There's nothing quite like building your own world, and no application makes it easier than Bryce. Now on its fifth major revision and currently owned by Corel, Bryce has grown from a fun application for building alien planets to a capable rendering tool with advanced features.
Version 5 offers numerous new features and improvements. To address the complaints of the slow rendering engine, Bryce 5 has introduced network rendering. No longer will one computer have to slave away all its own on a 10-second scene. Rendering can be distributed across as many systems as are available on your network. The number of computer slaves available for use is only limited by your own hardware, as Bryce's network rendering license is unlimited. However, Bryce still doesn't take advantage of computers with multiple CPUs--rendering on a system with two 400 MHz processors takes the same time as rendering on a system with one.
If you've got a green thumb, Bryce 5 has the Tree Lab, one of the easiest ways to grow a forest. Nearly everything about a tree is variable: number of branches, number of leaves, kind of trunk, kind of leaf, branch angle, amount of branching, etc. There are presets for dozens of common and uncommon trees, and the thumbnail preview screen lets you preview in wire-frame or rendered views.
Once the forest is grown, you might want to light it up using the tools from the Light Lab. Based on the earlier version, the new Light Lab has been redesigned to make it easier to build, adjust, and customize lights and their attributes. You can use color gradients as gels for lights, and control other attributes like shadow ambiance, soft shadows, blurry reflections, and true ambiance.
The new Light and Tree Labs, as well as metaballs and network rendering, make Bryce 5 a must-have application for old and new users alike. --Mike Caputo
Amazon.com Product Description
Bryce 5 lets you create realistic 3-D landscapes and animations. Striking an optimum balance between power and ease of use, Bryce is an ideal way to integrate 3-D technology into your creative process. Smooth network rendering saves time by letting you render images on multiple computers. The new Light Lab gives you robust control over lighting direction, and the new Tree Lab ensures a more accurate depiction of real-world environments.
0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
It's Awesome, May 25, 2023
I began using Bryce 5 at my school and soon bought a copy of my own because I love this program. I have spent endless nights creating new enviroments and such.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Great power for creativity and low price, but annoying..., Dec 1, 2022
It sure is hard to beat having the power to create your own world in 3D for so little money. If you want to break into 3D graphics, this is a good place to start.
However, if I had it do to over again, I would have bought a book on Bryce and read it before trying to learn by experience. That's the hard way.
Also, there are some useability issues that annoy me continually.
For example, there is a "select all" function key shortcut, but no "deselect all" function key. Why not? Photoshop does this.
Another is that they give you the ability to create trees, and they pre-load about seventy different tree templates, but in the select pull-down the don't alphabetize the tree names, so even if you know what you're looking for you have to visually scan the entire list.
Finally, and most annoying, once you get more than a few objects in your project then selecting an individual object becomes a real chore. There's a function that allowes one to select objects without clicking on them, which is rather handy.
However, if you have for example ten different cubes in your project, and you want to select one of them, you click on the little cube selector on the bottom and you can choose to select from the list of cube objects. However, there's nothing on the screen to identify the cube objects, so I have to select all the cubes until I find the one I want.
I find myself taking more time to select the objects I want to manipulate than I do actually manipulating the objects. Once I've spent a few hours with this product, I'm worn out, frusterated, and I don't want to use it again for several days.
The bottom line is that this software is powerful, affordable, but not much fun to use once you get past "Wow, I just created a mountain with a mouse-click."
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Good Warez man, Aug 21, 2023
Where to start...Corel Bryce 5 is [great], I like 3D landscapes or what i call "starescapes". Here is another creative powerhouse, the texture, material, bump mapping is awesome. Watch out for the tree lab though, scale it to large, add to much foliage..watch your PC choke to death on it(mine does)! The animations you can make are really cool as well, from simple, like a screw driving in to a 2x4, to complex, like a full length cartoon, Bryce 5 can do it, you can model cars from terrain plains, make "monsters" out of primitives, the boolean operations can make some wicked stuff. I highly recommend it, and I challenge you to master it..just when you think you have...guess what, you find something new you can do..your imagination and computer are your only limits! As Eric Cartman would say "kick [butt]"...oh yeah you can model him as well ;)
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
good beginning to intermedite program, Jun 10, 2023
This program is mostly intuitive and easy to use and learn. Great program to use when starting 3D graphics. I have used it (and bryce 4) for several years now, and my only complaint is my slow computer. Network rendering helps with that a lot though. THe problems would be: if you want complex lighting, this is a slow program; light does not act like it should (like off of mirrors and such); making a good texture adds a lot of render time; and this program ensures that it is the only thing you are using on your computer when it is running (locks taskbar in windows until you alt-tab to another program). Other than those things which I rarely have a problem with, I really like the program.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful:
A flawed favorite, Apr 17, 2023
I've been using Bryce since it was ported to Windows at version 2.0. My impressions were, this is great but I can spend a brief eternity waiting for it to render. As features were added and stability was addressed we get to Bryce 5 which does a nice job of creating interesting 3D images. Created to be a nature designer Bryce 5 offers import and texture mapping of several 3D objects. This is important as it's nice to sometimes add buildings, animals or humans to pictures you design. The modeling tools are designed for natural scene creation but it is easy to create indoor scenes, 2D style studies and combinations of styles.
The renderer is excellent with many options for developing your world. Bryce's interface has always been unique but intuitive. Still you will want to read the bland manual. After market books are poor to acceptable - beware of books depending on you purchasing modeling packages or 3D clip art.
The animation options are acceptable for a program in this price range but aren't really suitable for much more than short clips, say 5 to 30 seconds. Even with a very fast, highly tweaked computer Bryce can crawl when rendering.
Some solutions are to keep your animations simple and turn off the antiailising, on smaller frame sizes it is harder to notice and saves between 20 to 60% of render time. If developing stills make your picture slightly larger and don't use antiailising, go into your favorite graphics editor and resize. You will get faster renders and usually no jagged edges. For fun and small projects Bryce is great. It is priced to be appealing to the home user that isn't necessarily an artist but will certainly learn as they compose and develop scenes and animations.
Bryce 5 is getting old and lacking in many modern features including the inability to take advantage of modern processors. Still, it is fun to work with and can create some of the most realistic landscapes or abstracts you can imagine. Bryce 5 expects little from the user, even it's learning curve is simple, especially for a 3D program, and has impressive results. Because of it's slow renderer it is not really a good professional solution although pro quality landscaping tools for high quality 3D programs cost three times Bryce's price and demand a general purpose 3D program well into the high hundred dollar to multi-thousand dollar solution.
If you were curious what you could do in the visual arts but currently don't have the talent you can realize many of your ideas in Bryce 5. Much of 3D graphics have more to do with physics than artistic skills. If you are good at visualizing Bryce 5 is an excellent and modest costing program.