Integral to all of it's animation and rigging features, is LipService's LBrush sculpting tool. LBrush is a state of the art multi-resolution subdivision surface sculpting tool. Similar to Pixologic's ZBrush and Autodesk's Mudbox, the sculpting tool has features like stencil brushes, texture brushes, smooth, push, pull, stretch, blendshape, etc running at speeds that blow artisan's doors off . You can also go back and fourth between LBrush and other Maya sculpting tools while you work with it and even import/export displacements between LBrush and ZBrush and Mudbox.You can even import displacements from ZBrush/Mudbox.
It's icing on the cake, but we also include real time shaders for shadows, screen space ambient occlusion which you can toggle on and off in our display panel.
POSE SPACE DEFORMATION - BORN TO RIG
One of the least satisfying things to deal with in character/creature animation these days is rigging. Studios like ILM, Weta, Sony Imageworks, and Dreamworks have all invested a great deal of effort (see links at bottom) in creating software to help riggers make models still look good in all poses, the reason for this is that the commercial tools have not filled this void in any kind of useful way. We've made it friendly, fast and robust. New 'muscle memory' feature makes it easier than ever to memorize any deformation into the PSD, muscle systems, cloth, etc.
Using PSD, you actually 'train' the engine to correct your geometry by stopping in the middle of a sequence and sculpting corrections, at the highres subdiv level. The engine will the recognize those joint configurations in the future and blend corrections in and out as they are approached.
FACIAL ANIMATION (Phonemes)
LipService actually started out 15 years ago as a facial animation system. One of the key benefits is non-linear interpolations, there's actually a spline motion path for every vertex (even subpoly verts!). This means that your facial animations will require far fewer targets and will actually hit them without coming to a stop. With blendshapes, you have to over sculpt several targets around where you are keyframing just to get it to come close. As our sculpting tools are fully integrated, there are tons of sculpting tools to help animators/modelers create fast shape libraries, and animate high quality face with unprecedented speed - you can easily add new targets on the fly, while you animate. You can also rig facial motion capture with the above PSD tools.
Watch Mick Animation workflow here
3D TEXTURE PAINT
LipServices LBrush tool now has a high quality texture painting tool. You can paint very highres textures inside Maya directly in your viewport, hit render and the texture's already there (regardless of what render you're using). We do patterns, projections, clone, erase, blur smudge, move, rotate, falloff and more. We also have support for tiled texture work flows where you have lots and lots of 2k textures. It's really handy to be able to re-pose your model while you're painting on it, or even just touch up paints you've done elsewhere.
Watch the speed painting of old man here
CORRECTIVE SCULPT ANIMATION - FIX ANYTHING
A common wish or people who've ever dealt with skinned characters or simulations like cloth, is that after the all the animation or simulation has been done, they wish they could just go in with their sculpting tools and 'fix' or 'embellish' things. Now they can.
Without disturbing the underlying animation with morphs and blends, you can layer sculpts on top of it with tangent space sculpting.
The correctional sculpt animation can also be used to embellish things like cartoony exaggerations. You can use this tool in conjunction with PSD and any other animation method.
BlendShapes have been around for decades, LipServices LBrush tool now has blendshapes, the idea is you attach a slider to mix in pre-sculpted delta shapes that you've sculpted pre-rig. We've updated the concept a bit - thanks to stuff we've learned on our other animation modules, you no longer have to sculpt pre-rig - you can sculpt/animate them post-rig, or even one at a time - you can sculpt and animate them right on top of each other.
As matter of fact, your Maya blendshapes/animation is automatically imported.
Watch Blendshape+ intro here