! Lagoa and Polygonizer are awesome. Can't wait for it!
Just to critics a bit, i'ld preferred some features too (i hope to see them in the future release, if possible):
MentalRay with IBL and without limitations to irradiance-particles|final-gathering.
XSI Illusion (Fx-Tree) deeply improvements (with ICE workflow integration) instead of Composite bundle.
Modeling tools improvements (for example, more fasten extruding operation, edge extender...).
i don't like viewcube (i'll disable it...) and i'ld like dark-theme choice option.
Just my modest opinion only.
In all the cases, Softimage 2011.5 rocks!!!! Thanks SI-Team.


Posted 23 September 2010 9:56 pm

Could someone explain why my comment has been removed? I was asking a genuine question regarding the functionality of Lagoa as a paid-up subscription holder.




Posted 28 September 2010 7:07 pm

wooooooooooooooooot 80K views!!!! go Softimage!!!!


Posted 29 September 2010 10:08 am

Anybody know if iRay is going to be integrated with Softimage..? Softimage was the first to integrate mental ray to be fare...


Posted 1 October 2010 2:57 pm

Any update on the "update"? Many have noticed that the date has been pushed back, which is cool, as long as it is for bug squashing. The part that is weird is that there is no mention of Lagoa on the official Autodesk press release. Everything else is on there, but not Lagoa.


* New ICE compounds, preset FX, shaders, and model library—More easily create a wider range of effects in ICE (Interactive Creative Environment).
* ICE FX Builder—Create and modify sophisticated effects more quickly and easily.
* Polygonizer—Build liquid and blobby effects.
* Stereoscopic support—Take advantage of the current trend for 3D films, with new tools for the creation of stereoscopic renderings.
* Softimage® Composite—Comprehensive toolset offers high-performance, high dynamic range (HDR) compositing.

VFX Media

Posted 1 October 2010 10:14 pm

Re: ctedin1,

Nothing to worry about. Likely to just be pre-written Marketing copy. Read this:


Posted 2 October 2010 9:58 am

My biggest fear is coming true, i think. Autodesk is sinking SI...
Thats great update, i hope its not the last one!

VFX Media

Posted 2 October 2010 4:08 pm

Re: pimeto,

Autodesk has been giving special attention to SI with additional funding, devoted time, increased staff, etc. to help make SI into a great product and artistic tool. Besides Autodesk working hard internally, there are also a number of dedicated supporters "outside" of Autodesk working hard on new addons, tutorials, promotion, etc. to help make SI a great tool as well. So don't get on here and create unnecessary rumors based on your personal failings of negativity without knowing the facts and being disrespectful toward everyone's hard work in the process. Softimage is currently experiencing its strongest sales and best innovations in development than it ever has.


Posted 2 October 2010 11:20 pm

That's a relief. Thanks! Looking forward to the 7th (or later). The countdown begins! :-)

Re: ctedin1,

Nothing to worry about. Likely to just be pre-written Marketing copy. Read this:


Posted 3 October 2010 1:40 pm

VFX Media: Dont be such an ass dude! Relax, this i s my personal opinion...
And if we are to speak with facts, its a damn fact that Mray for XSi sux sooo hard, and hasnt seen any real development since version 5 maybe... This is the iceberg that is sinking the ship, if you know what i mean!
I cant figure how come Max and Maya get that kind of priority from Mray.
But lets see if you are right. In XSi 2012, if the world doesnt end, lets hope that we get a major update on Mray!!!


Posted 5 October 2010 10:33 am

pimeto youre spamming that useless fear in the lux forums aswell. It dosen`t really help anything. -_-*** Theres nothing wrong with SI under autodesk.
Anyway, softimages renderer api is now open so theres more renderers to come. Like arnold, once you test it you know that what youre saying is just silly. : )
Looking foward the release!

Mark Schoennagel

Posted 7 October 2010 6:05 pm

Holy cow, 91,700 views and counting!!

Hey I'm at the Austin GDC at the moment working the Autodesk booth. We're doing an event tonight with the local reseller here, Cinesys. We'll be showing Max, Maya and of course Softimage along with some other goodies.... Initially since it's GDC I was asked to do a game focused demo but decided since everyone wants to see Lagoa to just do a demo on that instead. Soooo, I apologize for the short notice, but if anyone's in Austin today and wants to check it out stop by!! The event is from 6:30 - 10:00 pm at the Speakeasy Live Music Lounge. 412 Congress Ave... oh, today is Thursday October 7th by the way.

Also, sorry for the delay in getting you all this new release- we're just waiting to hit 100,000 page views so I can say na-na-na noo-noo to all the Max and Maya guys. Ok, so that's not the real reason for the delay. Just a few little issues to sort out. From what I understand though the build has been finalized or is very close so it wont be long. Hang tight, its sooooo worth it!!


Posted 13 October 2010 6:50 pm

damn, the new update is so huge that I havent had the time to test lagoa yet... !!!

Silly question... Im just curius, why its a 2011.5 update when it has enough content to be a 2012 version in itself? (not that I am complaining). If Autodesk delivered A LOT for a .5 version what surprises Autodesk have for a 2012 version?


Posted 15 October 2010 4:28 pm

Mark... you have reached 100k views

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