Blender is the free and open-source 3D creation suite. It supports the entirety of the 3D pipeline—modeling, rigging, animation, simulation, rendering, compositing, video editing, and motion tracking.
Blender vs LightWave opinions
Blender shows up as a very good alternative to Lightwave 3D, not mention they share some UI paradigm. A definitive choice for independent artists.
SketchUp (formerly Google Sketchup) is a 3D modeling computer program for a wide range of drawing applications such as architectural, interior design, civil and mechanical engineering, film, and video game design—and available in a freeware version, SketchUp Make, and a paid...
Wings 3D is a subdivision modeler inspired by Nendo and Mirai from Izware.
It is possible to assign materials, vertex color, UV coordinates and textures, but there will be improvements in those features before Wings goes 1.0.
There is no support in Wings for doing animations.
CINEMA 4D is a commercial, cross-platform, high-end 3-D graphics application, produced by MAXON Computer GmbH of Friedrichsdorf, Germany. Noted for its flexible interface and ease of use, it is capable of procedural and polygonal/subd modelling, animating, lighting, texturing...
Bforartists is a complete 3D suite to create 3D content. It offers you the full 3D art pipeline to create game graphics, prerendered movies and stills.
MODO is a fully featured 3D content creation application, famous primarily for it's modelling capabilities, MODO also offers a fast renderer, sculpting, painting, dynamics and animation tools.
Houdini covers all the major areas of 3D production, including:
- Modeling - All standard geometry entities including Polygons, (Hierarchical) NURBs/Bezier Curves/Patches & Trims, Metaballs
- Animation - Keyframed animation and raw channel manipulation (CHOPs), motion captur.
TouchDesigner is a complete authoring tool for building interactive 3D art, visualizations, prototypes and UIs. Derivative makes and supports TouchDesigner and offers their services to do custom production using TouchDesigner.