Supported versions of 3ds Max and 3ds Max Design

Our plugins support the following 3ds Max 64 bit versions. 

3ds Max

3ds Max Design

 = Unofficially Supported. Due to Autodesk licensing policy Forest Pack is only able to officially support 3ds Max 2017 to 2022. The installer also includes versions of Forest Pack for 3ds Max 2013 to 2016 which should install and work as expected, but we are unable to test them. 

Mental Ray compatibility in Max 2017 and 2018

From 3ds Max 2017 Mental Ray was an optional installation. Forest Pack for Max 2017 still has many dependencies on the Mental Ray libraries and is required by our plug-ins to operate correctly. Please make sure that Mental Ray is installed for 3DS Max 2017, even if you don't intend to use it to avoid errors.

From 3ds Max 2018 Mental Ray is no longer included, and for technical reasons we have had to temporarily suspend support.

Supported Renderers

Forest Pack supports native instancing in the renderers and versions listed below

  • Arnold 7.1 (MaxToA 5.2) and greater. Please make sure the MaxToA plugin is up to date. You can download the most recent version from the Arnold Renderer website.
  • Mental Ray is supported in version 2013 - 2017 only.
  • V-Ray and V-Ray RT supported versions 3.6.05 or greater for V-Ray 3, V-Ray Next and V-Ray GPU update 1.1 or above and V-Ray 5.
  • Corona Renderer 1 and onwards
  • Octane 1.x and onwards
  • Redshift  2.x and onwards
  • FStorm
  • Final Render

Billboard Library compatibility

The 2D Billboard library is only supported by Scanline, Mental Ray and V-Ray.

Built in Library support

Not all libraries have materials available for all the renderers. To see which renderers have partial library support, please check the compatibility matrix shown below. To see which renderers are supported by each library item, please see the online library browser.

Billboard Library compatibility

To use Forest Color and Forest Edge maps with Arnold, you will need to turn on Legacy 3ds Max Map support in Render Settings->System.

Feature Compatibility

Due to technical limitations, feature support varies between renderers. The table below illustrates the compatibility of Forest Pack's key features with each render engine.

Fully compatible features are marked with a  and highlighted in green.


Forest Colour is partially supported by V-Ray GPU. Get colour from map using Random Values or As Texture on Surface is not currently supported.

Unsupported features are marked with a  and highlighted in red.



V-Ray RT


ArnoldMental RayCoronaTheaOctaneMaxwellFinal RenderArionRedshiftFStorm
Native instancing

Create instances using Forest  Tools

Forest Colour






Forest Material

Edge mode

Material Optimiser

Points-cloud display

Parametric areas

Distribute using maps

Automatic clustering

Frustum culling and falloff

Randomise and control transforms

Manual edit mode

Scatter animated geometry

Randomise and control animated geometry

Forest Effects

Library Browser

Presets with compatible materials





2D Billboards Library

* = Similar effects may be possible using the renderers own shaders.

Billboard Library compatibility

The 2D Billboard library is only supported by Scanline, Mental Ray and V-Ray.

For renderers not mentioned in the above list it is still possible to use Forest Pack using Forest Tools to convert scattered objects to standard Max instances.

License Manager

For network licenses, you will need to install the license manager on a networked PC. The license manager has the following OS requirements:

Microsoft® Windows:

  • Windows 10 64-bit
  • Windows 8/8.1 64-bit

Microsoft Windows Server:

  • Windows Server 2016 64-bit and above