DAZ Studio 4 Pro is the latest edition of the award winning 3D animation program which boasts some of the most leading edge advances in model manipulation and rendering, including the new Genesis figures that can morph into almost any shape or form imaginable. While you can buy the basic version of DAZ for a meager fifty bucks, the Pro edition normally retails for $430, and is well worth every penny for what you get. I've been using Poser for several years now (including the new Poser Pro 2012), but with the release of the Genesis figures I've been wanting badly to upgrade my plain vanilla DAZ to the Pro edition (and now I have!). Both programs are very similar, so if you know how to use Poser, you'll be able to dive right in to DAZ without any trouble. For those who've never used a 3D animation program, the learning curve can be quite steep (and tortuously unending), but in no time you'll be creating truly stunning works of art, even if you can't draw a stick figure to save your life. All of the art for The Ring Saga was created using 3D models.
Bryce is an environment creation tool, with the ability to produce utterly astounding digital worlds for your characters to populate. I honestly haven't used it much, as it's almost overwhelming in its possibilities, but if you want to build a fantastic backdrop for your 3D creations, this is the tool to use. Bryce Pro 7 retails at $250, so you can save yourself enough to buy a Kindle Fire and have some left over. The package comes with a ton of awesome content to get you started as well, from water planes to lush foliage, a multitude of terrain types, and a wide variety of skies.
Hexagon is a modeling tool for those who want to create their own 3D models instead of relying on the common stock of what's available to buy (which is a lot, by the way). I haven't done any modeling at all from scratch, so I'm looking forward to testing this program out. You can do a lot with morphs alone (my Alberich character was created entirely by morphing the crap out of a standard male figure model), but to create truly unique creations you really have to start from scratch and design your own. Plus, once you do you can sell them to others who don't want to bother! Hexagon 2.5 would set you package $150, but today it's free!
Click the image above to check it out.