I’ve been big fan of Robert Leger for quite some time now. Robert came to our attention at Motionworks a few years back as the winner of the Unplugged Title Challenge, and when I heard he was launching a new place to buy, sell and develop tools for Cinema 4D, I was really excited to check it out.
Robert’s site immediately made me think of Apple’s App Store; It’s clean, beautifully laid out and even my technically challenged mother could navigate her way around it. The difference for me, between the App Store and c4dtools.net, is that in a million years, I couldn’t tell you how to get an app created or published on the App Store. C4dtools.net is a different story, with the developer pages laid out in a user friendly way that accelerates rather than impedes the process of launch your product.
The developer log-in opens to the Product Overview page. There’s a red lock icon, indicating that you’re in edit mode and preventing the page from going live and publishing. To the right, there’s a button to edit your Product Page. Super simple.
Once inside the Product Page, there are three types of content that you can add: text, image and video. These are for descriptions of your rig, renderings, tutorials, etc. Images require a thumbnail and full-size, while video requires a thumbnail and Vimeo link. To the right, there is a small RGB interface for adjusting color of your type and background. Robert makes a note that developers should be aware of readability when adjusting values. Nice touch.
Once your adjustments are made and you’re happy with the Product Page, you can click on Preview Changes to check it before going live. Here’s a screenshot of how MovieType for Cinema 4D looks on c4dtools.net.
Other features include a Profile Page where you can add two email addresses, one customer facing and another for administrator use. Don’t forget to add your avatar!
Developers are paid on a monthly basis and have access to a spreadsheet (Sales/Payout page) that breaks down the share, sale and revenue for your product. This is a great way to keep track of your payouts right on the site.
The feature that I’m most excited about, not only as a reviewer but as a user and developer, is the Product Request page. This is brilliant. Customers have the facility to request specific tools and products for Cinema 4D. Robert’s “Rules of the Game,” break down the guidelines for developers.
Developers can see who is currently working on the project as well as who is next in the queue. Customers are reminded that they’re not hiring a developer to work on their project but rather as Robert points out, “they are asking for a favor that may or may not be taken care of”. The fact that developers are kept anonymous is also a good idea in my opinion.
c4dtools.net is such a wonderful addition to our community. Users and developers should really take advantage of what Robert has created for all of us. I’m excited to see what shows up on the page in the near future, maybe a flocking rig?