SENSEI FORMAT UPDATE LOG
SENSEI FORMAT 5.5.2 11/07/2017
• Updated Group layout UI.
• Fixed bug with pocket occasionally leaving behind temporary files and improved pocket editing and saving stability.
• Pocket will now display a message and prevent any objects linked to other files from being put into a pocket.
• Fixed bug regarding Pocket category icons.
• New Pocket features “Animated Pockets” and “Heavy Pockets”. These options can be set in the Builder options menu (located at the top far left of the screen in 3D View toolshelf “T”). When “Animated Pocket” is activated, any object possessing animated keyframes or belonging to a rigid body group will auto start the animation as soon as you let go of the item you’ve taken out of a pocket. Checking “Heavy Pockets” will make any object you pull out of your pocket instantly fall to the ground. If you prefer to keep these options on all the time, start up a new Blend file, activate the option/options you want and in Blender’s File menu click “Save Startup File” then click “Ok”.
• You can now change Pocket’s default path (where all pockets and pocket objects are stored). By default, pocket assets are kept in your Blender settings addons folder. You can change this by first checking the option “Change Pocket Path” in the Builder options menu. After that click the folder icon next to “Set Path:” and select a location on your computer where you want your Pocket assets to be stored. Changing this location may require restarting Blender. If you want to go back to having Pocket store its assets in the default location press the reset button (rotating arrows). Note, that moving your default Pocket location will not move any existing pockets or items for you. It just means that whatever pockets or objects you put into your pockets, will be saved in the location you’ve chosen thereafter.
• Pocket now understands about rigid body group settings and will merge rb group objects taken out of a pocket with any existing rb world group.
• Fixed Pocket bug regarding name serialization for some special cases.
• Fixed Pocket bug concerning some load cases of parented objects.
• Added better handling of reloading objects which the user has already brought into the scene while using the Link Pocket option. You may load the same object as many times as you like from a pocket (with the link option active or not active) and then activate the Link Pocket options and continue to load the same linked file as often as you want, however if you disable the Link Pocket option, then try to reload the same object, you will not be able to load it and an error message will print to the console (rather than freezing Blender).
• Pocket now handles loading group objects much better. It can also now remember layer positions when putting things in and taking them out of your pocket. If objects saved in a pocket were saved on no visible layers in the current scene you’re using, then all objects will be loaded to the current visible scene layer, otherwise you may save objects in multiple layers, and when you take these objects out of your pocket they will be repositioned into the same layers used when you saved them.
• Objects with mirror modifiers will now have them automatically applied if using Builder Align-to-grid buttons.
• Pressing File > Sensei Format “Full Uninstall” will now completely remove all Sensei Format folders and addons from all Blender settings folder. This should help with occasional Sensei Format re-install issues. Note that your “Pocket” folder generated by Sensei Format will remain even after pressing “Full Uninstall”.
• Fixed bug which would cause Pocket contents to be overwritten with update or reinstall of Sensei Format.
• Fixed bug causing slow performance when using mirror and reverse keyframe buttons in the dopesheet.
• FPS Time Remap (along with other Sensei Format timeline and keyframe operations) have been improved to included animated data from the scene, world, material and node materials and modifiers.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.5.1 10/26/2017
• SPECIAL NOTE: Sensei Format 5.5.1 is the largest update in the history of Sensei Format. It contains many special considerations for Blender 2.79 and many new, better ways of handling files, updates and more. As such, updating to this version of Sensei Format will require a complete uninstall of Sensei Format before updating to the latest version can be completed.
To do this go to Blender’s File menu press “Sensei Format” and select “Full Uninstall”. Then go to File > User Preferences > Select “Add-ons” tab at the top of the screen, then select the Sensei Format category (from addons category to the left) then click the arrow next to where there is a checkbox where it says “Sensei Format: Sensei Format” and press the “Remove” button. This will fully remove Sensei Format from your system after pressing “Full Uninstall”.
Finally, reinstall Sensei Format following the same basic instructions as when you first installed it. If you need help reinstalling Sensei Format please consult this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9YYBOZFn6A&t=3s
• Sensei Format has a new amazing tool called “Pocket”. Pocket allows you to easily store and retrieve files instantly with a fun user interface that auto generates thumbnails whenever you take something out or put something into your pocket. Pocket can be found in the Sensei Format Builder menu in the toolshelf and can be opened by pressing the large button with a down facing triangle next to the Builder options menu.
Putting things in your pocket is as easy as selecting everything you want to go into your pocket and pressing “Put In My Pocket”. Objects can be taken out of your pocket and brought into the 3D View by clicking on the thumbnail and selecting the image of the object you put in your pocket. That’s it. That’s all there is to it. No special rules about putting things in, taking them out or saving thumbnails.
Everything is taken care of automatically, even the positioning of the objects for the automatically generated thumbnails. You can save objects using mat caps or with materials, and they’ll automatically show up in your object’s thumbnails the way you saved them. You can create new pockets by pressing the + sign next to the default Pocket. Then you can rename your new pocket by clicking on it.
You can make as many pockets as you want. There is also a small search button at the bottom of the pocket box which will allow you to search alphabetically for pockets (useful if you have a lot of pockets or if you preface pockets as a way of managing categories). There are also link and edit buttons. When the link button is pressed, any object you pull out of a pocket will be linked to your file instead of just added to it. This means you can put the same object in all sorts of different files, then whenever you edit the original one, the file will update and change in all the other files where it was placed.
The edit button will transfer you instantly into the pocket file, then just press the back arrow pocket button and the file will be saved and you’ll be instantly transported back to whatever you were working on before editing the pocket object. Pocket handles serialization (auto naming basically) so you can make a bunch of quick variations of things and store them all into the same or multiple pockets without having to worry about accidentally overwriting something or manually naming it. An example of this would be making a bunch sick looking swords with slight variations so you can look at all of them at once. By default the pocket object will take on the name of the active object of all the objects you had selected whenever you place a selection of objects into a pocket so give this object a meaningful name before putting the overall selection into a pocket.
Pockets and objects can also be easily deleted by pressing the “X” where ever you see it located. Several other options for pocket can be found in the regular Builder options menu which can be found to the left of the main pocket button.
• The option to activate HD shading has moved from the Builder options menu, to a button which can now be directly pressed without having to first open a menu. The button sits to the right of the Builder options menu. Additionally, the snap to cursor button has been replaced with a set origin/snap menu which now sits to the left of the new “Align To Grid” system.
• The mirror/clone-mirror button found in the Builder menu has been converted into a dropdown menu with two new options -Bisect Mirror and +Bisect Mirror. When using the X,Y,Z buttons next to this drop down menu, these options will perfectly bisect one or multiple selected objects along the chosen axis lines and mirror with mirror modifiers. Using these options while in edit mode will likewise, symmetrize all selected mesh along the selected axes.
• The Builder “Align To Grid” button has been removed and replaced by a system that allows you to align and reset the origins of all selected objects by selecting one of four directional buttons at the top of the Builder menu. These buttons work contextually with the user view. This feature is very useful for quickly creating snappable sets out of many selected objects. when finished, all selected objects will align precisely to the same section of grid lines as desired. Note this feature also automatically activates grid snapping (this can be turned off by pressing the red horse shoe icon at the bottom of the 3D View menu).
• Sensei Format “Optimize Render” feature, now ensures denoising is activated for all render layers at render time.
• Upon initial startup, Sensei Format used to do screen resolution checks and select from a series of template startup files which best work for different screen sizes. Through the years, this function has proven to be perhaps more trouble than it’s worth. In addition to Blender 2.79’s new auto DPI features, it was decided to remove this feature. This shouldn’t be a problem for most users, but it is possible you may have to adjust some panels if installing Sensei Format and using a very low res screen.
• Fixed bug with director’s chair menu item “Focus Selected”.
• Updated custom Sensei Format Add menu with new Blender 2.79 icons and options.
• Added a “Reload All” button in the Hacker workspace next to the “Run Scripts” button. The reload all button will reload all external scripts and addons, not just the current script in the text editor.
• The user interface of the “Keyframe Tools” menu found in the Animation tab of the Tool shelf (T) has been updated with a cleaner presentation. There are now new tools which make it easier to delete all “keyframe parts” of a selection of objects, such as deleting all X Rotation keyframes for all selected objects, all Location or scale keyframes for all selected objects etc…
• The ability to time remap has been added to the Sensei Format animation timeline area. This feature allows you to change the FPS without affecting the animation timing. This feature can be found in the timeline options menu nested between the FPS and current frame sliders. The option is called “Time Remap With FPS”. After this option is checked you can adjust the FPS slider in the timeline without affecting the actual time that passes between keyframes.
• The “Set Interpolation” button of the default workspace animation area (near the bottom of the screen) has been moved from its location next to the automatic keyframe (red record) button to the left of the “reverse” and “mirror” keyframe options. This location makes more sense because all of these options are related to manipulating keyframes.
• The Builder menu “Physics Control” has been renamed to “Physics Sim” (simulation).
• The Sensei Format assets library can now function without having a default browser open. The default open browser panel (which sits directly above the bottom dopesheet in the default Sensei Format workspace) can now be closed, and the startup file saved and still display the user selected library location when opened.
• Rather than just always excluding lamp and camera objects when using the Sensei Format assets library to link or append groups and objects, there is now a menu which allows you to include or exclude any object type from being included when linking or appending a file. These options can be saved in your startup file as well for further customization.
• The Sensei Format “Composite” option (located in the options menu of the director’s chair located in the bottom right corner of the default screen) has been re-written and now works much better for both Blender Render and Cycles modes. Activating this option will not only send your default renders to the node compositor (where you can add effects, make color correction and so on) it also automatically builds the required node setups and additional assets (such as needed render layers and settings) to separate the objects in your scene from your background environment. No additional rendering is required for BR or Cycles allowing you to immediately add adjustment nodes to either your foreground or background image after rendering when activating “Composite” in the Director’s chair options menu. In addition, much better default settings have been added for the background (world environment) render pass which greatly speeds up the render process.
• “Use Mist” and “Focus Selected” options found in the director’s chair “Lights” and “Camera” option menus have been greatly improved for both Blender Render and Cycles. Especially when used in conjunction with the “Composite” option.
• New option “Auto View Clipping” found in the Builder options menu (and on by default) will automatically adjust 3D View clipping when using the tab to key to toggle edit mode.
• Pressing F (Frame Fast) to insert a keyframe for the selected objects and auto advance the timeline one second (allowing you to quickly prototype animations), which also only inserts a keyframe for the camera when pressed with the mouse hovering over the director’s chair area (even if something else is selected and without disturbing your selection), will not advance the timeline one second when animating the camera in this way as doing so is not very useful when animating the camera position and rotation.
• The “Thickness” slider found in the shape tools menu when the “Thickness” option (icon of a small dot next to the shapes you can add) can now control the thickness values of all selected objects at once. Additionally, a restriction that was in place for this option to only work while Shape Tools were active has been removed. This makes it easier to use this feature as a simple, quick way to add or remove solidify modifiers to one or multiple objects with advanced settings and intelligent modifier stack placement.
• New “Auto Align View” feature which is now set by default to Alt+(Scroll mouse up or down) and Shift+Alt+(Scroll mouse up or down) makes the daily use of view hotkeys obsolete. Gone are the days of fumbling around for the right number view hotkey when trying to align your view to make precise selections or arrange things along the grid. Now, you can simply hold Alt and scroll your mouse wheel (just a slight nudge, one flick) to automatically align your view to the closest appropriate orthographical view (front,back,left,right,top,bottom). “Auto Align View” uses the context of your current screen viewing angle and then finds the appropriate numpad view key to use for you. Scrolling once, will simply align your view, then once you’re done editing, you’ll be popped back into perspective view as you normally would when pressing your middle mouse button down alone to rotate, however you can continue to orbit your view by holding Alt or Shift+Alt and scrolling your mouse after the initial alignment but you will then be switched to an orthographical view until you use the feature again or manually pop yourself back into perspective view by pressing the top 7 keyboard key or number 5 numpad key.
• Big upgrades for the Sensei Format pose library (displays in the toolshelf menu of the Sensei tab while in pose mode). Just clicking on a pose now automatically applies the entire pose to your object (regardless of what bones you do or do not have selected). There is now a “Just Selected Bones” button (with a bone icon next to it) which will instead of having the whole pose be affected when using pose library buttons like “Reset”, “Flip”, (and when clicking on a pose to use it), will affect only the bones you have selected. A new menu button (next to the auto-IK button) can now be pressed to display quick pose library, creation, selection and deletion options. Individual poses and libraries can be renamed by simply clicking on them after selecting them, or deleted by pressing the x icon which displays by their names when selected (poses become renameable after creating more than one). Many bugs have been fixed as well, concerning the operation of the Sensei Format pose library including the “Replace Pose” button for making slight tweaks to already saved poses.
• Parenting to armatures has gotten simpler. Two new options will display contextually when an object and armature are selected, “Parent Stretchy” and “Parent Strict”. These options also display brief messages about their purposes. Use “Parent Stretchy” to parent things like clothes you want to bend with a character and use “Parent Strict” when you want to parent things like a pencil, hat or gun to a character’s hand or some other accessory that you don’t want bending with the bones. These new parent options will now display whether you are in object or pose mode, making things much simpler.
• An amazing new set of tools “Curve-Array” has been added to the Builder menu which makes creating easily extendible and editable tracks of repeating objects intuitive and easy. Whenever you have one or more objects selected and any curve or path object is active (that is, a curve or path object is the last thing you shift-selected) two new options will appear in the Builder dynamic menu “C-Array” and “No Stretch”. “C-Array” (short for curve array) adds an array and curve modifier to your object or objects, and fills in all the necessary settings (like what curve you’re using, proper curve settings to achieve the desired result, and more) allowing the instant creation of items like repeating tracks, belts, roads, ladders, animal spinal columns and more. When using C-Array, the objects used are automatically merged for smooth results, automatically extend when ever you extrude the path or curve and automatically snap to the length of the curve. Additional “offset” and “merge” sliders will display in the same menu when selecting objects you have used C-Array on. One of the biggest advantages of this tool is that it automatically rotates, aligns, and adjusts rotation and transform values to ensure the curve, array modifiers and objects are all working together in harmony to produce expected results. The one remaining stipulation is that you should ensure the small arrows on the curve or path (which you can see while in edit mode when your curve or path is selected if you zoom in on it) are pointing away from the starting position of the objects you wish to use them on.
Where as C-Array is great for making organically merged, smooth repeating items, “No Stretch” performs a similar function, however objects using “No Stretch” will not merge or be warped in any way along the curve or path (as is the case when using C-Array which is the default behaviour when combining curve and array modifiers). Using “No Stretch” is ideal for setting up things like dominoes, bullet holster belts, repeating items along a path or road such as lamp posts, small plants etc… You can use C-Array and No Stretch on different items using the same curve or path to setup amazing automatically extendible and editable tracks that use organically merged C-Array items (for setting up something like a roller coaster track) and No Stretch items (which could be used for instance, setting up the roller coaster track supports and additional assets like lighting fixtures). The speed at which these tools allow for creating is incredible. Note that you can use both set of tools with multiple objects selected at a time on a single curve or path object.
An “Apply” button will display in the dynamic Builder menu for any object which C-Array or No Stretch was used on. If you experience strange issues when trying to animate your scene (especially when using the “No Stretch” option) you should first press Apply in the Builder menu with the objects selected you used “No Stretch” on. Pressing “Apply” for objects which were modified with C-Array will simply apply their array and curve modifiers creating singular mesh objects, pressing “Apply” for objects modified with “No Stretch” will convert each duplicate into individual objects. You can also press “As Linked” on objects that have been used with “No Stretch” which will apply the effects but leave instanced objects in place along the track (great for saving memory and editing the mesh of one of the objects affects them all).
Each object that “No Stretch” has been used on will display rotation locking options in the Builder dynamic menu, this is ideal for say, locking supports of a roller coaster track vertically towards the ground, or telephone poles along a road. Where C-Array can automatically adjust the amount of objects along the curve, when using No Stretch, you’ll need to select the curve or path and adjust the “Offset” value to determine how many times the related objects will repeat along the track. There is also a “Smooth” slider which allows you to make the track more rigid and a shape menu to make the track auto-complete and adjust the orientation of the curve from say “Minimum” to “Z-Up” if you were creating a track you wanted to always face upwards. You’ll also notice two new options in the Builder dynamic menu while in Edit mode if you have a curve or path selected, “tilt” and “radius”. These values can be used to adjust track rotation and scale along any given point. “Tilt” and “radius” can be animated by using the hotkey i, however if you have more than one point of the curve selected “tilt” and “radius” will be replaced with the options “Tilts” and “radii” which can not be animated, but instead used to adjust large portions of the track at once.
• The Sensei Format hotkey “Shift-W” (while in object mode) previously called “Better Mirror” has evolved into a new tool “Quick Mirror”. Quick mirror works in two amazing ways. When you have just one object selected, quick mirror allows you to cycle through six different mirroring options by continuing to press “Shift-W”. The different options will display at the top of the screen informing you which axis is being used. When you’re happy with an axis, the mesh will then be automatically bisected and removed according to the axis which you selected. This effect can be multiplied (repeated after each use) so that your mesh will mirror perfectly in multiple directions as you edit it. If you prefer the old functionality of “Shift-W” (while in object mode) you can uncheck “Quick Mirror Bisect” in the Builder menu. You can also control how Quick Mirror bisects things by adjusting the “Quick Mirror Origin” menu, also now in the Builder options menu.
If more than one object is selected, pressing Shift-W will cause all the selected objects to mirror around the active (last selected) object. In addition, they will become parented to the object.After Quick Mirroring multiple objects, you can continue to press Shift-W with them selected to change the axis which their mirror modifiers are set to.
• Hotkey for setting the 3D cursor when using a tablet has been changed from Alt-Shift-Double Left Click to Ctrl-Alt-Shift-Double Left Click.
• Ambient values for Cycles mode can now also be controlled from the Director’s chair menu.
• When in edit mode with a curve selected, two new options now display in the top dynamic menu, “Tilt” and “Radius”. These options let you rotate and scale selected points on your curve or path. These are especially useful when the curve is controlling objects.
• The Builder “Parent” button has been better equipped for handling automatic parenting of objects to armatures. Parenting multiple objects at a time such as a character (and all their clothes/accessories/etc…) to an armature will now automatically position each object’s armature modifier to the top of the modifier stack, which delivers much faster and accurate results when dealing with objects that are using subsurf, multires or other deform modifiers.
The view levels of subdivision modifiers will also be lowered automatically when parenting multiple objects to an armature (the more objects parented to the armature, the lower the subdivision level views so that after parenting many accessories or clothing items to a character, your computer doesn’t freeze when trying to move the armature (render and sculpt levels will not be affected).
• Collision settings added to objects when pressing “Add Active” or “Add Passive” in the Physics Control tab will now automatically adjust their mesh source type from Deform to Final when added to objects using modifiers (such as solidify and array) which require the “Final” state to be active to work correctly in simulations.
• Added cancel button to shape tools (next to the “Apply” button).
• The 0 key (which sets your 3D View to the camera view) will now toggle off and on (as with Blender default behaviour).
• Cursor snapping (right click) no longer uses a limitation based on size of object being selected. The limitation was originally implemented to help avoid cursor jumping when attempting to place the cursor near large objects (such as ground planes) but has proven to be unreliable. Right clicking in the 3D View on any object of any size will now automatically snap to to that object’s origin point. You can still of course hold Alt while right clicking to temporarily disable this feature or disable it all together in the Builder options menu in the toolshelf of the 3D View.
• The “Extended Tools” (mesh editing tools in the Builder tool shelf), has been re-organized.
• Rare bug when mirroring or cloning armatures via the Builder menu has been fixed.
• Improved Builder “bevel” button intelligence concerning modifier stack placement when used.
• Added “Editor Type” selector back to bottom dope sheet area (default Sensei Format workspace). Additionally, the Sensei Format Asset library button will now open the bottom dopesheet area regardless to what editor type it is set on.
• Fixed Dopesheet editor bug with grease pencil layer keyframes.
• Quick thumbnail size controls are now available while the asset library is open. Four quick selection buttons will now appear when the library button is pressed to quickly adjust the size of the thumbnails displaying in the file browser below or switch to file text view.
• Fixed custom duplicate “D” bug which would sometimes not leave the newly duplicated object as active (when using shape tools), as is the case when using default Blender duplication.
• The function “Convert UV To Material” which displays in the Zero Brush (or ZB Lite) options under the material options menu whenever you have drag and dropped an image onto an object has been renamed to “Convert To Real Material”. Blender default will let you drag an image onto an object from the file browser, and if you’re in solid viewport shading, you’ll be able to see it. The default Blender feature creates a simple uv map for the object and builds a link to the image that was dropped onto it, however it does not add a material or setup nodes for this image to display at render time in either BR or Cycles. The “Convert To Real Material” button will build BR and Cycles required assets for the dropped image to be able to render in both BR and Cycles. It also sets up the required nodes to be fully paintable and work with the regular Zero Brush layer system. In addition to this, the “Convert To Real Material” button will now automatically setup the material to work with transparent files such as .png in both BR and Cycles. So areas of the image which are transparent will appear so both in the 3D View and at render time in both BR and Cycles modes.
• Removed dissolve verts, faces, and edges from Builder “Cleanup” menu while in edit mode, you can still access these by clicking on the other mesh menu tools (vert menu, edge menu, or face menu).
• New particle hair layers created in ZB or ZB Lite now automatically use modifier stack setting. This means default hair placement will look better on object’s with subsurf, multires or other modifiers.
• Updated button display for new Blender 2.79 UI.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.5.0 04/21/2017
• Fixed bug with Builder “Mirror” tools when no active object in scene but still selected objects.
• Builder “Mirror” tools have been tweaked to produce more consistent results.
• Ctrl-E (Individual extrude hotkey while in edit mode) was updated to use newer operator.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.9 04/11/2017
• Fixed bug with “Hi-Def Shading” option (found in the Builder menu). Bug would cause issues when switching between BR and Cycles and then rendering.
• Fixed “Camera Tracking” bug which would sometimes leave the camera as the active object after tracking or untracking, instead of the user’s initial active object.
• Changed “Use Preview Range” icon on default animation timeline at the bottom of the main Blender workspace to better reflect its functionality.
• Changed the Animation toolset “Extended Tools” to “Keyframe Tools” to more aptly represent the menu options.
• Expounded some tool descriptions in the director’s chair (you can always hover your mouse over an option to learn more about it).
• New menu layout and system for director’s chair menus “Lights” and “Camera”. These new menus are now more graphically arranged, will display available options contextually as they become available and will now stay open so you can adjust multiple values at a time without having to constantly reopen the menus.
• Cleaned up terminology and contextual display of director’s chair “Camera” menu concerning path following and tracking.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.8 04/06/2017
• Adjusted Builder’s “Dimensions” tab to display “Scale” values along with rotation and location. Also included the ability to lock the scale values along with the other transform values.
• Builder’s “Align To Grid” and snap menu is now available while in edit mode.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.7 03/23/2017
• Fixed Sensei Format install issue which can happen due to DLL errors caused by some third party addons using 64 bit Python.
• Fixed text cut off of some Sensei Format pop up messages.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.6 02/21/2017
• Made X-mirror weight painting work more consistently.
• Fixed render bug caused by new API change to Blender 2.78b when using “Optimize Render” option found in the Director’s Chair Menu “Output” options menu.
• Sensei Format now comes pre-installed with the Filmic-Blender addon by Sobotka which can be found on this page https://github.com/sobotka/filmic-blender. This addon improves Blender’s color management system greatly increasing the dynamic range of renders in Blender. New installs of Sensei Format will have these new available options activated by default. Learn more about these settings in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9AT7H4GGrA&t=1596s
• The Sensei Format “Lights” menu (located near the bottom right of the default screen) has a new option made available via the Filmic-Blender addon. This menu lets you select various contrast and lighting modes which affect your final render and render preview.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.5 02/21/2017
• Sensei Format 5.4.5 updates were merged with updates for 5.5.6 before an official release.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.4 01/29/2017
• You can now disable auto keyframe snapping to the timeline cursor. The menu where this option is located can be found by pressing the small blank button between where it says “FPS” and “FR:” (Frame) on the dopesheet/timeline area at the bottom of the default Sensei Format screen.
• Fixed bug preventing shift-selecting in the outliner.
• Fixed bug from last update causing error message to display in console.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.3 01/26/2017
• Updated Builder, “Dimensions” menu as well as “Display” properties shelf menu.
• Activating a units system in the Dimensions menu will then give you access to grid the amount of grid lines displayed and the actual dimensions of each grid square.
• “Length, Angle” and “Area” buttons now display in the Builder menu while in edit mode (rather than object mode). This makes sense considering the results of these buttons only display while in edit mode anyway. To avoid clutter, these options also now only display if using a unit system other than “None” such as metric or imperial. You can select your unit system in the Dimensions Builder menu. • Fixed bug with Mirror options in Builder menu when in edit mode.
• Improved Sensei Format color scheme for larger monitors. Press T in the 3D View and open the “Display” menu, press “Customize Theme”, then press “Reset” to apply the new color scheme. Press “Save Changes” if you wish to keep the changes to your color scheme. The new theme makes no drastic changes but increases the contrast and text layout in some areas for clearer viewing on larger monitors (which are typically kept less bright by people using them who also wish to keep their vision in tact).
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.2 12/23/2016
• Sensei Format Pose Library “Flip Pose” button will now flip just the selected bones if at least one .r and .l bones are selected. This makes it easier to flip only certain parts of a rig (like just the arms or just the legs). If you do not have at least one .l and .r bone selected, the entire armature pose will flip as normal.
• Improved Shape Tools display in Builder menu.
• Fixed some bugs regarding mirror and clone Builder buttons when using “thickness” with shape tools. Single layer shapes such as planes can get their normals mixed up when mirroring. This can sometimes cause issues when using “thickness” with plane shape tool shapes. If this happens try entering edit mode and flipping the normals.
• Added “Hi-Def Shape Tools” an option which is now on by default but can be disabled in the Builder options menu (next to where it says “Set Origin”). with this option active, all shapes created from the Shape Tools shape bar will have increased subdivision for higher detail.
• Added new options and re-organized, the Builder menu while in edit mode using the “Extended” mesh tool set.
• Using the “Bevel” builder button with a shape tool object selected now creates two new sliders for adjusting shape tools “Bevel Width” and “Segments”.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.1 12/13/2016
• Big upgrade to “Shape Tools” now allows you to add “thickness” to any new shape you add via the Shape Tools menu (or whatever object you happen to have selected). These new features make hard surface modelling much more intuitive from within Blender.
• Fixed bug with “Make Instance Real” option which appears in the “Group” menu if under the add menu “Shift-A” you have one or more group instances selected.
• Fixed “Shape Tools” bug causing the selected shape tool to be selected but not active after using a tool on it (“Cut Out”, “Combine” etc…).
SENSEI FORMAT 5.4.0 11/17/2016
• Updated Cycles default light paths, sampling and performance to maximize live 3D render previews as well as enhance renders.
• The “Composite” option found in the Sensei Format “Director’s Chair” options menu located in the bottom right corner of the screen next to the render button (camera icon), will now automatically transfer you to the compositor of the node editor whenever rendering, separating your render into foreground and background layers as well as build the required nodes to use it all immediately. This is a special Sensei Format feature that was buried in the “Output Options” menu but now completely replaces the default Blender “Composite” button to help avoid confusion.
This option works for both Blender Render and Cycles mode and will automatically create and separate foreground and background render layers after sending you to the compositor, however due to an issue with Cycles, to split foreground and background after activating the Composite option and rendering, you’ll need to open the “Output Options” menu and activate “Use Transparent”, then click the render icon on the node that says “Render Layers” to re-render the foreground image with a transparent background so the two layers can be properly separated.
• Fixed bug with the tool “Chain Select” (located in the Animation tab of the tool shelf) for dealing with object keyframes. Performing chain select options will now only affect the keyframes of selected objects.
• Improved Sensei Format “Optimize Render” feature to display warning message if GPU render settings is not working.
• Sensei Format “Auto Apply Transform” feature (found in Builder options menu next to where it says “Set Origin” in the tool shelf of the 3D View) will now exclude objects with particle systems when auto applying transform values after scale… you can of course altogether turn the option off as well if needed.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.9 10/19/2016
• Several bug fixes and adjustments for API changes were made to Sensei Format’s updating and auto-updating features.
• Sensei Format “Check For Updates” feature was enhanced, secured and made faster.
• Sensei Format “Check For Updates” feature will now check for updates to Blender and Sensei Format whenever the option is activated (as well as once a day if the option is left activated). This means you don’t have to save your startup file and restart Blender after checking the option to see if there are updates if you normally keep this option deactivated.
• Fixed small bug with Shape Tools which would sometimes cause an error display.
• New “Optimize Render” option (which can be found in the options menu down in the camera area near the bottom right corner of the screen under the menu “Output Options”) has been added to Sensei Format and is now activated by default. This new feature will automatically activate your computer’s maximum GPU rendering capabilities (if any found), maximize light path settings for Cycles for the fastest possible render times at the minimum cost of quality possible. It also auto adjusts tile render size for maximum render speeds depending on render engine being used (BR or Cycles) and whether or not GPU rendering is available for Cycles (slightly reduced in size to increase general stability for complex rendering situations if using GPU). It also activates common sense options for rendering animation in Cycles such as animated noise seed values. These auto features will be used when clicking the render button down in the bottom right corner of the screen in the “Director’s Chair”, or selecting “Render Animation” in the options menu directly to the left of the render button.
• Code enhancements across various Sensei addons for dealing with “adaptive” subdivision a new experimental feature for subsurface modifiers in Cycles mode.
• Improved “Scene Brightness” function for controlling global lighting whether in Cycles or Blender Render (found in the “Lights” menu, bottom right of screen in the director’s chair area).
• Improved Sensei Format “Object From Selection” tool (Shift-D while in edit mode).
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.8 09/03/2016
• Added display info when using Draw-Mesh, Draw-Topo, or Draw-Skin tools in the 3D View toolshelf.
• Various tweaks and bug corrections for Zero Brush Lite.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.7 08/10/2016
• Discovered an option buried in the API for setting an object’s origin to the actual center of all its dimensions. Blender’s default “Set Origin” options displayed to the user do not offer this. This new option can be found in the Builder “Set Origin” menu as “To Object Center”.
• Ctrl-Click will now select armature bones while in weight paint mode. Shift-Ctrl-Click can be used to add multiple bones to the selection (useful if using multi-paint option).
• Added the option “Auto Apply Transform” located in the Builder options menu (Sensei Format tab in the toolshelf “T” while in the 3D View). Sensei Format automatically applies transform values to objects after scaling (resizing) them via the S key. This can now be disabled if desired.
• Fixed Sensei Format feature “Enhanced 3D Cursor” when linked objects are present in the scene.
• Added new Blender API terms to garbage removal operators found in various locations throughout Sensei Format. These new terms help prevent crashing and increase stability when collecting garbage.
• Updated “Link and Append” features found in the Sensei Format assets library with better file handling and more feedback information.
• Fixed info message bug regarding functions with the assets library.
• Weight paint mode will now display a message to the user to make armature bones selectable if using an object with an armature which has not been previously set to pose mode (default Blender behaviour). This should help relieve some of the confusion around selecting bones while in weight paint mode.
• Created custom operator to handle mirror weight painting. The button can be found at the same location as the previous one where it says Mirror X,Y,Z when in weight painting mode (y and z mirroring are not currently available in Blender for weight painting mode, however the y and z are kept for UI consistency across ZB). The new weight mirror operator activates several options including Multi-paint, X-Mirror, as well as Topology Mirror (when painting an object parented to an armature).
It also performs a mesh mirror snapping function on the object being painted to help make painting across mirrored bones more consistent. Finally, while the X mirror option is activated, Ctrl-selecting any bone with a mirrored partner (for example arm-bone.l and arm-bone.r) will automatically add the other bone to the selection, making weight painting in mirror mode much easier to use.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.6 07/15/2016
• Sensei Format’s “Autocomplete” feature for the console window, which auto completes after every keystroke can now be disabled/enabled at any time by pressing the “Autocomplete” button to turn the feature off or on. This differs from Blender’s default Autocomplete button which will only perform the autocomplete feature once per click (and not as you type).
• The Clone operations found in the Builder menu of the Tool Shelf (T), now works in combination with the “Shape Tools” menu found in Builder. You can still duplicate objects used to cut-out, combine or intersect by pressing D.
• Alt-Right Click can now be used to access “Outliner Operations” within the outliner window (while hovering directly over an object). This is Blender’s default right-click menu (when hovering over outliner objects). Right-click to access the Sensei Format group and restrictions menu is still the same.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.5 06/17/2016
• The Node Wrangler addon (which comes pre-packaged with Blender) is now active by default on new installs of Sensei Format.
• Added “Preview Quality” option to the Output Options menu found in the Director’s Chair options menu (bottom right corner of screen) directly under the “Render Quality” setting. This value is the same as the “Preview” value found in the Sampling menu of the render tab in the properties panel and exists as a means of convenience for adjusting these values.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.4 06/03/2016
• Improved “Shape Tools” found in the Sensei tab of the 3D Toolshelf while in object mode. Using any of the shape tool options (Cut Out, Combine, Intersect) now turns on wire display to the object being affected. This makes it easier to getter better mesh results by aligning edges or vertex points when you press “Apply” to finish your creation. A few non evasive mesh clean-up operations have been added to the apply button as well such as welding together overlapping vertex points.
• Holding Ctrl and scrolling your mouse wheel up or down while in edit mode, will now increase or decrease your mesh selection.
• Sensei Format’s auto transform apply feature (which automatically applies an object’s transform when scaling or entering edit mode if object has not yet been animated or does not yet posses modifiers which would be effected by transform) will now only be activated when scaling (resizing). Having this feature used when switching to edit mode was causing issues with some edit mode tools.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.3 05/13/2016
• The Quick Lights feature found in Zero Brush and Zero Brush Lite, will now automatically light whatever Blender scene layer you’re in when performing a test render “Shift-Z” or pressing the render preview button. If you’re using Quick Lights to do an actual full render, you’ll still need to have your objects visible in the first scene layer by either moving them to that layer “M” or holding shift and adding to the layers you want to be visible using the standard Blender scene layer buttons located in the bottom of the 3D View menu.
• The Auto Advance Render Slot option will no longer auto-disable if using multiple render layers. It will now only auto disable when using the compositor. You can disable this option manually in the Director’s Chair options menu near the bottom right side of the screen.
• Fixed director’s chair lights menu “Brightness” control to only adjust light/darkness value of world environment color if in Blender Render mode (was previously converting the color and value to gray scale).
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.2 05/08/2016
• Bug fixed which was causing the startup file to be overwritten whenever an existing Blender file was opened.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.1 05/06/2016
• Added child detail display type selection buttons to ZB (and ZB Lite) particle edit (hair) mode. Control over the amount of detail used to display your particle hair while in particle edit mode, object mode, and at render time is scattered around in 3 separate locations across Blender. These values can now all easily be adjusted right from the ZB particle edit brush menu when in particle edit mode.
• GPU based rendering is now the default setting for Sensei Format. Considering that multiple settings found in different locations across Blender require activation to properly take advantage of GPU rendering, this new feature will help a broad amount of users with hardware capable of taking advantage of these features without negatively effecting users without those capabilities. These new automated settings can double, triple (and more) increase the speed of your Cycles renders and render previewing. New code implemented into Sensei Format can automatically detect if your computer is capable of GPU rendering or possesses Cuda technology and will select the highest available settings (including the use of multiple graphics cards), if your computer possesses them.
• Updated several Sensei Format buttons and options to include more in depth descriptions of their functionality.
• ZB Lite bug when using Render preview (Shift-Z or press render preview button) has been fixed.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.3.0 04/22/2016
• Fixed bug causing mode to switch if using ZB Cycles conversion while in particle edit mode.
• Blender does not by default allow render previews while in particle edit mode, Zero Brush and ZB Lite now override this by temporarily switching to object mode when performing a render preview by either pressing Shift-Z or the render preview button. This allows you to quickly examine your particle hair without leaving particle edit mode.
• Improved hair material generated for Blender Render when using ZB particle edit mode button “Add Basic Material”.
• Basic Cycles hair material generated from new “Add Basic Material” option in ZB particle edit mode was fixed.
• When using Zero Brush particle edit mode (comb) particle strands (hair) no longer starts with “Hair Dynamics” activated by default when creating a new particle systems. All the same settings are still generated, but for the hair to be animated you must press the “Animate Strands” button found in the ZB particle edit menu or check the “Hair dynamics” option in the particle tab of the properties panel.
• Adjusted default particle hair system settings to be less taxing when using ZB particle edit mode to create and handle new particle hair layers.
• Added “Detail” slider under child particles “Display” slider in the ZB particle edit brush menu, for quick access to adjusting hair particle children quality.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.9 04/19/2016
• Fixed issue with render button not showing render result by default when rendering if in texture paint mode.
• Added option to disable Sensei Format auto render slot advance “Auto Slot” under the “Output Options” menu in the director’s chair options menu in the bottom right corner of the screen next to the render button. If this option is disabled, the default Blender behaviour of your renders overwriting each other will resume. • Fixed issue with HD Shading option when using Cycles.
• Removed double left click to select/deselect all in node editor. While this behaviour is more consistent, due to the occasional lagginess of working in the node editor, it can sometimes complicate things. If you need to select/deselect all in the node editor use A.
• Made behaviour of Builder, separate and duplicate buttons more consistent.
• The Particle Edit Mode menu for Zero Brush (and ZB Lite) has been completely rehashed. The properties shelf to the right (which normally displays layer selection when texture painting with Zero Brush) now displays a minimized version of Blender’s particle layer selection menu when in particle edit mode (hair stuff mode). The new particle layer selection menu uses custom operators to make creating, copying and deleting particle strand layers easier and more intuitive.
• A small “Layer Options” menu now appears under the new particle layer selection menu in Zero Brush (and ZB Lite). Included is a simple notification to inform the user that the active layer being edited will be animated if the user creates an animation. This is important to know, since each strand (particle hair) layer that is added to the animation pipeline might significantly increase render times or slow down the animation workflow. ZB particle strand layers are set to “animated” by default, so if you do not wish for a particular hair layer to be animated, make sure and turn off “Animate Strands” option after creating or copying new hair layers.
• The new particle layer options menu also contains tools to make creating and applying materials to each hair layer way easier. The menu lets you select a material from within the entire file (not just the active object as is Blender default), then it adjusts all necessary settings to apply the right material to the right hair layer and can be changed at any time.
• “Add Basic Material” found in the new ZB particle layer menu generates either a Blender Render or Cycles material with basic hair settings and nodes for each respective engine, and then applies that material to the active particle hair layer. Once the material is added, you can easily adjust the color of each selected hair layer right from the same menu without having to leave full screen or particle edit mode.
• The Zero Brush (and ZB Lite) particle edit brush menu has been re organized to appear more consistent with other Blender brush painting modes used with Zero Brush. The “X-Mirror” option now looks the same as the standard x,y,z mirror options found throughout Zero Brush although only x-mirroring is available in particle edit mode and the y and z options are left for consistency of appearance.
• With all the space saved by cleaning up the particle brush menu in particle edit mode, there was room to add simple child particle sliders and controls. Combined with the quick layer selection, copying and creating from the new particle layer menu, this makes creating multi-layered hair systems a breeze. The full “Child Particles” option menu can of course still be found in the particles tab of the properties panel if more control is needed.
• Increased the default child particle count when new particle system is generated via the ZB particle edit mode button (if no particle systems present on object). In addition to increasing the child particle hair display count, the over all particle display value slider (now accessible in the ZB particle brush edit menu in the tool shelf) has been lowered to make working with particle hair systems more manageable.
• Default animation values (found in particles tab “Dynamic Hair” menu) for new ZB particle strands layers have been adjusted to take better advantage of options found in newer versions of Blender. The new default settings are more generalized and less taxing on your system making for a smoother animation workflow and lower rendering times. These settings work better for more general uses of hair and particle strands but can always be edited from the Dynamic Hair menu found in the particles tab of the properties panel.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.8 04/08/2016
• “Reverse” and “Mirror” keyframe tools found in the “Animation” tab of the 3D view tool shelf menu have been moved to the animation area at the bottom of the screen. A keyframe insertion button (denoted by keyframe icon) has been placed next to these buttons so that keyframes may be entered via button right from the animation area as is the standard for most animation programs. It’s still typically easier to use F or I to insert keyframes, however this brings more usability to new users.
• Gutted Sensei Format animation area at bottom of screen to be tighter and more functional. Opening up the dopesheet editor in any other window or workspace, will give you full access to Blender’s default dopesheet editor if needed.
• Cleaned up Hacker workspace menu items.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.7 04/01/2016
• When using Builder “Parent” button to parent objects to armatures, a condition was added to test if any constraints modifying the armature’s pole targets are in place before automatically recalculating the armature’s bone roll.
• Speed up 3D Cursor snapping code for less laggy snapping.
• Added new conditions to 3D Cursor snapping code. Cursor will now only snap to an object’s origin point if it is somewhat near the object’s origin. This helps avoid annoying situations such as your cursor snapping to your floor or ground object when trying to reposition it. Of course cursor snapping can be temporarily disabled by holding Alt when right clicking or completely disabled under the Builder options menu (located in Builder menu to the left of “Set Origin” button).
• If in an orthographic view such as front, back, top, bottom etc… the 3D Cursor will only snap to the grid (instead of snapping to both nearby objects and the grid). Functionality will remain the same however if in orthographic user view (an ortho view but not front, back, top, bottom etc).
• Sensei Format automatically shuts closed additional keyframe information in the dopesheet area after hitting “I” or “F” to insert a keyframe. This is now, and will continue to be the default behaviour, but you can now disable this functionality in the timeline options menu (a blank button located between the FPS(frames per second) and FR(Frame) buttons down in the animation area) by unchecking “Auto-shut Keyframes”.
• Sensei Format will automatically adjust the type of keying set used for keyframe insertion. For example, while in pose mode the keying set is automatically changed to “WholeCharacter” when you press F or I to insert a keyframe. This ensures each keyframe you insert for your armature bones “takes”. This can now be disabled if needed in the timeline options menu (a blank button located between the FPS(frames per second) and FR(Frame) buttons down in the animation area) by unchecking “Auto Keyset Adjust”.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.6 03/21/2016
• New “Manual Update” option (found in File > Sensei Format menu) allows you to manually update Sensei Format with the Sensei Format zip file (downloaded from blendersensei.com) rather than using automatic updates. Just download the Sensei Format Zip file (the same zip file you downloaded the first time you installed Sensei Format) somewhere to your computer, then in Blender go to File > Sensei Format and press “Manual Update” to select the zip file you downloaded and Sensei Format will be updated to the latest version.
Updating Sensei Format will not overwrite your settings, addon options, theme, workspaces or layouts, just the core addon code to make sure everything is running as smoothly as possible. However, if you wish to update to the latest Sensei Format layout and settings after updating the Sensei Format addon (either automatically or manually) you can press the “Reset Layout” button below the “Manual Update” button to reformat your layout and startup files to the latest Sensei Format ones. Doing so will reset your settings to Sensei Format default and require you to re enable any additional addons you were using before pressing “Reset Layout”.
• New feature “Reset Layout” located in the Sensei Format file menu has been fixed.
• Replaced node deletion keymap of “X” to delete nodes to “X” to delete and reconnect. This means whenever you delete a node now, if it existed within a circuit, the circuit will not be broken just for deleting the node.
• Sensei Format’s “-Scene Light” lamp, which possesses a lamp parented to it solely for the purpose of producing base shadows while in Blender Render mode, was causing render anomalies when in cycles. This has been fixed.
• New director’s chair option menu “Use Compositor”. This option can be found in the “Output Options” menu of the director’s chair options menu (three stacked lines icon near bottom right of screen). When activated, pressing the director’s chair render button will open your rendered image in the compositor instead of the default image editor. This will also set up the appropriate nodes and settings to see your render as a backdrop in the node editor and allow you to immediately drop in effects to your render.
A default two render layers will be used (if the user has not set something up already) one for your foreground objects and a lower node for your background. This allows you to instantly drop effects onto foreground or background images after rendering while in Blender Render mode. A similar node setup will be generated if in Cycles mode, however due to inconsistencies between compositor behaviour in the different engines, you’ll need to turn on the “Use Transparent” option found in the “Render Output” menu of the director’s chair options menu, then manually press the render icon found on the first render layer node in the compositor to render your foreground objects with a transparent background while in Cycles. Doing this will give you individual control over effects on the rendered image foreground and background while in Cycles. More scene render layers and compositor nodes can be added as usual if desired.
A new “Save Image” button will also appear in the compositor area to make it easy to save the newly composited image straight to your computer (as is normally done in the image editor).
• Sensei Format auto-render slot advance functionality which allows you to render images without overwriting previous renders and be able to compare your renders during a Blend session was adjusted to disable itself if using more than one render layer or compositing nodes. While this functionality is generally desired, it was sometimes getting in the way during compositing.
• Adjusted auto-scale transform apply to disable itself when modifiers such as curve or simple deform are being used on an object to help produce expected results.
• Improved handling of unified 3D effects display for the director’s chair camera area when opening and closing files from within Blender.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.5 03/11/2016
• Adjusted for API changes for the coming Blender 2.77
• Improved timeline and keyframe snapping to include animation data from materials.
• Added auto-smooth button next to “Smooth” and “Flat” shading buttons in the Builder menu. Press this button to activate auto smoothing for objects. When activated, the option will present a slider you can use to control the angle of smoothing used during auto smooth. Using this mode is ideal for hard surface modelling but not great when using subsurf, multires or bevel modifiers on an object.
• Fixed issue with Shape Tools (located in the Builder menu of the tool shelf) where hidden objects or objects not linked to the active scene were causing issues with initiating the tools.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.4 03/01/2016
• Fixed issue with new auto-scale apply when using edit mode or scaling linked duplicate objects.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.3 02/27/2016
• Fixed “Align To Grid” bug not working for some object types.
• Zero Brush as well as Zero Brush Lite will now truly auto save your painted images. This means no extra steps need to be taken when saving your file to assure any new objects you’ve painted, or changes you’ve made to painted objects will be saved.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.2 02/26/2016
• Added “Reset Layout” option found in the Sensei Format menu in Blender’s file menu. This option can be used if you’ve accidentally changed an aspect of the Sensei Format layout that you want to get back. This will however reset your addons, so after using you’ll need to go to File/ User Preferences/ Add-Ons and re-enable any default or other custom addons you were using.
• Sensei Format now uses a custom edit mode toggle operator (the button used to switch between object and edit modes) along with a custom scale operator. The purpose of this is to auto apply scale transform to mesh objects when they are scaled in object mode or when leaving object mode and entering edit mode (in case the mesh is scaled via other methods such as the transform widget). Location and rotation transform are left alone. Right now the auto-apply scale will only be used on mesh objects and only if those objects do not possess animation keyframes to prevent disrupting them. To advanced users this may seem a bit extreme but there are good reasons for doing this:
A. It took me years of having modifiers and mesh edit tools behave sporadically before learning most of the time the issues were being caused because the scale had not been applied, imagine if we could eliminate that frustration for ourselves and new users.
B. So far, sculpting, bevelling, and loads of other modifiers are acting way smoother due to this feature delivering a way better experience and expected results.
C. This does not effect animation info as it is not used on any object possessing transform keyframes or non mesh objects.
This feature is experimental. I’ll continue observation through daily use to see if additional context exists which may need additional code regarding the feature, but right now I’m loving it. If you experience issues due to this feature please let me know so we can work to correct them.
• Navigation view keys can now be used in camera mode thanks to custom navigation code. Pressing 1-9 on your keyboard’s top keyboard keys will now rotate your camera view to the appropriate view rather than jumping out of the camera view if your mouse is hovered over a 3D View screen viewed through a camera such as the bottom right camera view in the director’s chair. This is awesome for quick test renders in addition to helping the director’s chair fulfil its secondary purpose as an always-on 3D View which can be used to make quick selections without disturbing your main 3D View work area.
• Changed the hotkeys 3 = Right, 4 = Left view to vice versa, 3 = Left, 4 = Right. I have no idea why I would want to break the convention 1-2 Front Back, 3-4 Left Right, 5-6 Top Bottom by making 3 right and 4 left… anyway it’s fixed, the documentation now reflects these changes as well if you wish to re download hotkeys or the Sensei Format manual.
• Adjusted Builder edit mode menu mesh tools. Vert, Edge, and Face dissolving have been moved to their respective menu types from “Clean Up” tools which now only displays “Limited Dissolve”.
• Improved sluggishness of timeline cursor snapping when dealing with large number of keyframes in the dopesheet.
• Adjusted Builder “Dimensions” menu. The “scale” value in the Dimensions menu was changed to read “Dimensions” to more accurately represent the values. The value boxes for dimensions were increased in size to make it easier to read and enter these values (especially when using metric or imperial display units).
• New “Distribute Keyframes” button located in the “Extended Animation” menu of the animation tab in the tool shelf lets you distribute the active object’s (the last object you selected) keyframes to all other selected objects. This is mostly useful when you’ve entered specific rotation or scale keyframes for objects that you want to give to other objects… remember that if location keyframes exist for an object and you distribute its keyframes to other objects, those objects will be keyed for the original object’s location, meaning they’ll all snap to the same position due to using all the same location keyframes whenever you play the animation.
• Connect Objects button (which auto-builds rigid body constraints) located in the Physics Control menu of the toolshelf can now be used in conjunction with “Shift-R” to repeat your last action allowing for rapid-fire connecting of things.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.1 02/20/2016
• Adjusted top Builder options menu. The set origin buttons now more closely represent their “button” like behaviour rather than using check boxes which might be confused as “defaults”. The Builder options menu is now denoted by the standard horizontal stacked lines which have come to represent “options” in this modern era, rather than have the stacked lines placed on the “set origin” menu.
• Builder menu mirror bug was fixed. Mirroring in object mode was causing mirror to occur around cursor (whether or not this option was selected).
• The Builder “Align To Grid” button now automatically resets your object’s origin point in addition to aligning the selected objects to the bottom left of the nearest grid line. This is very useful in conjunction with the Builder “Dimensions” menu which allows you to manually enter values for location, rotation and scale.
• When creating group instances (Press Shift-A and select “Instance” after creating a group “Ctrl-G” to create a group from selection of objects) origin and alignment have been greatly improved (though still not always ideal thanks to the fact Blender will add an arbitrary shift in location when creating a group instance… no one knows why).
• Group instances and linked duplicate objects can now be properly used with the Builder button “Align To Grid”.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.2.0 02/18/2016
• Physics Control menu “Connect Objects” button bug was fixed (was messing up if multiple constraint types used in scene).
• Fixed error popping up when using Builder mirror and clone operations while editing an armature.
• Vastly improved contextual operations of mirror and parenting buttons located in the Builder menu while editing armature bones in edit mode. Using the mirror/clone XYZ buttons found in the Builder menu while in edit mode and editing armatures, will now auto flip, rename, position and correct bone roll for any axes in which your bone selection is mirrored or clone mirrored.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.9 02/11/2016
• New director’s chair menu “Record Live”. Click the camera button down in the lower right side of your screen to reveal the new “Record Live” menu. Within the menu are three options “Record Basic, Record Walking, and Record Fly Mode”. Pressing any one of these options will allow you to begin live recording in the camera view. “Record Basic” will record any basic motion you perform on the camera such as rotating, zooming or panning in the normal way you would to adjust your view. “Record Walking” will send you into walk mode. W,A,S,D to walk and strafe, mouse to change direction, Space to jump, scroll middle mouse to increase speed, and tap middle mouse to teleport (like Link’s claw gun in Zelda). Use the mouse to rotate and the middle mouse button to increase or decrease speed if using Fly mode. Click the screen once when you are done, then press the pause button to finish.
You can use the “Extended Tools” menu located in the animation tab of the tool shelf and use the “Chain Select”, “Invert Selection”, and “Delete” buttons to clean up your keyframes afterwards if you desire. Be careful that only your camera’s keyframes are selected when deleting large amounts of keyframes. Pressing the mouse icon (next to the ghost icon in the dopesheet animation area) will limit your dopesheet view to just the selected object. This would be a good idea to do first before using the animation Extended Tools menu to chain select and delete your camera frames generated from the Record Live option, if you choose to do so.
• The Builder “Snap To Grid” button has been renamed to “Align To Grid” to better represent its functionality.
• Activating the “Draw Topo” tool snap button will now automatically turn on wire frame mesh for your source object (the object you are using the tool on) to make it easier to snap to key points of geometry. Pressing the snap button again will disable the wireframe mesh. Many have been asking when is a full tutorial going to be released on the Draw Topo tool. Sorry for the wait, but know that it’s getting better and better between now and the time when a tutorial will be released covering it.
• Tweaked “Draw Topo” tool “Finish” button to deliver better results when using a high detail value in your retopo.
• Fixed bug causing SF Assets library to sometimes send you up or down a directory more than you intended it to.
• Removed file browser double clicking to rename (use right mouse click instead). At first this seemed like a good idea considering double clicking on objects and values in Blender is now the standard way to rename them, but it was brought to my attention that doing so removes the ability to open or save over files by double clicking them in the file browser which is a more important behaviour.
• Fixed bug with Builder button “Separate” when using in edit mode.
• Fixed bug with rigid body world group being accidentally removed in rare cases.
• Greatly improved “Connect Objects” rigid body physics button when connecting objects already using rigid body constraints. The new constraints generated when pressing “Connect Objects” will now fully duplicate the previous object’s constraint settings. This makes it very easy to add additional items to chains of objects using various rigid body constraint types such as spring, point, hinges, sliders and more.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.8 02/01/2016
• Appending objects from files via the Sensei Format assets library (located in the bottom 3D View header menu) has been greatly improved for appending group objects, objects containing rigid body physics and animated objects. Even when appending groups using Blender default, doing so would cause the group objects to be highlighted in cyan meaning that they belonged to multiple scenes. This is not desired behaviour since appended objects are duplicated as entirely separate objects from the files which they are pulled (as opposed to linking objects which causes them to retain a connection). Groups appended via the Sensei Format assets library now appear and behave like regular Blender groups.
Groups containing rigid body physics are now automatically activated and assigned to the open file’s rigid body world group when appended. Finally, objects containing location animation data will not be repositioned to the 3D cursor location as is usually done when appending or linking a file via the Sensei Format assets library. The reason for this being, that objects with location animation data will automatically jump to the location of their animation data when pressing the play button. This is both confusing and can disrupt rigid body simulations so an exception has been created to overcome this and a message presented to the user if this exception occurs.
• The Sensei Format assets library will now automatically update the lower large thumbnail view (if library is active) when navigating through folders in the above, always present, list view of folders.
• You can now double click files to rename them in the file browser the same way you can rename any item in Blender by double clicking it.
• Using the Sensei Format assets library (save to open folder) save button (looks like down arrow) will now only auto generate a save name for the unsaved file using a selected object’s name and not use the object’s group name as a file name if it had one. In any case, you’ll usually want to rename your newly saved file after using this quick convention anyway.
• Builder “Set Origin” menu bug fixed when setting “Object To Origin” for non mesh items.
• The dimensions tab in the Builder menu located in the toolshelf of the 3D View, got another makeover. This menu has changed several times in the past year but has finally evolved to a now very aesthetically pleasing and efficient place. The menu allows you to set, restrict, reset and apply transformations to your selected object in a very intuitive way. Press the small x,y,z indicators over each transform value to lock that value’s axis from being used or reset when pressing any of the reset transform buttons.
• Fixed “Select By Group” option when double clicking to deselect/select all objects.
• Bug involving keyframe snapping in rare cases fixed.
• The “Use Cycles” option in the ZB options menu, will no longer use the Sensei Format “-Scene Lamp” while in Cycles render mode unless the ZB option “Auto Convert Lamps” is activated from the ZB options menu (Press Q in the 3d View and hover mouse over “ZB Options” to activate or deactivate “Auto Convert Lamps” option).
• Fixed rare bug when turning off mist via director’s chair menu.
• Extended animation tools (Toolshelf/ Animation Tab/ Extended Animation Tools) feature “Delete Object Keyframes” which allows you to delete all of a particular object’s individual transform keyframes (location, rotation, scale) has been fixed.
• Using “Follow Path” which appears as a button when you have an object and curve selected in the 3D View was tweaked to better handle animated objects as well as objects using rigid body physics.
• Help messages added to some tools if attempting to use them fails to explain how to use properly.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.7 01/21/2016
• A few hotkeys were redefined to make sure those who need quick access to edit mode default “Specials” menus have them. They are as follows: Ctrl-X Delete menu, Ctrl-V vertex specials menu, Ctrl-F face specials menu, Ctrl-W subdivide specials menu, Shift-Ctrl-E edge specials menu. There is also an update to the Sensei Format manual. Click the links below to get the updated versions:
• Shape Tools bug fix involving multi user objects (objects duplicated with “Alt-D” rather than “D”).
• Fixed Builder “Bevel” button when trying to bevel multi user objects
• The “Physics Control” menu got big upgrades for adding rigid body physics to objects that have been animated. Animated objects, objects using shape keys and other situations require settings to be adjusted to make certain objects work well within rigid body simulations. Now when you press “Add Active” or “Add Passive” with a selected object or selection of objects via the Builder “Physics Control” menu these settings will be adjusted for you automatically.
• The “Connect Objects” button in the “Physics Control” menu of Builder has had many bugs and issues hammered out in addition to new warning messages to make it easier to use.
• Default Blender “Free All” button in the physics control menu was failing to reset 3D View cache in some situations so a custom operator was built to fix this.
• Fixed follow path bug and simplified functionality to be more consistent.
• Fixed error message when trying to use the Builder menu option “Snap To Grid” for group instanced objects.
• Changed the hotkey “Shift-Double Left-Click” to set the 3D cursor to “Shift-Alt Double Left-Click”. The purpose of this hotkey was to provide a way to easily set the 3D cursor if using a tablet instead of a mouse. So instead of right clicking to set the 3D cursor with the mouse you would hold Shift and double tap on your tablet to set the 3D cursor, only this was causing issues with “Shift” selecting to add to your selection. So if you need to set the 3D cursor while using a tablet, you can hold Shift-Alt and double tap to set the 3D cursor.
• Builder menu “Separate” button got an upgrade. In addition to separating selected objects by their loose mesh parts (while in object mode), if you click the separate button on objects that have already been separated by loose parts, they will be broken down even further into separate objects composed of each mesh face.
• Adjusted “selected objects to cursor” button in the Builder menu (previously represented by orange cube icon) to use a cursor icon instead (less confusing).
• Holding “Shift” while vertex painting now toggles between black and white (useful for erasing material maps on the fly). Holding “Ctrl” and painting will now toggle use of the blur brush.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.6 01/16/2016
• Fixed bug causing render engine to switch to wrong engine after deactivating the Builder option “Hi-Def Shading”.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.5 01/13/2016
• Fixed bug with Shape Tools which was causing the end result after pressing “Apply” to be selected but not active.
• Bug with “Follow” object path fixed.
• Fixed adding additional objects to animated path causing to reverse path.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.4 01/11/2016
• You can now get objects to follow curves and paths with one button the same way you can with the camera. Just select the object you want then Shift-Select the curve or path you want it to follow. Notice the button under the mirror options at the top of the Builder menu in the Tool Shelf (press T to bring up tool shelves) will now read as “Follow”. Press this and your object will be instantly tracking the selected curve or path perfectly. To reverse the direction select the curve and note the option will now read as “Reverse”, press it to reverse the animation path. Note that to get the “Reverse” option to display, only the animated curve path must be selected.
• Rare bug causing error message for delete “location, rotation, scale” keyframes in “Extended Tools” section of animation tab has been fixed.
• Fixed bug if had camera or object following curve, then deleted keyframes and selected “Follow” again, wouldn’t re-animate path.
• Fixed bug with Alt-Right click (temporarily disables 3D Cursor snapping) wasn’t working if in orthographic mode (front, back, right view etc…) where the 3D Cursor will snap to the grid automatically if 3D Cursor snapping is enabled.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.3 01/07/2016
• Pressing “New” to reload the startup file “File/ New” or press “Ctrl-N” now reloads your UI as well. Previously this would only happen if you had “Load UI” enabled in your user preferences. Leaving on “Load UI” however, means that if you load someone else’s blend file (from say the internet), you’ll be forced to deal with their layout rather than your own (or Sensei Format default). Finally, pressing “New” gives you a really “new” file so you can keep your personal layout and not have to Quit and reopen Blender just to get things nice and neat again.
• Fixed parenting bug in Builder menu (previously parented objects could not be parented to children objects within their own parent structure without raising an error).
• Tweaked “Follow Path” code which automates making your camera follow a path.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.2 01/02/2016
• Removed “Select By Group” button from Assets Library menu (up-triangle icon down in the 3D View header menu). This button used to appear as a small hand icon you could click on or off when at least one group was present in your scene, but was cluttering up the Assets Library menu so the option has now been moved to the Builder options menu located next to the “Set Origin” button in the Sensei tab.
• Fixed bug with timeline indicator in pose mode (dragging timeline in pose mode caused error to display.)
• Shape tools now auto enables Normal Auto Smoothing after pressing “Apply” to finish your object. This accomplishes the same task as adding an “Edge Split” modifier without having to actually add one (which can mess up your modifier stack making your mesh more difficult to work with). These settings can be adjusted in the object properties panel located on the left side of your screen under the menu “Normals” (when the object you created with shape tools is selected).
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.1 12/30/2015
• Bad bug causing error spamming when deactivating Sensei Format has been corrected.
• In the camera menu of the director’s chair, the “Track Path” option was adjusted to automatically reset the camera’s transform when activated. This ensures that the camera will properly track the angle of the path whenever “Track Path” is activated or deactivated.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.1.0 12/29/2015
• Pressing “I” to insert keyframes over properties (such as materials, lamps or shape key settings) now behaves more consistently with pressing I or F to insert keyframes via the dopesheet or 3D View. This keeps your animation channels collapsed automatically whether entering keyframes for properties or directly. Unfortunately there’s no programmer access to property keyframe animation so a macro had to be created to accomplish this. Basically, releasing “I” automatically collapses the property animated keyframes. This is not as clean as I would like but it gets the job done and helps further create an Adobe (After Effects/Premier/Flash) like simplicity to the animating process in Blender.
• In the director’s chair area (in the camera menu) the “Follow Selected” option was renamed “Track Selected” to more accurately portray this feature and help avoid confusion with the new “Follow Path” option which now manifests in the camera menu if there is at least one curve object present in your scene.
• New “Follow Path” option will manifest in your director’s chair “Camera” menu when at least one curve object is present in your scene. This option (like the Track Selected option) gives your camera the appropriate constraint modifier and settings for the path and camera to deliver expected results when using a curve as a camera path. You can change which curve you’re using (along with other helpful settings) any time after using this option down in the Camera menu.
The “Follow Path” and “Track Selected” options have been integrated to allow seamless mixing and matching of these settings while always producing expected results. The new “Follow Path” feature includes several options which take care of confusing tasks such as reversing camera flow, properly tracking the angle of the curve, and animating the curve for the user. Selecting a curve in the 3D View and pressing “Follow Path” will automatically generate start and end keyframes for the path allowing you to immediately adjust the duration, beginning and end of the animation.
• Fixed Shape Tools error display if press “Apply” before using shape tools.
• Adjusted hotkeys so that holding Alt and double right clicking will call the add menu in the 3D View (while 3D Cursor snapping is temporarily disabled) the same as double right clicking does.
• Keyframe snapping and extended animation tools were tweaked to better include curve and “properties” animation data (along with a few bug fixes).
• Fixed “Advanced Object From Selection” bug which was occurring if the option was left on but the mesh being duplicated did not posses any subdivision surface modifiers.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.9 12/23/2015
• The director’s chair portion of Sensei Format (camera view and menu in bottom right corner of screen) now supports using multiple cameras. If there is more than one camera present in your scene, you’ll now see a menu to select the active camera for the director’s chair to display at the top of the “Camera” menu which is right next to “Lights” in the director’s chair menu. Director’s chair features such as “Follow Camera” and “Focus” (dof) effects have been recoded to handle multiple cameras better.
• Added more options to the “Timeline Options” menu located between the FPS and FRAME buttons down in the animation timeline area. This new menu brings together the most commonly used options from both the dopesheet and timeline area.
• The timeline animation area will now keep track of the current frame as your animation plays. This is a default Blender setting called “Follow” which is now activated by default in Sensei Format.
• Fixed bug with new “Hi-Def Shading” feature (located in the Builder options menu next to “Set Origin”) which wouldn’t shut off or on if in fullscreen.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.8 12/14/2015
• Slight bug caught in reverse frames had to be reuploaded as 5.0.8
• Added “Fill”, “Adjust Interpolation” and “Delete Object Keyframes” to the “Extended Tools” section of the animation tab in the Tool Shelf (press T in the 3D View to bring up the toolshelf.) Pressing “Fill” will generate a keyframe on every frame between two or more selected keyframes in the dopesheet area. You can then use the “Chain Select” option to thin these keys out if needed.
The Adjust Interpolation options allow you to remove interpolation effects or smooth out your keyframes animation curves (a bit like blurring the keyframes together to create smoother animation transitions). The Delete Object Keyframes menu lets you delete specifically location, rotation or scale keyframes for whatever objects you have selected.
• The current Sensei Format version will now display in the Sensei Format options menu located in Blender’s File menu. This is a nice way to know what version you’re using without having to check the addons section and a way to immediately let you know if the update process was successful.
• Fixed bug with extended animation tools.
• Added new option “Hi-Def Shading” in the Builder options menu (accessed by pressing the small blank space at the top of the builder menu between where it says “Set Origin” and the orange cube icon which will move your selection to the location of your cursor). This option will increase all buffer lamp shadows in the scene to ten times their current resolution, enable ambient shading in the 3D viewport, turn on GLSL and material shading, and temporarily transport you to Blender Render mode (so you can see the shading effects and such). You’d be surprised how working with a bit of shading can seriously help while modelling.
If you find the 10x buffer shadows is making your system to sluggish, just go to the outliner and click on “-Scene Light” then select the lamp parented to that one “-Shadows” then open the “Shadow” menu directly above where your selected object properties display, click “Buffer Shadow” and lower the “Size:” value. This will change the amount of resources used when using “Hi-Def Shading”. Before exiting the shadow menu, be sure to click the “Ray Shadow” button next to “Buffer Shadow” so that the ray shadow settings are used when rendering in Blender Render mode. You can adjust any lamp which uses buffer shadows in this way to get the most out of “Hi-Def Shading”. When you’re finished go to File/Save Startup File to save your changes.
• Cursor snapping: Shift-Right Click is now the hotkey to snap cursor to object’s mesh while in Object mode and Shift-(double) Right Click will now place the cursor and set the object’s origin point (previously, you held alt for these commands).
• You can now hold alt while pressing right mouse button (when in 3D View) to temporarily disable cursor snapping in the same way you can now hold alt while pressing right mouse button to temporarily disable cursor snapping in the animation timeline.
• Removed depreciated items from keymap. Now that these options are much more easily visible and available from the Builder menu (or performed automatically via Builder 3D cursor snapping) the below hotkeys are being removed from the default Sensei keymap to make room for other potential uses.
-Move Cursor to 3D Object: Alt-Shift-Right Click (Alt-Shift Double Click if using tablet)
-Move Object to 3D Cursor: Shift-Right
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.6 12/09/2015
• You can now hold Alt (while holding right or middle mouse button) to move the timeline indicator (orange line down in the animation area) to temporarily disable timeline snapping.
• Added “Extended Tools” to the animation tab of the Tool shelf (press T to open while in the 3D View) then select the “Animation” tab. These new tools handle reversing and mirroring your keyframes (without having to position the cursor “time indicator” to a special location or deal with any other special setup) and generally just deliver more expected results.
Also included is the new “Chain Select” which allows you to select keyframes based on a pattern which you can set next to the button. You can also quickly inverse your keyframe selection from this same menu. This is very useful for cleaning up large animation files with frame-by-frame animation data where you might want to say, remove all but every fifth frame in the object’s animation.
• Added custom Apply and Reset buttons to the Dimensions tab of Builder in the tool shelf and removed “reset” button from the “Set Origin” menu at the top of the Builder menu.
• Fixed Meta Shape Tools bug, base meta object was staying behind after disabling Meta Shape Tools.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.5 11/25/2015
• Sensei Format will now only check once a day for updates. Sensei Format only checks for updates once when you start Blender and only if “Check For Updates” is active.
• Draw Mesh, Topo, and Skin tools located under “More” in the add menu “Shift-A”, got huge upgrades. Now when using any one of these tools, you’re presented with a “Finish” button in the toolshelf. These tools are handy but required changing some settings specific to each tool after you were done using them, the finish button now converts your creations back into mesh while returning all your previous settings to the way they were before initiating each tool.
Draw Topo received even more special attention and is now capable of greatly reducing the workload of retopology in Blender. The “Draw Mesh” and “Draw Topo” tools, in addition to displaying a finish button after starting them, have several options to help aid your creation. There is an X icon to quickly delete grease strokes if you decide you don’t want to use them. A white square icon which will fix your meshes normals if they happen to get wacky, and for the “Draw Topo” tool, a button to use advanced vertex snapping and a “conform” button (icon looks like a person) to aid you in retopologizing.
• The “Draw Topo” tool now allows you to draw a grid “via grease pencil strokes (hold V while drawing with mouse to create grease strokes)”. Rather than convert the strokes directly to mesh, your strokes (when you press Shift-V) become part of a grid which is used to drape a sheet like layer of faces across the object you’re retopologizing. Pressing the Draw Topo “Finish” button will then use the many faces sheet layer to average out and correct the position of your final mesh. It works amazingly.
• You can now disable advanced mesh operations for the “Object From Selection” duplicate button (Shift-D while in edit mode). Enabling or disabling this function can be found in the new Builder options menu (blank icon located between “Set Origin” and the orange cube icon in the Builder menu).
• Auto group select no longer turns on by default when creating a group and the place where you enable/disable this feature has moved to the library display buttons for ease of access. Just press the small up arrow icon located in the 3D View header menu used to display the Sensei Format assets library. If your scene has at least one group, you’ll see a pointing hand icon allowing you to enable/disable auto group select. This feature can also be enabled/disabled in the Builder options menu (blank icon located between “Set Origin” and orange cube icon in the Builder menu).
• Added Bevel mesh and individual face smoothing to Builder mesh tools while in edit mode to be more consistent with the tools available while in object mode. The buttons look the same but do their respective tasks relative to object or edit mode.
• Cleaned up “Dimensions” menu in the tool shelf.
• Shape Tools got a huge upgrade. It’s no longer necessary to select multiple objects to use shape tools options like “Cut Out”, “Combine” and “Intersect”. Simply choose an object you want to affect, then press one of the above buttons, and it will carry out whatever operation you chose on whatever object happens to be closest to it. The previous behaviour of selecting all the objects that you want to affect an object then finally shift selecting the object you want to be affected, is still there only now, you have the option of using Shape Tools in a much more intuitive way.
• New feature “Meta Shape Tools”, can be found in the “Shape Tools” option of the toolshelf (Press T while in the 3D View). By default, your regular shape tools will display. Press the small white cube and sphere icon next to “Regular” to activate meta shape tools. Meta shape tools use Blender’s metaball system in a very unique way giving you incredible artistic freedom to create very complex geometric forms by merging and subtracting a set of basic polygon shapes such as a cube, sphere, plane and cylinder. The tools for meta shapes work very similar to the default Sensei Format Shape Tools with a few differences. Pressing the “Apply” button will convert the meta shapes into a single mesh object. These objects are beautiful but will require retopo in most instances if you plan to texture paint or animate them.
• Updated Director’s Chair “Lights” menu to behave more consistently.
• Fixed bug causing Lights menu not to display if all lamps were deleted.
• If “Only include channels relating to selected objects” is selected in the dopesheet editor (looks like a little mouse cursor icon), so as to only display the keyframes of a selected object, if timeline cursor snapping is kept activated (and it is on by default, you can turn it off by pressing the blank little icon between FPS: and FR:) then your cursor will now only snap to keyframes being displayed in the dopesheet editor.
• Fixed Director’s Chair ambient off/on display when in fullscreen mode.
• Pressing W while in object mode (to smooth things) will now also increase smoothing of metaball objects (Shift-A to bring up the add menu while in object mode, select “More” select “Metaball” to add meta objects).
• Fixed Cycles to BR conversion issue with DOF effects in Director’s Chair.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.4 10/20/2015
• Pulled the material library. This library was bulky, buggy, required a lot of hacks to keep it user friendly, and just wasn’t wear it needed to be. If you already have the library, it will continue to stay with you when updating Blender and Sensei Format (unless you just decide to manually uninstall it, your choice).
It will not be removed or overwritten by updating Sensei Format or Blender via the Sensei Format menu. But it is no longer being released with new versions of Sensei Format and it will not continue to receive maintenance and support. A new much better material library is currently being developed.
• Updated theme colors for lists to be easier to see.
• Added “hold S” to disable snapping while using the knife tool (“T” while in edit mode)
• Few minor bug fixes and updates to the core Sensei Format addon UI.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.3 10/12/2015
• Fixed some object mode issues with the Builder cloning and mirroring system (mirroring results are now much more consistent with one or multiple objects).
• Made “Bend” tool for object and edit modes Alt-Shift-W (since Shift-W is already being used in Sensei Format).
• Changed default viewport clipping to 2500 for main 3D View.
• Fixed bug when using Director’s Chair in fullscreen mode causing DOF not to work.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.2 10/02/2015
• There was a bug causing the Sensei Format startup file not to load for some users using smaller screen resolutions. This has been fixed.
• Increased Shader workspace performance by forcing the left 3D View window to use bounding box mode display rather than material while render preview is activated.
• Added “Read About Update” to menu when either a Blender or Sensei Format update is available so you can learn more about them before updating. This will only show up if you leave “Check For Updates” turned on in the Sensei Format menu (File/Sensei Format).
• Simplified animation controls in NLA, Sequence and other animatable editors to look more consistent with the default Blender layout.
• Added quick access to animation interpolation modes next to the record button down in the dopesheet editor. The icon is a blank little sliver, which in Sensei Format world means (pss…. hey more stuff here).
• Normally if you press “F” with your mouse hovered over the camera view in the bottom right corner of the Blender workspace, this will insert a keyframe for your camera and not whatever objects you have selected. There was a bug if in pose mode, that has been corrected.
• Fixed some issues with the Director’s Chair “Lights” and “Camera” options for Focus and Ambient Occlusion regarding loading previously saved files that were using these options. Some issues were related to broken code which have now been fixed while some issues are inherent to the way Blender saves user preferences. In any case, when loading a previously saved file, you should see your options now the way you left them.
• Improved Assets Library importer system (append button also imports non native blender file types such as .obj, .fbx, .bvh, .svg and so on).
• Fixed bug in Shader workspace causing the camera render preview to switch sides depending on how the dividing line between the two 3D views were adjusted. Now, however the line is adjusted, the render preview side will consistently occur on the right side of the screen.
• Changed default armature creation (when parenting mesh object to armature) display type from “Stick” to “Wire”. It’s a much cleaner, simple way to pose and animate.
• Sensei Format will now only report Blender update available if the update is a stable release.
• Fixed slight bug in Blender updater.
• Made default library displays tighter.
• Fixed bug when adjusting ambient value from “Lights” menu in the Shader workspace.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.1 09/17/2015
• If Sensei Format is deactivated, and “Check For Updates” is left on, only notifications about Blender updates will be displayed to the user.
• Stability and increased compatibility fixes for Sensei Format’s updating system.
• Was getting reports from some Mac users that some Sensei Format addons were failing to initialize during the install process of the new Sensei Format addon. This has been addressed, and should no longer be an issue.
• Adjusted default Sensei theme just a smidge.
• Fixed bug in “Apply All” button located in the “Customize Theme” area of the Display menu in the properties panel (“T” menu on the right in main 3D View).
• Discovered and corrected an issue that may arise when attempting to auto-update Sensei Format, if using a browser such as “Safari” which auto unzips downloaded files from the internet.
• The pause render button, which displays whenever changing the 3D View shading to “Rendered” was turned on by default in the last release of Sensei Format. The new default is unpaused to help avoid confusion for people using this feature. Though it’s faster to use the Sensei Format render preview button located in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen in the “Director’s Chair” area, or in the Zero Brush options menu in the properties panel while in texture paint mode.
• 3D Cursor and Timeline snapping are now on by default. To disable 3D cursor snapping press the thin blank button nestled between “Set Origin” and the orange “Object to Cursor” box icon in the Toolshelf “T” of the main 3D View. To disable timeline snapping press the thin button nestled between the “FPS” (frames per second) and current frame buttons down in the dopesheet animation area near the bottom of the screen.
SENSEI FORMAT 5.0.0 09/09/2015
• Sensei Format now auto installs, auto updates, auto transfers your files and auto updates Blender as well.
• Sensei Format finally has a fully functioning assets library. click the up arrow located in the bottom 3D View header menu to display you’re current library folder with large icons you can drag and drop or select files from. Click again to close. When the button is pressed you’ll have three additional options. The first which is represented by an arrow pointing down allows you to save your file. If the file has not yet been saved it will be saved to the current folder location displayed in the library. If the open file has not already been saved, a name will be automatically generated for it which of course you can change the name of as soon as you save it. The other two options allow you to link or append a selected file.
The library will now import many file types as well such as .obj, .3ds, .stl, .svg and so on. To import just select a file you want in the file browser then press “append” the same as you would if the file was a .blend. The file will be appended or linked “depending on choice” if the file needs to be imported it will be imported instead. Only .blend files generate real thumbnails in the assets library but you can still import many other file types directly to your scene.
• Using B to border select in the outliner will now finally actually immediately select all the items you selected rather than just highlighting them. Any objects with children objects under them will also be selected if in the selection. Each new border selection you do in the outliner will be added to your selection. To deselect just click on a single object. As is the case in the 3D View, if an object is hidden (the eye icon next to its name in the outliner is closed) then the item within the selection box won’t be selected. If you need to unhide everything just right click in the outliner and under restrictions select “Unhide All”.
• The “Unhide All” option under Shift-A/Groups/Restrictions (or by just right clicking in the outliner) has been fixed.
• Group selection button normally found in the 3D View header bar when at least one group is present, has been moved to the “groups” menu under the “select groups” option which can be found by right clicking in the outliner or pressing “Shift-A” in the 3D View.
• Big upgrade to the “Connect Objects” button in the “Physics” section of the Builder menu in the main 3D View located in the Tool shelf (“T” on the left side of the screen). After initially connecting two objects, if you connect another object to the last member of those objects, it now inherits all the relative physics settings of the last selected object (object you are connecting to). So if you’re connecting any object to a chain of connected objects, the new object will automatically assume the type (hinge, point, etc…) the angle of the constraint axis, whether or not the chain is using collision detection etc. This makes it very simple to, at any point, duplicate a member of the connected objects, select a member of the connected, press “Connect Objects” and continue your chain of connected things.
• Fixed Builder parent button to account for parenting to armatures that already have been animated (such as downloaded .bvh motion capture files). The parent button has also been contextualized to handle parenting objects to armatures after initially parenting an armature to a mesh (exp… bones to a character).
• New hotkey (Alt-Shift-D) rotate direction of array after adding an array modifier to an object (Shift-D) while in object mode (or just add via “add modifiers”).
• Some options previously unavailable if using Curve objects such as “Join” in the Builder menu and the (Shift-D) array modifier hotkey now function for curve objects as well as mesh.
• Added button between FPS and Frame number in the bottom timeline/dopesheet area to allow you to quickly turn timeline snapping on or off.
• Cleaned up dopesheet to display as the default Blender Dopesheet and not display the additional animation controls if used in a regular window. Fixed bug causing error message to display when trying to drag the timeline in the NLA editor.
• Tweaked File Browser selection to not be so “sticky” and accidentally pick up files when dragging and dropping.
• Adjusted clipping border (Alt-B) color to be invisible. You can easily hide and unhide much of your object’s mesh by making a clipping border with Alt-B (get rid of it by tapping Alt-B again), however by default Blender creates a special background color for the clipping area (this could potentially be useful if you were dealing with a lot of objects you were hiding bits from and needed to remember which objects were using clipping masks and which weren’t but in most situations, visibility is improved a bit by removing this special background color for clipping).
• Fixed Shader workspace bug causing “Ambient” and “Mist” options not to appear under the “Lights” menu.
• Fixed Material Library bug which would save your Blender file as a temp file when saving a new material.
• Updated Pose Library. If you use the “Parent” button located in the “Builder” menu in the 3D tool shelf (press “T” to bring up tool and properties shelf in the 3D View), to parent your mesh object to an armature (that is a bone rig), then Builder automatically creates a pose library for you to use on your armature. Automatically creating a pose library for an armature is not default Blender behaviour so if you’re armature is not using a pose library then the Builder pose Library menu would not appear. This has been fixed. If you’re using a file or object that has not pose library a new option will appear to create one.
• The armature icon next to the “Save Pose” button in the Pose Library is now clickable and can be used to quickly enable/disable auto IK for your armature bone rig.
• Updated key map to allow selecting bones in weight paint mode by pressing “Alt” rather than “Ctrl” (everything else you alternately select while in a particulate mode mode is done by holding “Alt”, this should be kept consistent with that).
• Fixed “alt-s Shrink/Fatten” hotkey to be consistent with the button operator in the toolshelf when in edit mode.
• By default Blender can not render preview particle strands while in particle mode, so whenever you hit the render preview button, if you’re in particle mode, you’ll be automatically transported to object mode so you can see the hair rendering you were working on.
SENSEI FORMAT 4.9.9 07/30/2015
• Fixed bug in Builder causing “Fill” button not to display.
• Fixed bug causing slight performance decrease when using “Basic” tool display in edit mode.
• Fixed bug in advanced 3D cursor which was selecting objects when use “Alt-Right Click” to set the 3D cursor to specific point on an object while in object mode.
• Fixed bug in “Director’s Chair” causing ambient and mist options to be disabled if no active object was selected.
• Moved Ambient and Mist in the Director’s Chair section (located in the bottom right corner of the screen) over to the lighting section and cleaned up the UI a bit.
• Performing a mesh bevel is now contextualized based on what type of selection you’re using. For instance, if you’re using vertex selection while in edit mode, Ctrl-B will perform a vertex bevel, if using edge or face selection, an edge bevel. If you prefer you can still use “Ctrl-Shift-B” to perform vertex bevel only. Beveling selections of mesh now feels much more intuitive.
• You can now adjust the strength value of ambient occlusion once activated (“Lights” menu of Director’s Chair) directly from the lighting menu. Adjusting this value in real time will also adjust the render value to help accurately represent the value.
• Adjusted default theme color for curves (were a bit hard to see with the new Sensei theme straight background color).
• If you’ve transformed a mesh object (while in object mode) and go to apply a “bevel” modifier to it (without first applying rotation and scale) it can sometimes make the bevel effect look like shit. The bevel button in “Builder” (located in the tool shelf “T” in the 3D View) will now automatically apply rotation and scale to your object before adding the bevel modifier delivering more consistent results.
SENSEI FORMAT 4.9.8 07/22/2015
• Added “Draw Topo” a new free retopo object which can be found by pressing “Shift-A” to bring up the Add menu in the 3D View and then select More/ Draw Topo. The instant you add the “Draw Topo” object to your selected object, hold “V” to draw the top and bottom lines of your first face. Then press “Shift-V” to convert the grease strokes to mesh. After you’ve created some initial mesh, you can reposition and extrude it to further conform the mesh retopology to your object. This mode automatically disables the 3D View button “Limit Selection To Visible” while in edit mode (you’ll find this button located in your 3D header menu when in edit mode). Be sure to turn this option back on (if desired) when switching to a regular object to work on in edit mode.
• Updated Extended Mesh Tools “Clean Up” to include edges, vertices and face dissolve. The menu was slightly re-arranged to improve usability and a new “Select Non-quad” button was added to help you quickly spot trouble areas in your mesh.
• Fixed bug causing Timeline Cursor Snapping to stop working sometimes.
• Cursor snap increments (Dopesheet/(select collapsed menu icon)/View/Snap Increments) can now be set and saved as a default setting. Once changing the setting, to keep it permanently changed go to File/Save Startup File, press it and click ok to confirm saving your changes.
• Changed a few custom Sensei Format names to be more consistent with default Blender button names.
SENSEI FORMAT 4.9.7 07/16/2015
• Added “Constraint” value in the Director’s chair Camera menu option at the bottom right corner of your screen. This value will appear whenever you choose the option “Follow Selected”. Adjusting this value controls how much slack you have to move around with your camera while it automatically tracks an object. This value can also be accessed on the constraints tab (value is called influence here) of the properties panel once you’ve chosen to follow an object.
• The Draw Mesh object has been updated to work more efficiently in combination with some tweaking to BSurfaces. You can now choose “Simple Mesh Mode” and “Smooth Shading” (now on by default) under the BSurfaces menu on the “Tools” tab of the tool shelf when in edit mode. A bug that would sometimes cause smooth shading to go off and on when using the draw mesh object (Shift-V to create mesh from grease pencil strokes) has been fixed as well.
• Updated the timeline and keyframe snapping code to include keyframes created using grease pencil keyframes. To animate with the grease pencil change the “Dope Sheet” option in your Dope Sheet/Timeline editor at the bottom of your screen to “Grease Pencil”.
SENSEI FORMAT 4.9.6 07/14/2015
• Sensei Format “Shift-D” (new object from mesh selection, which can also be used by pressing “Duplicate” in the Builder menu while in Edit mode) got an upgrade (along with some clarification in its description name and in the code). If you’re using a subsurface or multires modifier, this operation will now attempt to better conform your new mesh object from your mesh selection.
• Changed “Make Unique” button located in the add menu under the groups heading to “Make Instance Real”. This button only shows up if there is one or more group instanced objects in your selection. Previously the operations of these buttons were combined. The “Make Unique” button (which can still be used via the Zero Brush options menu “Q”) would convert any group instanced object into a real object with its own mesh, material, textures, nodes and images. This is great most of the time but occasionally, you may want to convert group instanced objects into real objects with their own mesh, without creating duplicate materials. So to do this use the “Make Instance Real” button under the “Groups” of the add menu (Shift-A) whenever you have one or more instanced objects selected.
• There was a bug causing the “Apply Drag And Drop Textures” (Shift-Q or Q/Materials) not to work if used from Cycles mode. This has been fixed. • “Customize Theme” Sensei Format’s quick theme customization options located under the “Display” options of the properties shelf in the 3D View (press T and it’s the shelf on the right), has been updated to include options to adjust shelf, skin and header colors as well as the ability to reset your theme with the reset button or toggle off and on the 3D View’s use of a background gradient.
• Adjusted default Sensei Theme. Removed basic gradient background. While the gradient background looks cool, it doesn’t really aid in improving visibility overall in most modelling situations and was making the grid difficult to see. Ultimately we need to strive for clarity, simplicity, and joy in our work environment.
SENSEI FORMAT 4.9.5 07/03/2015
• Fixed Zero Brush Lite and Zero Brush Full Version bug causing ZB not to work for people using translated versions of Blender.
• Updated “Customize Theme” button located in the Display option of the Properties shelf in the 3D View (press T to display tool and properties shelf). You can now adjust the 3D View text color as well as grid, background, and selection colors.
• Fixed bug in Display Properties Shelf menu “Hide Bevel”. Now works regardless of whatever mode you happen to be in.
• The brush menu in Zero Brush Lite (as well as Zero Brush Full) located in the tool shelf now reflects the new brush symmetry options available for texture painting in Blender.
• You can now mirror texture paint in Blender! Integrated new brush symmetry options new to Blender 2.75 into ZB menu for quick access.
• Fixed auto convert skin modifier object to paintable or sculptable object (yes Zero Brush can do that).
• Fixed bug displaying error message when click on particle edit brush for non particle edit objects.
SENSEI FORMAT 4.9.4 06/22/2015
• Updated color scheme for 3D View. The new scheme blends in a smidgen of blue into the otherwise gray gradient background to help relax the eyes for longer Blend sessions.
• Updated keyframe and timeline cursor snapping code to work better when closely zoomed in to the keyframes. When working at a close zoom level with keyframes switch the snap increment to the smallest value “1/8” second, for best results. This can be changed in the dopesheet/timeline menu under View/Snap Increment.
SENSEI FORMAT 4.9.3 06/17/2015
• Changed the default selection color to orange from white to increase visibility.
• ZB 1.5 Lite (and ZB 1.5 Full) have been updated to take advantage of the new awesome texture paint brush symmetry (mirror brush) options added to Blender 2.75. (note that these tools won’t be visible unless using Blender 2.75 and above).
• The material library now displays a warning message and confirmation prompt if you want to delete a material. This is good since doing so can not be undone.
SENSEI FORMAT 4.9.2 06/10/2015
• Changed default behaviour of “Use Cursor Snap” which can be turned on or off in the “View” section of the Dopesheet menu at the bottom of your screen (this menu is by default nestled under the collapsed header menu icon which looks like three small horizontal lines). Now when you disable cursor snapping, keyframes will still snap to the cursor, only the cursor will not snap to keyframes or the grid.
• Added Theme Customization options to the display menu of the Properties Panel (Press T in the 3D View). This menu allows you to quickly edit and save basic changes to your workspace such as overall selection, the grid and background color.
• Stopped Face mesh tools menu of Builder from switching mesh selection type to “Face” when it is clicked. While this behaviour makes sense for the other categories, mesh categories, most of the face tools actually rely on your selection mode being set to either edge or vertices to work.