“What if you could create a gaming character that looked like you?”
That’s the question I asked my son, daughter and niece yesterday – and their responses ranged from all manner of thinking the concept “very cool” and beyond. After all, people play enough video games these days to realize that it would be pretty interesting to see your own morphed face trolling around one of them, even if that isn’t the first and foremost use of Looksery, a new app that helps people change their appearances within photos and videos in a real-time way. (That real-time video Photoshop-like feature is really amazing to me as I write this, especially the manner in which it will allow folks to slim down their faces – not just in the after-effects mode, but during the filming of a video. There’s no other app like that in the app store, and you’ve heard it here first: This app is going to go seriously viral. Girls love looking trimmer in videos.)
Of course, being so gaming focused, when I checked out the filters that allow users to apply X-ray effects to their faces or make scary zombie faces, I couldn’t help but think that customers could then pass on those 3D avatar images to developers to help place themselves inside of developing games, or at least use the altered photos as personalized avatars in whatever games allow you to upload your own images therein.
Bouncing slime? Bouncing you, with re-skinned images in gaming apps
Those readers who’ve read my previous Venture Beat GamesBeat articles know I’ve begun to jump on the bandwagon of buying gaming app code from places like Chupamobile or Udemy to create clones of successful games and get them approved in the iTunes App Store. I’ve already purchased the $99 per year Apple iOS Developer Program license, and now I see how Looksery can become a big part of creating my own images that are legal to use within the cloned games that need re-skinning.
For example, instead of slime bouncing around in your cloned version of Bouncing Slime, you could use a “monsterized” version of your own zombie-like face shown in the above photo, or create a similar animalized gaming version of a character that still resembles you, but is much more characterized, like this gecko looking thing:
Heck, the possibilities start to become endless when you think of the variations of images and videos that can be created and then used for gaming purposes, especially if you get a good variety of friends and family members to agree to use their faces within your games.
Hey, who needs Laura Croft or Megan Fox to star as the next generation of video game heroines? We could make ourselves look just as good, then send that data over to gaming development companies or use them as re-skinned photos to make us come to life inside a console or on a mobile device’s screen.
The real money and best use will come from licensing the technology to gaming companies
While it truly is a bunch of fun and games to play around with the individual aspects of the Looksery messenger app, this is the point where “Mr. Wonderful” on Shark Tank would pipe up and point out that the real money and success would come from licensing their core technology to a variety of industries – and not just gaming firms but those in the realm of the beauty industry, mobile device makers, and video communication, too. Especially when it comes to the face tracking and face transformation technology – which is all the rage these days – the company can use their ability to develop various image enhancing and 3D filters in fields well beyond gaming.
GamesBeat 2014 — VentureBeat’s sixth annual event on disruption in the video game market — is coming up on Sept 15-16 in San Francisco. Purchase your ticket now to save $200!