SideFX Software have just released Houdini 17.5. You can learn more about the 17.5 release here with more detailed release notes being available here. Houdini is such a unique procedural 3D software package that the release notes will make little sense, unless you are already familiar with Houdini. Houdini is “built from the ground up to be a procedural system that empowers artists to work freely, create multiple iterations and rapidly share workflows with colleagues.” Traditionally known for special effects work, Houdini is becoming more and more commonly used in game development. In fact, they ship a runtime version, Houdini Engine, that enables you to bring their procedural approach directly into game engines such as Unreal Engine or Unity.
Perhaps more importantly, Houdini is also now available in the much cheaper Houdini Indie version (also on Steam), bringing Houdini within the price range of indie developers, so long as they make less that $100,000USD per year. They also have the non-commercial but completely free Houdini Apprentice for people looking to learn or evaluate Houdini. To go along with Apprentice they also have tons of free learning resources to get you started. Be forewarned though, Houdini is a very unique application with a very harsh learning curve!
For a better idea of Houdini’s game related capabilities, be certain to check out their games reel and details available here.