Blender 2.8 Planning Update

Blender 2.8 Alpha 2

At this point we will not have a feature complete Beta release ready in August as we had hoped. Instead, we invested most of our time improving the features that were already there and catching up with the bug tracker. This includes making the viewport and EEVEE work on more graphics cards and platforms.

The Spring open movie team is also using Blender 2.8 in production, which is helping us ensure the new dependency graph and tools can handle complex production scenes.

Frame from Spring rendered in Blender 2.8 by the Blender Animation Studio

Frame from Spring rendered in Blender 2.8 by the Blender Animation Studio

Since the first Alpha release about a month ago, the main addition is the new Grease Pencil, turning Blender into a full fledged 2D animation tool. Other major development included subdivision surfaces using Pixar’s OpenSubdiv, a light cache for EEVEE, better bundled matcaps, and a new Blender benchmark. Three Google Summer of Code projects were integrated: Principled Hair shader for Cycles, bevel modifier improvements, and normal editing tools.

The new planning is as follows:

  • Today: Blender 2.80 Alpha 2. Download from builder.blender.org.
  • End of October: feature complete Blender 2.80 Beta at the Blender Conference.
  • Early 2019: Blender 2.80 stable.
  • 2019: Blender 2.81, 2.82, .. for features that didn’t make it in the first release.

For the next weeks we will focus on completing more features, including:

  • Tool system and gizmos.
  • Subvision surfaces and multi-resolution modifier using Pixar’s OpenSubdiv.
  • Polishing the top-bar, status bar, tool settings and related UIs.
  • EEVEE and viewport support for more GPUs, and minor new features.
  • Production-ready static overrides to replace the proxy system.
  • Modifiers in edit mode.
  • Default Workspaces and environment maps.

There is also a more detailed workboard on developer.blender.org that we use to keep track of the remaining work.

Watch the video announcement in the Blender Developers channel.

23 comments 20,187 Views
  1. I comment this in a live session of blendertoday and i repeat it here,
    +1 to delay the beta
    Up today the amount and quality of the work its actually more than was realistically espected, don’t need to rush a beta there is a huge amount to things to polish but also there are a lot of things! period, so take the time to make them awesome and as rock solid as posible.

  2. Normal editor buttons are disabled here: https://i.imgur.com/iLAfLjU.png
    Do i need to to something to enable them?

    • Just found how! enable auto smooth (Data>Normals) , sad thing is… it doesn’t seems to update the normals overlay (the lines pointing out) so its hard to see were the normals are pointing after you made changes

  3. I have one question. I have not seen any obj or fbx export options in Blender 2.8 Alpha. Will, there be a way to get animation and game assets into game engines like Unreal and Unity. I have been spending some time with Blender this past month and was wondering if Blender will still be viable for producing game assets that include character animation.

    • There’s a hold on updating the addons (including the exporters) until the Python API is stable (no point in doing the work to update them more than once if the API needs further changes). They’ll be back.

    • “I have not seen any obj or fbx export options in Blender 2.8 Alpha.”
      Well maybe because there is this one magical word there: Alpha? I think you should give devs time to finish their job with Blender first. Besides any alpha or beta release isn’t something anyone would use in production environment anyway. Regardles of the features it can ship with. It’s more of show case/bugs report stage of development and lots of things can change in the process anyway.

    • It Will dont worry :).
      For now you van still export tour work as abc format, import-it into blender 2.79. And ré-export-It as fbx file;)

  4. Sad to see the delay, but I’m glad the dev team is taking its time to make 2.8 the best it can be.
    Are there any plans or considerations for a Grease Pencil armature modifier? I feel like that’s one of the only things keeping 2.8 GP from being on par with dedicated 2D animation software, but I haven’t heard anything about it yet.

  5. Sort of sad for the delay but I am not too worried about it. The builds now have been quite a bit more stable than even a month ago. Revolutionary stuff added and more to come. The build is a pretty huge over haul to tackle!
    Wish you guys luck to get a stable beta for the conference.

  6. It’s actually quite outstanding how Blender continuous.
    In history, many programs have collapsed with big overhaul updates.
    And here an opensource program proves it can be done and be re-made, because people really like it.

  7. blender 2.49…

  8. Hi,
    I have a question that i need answered and didn’t knew where to ask it, so i’ll ask it here. Boes blender eeve works with GPU s without CUDA cores? I have a gt 850M laptop 4gb and i wonder if it will work.

    • Blender requires OpenGL 3.3, which the GT 850M supports. It actually has CUDA cores as well though this is not needed for Eevee.

  9. saw armature x-ray commit today. please make x-ray a per-bone setting!

  10. Hi there, while you develop the new version, can you please add support for double precision or similar: one downside from 3DS Max was the rounding errors that occurred when I modelled scenes from technical drawings, and I depend on accuracy for quality control. I left 3DS Max because of the subscription-only pricing.

  11. Hi! Great job. Just take your time.

    Also I have a (maybe not so) little question. Are you planning to integrate import / export add-ons deeper? Or maybe create just one multi-format import / export module?

    Right now you can import / export just one file type by choosing File > Import > Desired Type. In other softwares you generally can simply choose File > Import and then, when a window pop ups, select filter by just one type or choose “Show all supported types”. In this case, if you have multiple formats in the same folder – obj and 3ds for example – you can see them both in the Import window. It may be useful if you have a folder with many 3d objects and you don’t remember which format each has. So you just open Import dialog once and choose whatever 3d model you want to import. Enabling and disabling import/export add-ons might just lead to changing filters in this one Import / Export window.

    Thank you.
    (If this isn’t the right place for this kind of questions – can you point me to the right direction?)

  12. Hi guys!
    Superb job on Blender 2.8!
    How can i report bugs to help you guys?
    How can i suggest some improvements?
    Thanks and congrats for this awesome tool!

  13. I havent been keeping up to date with Blender 2.8 since January but is there still going to be an asset management feature when the final version of 2.8 is released? I googled Blender 2.8 asset management today to see if there is any up to date news on this promised feature but I cant seem to find any up to date info on it.

  14. Fantastic work on Grease Pencil (and of course everything!). It already is and will be more and more of a joy to work with. I hope it will be possible to convert SVG’s into Grease Pencil objects. That would be a winner and would make a switch to Blender for 2D animation even more attractive for many artists.
    Thank’s for the already great work done and take your time to debug and fix things on this big and complex venture.

  15. I’d only say please think of those of us that went with the RX Vega 64 rather than Nvidia (more compute power and the desktop is not for games).

  16. I’m an user comng from other 3dpackage like Sketchup, one of the most problem is the difficult to draw freely polygon on the grid and tha lack of cad tool, to design precisely the most part of object in our daily environment and to print them.. will you plan to improve the cad part of Blender?

    Simple tool like push/pool or the pen tool is missing in blender, and i will suggest to think over the 3dcursor function.

    What about BlenderCam and its feature to generate GCode, will hey be supported by future version of Blender?

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