DAZ3D’s Genesis 2 and Victoria 6 Review

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Michael 6/Genesis 2 M review

Genesis 2 ProDAZ3D’s regenesis or devolution?

After much speculation since the first hint of Genesis 2 and Victoria 6 on the 13th of June the release has finally happened. Users are just as divided between the excited, neutral and angry camps as it was during the week long silent build up. Well played DAZ3D. They knew the product would be controversial, as just about everything they do seems to be, and the effect was they didn’t have to do a shred of promotion other than dropping a clanger in the store and springing an image rich, detail deficit teaser thread on their PC forum. Word spread fast and speculation ran at fevered pitch.

So, in the light of a new day as the dust begins to settle all those questions have been laid to rest. Genesis 2 comes as two base meshes; Genesis 2 Female (released), and Genesis 2 Male (presumably – yet to be released). While Victoria 6 is a purchase item the base mesh is available for free (Genesis 2 Female Starter Essentials) and can be downloaded via the DAZ 3D Install Manager or via the site from the Product Library.

For many, the move to separate male and female meshes is a backwards step. Genesis was about flexibility and universal morphing. The argument put forward for the split is that this allows for greater levels of gender specific detail that weren’t possible in a unisex mesh. I think this is a reasonable compromise. Future characters such as The Girl 5 and Freak 6 can be made from a mesh specifically designed for their gender, and we won’t have to worry about a hundred thousand fit/morph packs to put that sexy cyber suit for V6 on Aiko 6. Also, this should improve the quality of outfits as vendors will be free to make more gender specific mesh details. For those who see a universal mesh as the absolute end of 3D figure design there is hope.

Victoria 6 for Genesis 2GenX update in the works

Dimension3D intends to update his popular plugin GenX for use with Genesis 2. For those not familiar with the plugin, it allows for the conversion of morphs from previous figures to work with Genesis. Dimension3D had this to say: “I can’t give details or a release date this time, but I’m planning to add morph transfer from Genesis 1 to Genesis 2 and vice versa as well as direct transfer from generation 3 and generation 4 figures to Genesis 2.”

Genesis is going to be able to access morphs for Genesis 2? This will undoubtedly make a lot of G1 diehards very happy, and all at the same time create a work-around for G 2’s inability to mix male and female morphs. Well, undoubtedly a male morph could be created for G2 Female but being able to bring G1’s flexibility to G2 will be very useful and save time and money for those situations where close enough is good enough. Of course I could be reading too much in to this, but it sounds like Dimension3D is gearing up to effectively merge Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 while bridging the gap between G2 Female and male.

Until such a day as we are graced with an updated GenX there are other approaches to consider. Some users have already created male characters by mixing various morphs – see pg. 35 of the Genesis 2 preview thread.

Auto-Fit

Out of the box Genesis 2 has auto-fit capabilities for Genesis content, but a separate product (Victoria 4 for Genesis 2 Female) needs to be purchased to fit V4 clothing and textures. This has been one point in particular that has caused angst among users whether, as of yet, they have bought in or not. Presumably fits for other popular figures will be added as additional purchases, as they were with G1. The up-shot here is that, according to promo material, the V4 to G2 conversion is better than the standard V4 to G1 conversion. One significant leap here is with the fitting of V4 based shoes, particularly those with high heels. The standard G1 conversions absolutely butchered footwear, so this will undoubtedly be an important improvement for those of us who are looking for a quick and easy way fit.

V4 to Genesis 2 Auto-fit workaround

Genesis 2 victoria 4 auto-fit workaround

Genesis 2 victoria 4 auto-fit workaround

If that still isn’t enough to entice everyone then there is a work around. Load Genesis > auto-fit desired apparel > save as support asset > figure/prop asset > clear scene > load G2 > find and load the items just saved > auto-fit as usual

The fit won’t be perfect and will likely require a smoothing modifier to cover good ol’ fashion poke.

Genesis 2 Poser Compatibility

poser dson test

Genesis 2 in Poser via DSON

DSON is still the only easy way to get a poseable Genesis 2 into Poser, which is undoubtedly no surprise to anyone, but still disappointing none the less. This comes with all the boons and dooms of the past Genesis/DSON deal, such as the slowdown experienced while using Genesis/DSON content in Poser Pro 2012/9. Thankfully there is an easy fix for this which a surprising number of users still don’t know about. Simply turn subdivision off in the Scripts > DSON Support menu. In any case working with Genesis in Poser is still a slower process than working with other figures such as the Gen 4 DAZ3D figures. This could be a very different experience for Poser Pro 2014/10 with the advances made since the 2012/9 releases, such as the support for the subdivision methods utilised by Genesis 2. I can’t test the theory, but will update this as soon as I find out.

Compatibility with older DAZ Studio versions

Genesis 2 uses the newer .DUF file format and other new technologies such as weight maps, and as such is not compatible with versions of pre 4.5 versions outside an exported .obj, but this means using current versions of DS anyway.

G2 is compatible to the fullest extent only with DS 4.6x, but will work just fine in 4.5 versions (so I hear) but without the new surface/materials. Luckily it comes with legacy materials, so should be fine but might need a little tweaking.

The experience for most people updating from DS 4.5 to 4.6 has mostly been positive, but there has been some report of issues. OS users seem to have got a better deal with this update than has been the case with previous DS updates. With the new advances in DS since 4.5 it is certainly worth testing out, and since 4 or 3X the progress has been huge – not least of which include significant 3Delight upgrades.

Value for money bundles?

Without a doubt the bundles look pretty good. You get some very nice hair props and texture sets (one comes with the basic V6 product) with the Victoria 6 Starter Bundle, and the outfits, one fantasy and the other, a party dress offer a nice bit of diversity and will likely find use with a lot of users. The Pose sets are always useful when you want to do a quick render or if you want to do something more significant and need some inspiration.

The Victoria 6 Pro Bundle is the same again X2!  The quality of the products is of the same or similar quality and will find use in a wide variety of situations. The included outfits are not my cup-o tea, but there might be some texture magic I can pull for my own tastes – something sci-fi!  The hair props and included textures sets are great with lots of mat varieties. Love the fashion hair – everyone loves a bob! Who’s with me? Oh I forgot to mention, the pro bundle has the genitals (must remember the genitals *note*). The texture sets are by well-known and adored artists such as Silver and Countess (yay for tattoos).

No maps!

no maps

Victoria 6 on left with default textures, and Genesis 2 with Bree textures on right. Maps make a difference!

…but where are the Sub Surface Scattering maps? Unless I’m missing something none of the four included texture sets have SSS maps! There are SSS settings, one of them comes with three… but maps? What is maps? Eh, no one on the forums seems to mind this too much, which has me kind of puzzled. If I could just chuck a V5 map in there with my V6 ones I wouldn’t be so confused or disturbed, but we can’t. Maybe this is just me being some kind of SSS lunatic? People seem to be more concerned with a slight fluctuation in the percentage of the sale price.  Of course a little tweaking can fix up a bright red over powered SSS, but you will only get the fine subtlety and control with proper texture maps (so maybe I should just go make one!).

Genesis is the prize

For me the real value of the package comes in the base Genesis 2 figure, and for those of us who can’t sculpt/morph their way out of a wet paper bag, the Victoria 6 morph. The greater level of detail in the geometry is fantastic. The extra detail in the joints as they bend looks a lot more realistic, and all for the cost of a mere 2000 extra polygons. New weight maps and greater articulation in the jaw, ears, breasts, joints etc gives greater realism when posing.

I think Genesis 2 represents quality over quantity, but with the current discounts on the bundles you certainly get both. DAZ probably could have mitigated a good deal of angst by working out a deal to get the V4 morphs into the starter or pro bundle, especially as many Genesis users take it for granted (and why shouldn’t we?). While we’re talking about morphs again I think adding the morph bundle to the pro product would have been a nice touch, but DAZ have certainly been a shrewd with their content/sales strategy this time around. The lack of morphability at this point in the base G2 product feels very un-Genesisish, but if you’re willing to spend the money you can get a very good product. In any case, I look forward to seeing how the figure develops and what the content creators cook up for us.


21 thoughts on “DAZ3D’s Genesis 2 and Victoria 6 Review

  1. I did a super short review, nothing like yours, lol. I do like the new figure, I just hope some stuff can be used on both male and female, as I do use some clothing as unisex.

    Oh, the V4 for Genesis 2….. awesome, completely fixes the damned shoe problem 😀

    • Man I’m still wrecked lol That was one hell of a DS binge last night. The V4 for Genesis does seem to do a much better conversion of V4 based shoes. Forgot to mention that gem in the review. I did see some warping though, but it was very slight when you look at a standard G1 auto-fit.

      • lol, that’s what you get for not sleeping! the warping is definitely minimal, as I tested my two most extreme pairs of boots. I’m still annoyed with the fact that there is no way to do the skins on characters other than piece by piece, even for spec, bump, disp… down to things like cornea, iris, lip…. it’s fucking ridiculous. Bad move on Daz part for sure.

        • You can use the surface selection tool to grab all the similar surfaces (eg. head, shoulders, torso etc) and edit them all at the same time. It will save you light years in the long run.

          • Yeah, there is that, but it would still be nice to be able to set an entire character with one click…although, to be fair, I never use a full char as intended anyway……

            I actually am starting to dislike it even more as I play with it though. The genesis morphs are not compatible, I haven’t tried poses yet. but if some of this genesis stuff is not going to be transferable, I think Daz may have shot itself in the foot. I know I’m not going to resculpt my chars from scratch because they can’t be bothered to let me use my genesis morphs. Also, all of the morph packs that everyone spent money on are now useless? bad bad move.

          • You can set materials with a couple of clicks after you do it once. You just save it as a material preset. I don’t see how it could be done any quicker to start with though.

            When Dimension3D releases his update to GenX there should be no problem with applying old G1 morphs to G2. I guess you could actually use it to gurn G2 in to a unisex mesh too. We’ll just have to wait and see.

  2. Please also note that Genesis 2 and V6 are meant only for Daz Studio 4.6, and people having to use older versions of Daz Studio will not be able to fully utilize the new Genesis features and maps.

    • Thanks forgot to mention that. The new materials and shaders are probably the major things that won’t work with previous versions, but Genesis 2 still comes with legacy materials. I’ll update the review when I get the chance. Thanks 🙂

  3. Hi .. i like your site . Full with information about DAZ/Poser content s. Very valuable for new / returning DAZ -Poser user like me who sometimes doesnt know which one we should buy . Thanks and I hope you can keep inform us about new products especially items which could used /mix and matched / or classified by theme ( scifi – toon – fantasy etc ) . I think those type reviews would be useful for people who want to enhance their short/long story with rendered images . Thanks

    • Thanks a lot. Glad you like the site. I’ve been working hard to get it going the last couple of months. It is a time consuming endeavour, but I hope I’ll be able to keep the info flowing.

  4. Fantastic Review. Good balance of all the points and not the doom and gloom reviews you find so often. So thanks for that fantastic review. Having created content for V6 myself I can confirm that having two separate bases again is a good step. It makes morphing much better and easier and it just feels better. I liked Genesis…. but I LOVE Genesis2… also anyone who updated their DSON recently will notice that it does all work faster now anyway. I did 80% of my promos for my V6 stuff in poser and have to say I didn’t notice any change with speed anymore from my old V4 renders. So for me this new release does get the thumbs up, plus characters can now be released with SSS for both systems, which again is great, and something I did for all three girls that I did myself. So all in all, I think this is the right way forward for DAZ and having worked with V6 for about a month or longer, I have fallen in love with her already and know that anyone who does give her a fair chance will do so too… so anyway… just wanted to say thanks for the great review. 🙂

    • I’m glad you feel that way about the review. There is too much doom and gloom going on out there. Swing by the G2 threads at the DAZ forums and you would be forgiven for thinking it was the apocalypse. I don’t understand it. I upgraded my DSON but didn’t notice any benefit. I may try it again as I thought it odd that there was no speed improvement.

      Thanks for stopping by. Look forward to seeing all the new creations you content wizards conjure.

      • Yeah I noticed the same when looking at other forums, even before the info was out people said they didn’t like it. It’s a shame, because she is a great character, and that is why I loved your review, because it highlights all parts, the good and the bad, which is how any good review should be written. I bookmarked your blog and will read through your other work, as it’s most certainly worth reading. Thanks again for this great review, and glad you like tattoos, as all my three girls that are coming out got tats. 🙂
        oh and as for the dson, did you upgrade it after the 4.6 release? that’s when I started using it with V6 and noticed how much faster it was.

        • Thanks for book marking. You can also subscribe by email on the side bar near the top. I don’t post here more than once, and rarely more than a few times a week.

          I look forward to seeing your tattooed characters. That is something in short supply at DAZ 3D.

          I did upgrade DSON after the the 4.6. I had a sneaking suspicion at the tie I did the update that it hadn’t worked. Do you know an easy way to check what version of DSON Poser is currently using?

          • Oh i’ll do that then, as it makes more sense to get the emails for me than checking periodically. After all I am so rubbish with it all that I didn’t check this reply until now….

            I got a few more characters coming, all have at least a few tattoos, as I just love tats… so hope you like them when they come along.

            As for the whole DSON thing…. no I don’t know to be honest. I just every so often check it… I did the last update when I upgraded to PP2014, but I think that was the same one already that came with DS4.6… but I don’t know if there is an easy way to check it all. But if and when I find out I shall let you know.

          • I’m sure your new characters will be awesome. I’ve been meaning to update the article. I’ve since re-updated DSON and it works fine. I’m not a pro Poser or DSON user so there are still some things I don’t know about the plugin. I just started going through the basic Poser tutorials. Many of the interface controls and features are looking a bit dated, but the program itself is solid and well developed. I look forward to working more with Poser, especially since I just updated to 2014.

  5. Hi, fantastic review and will bookmark your site for more professional reviews like that.

    In my situation I only use the base characters outside of DAZ/Poser and into Max/Blender. Of course I don’t get all the fancy bending that makes the models bend much better at the joints, as I have to put up with whatever the result will be when max/blender bend at the joints with straight bones.

    I’ve briefly tested Vic6 in Max and so far I admit to be pleasantly surprised. I can bend the thighs forward around 45 degrees before it looks bad as apposed to about 35 degrees for Vic42. Also collar and shoulder up 45 degrees look perfect while Vic42 looks quite bad.

    Has your experience of Vic6 in Max/Blender been positive? Could your review say a few words for people using these characters outside of DAZ/Poser as the pros/cons of Vic6 vs. Vic42?

    (I never even tried Vic5… the ‘one mesh for man and woman’ totally turned me off so I’m super glad to see DAZ coming to its senses and generating two base meshes again!)

    Dan,

    • Hi Dan, glad you found the review useful, and thanks for the info. I haven’t had the chance to test G2 out in any programs outside Poser and DAZ. I was quite surprised to get some posable usage with Genesis 1 in LightWave, so it will be interesting to see if this has improved. I don’t hold much hope, as there is no way to convert the weight maps.

      I quite liked the singular unisex mesh – very handy for the sake of flexibility, but not always the best results.

      Feel free to subscribe by RSS email or the standard WordPress email function.

      Thanks for stopping by.

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  7. They’re separated, but most stuff can be converted, so is not really an issue.

    I have genesis 1, 2, 3 and 8, plus Michael 4 that I got as freebie.
    I also have several characters (Michael 6 and Victoria 6 that I bought, and Lee and many other that I got as freebies), plus I have custom full morphs for my custom characters. Honestly, my favourite model to work with is Genesis 2. For the other models there is still something is not right to me.

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