2022-10-06 Pipeline, Assets & I/O Meeting

Everyone is welcome on the Google Meet linked below every other Thursday, at 17:00 CEST.

Present: Aras Pranckevičius, Arjan van Diest, Bastien Montagne, Brian Savery, Charles Flèche, Lilith Houtjes, Michael Kowalski, Nathan Rozendaal, Sonny Campbell, Zhen Dai

The meeting covers the pipeline & I/O module in a broader sense, including some topics hosted in other modules (e.g. some I/O python add-ons, or overrides and .blend file I/O from the Core module).


Collections for Import/Export Design & USD

Sonny has videos and prototypes for collection IO (both based on c++ and python code), as detailed in the task.

Micheal has a patch for unbound materials. He also notes that Charles Wardlaw has patches for color attributes support.



Nathan has created a design task for this project, he is looking for feedback on it before starting the implementation work.

Specific USD-Based Pipeline in Game Development

Charles is a pipeline developer at Ubisoft Montreal.

He exposes their need for some custom handling of specific data sets when they import USD files in Blender (e.g. to convert smooth groups into smooth/hard edges, complex rigs manipulations, etc.). They have been in contact with Micheal and created some preliminary design task for this. Custom USD schemas could be a good candidate here?

Another potential future development would be adding support for USD shapes.

Discussion also goes over differences between animation and game production pipelines. Animation is typicaly relatively linear, where each step works with what was produced by the previous ones, and produce results for the next stages. In game studio pipeline, the workflow is more centralized on the engine, other tools are ‘use and forget’, once results is put back into the engine data. For references, there are meetings about games and USD,

In that sense, usage of USD is different, typically there is no need to have a strong conservation of data between import and export in a DCC.

Next Meeting

The next meeting will be on Thursday 20th October, 17:00 CEST/Amsterdam time (your local time: 2022-10-20T15:00:00Z).

The provisional meeting agenda will be linked in the #pipeline-assets-io-module channel before the meeting.


Was ⚓ T101320 Multilayer EXR UDIMs display incorrectly able to be brought up?

It’s an issue that could affect more USD imports in the future (beyond ALab) but I am unable to fix on my own as I don’t know the entire history of why multi-layer EXRs were implemented as they are today, nor do I quite know what the best design would be to fix this one.

to convert smooth groups into smooth/hard edges

That’s a very interesting one! I have to send my lowpoly/meshes from Blender to 3DS Max, and my smoothing always breaks between the Apps… I end up having to 100% redo my smoothing in Max, to be sure it will bake properly in the end…

Would be awesome if I can send my work between Max/Blender, and preserve my smoothing. It would save alot of time and headaches…