The beta will continue as a private beta until launch, at which point we will have a trial version available for everyone to try. Due to the positive reception we've gotten so far and the great feedback from our private testers we've decide to skip the public beta and go straight to release.
Anyone who has contacted me recently about getting in the beta, sorry, we're not going to add anyone else due to the official release coming up shortly.
If you’re in the beta program you should get an email notification about the new build with download links. If you’ve got a build already, launch it and you should get a prompt to update (if you do not get a prompt, check your firewall/anti-virus settings and make sure internet access is granted for toolbag.exe, or follow the link in the email to the manual update download).
We’ve changed/added a bunch of stuff, including a revamped skin shader, tweaks to the UI and general usability, re-organized the material editor for improved flexibility, metalness reflectivity mode, object visibility, ao/cavity map support, detail normal map support, and much more. Check the full list of changes here:
The material system re-order will break existing scene files. The scenes will still open, but you may need to set up your materials again (the materials should still be assigned to the appropriate mesh chunks.
We still have some general scale issues, we have ideas that we’re working on to deal with it, however, please bear with us for the moment. You may notice that some of the settings in the skin shader are very scale-dependent. If the skin shader looks borked, check your mesh scale. A quick way to check mesh scale is to move your mesh around in the viewport and then check the numbers in the transform tab of the object properties - if the numbers say something like 1243 units, try scaling your mesh down in your 3d app and re-importing it.
If you've got a build, load it up and you should get a notice to update.
This build comes wit the usual spattering of new features and bug fixes, including UNDO, some tweaks to the movement/rotation widget, anisotropic specular shader(make sure to set both reflectivity and gloss to aniso to use) microfiber shader (lambert + fuzz yay!), focus tracking to keep your model in focus while adjust the camera, properly synced normal maps from 3ds max and a variety of other things.
Minor update 4:
B4 is out with a few fixes and new features. Ansio now actually works (yay!), the skin shader bug that was found has been fixed, selection of focus point with MMB (when using DOF, this rules, try it!), some new key combos for navigation on laptops w/o MMB (alt+shift for pan, ctrl+shift for focus point), and some updates to preferences and visibility stuff.