A while back I asked a range of 3ds Max users to share their favourite MAXScripts and a brief description of why they find them indispensable. Below you will find the responses and most importantly, where to get your hands on them, (now that I’ve finally got around to collating them all.)
Thanks to everyone who took the time to share their MAXScript tools.
RenderMask – Mark Lee www.uniform.net
“Renders selected objects as black/white masks for use in post production with some nice other features which similar scripts are without.”
Fassadeblinds – Dave Buckley www.davebuckley.co.uk
“Creates blind with random open values, adding that all important variety to the windows of your buildings”
Offset Animation– Alvaro Martinez www.crystalcg-international.com
“This script has been written by my workmate Dan Grover (www.dan-grover.com) Last time we used it was for offsetting an animation where a city was being “magically” built. It saved us a lot of time, we only had to animate one object, clone it and run the script to have a beautiful building sequence. A video example can be found here”
Empty Layers – Mark Lee www.uniform.net
“Deletes all empty layers in your layer list in a flash.”
Autosnap – Dave Buckley www.davebuckley.co.uk
“Automaticlaly changes the snapping degree depending on viewport type, i.e. perspective, top”
VMC (Vray Material Control) – Rob Deja www.uniform.net
“Great for changing many vray materials properties at once.”
Ambience Occlusion Light – David Jones, www.thecadstudio.com
”Any time we need to render animated scenes we can use this script as mentioned in the blog. So rather than having to calculate FG or GI we just use this to give us a quick alternative. With some scenes it looks comparable to rendering with global illumination!”
Modifier Modifier Zorb – Simon Moir http://simonmoir.blogspot.com/
“It’s super duper”
3pt Align – Dave Buckley www.davebuckley.co.uk
“Align an object to another by selecting 3 simultaneous points on each object”
Merge by Layers – Mark Lee www.uniform.net
“It shows you the layers in the selected max file you want to merge from and what objects are on each layer.”
Relink Bitmaps – Rob Deja www.uniform.net
“This script makes it very easy to find and repath any missing bitmaps in your scene.”
Condense Materials to Instances - David Jones, www.thecadstudio.com
“We get a lot of scenes with materials from customers where every object has its own material even though they are called the same name and supposed to be using the same instance. This utility allows me to instance all names that are the same and condense them to one material then a can effect global changes to the scene without having to go around to hundreds of objects and change each one. A huge time saver and saves memory on render!”
Copy Paste – Mark Lee www.uniform.net
“It allows you to copy objects from one open instance of max and paste them into another.”
Soulburn Scripts – Rob Deja www.uniform.net
“A collection of loads of useful scripts. Specifically - Planter, Pivot Placer, Aligner, Find Instances.”
Sweep Profile – Dave Buckley www.davebuckley.co.uk
“Nice interface for managing profiles and quickly applying cornices, skirting, rails”
mrArch & Design Tools – Dave Buckley www.davebuckley.co.uk
“Can quickly turn on AO in all A&D Materials rather than having to go back to each material and turning on manually, same for Round Corners”
You can find this MAXScript on the 3ds Max Samples content, on the subscription portal.
MB Collapse – Rob Deja www.uniform.net
”Script for collapsing down animation to keyframes per frame. Very useful for collapsing down complex hierarchies of linked objects and exporting to other software.”
Whilst we are discussing MAXScript, you should also find this 2 page ‘Cheat Sheet’ useful for those that are new to this extremely powerful toolset (I know I did). This was constructed by Markus Boos and is hosted on 3das.com.
Please Note: It is worth noting that these scripts cover various versions of 3ds Max and as such, similar functionality may now already be in the latest release. Always check the help files to see what improvements are made.
Once again, thanks to the above talented artists for taking the time to share their thoughts with the wider community. Of a course, a special thanks should also go to the creators of these great scripts for 3ds Max.