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The 3 Types of 3D Animation You Must Learn About

by Steven Brown
Types of 3D Animation

3D animation has gone a long way since its inception. It involves motion in three-dimensional space to bring characters, objects, and elements to life. Initially, it was used in the creation of video games, tv shows, and movies. However, as technology progresses, businesses are starting to use it to market their products/services.

When you think about 3D animation, what first comes to your mind? Video games and movies, right? But 3D animation isn’t just about that. 3D animation has 3 different types, each with varying complexity and interactivity. As an animator, you must know all of them. 

Regardless of the tools used, the goal remains the same: to create a realistic environment for the viewers. Read on to know what these types are and which is the best fit for your next project.

Passive 3D Animation: Video and Film

This type of 3D animation focuses on visuals rather than interaction. Hence, it is known as passive 3D animation. Among all the other three types, 3D video is the most common. 3D animated videos are quite popular in the business world. This is owing to their ability to generate excitement for products, as well as their accessibility to viewers and lower production costs.

Pixar’s Toy Story is one of the best examples of 3D animation in the video. You sit back and watch the 3D toys move about in a 3D environment. Besides, as for the viewer, the experience is completely visual. Creating a 3D animation video requires a great amount of effort. Even then, this is the simplest sort of 3D animation.

Additionally, you may use passive 3D animation in the following scenarios:

  • For new product launches, particularly as a strategy to energize your sales team
  • When you have to explain high-tech products or services in detail to your audience 
  • To create clear and precise product differentiators 

Interactive 3D Animation: Augmented Reality (AR) and Video Games

Another type of 3D animation is Interactive 3D. It is used when creating video games and augmented reality (AR) experiences. What makes interactive 3D animation so popular is the first or third-person perspective it brings. If you’ve tried out augmented reality (AR) or AR glasses, you already know how it manipulates objects in a 3D space. 

In interactive 3D animation, the experience is purely interactive between the users, characters, and environment. It is more complex and costly than 3D video animation. Thus, they require more effort to create. But interactive 3D animation is more rewarding and effective. 

Moreover, you can make use of interactive 3D animation to:

  • Provide users a tour of a physical environment, such as an office or a retail store, to connect and interact
  • To give users the impression that they are inside a video game by using a digital screen and external controllers like a mouse and keyboard
  • When you have to showcase product animations that let users manipulate the view

Immersive 3D Animation: Virtual Reality and Mixed Reality

Immersive 3D animation, including virtual reality and mixed reality, is the most complex type. Virtual reality allows users to interact with characters, objects, and the surroundings in a completely virtual setting. A combination of virtual and mixed reality appears as powerful tools with limitless real-world applications. 

This sort of animation needs the usage of a device, such as Google Glass or Oculus, to help viewers interact with the real world. Moreover, it is best used in the training and learning environment. For example, from surgeons to mechanics, almost everyone can benefit from the step-by-step guidance of an immersive 3D animation video. It is also more costly and time-consuming to create than the other two types of 3D animation. 

Besides, you can also use immersive 3D animation for:

  • Complex informational training
  • Training users on how to use a particular product or service

Which is the best type of 3D Animation for you?

Each type of 3D animation has its set of benefits. Moreover, each differs when it comes to the level of interaction, immersion, and complexity. Passive 3D animation is less costly and less time-consuming. Whereas, interactive and immersive 3D animation is much more complex and costly to create. Choose the best type by keeping your goals, budget, and target audience in mind.

Do you want to use 3D animation techniques to benefit your brand or business? Work with the right expert to create the compelling computer-generated imagery you desire. Get the best 3D animation service and turn your imaginations into animations!

The Final Words

There you have it! Now you know the three types of 3D animation, what they are, and where can you use them. When it comes to 3D animation, the sky is the limit. So, make sure to include one or more of these into your sales, marketing, or training strategies. 

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