About thinkinetic

Interested in computer graphics and visual FX.

A lift for life by Andres de Mingo

Estaban Cuesta has done a thorough tutorial about this appealing shot by Andres de Mingo, using Pulldownit plugin in 3d Max and adding some Maya fluids for smoke and dust.

In this  video tutorial you can learn all the Pulldownit workflow in 3d Max to get the destruction of the billboard done, go back to the 50s with PDI!


Car Render Challenge 2017 Winners


Hum3D car render challenge 2017 has ends, as sponsor of the competition Thinkinetic is proud to gift a Pulldownit Pro license to the winners, congratulations to all of them.

Take a look to the winners works and best finalists in the official announcement:

Car Render Challenge 2017 Winners

Besides Keving Boulton the 1st place winner explains how he used Clay Maker in 3d Max to model his awesome car:

Modelling Wiesmann GT MF57 in 3D Max

War Reign Cinematics by Lee Soo In

Lee Soo In, FX artist at  Penxel, has uploaded several great cinematics and breakdown for the game War Reign using extensively Pulldownit plugin for destruction effects.

Lee Soo some words about his experience with Pulldownit plugin:

I’ve been using a lot of fragments tools. Among all the advantages of the PDI plugin,
the credibility of the results is very high and during the simulations access to objects is very easy.

Since we’ve done a lot of work with PDI, we’ve been able to do it very

“Bake simulation” is a good feature. Because I can change the timing and
speed freely , many times It is convenient to perform detailed tasks with keyframe modifications.

below another great War Reign cinematics with some PDi destruction effects, and lots of smoke using Fume FX and Krakatoa,

Thank you for showing those great  videos  and your testimonial Lee.

Tips & Tricks: Damaging without collapsing

When doing a destruction shot many times you want large structures like buildings to be destroyed partially while standing or you may want a dynamics object to be damaged only in the impact areas while maintaining its overall shape and trajectory. Let’s review the different options you count in Pulldownit plugin to break objects in localized areas only.

First you have to generate more density of fragments in the areas more likely to break using local shatter style, this will increase the quality of the destruction, after that create a fracture body for the object, there are two different cases:

Case of a static object, like a wall or building; after creating a fracture body for the object:

  • Set the fracture body as Static.
  • Set Activation->Breaks upon Impact.

Play the simulation, if there are still fragments which moves and you want them to stand,

  • In Advanced fractures set the fragments you don’t want to move to static.

Play the simulation modifying Hardness value until you get the level of damage you want.



Case of a moving object, like a flying stone, airplane or whatever object is moving through the scene and eventually collides and breaks; after creating a fracture body for the object:

  • Set Clusterize parameter to 0.0
  • Change to Local Propagation scheme.
  • Set Hardness to 10.0

Play the simulation modifying Hardness value until you get the level of damage you want.


Pulldownit for Maya 2018

Maya 2018 has been finally released by Autodesk, and Pulldownit plugin is already available for it, you can download Pulldownit Pro for Maya 2018 from the users area if you have licensed the plugin or download demo versión  from the web site in case not.

Apparently legacy viewport has been removed from Maya 2018, you can enable it again by setting the environment variable MAYA_ENABLE_LEGACY_VIEWPORT, anyway Viewport 2.0 seems to be the future for Maya so Thinkinetic has made an effort to fix several issues of the plugin when using it in VP2 and now it is fully supported, along it other annoying issues reported by users has been fixed in this latest update ( 3.8.8) you can read the full list of fixes in the version logs page of the Thinkientic web site,  besides you can review latest features and demos of Pulldownit 3.8 here:

Pulldownit 3.8.6 new features

Maya 2018 doesn’t count with overwhelming new features but with quite a lot of fixes and useful improvements; this time Autodesk has preferred to fix  several issues which sadly were doing  Maya 2017 not usable in production  and improve  tools and solvers already present like the UV editor, Bifrost  or XGen, the Maya built-in hair solver, which is a great tool indeed and now has new useful capabilities as the Clump modifier, better  interactive grooming and ability to make hair and fur collide physically with other objects in the scene.

And don’t forget the new versions of Arnold and MASH included,  these plugins  are developed by external teams and now count with new features, here a pretty impressive demonstration by Steven Roselle about rendering a dense forest of 10000 trees with millions of polygons  combining  Arnold and  MASH capabilities in Maya 2018.

Export PDI dynamics from Maya to UE4

In this excellent tutorial Esteban Cuesta shows us how to destroy a pile of tubes using Pulldownit in Maya and then export it to Unreal Engine 4, but not only this, he also teaches us how to trigger the destruction in UE4 when a bullet hits the model during the game. Exporting broken models and dynamics to UE4 works with either Pro version and free version of Pulldownit, just follow the tutorial to learn how to add quality destruction effects into your game.


thank you Esteban for the amazing tutorial


Pulldownit for 3d Max 2018

Pulldownit , the destruction plugin, is already available for 3d Max 2018, you can review latest features and demos of Pulldownit plugin here:

Pulldownit 3.8.6 new features

3d Max 2018 has come early this year, the major new addition is Arnold render, this award winning  renderer replaces Mental Ray which has been removed although NVidia still commercialize it on its own. The User Interface has changed also quite a bit, this new release uses QT5 for all UI windows making the UI more versatile, now you can tear off the Timeline window and even the whole Commands panel besides you can make it thicker however the controls inside remain the same size, which makes resizing it useless, I hope in future updates of Max the controls turn larger when resizing the panel they belong to, it can be helpful when twiking parameters, by the way Max UI distribution resembles a little more to Maya, first with the addition of the Scene Explorer in 3d Max 2016, and now changing the workspace selection box to the top right corner, same as Maya does.

Another Tool that has been enhanced in this version is MGC, it counts now with 78 new operators, and better performance and usability. MGC is a great tool for creating procedural objects and modifiers in 3d Max in a visual way, much easier than scripting.

Doing simple animations is now easier with the new Motion Paths , you can set the main keys just by dragging the object and adjust later its trajectory with fine control without having to convert it to a spline, that’s great, time saving feature and less stuff to handle in the scene.

And don’t forget the Data Channel modifier and Blended Box map, those powerful tools were introduced in 3d Max 2017 update 1, and Autodesk continues enhancing them in this version. Blended Box is a fast way to combine different textures over the same model without visible seams and not having to edit UVs at all, the Data Channel is a new modifier which can be cumbersome to use at first time but definitively powerful in what you can do with it like affecting only the concave areas of a model to modify them or whatever.

Quite a lot of useful news for a year development, worth to try this new version, below a couple of tutorials highlighting some the new features inside Max 2018,