Antics 3.1 ProPack offers a simple way to prepare storyboards created with 3D characters and scenes.

Antics software has been regularly used to help producers and directors pitch ideas, offering a simple way to prepare storyboards created with 3D characters and scenes. Antics also releases a free version of its software, BasePack, with the aim of providing animation tools that will appeal to a broad range of personal users.

The two versions of the product, BasePack and Antics 3.1 ProPack (reviewed here), share most of the same technical functions, but the ProPack provides a great deal more content as well as higher levels of technical support and some advanced features. These include an exporter for 3DS Max, as well as multiple licences that can be administered from a server.

Within Antics 3.1 ProPack you can create a set into which pre-generated characters and props can be dragged and dropped. Animations allowing interaction between different elements are automatically generated, making this one of the easiest 3D packages around to use when it comes to creating movies. While preparing your set will still take a little time to master, the essentials can be picked up in a few hours.

Antics ProPack version 3 has greatly added to previous releases, now allowing users to import some common file formats such as .jpg, .wav, .bvh, .3ds and .fbx (with support for Google SketchUp included in 3.1), as well as some essential tools that had been missing, most notably the ability to scale items. Camera controls have been improved, while the content viewer organises different characters and props hierarchically so that you can find the element you need more quickly.

While most of the essentials are very similar between the BasePack and Antics 3.1 ProPack, it is the additional content that will decide if you need to upgrade. Individual content packs can be purchased from the Antics website – for example characters in formal attire or courtroom sets – for users who want to create something very specific.

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Antics 3.1 ProPack: Specs

  • 1.5GHz processor (3GHz recommended)
  • 512MB RAM (1GB recommended)
  • Windows 2000 SP2/XP/Vista
  • 1.5GB hard disk space (3GB recommended)
  • 128MB video card with Open GL 1.4 or later support
  • 1.5GHz processor (3GHz recommended)
  • 512MB RAM (1GB recommended)
  • Windows 2000 SP2/XP/Vista
  • 1.5GB hard disk space (3GB recommended)
  • 128MB video card with Open GL 1.4 or later support

OUR VERDICT

Antics BasePack is highly recommended as a quick and easy way for creating animations. Modelling and rendering are not to the same level as professional 3D packages, but this is operating in a different market that privileges speed and ease of use. Antics 3.1 ProPack's usefulness depends largely on how much content you need, with the option to buy elements separately.

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