I've got a motion design course that I have to use c4d for. I'm used to maya and know next to nothing about c4d.
Are there any plugins you guys would recommend?
Isn't the entire point of a plugin to either improve a certain aspect of the program or add more features?
I don't see how this is looking for a solution to a problem I don't have. There could be a plugin that makes a certain task you perform repeatedly easier or provides better results consistently.
Why not use something like that if it's available? I obviously intend on learning the basics of the program despite what might be provided by a third party.
on c4d and after effects there's some plugins that can speed up your work and save you alot of time (for example align stuff, lighting/studios/hdri/materials presets, etc) and there's some others that do unique things (turbulencefd, hot4d/ozean, greebler, ivygrower, kurulumun, reeper x, supertracer, thrausi, xparticles 2, etc)
here a few very useful: gsg light kit pro (presets library for lights setup, hdri, etc.), cs tools (free pack with some presets), nitro blast (breaking stuff), drop to floor + align anchor point (forgot the name), x particles, vray/or/octane, turbulencefd (smoke/fire), maybe magicslowmotion, ToolBox (free), motionWorks movietype, also check other plugins by gsg and pixellab. also there's people on youtube that upload free .lib4d with materials (c4d library) eg. SmokyCrasher, Rainy 3K, Markoarts, Droid Packs, Project4D, etc.
Never really needed any plugins, but then again I'm not a professional. Maybe Atmosphere Shader for shading atmospheres.
Other than that, have fun, c4d is a pretty fun program. Do some basics of mograph tutorial to get a feel of what it can do. If you know python you can write your own plugins and modifiers right in the application, it has a pretty nice api.