Carbon Scatter 2015 Review – The latest update to the Carbon Scatter instancing plug-in forges closer links with e-on’s Plant Factory, although this functionality does require the Pro version (¤240, £191, $306), replacing the Botanica module. You can export vegetation from Plant Factory and then use the Editor in Carbon Scatter to tweak the mesh and generate different variations to populate your scene. If you’re a seasoned Plant Factory user, the ability to create bespoke, animated vegetation for use in Carbon Scatter Pro is a real benefit, but it would be nice if you could simply export directly to the CSPLT file format.
Other new features include enhanced brush functions, providing control over instance position, scale, alignment and orientation, plus the ability to convert instances to native objects, for output to unsupported renderers. This feature works well, but will naturally bring your system to its knees if you try to do it with too many instances.
Despite a lengthy open beta phase, CS2015 is still a bit rough around the edges – we suffered a few crashes which even brought down the OS. But when it behaves, it’s great fun to use, and is capable of producing spectacular scenes consisting of billions of polygons.
- Imports Plant Factory vegetation with wind animation (Pro version)
- Generate up to four variations per plant model
- Convert CS instances to native meshes
- Use brush to control size, angle, alignment and orientation
Carbon Scatter 2015 Specifications
- PRICE 199 (£158, $254)
- COMPANY e-on Software
- WEBSITE www.carbonscatter.com