Swarm3D: Computer Aided Swarm Flight Planner for Autodesk® 3ds Max

Transform your drone swarm maneuvers designed in Autodesk® 3ds Max into safe flight paths and transitions – just by the click of a button. Create collision free paths for an endless number of drones flying in a dynamic swarm.

This package contains all front end functionalities to generate automated, collision free and efficient flight paths for an endless number of swarm drones. Just select your target formations (your designed meshes and/or animations), specify the maximum velocity and the minimum safety separation of your drones and press “SWARM”. As a result your drones in the real world will follow the most efficient paths for your designed formations.



Installation – How To

Here is a step-by-step instruction how to install and use Swarm3D. Before installing, make sure you have read and understood the Terms and Conditions and the Privacy Policy.

System requirements

  • Windows 10 (64 bit)
  • Autodesk 3ds Max 2018
  • Anaconda 3 (64 bit)
  • Internet connection

Install Anaconda 3

Download the Anaconda 3 installer for Windows from here. When installing Anaconda 3, use the following settings:

  • Install Anaconda 3 for “All Users”.
  • Use the default destination folder.
  • [x] Add Anaconda to system PATH environment variable.
  • [x] Register Anaconda as the system Python 3.6.

Installation of Swarm3D in Autodesk® 3ds Max

  • Set write permissions for C:\Program Files\Autodesk\3ds Max 2018\python. To do this, right click on the path -> Properties -> Security -> User -> Edit -> User -> Full Permissions.
  • Open Autodesk® 3ds Max.
  • In the Autodesk® 3ds Max main menu go to “Scripting” and click “Run Script”.
  • Select the previously downloaded installer Swarm3D.mzp and open it.
  • The installer will install a few dependencies. Be patient.
  • After the installer is done, a small popup appears. Follow the instructions and enjoy using Swarm3D.

Getting Started

Obtaining a license key

There are two types of license keys:

  • FREE license key: When you press “Swarm” for the first time, you will be prompted with a form to request a FREE license key. Fill in this form and you will be able to test Swarm3D 3 times.
  • PAID license key: Let us know your specifications by contacting us at office@spaxels.aec.at.

Testing Swarm3D with sample 3D-objects

We have prepared sample data for you to test Swarm3D. This will help you choose the right format for your 3D-objects in Autodesk® 3ds Max in order to work with Swarm3D. It will also give you an idea of the possibilities this new swarm design tool provides. Just download the sample 3D-objects (2 meshes and 1 animation).

Go to “Customize” -> “Units Setup” and make sure you set  “System Unit Setup” to “1 Unit = 1.0 Meters” and “Display Unit Scale” to  “Metric” -> “Meters“. Then import the sample 3D-objects to Autodesk® 3ds Max via “File” -> “Import”. Now you can add the 3 sample show elements to the Swarm3D plugin and press “Swarm”. After a while you will receive the computed trajectories. You can view them in the Scene Explorer under “Sort by Layer”.