Maxon plans to acquire the assets of Pixologic, makers of the well-regarded ZBrush 3D sculpting and painting software. Maxon, the developer of Cinema 4D and several other tools, has been on an acquisition spree for a few years now, and adding ZBrush fits neatly with its growing arsenal of digital tools for multiple 3D industries, like visual effects (VFX), game development, broadcast animation, and the AEC industry.
Academy Award Winning
Maxon has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the assets of Pixologic, an Academy Award-winning software company. The deal is expected to close in Q4, 2021 and is subject to customary regulatory approval and closing conditions.
Upon close Pixologic founder and CEO, Ofer Alon and his team will join Maxon. More details will be disclosed after the closing. Until the close, each company will continue to operate independently.
“ZBrush is an industry-leading 3D sculpting and painting solution for the most respected companies and artists in the world. By combining our world-class tools and people, we hope to delight creative artists with an ever-expanding and powerful toolset for their needs,” said David McGavran, CEO of Maxon.
“ZBrush has been my passion for over two decades. I can think of no better home for the future of ZBrush and its community. I am looking forward to collaborating with Maxon’s innovative development team to further revolutionize ZBrush for many years to come,” said Ofer Alon, Founder, and Visionary of Pixologic. “There’s never been a better time for artists to add ZBrush to their creative arsenal.”
ZBrush’s Noted Use
ZBrush is used by many of the biggest film studios in the world, in addition to game developers, designers, illustrators, and even scientists. Nearly every major franchise has used ZBrush in its development and visuals, including:
Dune, Star Wars, Avatar, The Marvel Universe, Game of Thrones, Lord of the Rings/Hobbit, and many more.
Architosh Analysis and Commentary
This latest acquisition clearly indicates that Maxon’s new CEO, and perhaps leadership at Nemetschek in Germany, sees value in Maxon building out a library of related applications that rival a similar set of competing applications at Autodesk. This latest Pixologic acquisition goal brings onboard a leading 3D sculpting and painting and texturing tool. Longtime Architosh readers may recall us mentioning Maxon’s BodyPaint 3D in the past, including in our second review of Autodesk’s Mudbox. Of course, as associate editor Tim Danaher noted in his 2008 review of Cinema 4D R10.5, Maxon rolled in BodyPaint 3D’s capabilities into its main application.
These mentions are taking us back quite a distance and so much has happened to both Cinema 4D and ZBrush and Mudbox. While we reviewed Mudbox for Autodesk a decade ago, we actually have never reviewed any other 3D sculpting and painting software before. Pixologic’s ZBrush is a tool we have long since covered in our news.
ZBrush and its little sister app (a reduced function version) are comprehensive 3D sculpting modelers, painters, and texturing tools. Basically shape, paint, and texture “virtual clay.” ZBrush gives Maxon an Autodesk Mudbox competitor and over time we can see excellent integration working between ZBrush and Cinema 4D much like Mudbox and Maya.
So who next for Maxon to acquire?
Most of the top professional 3D tools aimed at the film, VFX, games, and animation industries now live in three major software firms: Autodesk, Maxon, and The Foundry. Each of these companies now contains rival professional tools utilized in the world’s top film and visual effects studios. But there are still some interesting independent tools out there. The next smart buy would be something that isn’t a major competitor animation package and can complement and extend Cinema 4D’s value. e-on software’s Vue, a world’s or natural elements creation, rendering, and animation package that works with all the best animation packages out there, including Cinema 4D. Vue lets you create stunning skies, terrains, and vegetation ecosystems. And Vue’s PlantFactory sister application—used to create plant life—also imports in meshes created by ZBrush.