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Substance 3D Announcements from GDC 2024

Adobe Employee ,
Mar 25, 2024 Mar 25, 2024

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March 2024 has brought another edition of the Game Developers Conference, the premier event of the gaming industry. The Adobe Substance 3D team presented Substance Days at GDC, and we were once again delighted to be able to meet so many of our 3D community in person, in San Francisco. Big announcements during our keynote presentation this year included:


Substance Connector debuted at GDC this year. Take a photo of any surface; convert this photo to a modifiable 3D material in Substance 3D Sampler – and now, thanks to Substance Connector, send this material directly to Unreal Engine 5. Materials appear in UE5 in real time; they’ll load in your UE5 project, and can be modified there, right away.


Available for UE5 right now, it will also boost artist workflows incorporating Blender, Maya, 3ds Max, and Unity in the near future.



Wes McDermott discusses Substance 3D developments in our keynote presentation. 


On this theme of connectivity, we also announced updates to a range of Substance ecosystem plugins – notably our Blender plugin 2.0 update, bringing in refactored plugin architecture, improved stability and overall performance improvement, new image formats to export textures, bit depth selection for each map type, Substance Engine selection support (defaulting to GPU), and much more.


We announced a range of new features and updates In Substance 3D Painter, but perhaps most impressively, we gave a sneak peek of the inclusion of new features coming in our spring release: first, access Substance 3D Assets directly within Painter. That is, thousands upon thousands of parametric, customizable materials, right within Painter’s UI. 


And another avant-première for Painter: Text Resource – that is, the addition of lettering to the surface of your assets. Any writing added is of course infinitely customizable, to suit your precise needs.


In Substance 3D Sampler we announced the release of Text to Texture powered by Adobe Firefly. Describe, in words, the material you need; Sampler will propose a selection of photorealistic textures. Select what you want, and modify in more detail if needed. Based on Firefly’s proven Generative AI, this means faster creation of parametric materials, and more flexibility to iterate in Sampler. Enjoy!


For Substance 3D Designer, we gave a sneak peek of USD lossless support. Allowing you to non-destructively override and edit any material in a USD scene. We also previewed the MaterialX graph edition, coming later this year, providing a range of features – such as using SBSAR files as inputs of MaterialX graphs, and delivering materials readable in every renderer – that will fill a gap in user workflows.


A lot of news for Substance 3D Modeler. We announced that the public beta for Substance 3D Modeler is available now on Creative Cloud for PC, allowing artists to get an early look at new features, and help inform the direction of new technologies. Modeler is the only tool that allows you to sculpt 3D clay both in VR and on desktop; if you have a Creative Cloud ID, you can try it out for yourself right now. 


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The public prerelease incorporates a couple of notable new features: you can now search Modeler’s asset library by shape – that is, you only need to select a shape, and Modeler will suggest alternatives on a shared theme. We also announced the release of surfacing tools, allowing you to add fine details to sculpted surfaces.


Moreover, we also detailed the inclusion of new camera features in Modeler, giving artists a powerful set of tools for refining the composition of their 3D models or scenes with different camera views, in both desktop and VR. We also announced warp tool improvements in Modeler, which gives artists more control when creating flowing, organic shapes, and better upres, ensuring that artists get cleaner, smoother results when increasing a model’s resolution. 


And of course, no GDC is complete without demos, portfolio reviews, users and developers chatting and exchanging experiences, and the countless other moments of connection that are so absolutely fundamental to creating the absolute best tools we can for the 3D community. Enormous thanks to everybody who attended; we’ll see you again next year!








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