Back in the early 2000s, there was an image designing/rendering software that you could use to design everything from simple colorful balloons to worlds with cool planets hanging low over the sky, with the sea and mountains in the foreground. The software had a ton of material styles and textures and one of the most intuitive and easy UIs I have ever used, complete with glowing buttons and textured sliders. In all, totally cool. Unfortunately the company that produced it was taken over by Corel I think, and they promptly killed Bryce 3D.
I was thinking how cool it would be to be able to use Bryce again; surely some copy of it must exist somewhere? This was in the Windows 98 SE world, so I have no idea it if would run on my 2015 laptop even if I got hold of a copy. It would be a cool way to kill some time on boring Sunday afternoons. Now that I think about it, any antique software would be cool to use again just for amusement.
I had Bryce 2 and 3 back in the days when Macs ran on PowerPC chips.
I made some interesting surreal landscapes, but the person who could actually use the program was my housemate michael.
He’d kick off some shapes, subtract other shapes or combine them, apply a texture, and after three beers and 20 minutes what would be on his screen would be a sharper-than-photography image of his client’s product in a cellophane bag with the corporate logo on the label, glowing in the sunshine coming in from the storefront window to the right. Or equally jaw-dropping “how the fuck did you DO that?!?” equivalent. I could no more do the stuff I saw him do than I could carve a down-to-the-eyebrow-hairs accurate bust of Jennifer Beals out of a ripe tomato with a soup spoon.
Something about the program just spoke to him, I guess; he’d see the possibilities and immediately realize exactly how to make a desired shape by taking this torus and subtracting this plane inserted at this rotated angle then add this sphere after removing this smaller sphere, etc.