Reviewing Sculptris

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May 23rd, 2010

Today Sculptris, a new free 3D sculpting application, had it's 1.0 release. I had been hearing some good things about it (thanks Vrav!), so I took the occasion to try it out and provide my thoughts on it. Here is the trailer showing the program in action, with my thoughts below.

Sculptris trailer (watch on YouTube)

Things I liked:

  • Because subdivisions are handled automatically in Sculptris, you don't have to worry about extruding areas of a mesh. This means it's a great tool for trying out different ideas. I was able to get some pretty interesting results using the reverse-flatten tool.
The result of testing random tools
  • Sculptris has a full texture painting suite that works very well. The brushes feel great using a tablet because of perfect support for pressure sensitivity.

  • The user interface is very simple and easy to learn. I was able to pick up and learn the software in a few hours. Below is a rabbit head totem I made while testing out the software.

Rabbit Head
Production oriented test in Sculptris
  • It's free!

Things I didn't like:

  • Since it's an early release, there were a few minor bugs. For example, I was not able to save or load files until I deleted one of the textures that came with the software.

  • Even though you can get by with less geometry than in other sculpting applications, there is still a problem with the program bogging down on more complicated models.

Initial Verdict:

I have been using Mudbox 2009 for a couple years now, and while Sculptris can't replace all the functions Mudbox has, it can replace most of them and is totally free. I would recommend this program to anyone as a useful tool for blocking out models and texture painting, and for people who don't want to pay hundreds of dollars for Mudbox or ZBrush, it is a great all-round sculpting application.