Originally posted on 22 July 2021. Scroll down for updates.
Adobe has released a new Substance integration plugin for Blender, making it possible to edit procedural materials in Substance .sbsar format natively inside the open-source 3D software.
The software was released earlier this week alongside a second new plugin, Mixamo Auto Control Rig for Blender, which automatically rigs biped characters for use with animation clips from Adobe’s Mixamo library.
Both plugins are free to download, and are officially still in beta.
Edit SBSAR materials natively inside Blender
The Substance 3D add-on for Blender, to give it its full – if rather clunky – title, enables artists to import materials in .sbsar format and edit their parameters natively inside the software.
You can see the workflow in more detail in the video at the top of this story.
It makes Blender the latest DCC application to get its own Substance integration, alongside 3ds Max, Maya, Modo; the Unity and Unreal Engine game engines; and many key offline render engines.
The release fulfills a longstanding request within the Substance user community, given Blender’s increasing use in game development, visualization and VFX pipelines, where .sbsar materials are widely used.
As well as custom materials authored in Substance 3D Designer, the new integration plugin will also enable Blender users to make use of stock materials from online libraries like Adobe’s Substance 3D Assets.
Automatically rig biped characters for use with free Mixamo animation clips
The second new plugin, Mixamo Auto Control Rig for Blender, automatically builds a control rig compatible with animation data from Adobe’s Mixamo library on “any biped character” inside Blender.
The online library, which is now available free to anyone who registers for an Adobe account – it doesn’t require a Creative Cloud subscription – contains over 2,500 motion-capture-based clips, including poses, motion cycles, combat moves and idle animations.
Mixamo data is widely used in motion graphics work, and increasingly for augmented reality, with Adobe providing a button on the Mixamo site to send animations directly to Aero, its own AR authoring app.
Updated 1 September 2021: Adobe has released Prerelease Version 2 of the Substance 3D add-on for Blender, adding support for Linux as well as Windows and macOS.
The update also adds support for Parameter Preset (.sbsprs) files, making it possible to load or create sets of parameter presets in Blender.
Updated 29 October 2021: Adobe has released Prerelease Version 3 of the Substance 3D add-on for Blender, adding the option to create and modify presets.
Users can also now load .sbs and .sbsar files via scripts; and can modify .sbsar files in Substance Designer and export them to the same location in Blender using the refresh button inside Blender.
The Substance 3D add-on for Blender and Mixamo Auto Control Rig for Blender are available free under a GPL v3 licence. Both are officially still in beta.
Both add-ons are compatible with Blender 2.90+, running on Windows, Linux and macOS.
To get the Blender plugin, you have to agree to the terms of Adobe’s Prelease software program, which requires registering for a free Adobe account. The Mixamo plugin can be downloaded directly.
Read more about the two plugins on Adobe’s blog
(Includes a direct download link for the Mixamo add-on)
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