Best apps for 3d animation

If you’re looking for the best apps for 3d animation, we’ve got you covered. We’ve rounded up a list of the Best apps for 3d animation, Animation in the Palm of Your Hand, BEST 3D Animation Maker Software for PC (Free & Paid) and we’ll tell you what makes them so great.

Technology has come far enough that we can now do things that animators used to only imagine: make 3D animated characters, designs, and short films on a smartphone. Whether you’re on the bus, waiting at the doctor’s office, or simply inspired in the moment, you can easily bring your cartoon dreams to life with just a phone and your fingertips.

In this article, we’ll get you acquainted with the Android and iOS apps that can get you started on your DIY 3D animation process, whether it’s just for entertainment or you’re looking to explore or expand your animation skill set. Here are the considerations we’ve used to narrow down the options:

  • Creative possibilities: These apps allow you to create animations in a variety of styles and formats, providing a range of tools as well as a variety of possible activities within the app, such as storyboarding or producing short films with your characters.
  • Efficiency: Ideally, you shouldn’t be spending hours just figuring out how the app works but be able to jump in quickly and start bringing your imagination to life. These apps will do just that.
  • Quality: The apps featured here are functional and smooth, with well-produced graphics, and feature the right tools to make animating as streamlined as possible.

At the end of each app’s description, you’ll also find a quick run-down of the basics. Also note that using a tablet instead of a phone will give you better ease and access to more complex animations; user reviews of the apps often reflect this fact.

Animation in the Palm of Your Hand

1

THE BEST 3D ANIMATION APPS FOR ANDROID & IPAD

Jerky Motion

Ideal for fans of meme-creating, Jerky Motion allows the user to hone in on the animation of a single character. This app has less of a focus on characters and props (you’ll need to make in-app purchases if you want a wider selection) but has a great base platform for lighthearted, entertaining cartoons and short video-making capabilities.

Lens flares, color grading, and options to add in audio or voice recordings help add flair and pizzazz to the animated characters. Just be aware that while the app suggests it’s for ages 4+, Jerky Motion is really better suited to older children or teenagers (and adults, of course!) in terms of usability.

  • Cost: Free, with some additional costs for bonus features
  • Platform: iOSAndroid
  • Rating: 4 stars
  • Audience: Older children and teens
Have fun
Have fun “jerking” the motion of your animations around (Source: DigitalMarketer Limited via Google Play)

2

THE BEST 3D ANIMATION APPS FOR ANDROID & IPAD

Toontastic 3D

With a focus on storytelling, Toontastic 3D is an ideal app for younger children to let their creative side be unleashed. Chunky, fun 3D cartoon characters are brought to life with basic story outlines that kids can take on by creating their own characters and props or using the included items to customize.

User-friendly 3D drawing tools and kid-friendly in-app musical soundtracks make this an ideal choice to introduce kids to the art of animation and storytelling in film, as parents won’t have to worry about anything inappropriate; the app gets high marks from Common Sense Media reviewers, as well.

  • Cost: Free
  • Platforms: iOSAndroid
  • Rating: 4 stars
  • Audience: Geared towards kids, easy for adults
Animate yourself, or let your imagination run wild!
Animate yourself, or let your imagination run wild! (Source: Google LLC via App Store)

3

THE BEST 3D ANIMATION APPS FOR ANDROID & IPAD

Iyan 3D

A fun animation app for a relatively broad audience, Iyan 3D is great for burgeoning filmmakers as well as those who want to use 3D animation for pose modeling, choreography, or still images. It also allows users to render text in 3D font styles.

After importing characters and props from the app’s store, you can get right to work creating scenes or animating short films. You can also opt to import photos from your personal album to utilize, too.

  • Cost: Free
  • Platforms: iOSAPK available for Android
  • Rating: 3 stars
  • Audience: Teens and adults
Iyan 3D even allows for photorealistic rendering. Look at the shadows!
Iyan 3D even allows for photorealistic rendering. Look at the shadows! (Source: Smackall Games Pvt Ltd via APKPure)

4

THE BEST 3D ANIMATION APPS FOR ANDROID & IPAD

Plotagon

With a strong focus on storytelling, Plotagon is a great app choice for those looking for short filmmaking options or storyboarding inspiration. The animations in the app are script-based, and you can add in your own voice recordings, so it’s ideal for budding voice actors.

While it’s rated quite highly with users who enjoy its creative possibilities, be aware that some report that it can get expensive as you need to pay to access some of the higher-level features.

  • Cost: Free, with options to pay for high-content versions
  • Platforms: iOSAndroid
  • Rating: 3.5 stars
  • Audience: Teens and adults
Turn your script into an animated film
Turn your script into an animated film (Source: Plotagon via Google Play)

5

THE BEST 3D ANIMATION APPS FOR ANDROID & IPAD

MJOC2

A fairly straightforward 3D animation app, MJOC2 uses simple characters, props and scenery to allow users to create entertaining short films to share with friends and family via their phones or tablets. Characters’ appearances and vocal styles can be customized.

It was designed primarily for use with phones, so for those without a tablet, this app could be a good option. While it isn’t necessarily ideal for more sophisticated 3D animators, it’s a good choice for beginners or for those looking to use it for entertainment purposes only.

  • Cost: Free
  • Platform: Android
  • Rating: 3.5 stars
  • Audience: Older children and teens
Animation optimized for touchscreens
Animation optimized for touchscreens (Source: TBS groups via Google Play)

6

THE BEST 3D ANIMATION APPS FOR ANDROID & IPAD

Animate Free!

Though users report it might take a bit of time to master the controls, the Animate Free! app is another good choice for those trying to do 3D animations primarily on mobile as opposed to desktop or tablet animations. You can create or customize characters and skins or use the ones the app provides.

While it’s a bit limited in terms of available models and props, this is a good app for amateur animators or storyboarding as well.

  • Cost: Free
  • Platform: Android
  • Rating: 3.5 stars
  • Audience: Beginners, those without tablets
Footprints in the sands of virtual time
Footprints in the sands of virtual time (Source: Stenson via Google Play)

7

THE BEST 3D ANIMATION APPS FOR ANDROID & IPAD

Animate Plus

Animate Plus is from the same developers as Animate Free!, so you can expect that we’re dealing with similar but specced-up functionality.

Another option that’s optimized for those looking to do the majority of animation on their phones instead of a tablet, Animate Plus offers simplified 3D characters for speedy posing. It’s especially well-liked by Minecraft users as you can use a skin selection for Minecraft models.

The touch-and-drag features of this app are what helps it be more phone-friendly for aspiring animators who don’t necessarily have access to a tablet. The app also allows for easy sharing of videos with friends and other users.

  • Cost: ~$1
  • Platform: Android
  • Rating: 4 stars
  • Audience: Teens, Minecraft fans
Bringing Minecraft into a whole new world
Bringing Minecraft into a whole new world (Source: Stenson via Google Play)

BEST 3D Animation Maker Software for PC (Free & Paid)

#1) Adobe 3d Animation Suite

1) Animate 2) Character Animator 3) Illustrator 4) Illustrator Draw, and 5) Photoshop Sketch are Adobe 3d Animation Suite. These comprehensive bunch apps cover all aspects of modern design, layout, animation, and film­making. These are one of the best 3D animation software to collaborate quickly and effectively with integrated apps as well as online cloud storage and sharing.

Let’s see the features of all of Adobe 3d Animation Suite tools:

Features:

Adobe Animate:

  • Allows you to stretch your 2D artwork into the distance and create natural depth.
  • You can add, subtract, and combine artwork with building up detailed 3D drawings.
  • You can define the spatial placement of the artwork layers and camera
  • You can use parallax effect to create a sense of space and depth
  • Enables you to accentuate or reduce the apparent depth of your animation by adjusting the Perspective Angle.

Adobe Character Animator:

  • Allows you to add textures, designs, labels, or other surface effects to your 3D objects.
  • Adobe Character Animator allows you to add, subtract, and combine artwork with building up detailed 3D drawings.
  • Animate or Character Animator through your shared Creative Cloud Libraries.

Adobe Illustrator:

  • Allows you to make functional groupings of your artwork to speed up animation.
  • It helps you to export your animation in real time to Facebook Live, YouTube, or another third-party app.
  • You can add, subtract, and combine artwork with building up detailed 3D drawings.

Adobe Illustrator Draw:

  • It allows you to quickly build up sophisticated vector designs on your mobile device.
  • It helps you to convert your gestures into editable vector artwork and share it using online libraries.

Adobe Photoshop Sketch:

  • You can work in oil paint, watercolor, charcoal, or marker.
  • You can use preset, customized brushes and an unlimited palette to create spontaneously.

Supported platforms: Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS

Visit Adobe Suite >>

#2) D5 Render

D5 Render is a real-time ray tracing rendering software that speeds up your architectural, interior, landscape, product design, and other CGI visualization workflow. It allows you to turn ideas into amazing animation in a snap with its intuitive interface, real-time preview, self-explanatory animation tab, and amazing render speed. For an 8 second video in 4K resolution, it usually takes only minutes to render. You’ll still get the work done in less than 20 minutes, even when the scene gets huge, complex, and heavy on resources, according to D5 Benchmark. D5 not only saves your valuable time for reviewing, refining, and editing, it also offers photorealistic renders that can beat offline renderers.

Features:

  • Livesync with 3ds Max, SketchUp, Revit, Cinema 4D, Blender, Rhino, Archicad.
  • Video rendering resolution up to 4K with no watermarks.
  • Output with a sequence of frames and channels: Material ID, Ambient Occlusion, RT Reflection, Alphamask, Trans Mask
  • Built-in post-processing effects: LUTs(custom LUT files also supported), Color Grading, Lens Flare, Bloom, Vignette, Chromatic Aberration, AO & Outline styles.
  • On-click weather system of rain, snow, fog, cloud, and wind.
  • Ease of setting up shots and camera movement.
  • 8000+ ready-made assets: PBR materials, dynamic plants, furniture, exterior models, animated 3D people, particles, and more.
  • Handy tools to quickly place multiple models, especially plants: Brush, Scatter, Path
  • Custom HDR, LUT, IES files import
  • Saving models/materials to local asset library

Visit D5 Render >>

#3) Daz 3D

Daz 3D is a figure posing, animation, and rendering application that is designed for animators and designers. It enables them to create human models in 3D. The latest version of this tool allows you to add light and texture to the image.

Features:

  • It provides 3D motion pictures, posing, and animation.
  • Models are hand-painted with details.
  • You can import content into other 3D software tools such as Maya, Mudbox, and 3DS Max.
  • It enables you to export the output in COLLADA, Universal 3D, BVH, and FBX format.
  • You can customize character types.
  • It automatically syncs lipsing to the character.
  • This tool provides virtual lights.
  • You can transfer figures to Maya software with a few clicks.

Visit Daz 3D >>

#4) Adobe Character Animator

Adobe Character Animator is a software product that helps you to animate characters in real time. You can utilize this software to turn any art into animated characters with a webcam.

Features:

  • It helps you to create an animation that matches your facial expression.
  • You can animate with arms, legs, and heads.
  • You can drag and drop customizable characters and sets to make animation.
  • It helps you to create high-quality 3D animation effortlessly.
  • This tool allows you to set up specific shots like a close-up and zoom.
  • You can design characters to convey movement and speed.
  • It provides Keyframes to create a moment.
  • You can sync audio to your animation.

Visit Adobe Animator >>

#5) MotionBuilder

MotionBuilder’s Auto Desk is a 3D character animation software developed by Autodesk. It can be used for motion capture, virtual cinematography, and traditional keyframe animation.

Features:

  • You can capture, edit, and playback character animation.
  • It helps you to manipulate motion capture data.
  • Characters.
  • This tool allows you to exchange data between other animation applications like Maya, 3ds Max, and Motion Builder.
  • It enables you to create a realistic movement for any character.

Visit MotionBuilder >>

#6) Crazy talk

CrazyTalk is a 3D animation tool that uses voice and text to animate facial images. This 3D animation software for PC enables you to use the intensity of your voice to drive animations in real time. This tool provides 3D editing with expression templates, modified sliders, and muscle control.

Features:

  • It enables you to transform a photo in real time into 3D heads.
  • Lets you make 3D animated movies on your desktop.
  • You can synthesize 3D heads by using both front and side photos for the right and accurate looks.
  • You can dress up and customize designs of accessories.
  • It allows you to control selected parts and fine-tune facial behaviors.
  • Crazytalk provides timeline editing with individual part control and motion clips.
  • It supports major image and video file formats up to 4K.

Visit CrazyTalk >>

#8) Maxon

Maxon is a 3D modeling, motion, and rendering software designed by MAXON Computer. It is capable of animating, lightning, and texturing. This tool helps you work on both 3D graphics and animation.

Features:

  • This 3D rendering software helps you to create both realistic and abstract models.
  • You can design a cloud with realistic shading.
  • You can create high-quality product visualization using customizable models.
  • It enables you to choose fonts quickly from the drop-down menu showing a preview.
  • This tool offers procedural objects and shaders make, which makes it easy to refine your ideas.

Link: https://www.maxon.net/en/

#9) Keyshot

KeyShot is a rendering software to create 3D visuals. It includes support for over 35 leading file formats. This tool provides free plugins that offer one-click loading. It is compatible with Windows and macOS.

Features:

  • It includes more than 750 preset materials having advanced capabilities to create your own style.
  • You can experience VR (Virtual Reality) with just one click.
  • This 3D rendering software allows you to create, iterate, and refine your designs and concepts.
  • You can apply textures, labels, and variations to any photo.
  • It enables you to add lens effects in the image.
  • KeyShot helps you to create still images as well as animation.
  • You can create visuals for the web as well as mobile.

Link: https://www.keyshot.com

#10) Mari

Mari is a 3D painting tool that enables you to add texture around any object. It is one of the best 3D animation apps that provides more than hundreds of HD textures. This tool has Python API to automates workflows and studios.

Features:

  • This tool support UDIM workflows.
  • You can make adjustments and changes to your paint before working on a photo.
  • It allows artists to import and convert your set of textures into a Mari material.
  • You can mix paint with the adjustment layer to build a shader.
  • This tool supports Ptex format to UV-based texture.
  • It allows you to manage color transforms.

Link: https://www.foundry.com/products/mari

#11) Toon Boom Harmony

Harmony is an all-in-one tool for efficient animation, from drawing to final production. It allows you to create artwork, animate, and add sounds and special effects into animation. You can import multilayer PSB and PSD files, Illustrator, PDF, bitmaps, and media files.

Features:

  • Stabilizer for smooth lines.
  • It provides 3, 4, and 5-point curved perspective guides.
  • This 3D cartoon animation software application allows you to create cut-out animation.
  • You can integrate it with software available in the production pipeline.
  • It offers 2D or 3D integration.
  • Harmony helps you to create 3D animation for the game.

Link: https://www.toonboom.com/products/harmony

#12) Unity

Unity is a fully integrated development game engine that gives functionality to create games and other interactive 3D content. It helps you to assemble art and assets into scenes and environments. It is the best 3D animation solution for building, rendering, and animating realistic natural environments.

Features:

  • You can use it for Windows, Linux, as well as Mac.
  • This tool can be used for 2D as well as 3D development.
  • This application allows you to modify props, textures, animations, environments, etc.
  • It helps you to create user interfaces intuitively and fast.
  • It provides realistic ozone simulation.
  • This software includes shaders to add shades to your image.
  • You can extend the unity editor with numerous other tools to match your team workflow.
  • You can also use models made in third-party software like Google Sketchup, Autodesk’s 3D Studio Max, Blender, etc.
  • This tool allows you to fine-tune your scenes quickly and easily. You can use it to give visual effects in movies.
  • It enables you to collaborate with others.

Link: https://unity3d.com/unity

#13) Mixamo

Mixamo is a tool that allows developers and artists to customize and create 3D character animations. It has a collection of high-quality 3D ready-to-use characters.

Features:

  • It can automatically set custom characters according to a full human skeleton.
  • You can transfer readymade characters into your own characters.
  • It allows you to download animations in multiple formats.

Link: https://www.mixamo.com/

#14) Blender

Blender is a 3D computer graphics software application for developing visual effects, animated movies, games, and more. This free 3D animation software allows you to import or export videos in MPEG, QuickTime, and AVI file formats.

Features:

  • This tool provides a Python API for scripting and customization.
  • You can customize shortcuts.
  • It has a path tracer for realistic rendering.
  • You can create, transform, sculpt, and edit your models.
  • This 3D rendering software offers a real time preview of the 3D scene and tracked footage.
  • It helps you to turn still characters into impressive animations.

Link: https://www.blender.org/features/animation/#animation-toolset

#15) LightWave

LightWave is a 3D computer graphics software application developed by NewTek. It can be used for both animated and static 3D images. This software provides independent scaling options for a multi-monitor setup.

Features:

  • It provides metamorphic animated sculpting or painting.
  • You can work with FBX (Filmbox) data.
  • This tool kit allows for live Constructive Solid Geometry (CSG) operations and grid filtering.
  • Using the UV technique, you can map 2D image texture onto a 3D structure.
  • It offers shading and rendering characters.

Link: https://www.newtek.com/lightwave/2020/

#16) Houdini

DescriptionHoudini is a 3D animation software application developed by SideFX. It helps artists to work freely, create multiple iterations, and share workflows with colleagues. It provides a grooming tool to create quick curves.

Features:

  • Houdini is a tool that helps you to create complex models like environments and cityscapes.
  • It provides a wide variety of polygons, Subdivision Surface modeling tools.
  • You can choose from a range of third-party rendering applications like Redshift, RenderMan, and OctaneRender.
  • Houdini offers a better way of building, sculpting, and rendering cloud formations.

Link: https://www.sidefx.com/products/houdini/

#17) Clip Studio

Clip Studio Paint is a tool that allows you to paint and draw with a natural brush. It helps you to capture every detail in your drawing. This tool has inbuilt rulers for drawing lines.

Features:

  • This tool allows you to edit thickness, shapes, and more with layers.
  • You can customize a pen to draw a stroke.
  • It has a built-in stabilizer for smoother lines.
  • You can add finishing strokes with starting and editing effects.
  • It provides more than 1000 customizable brushes.
  • Clip Studio enables you to set your own brush shapes and texture for unique brushes.
  • You can convert layers to dot images.

Link: https://www.clipstudio.net/en/

#18) Poser

Poser is a 3D computer graphics program distributed by Bondware. It provides ready-to-use 3D human figures, clothing, hair, and lighting to quickly start project.

Features:

  • You can easily create animation and art with 3D characters.
  • It helps you to create the human for illustration, art, animation, comics, and more.
  • This tool enables digital artists to access numerous third-party digital content.

Link: https://www.posersoftware.com

Leave a Comment

two + four =