Design stunning characters and show them off to the world. Best of all, it’s absolutely free!

Ever wanted to make your own unique 3D anime character but stopped because it’d take countless hours to create one that resembles a virtual YouTuber? Such was the case in the past, but times have changed.

Pixiv Inc., the company behind Japanese artist community Pixiv, has just announced their free streamlined modeling software called VRoid Studio, allowing both aspiring artists and veterans alike to swiftly design characters as they see fit.

▼ Creating your original 3D anime character has never been so easy.

VRoid Studio is packed with features to take the hassle out of character creation, so let’s take a closer look at some of them.

With the “Procedural Hair Design” feature, artists can use the stylus to create 3D objects like hair and tweak a ton of customization options via slider bars to adjust thickness, direction, or even the way hair tips curve.

▼ Draw a few strokes, modifying each lock of hair…

▼ …and tailor your character’s look effortlessly.

VRoid Studio also comes with “Texture Painting”, a powerful tool offering users the ability to directly paint onto 3D objects in the program. Conventional texture mapping techniques require pre-made textures to be wrapped around 3D models, a monumental task for those who aren’t tech-savvy. But VRoid Studio streamlines the experience and lets artists fully concentrate on drawing instead of grappling with 3D modeling concepts they aren’t familiar with.

Brush pressure sensitivity is a must for software like these, and VRoid Studio is no different, allowing artists to express their creativity with bold and light strokes of the stylus.

▼ Not satisfied with the stock eyes? Add as much detail as you want.

▼ A real-time preview on the side helps users focus on their work.

There’s a wealth of customization options for hair and eyes, but Pixiv Inc. hopes to push the boundaries and provide more tools for other body parts to give artists a true sense of drawing on a 3D model.

The recent rise in virtual YouTubers, virtual reality, and augmented reality-based communication has in turn resulted in a steady demand for quality 3D character models. However, existing software are often complicated to operate and require a huge time investment to learn their techniques. Pixiv Inc. hopes to fill this void with the easily accessible VRoid Studio.

▼ This Twitter user went for a
warrior look on his character

Available to Windows and Mac users, VRoid Studio will undergo closed beta testing starting late July, and signing up is as easy as heading to the official website here and plugging in your e-mail address.

Development of a platform called VR Project is also underway, which lets people use their created anime characters as avatars to communicate in an online world, all done using virtual reality or augmented reality. That doesn’t mean its use is limited to only social purposes though, as utilizing it for 3D animation or game development is just as feasible too.

As a company that encourages and supports artists, Pixiv Inc. envisions both VRoid Studio and VR Project to pave the way for even greater 3D content. Whether you’re a beginner or a professional, why not give the program a whirl? It’s good to be prepared for when you can enjoy a date at a cafe with your virtual crush!

Source: Pixiv VRoid, YouTube/Pixiv via Panora
Images: YouTube/Pixiv