Fellow internet citizen, you should definitely strive to enrich your life with various 3D creations. Why not have your own video game, or a WebGL feature in your website? Why not make something VR or even AR? The tools are at your fingertips, and the source of 3D stock models is always open for you. But first, let us deal with all the wondrous things that you can now do in the world of 3D media.
For the first time in years, the field of game development is almost entirely democratic. Yes, the ones who have experience, money and large teams have some leverage, but they no longer have the exclusive tools to make games, which should make any would-be game designer perk up. Because the most important tools of all, game engines, are almost universally free these days. Unity, which is quite popular among game designers both large and small, is mostly free and provides a lot support (in form of documentation and tutorials) for any aspiring developer. Unreal Engine 4 is even more free (of course, there are some restrictions when it comes to monetization), and already developers across the board are enjoying the access to a premiere game engine. Speaking of premiere game engines, Cryengine has just become pay-what-you-want, which means that it can be totally free. Much like Unreal Engine, it supports visual programming, which means that you set up actions and reactions by connecting blocks in an editor – no prior coding knowledge required.
And if your ambition doesn‘t reach the heights of AAA game production companies, you can still join in the fun with various WebGL enabled engines. WebGL is this wondrous thing that lets games and interactive creations work inside your websites without the need to download any plug-ins. Just open the browser and play – seriously, it’s hard to find a browser that does not support WebGL. Here you have Goo Create, a mostly free engine that also supports visual programming. Turbulenz is an another mostly free package that has been aimed at multiplayer games and easy monetization. PlayCanvas has many paid features, but you can also dip your toes in for free and enjoy many features. And that’s without mentioning open source, if a little harder to use, alternatives like CopperLicht and BabylonJS. Whether it be games or interactive presentations of the goods in your store, they can be made to seamlessly integrate with your website!
Not satisfied with plain old media? Why not make the jump into VR and AR! Many of the game engines come with VR support. This makes it easy for you to make VR games… well, as easy as VR game making can be! Of course, you can make it into VR experiences, too. Projects like High Fidelity and the mysterious Project Sensar are working on making platforms that will allow you to upload your own models (or ones bought from 3D online marketplaces, wink wink, nudge nudge) to create virtual storefronts, virtual tours of your home or whatever. There are applications out there made with the explicit purpose of letting architects do VR tours of their creations. And if you’re not happy with mere VR, augmented reality can help you! Projects like Entiti app or Augment enable you to key 3D objects and more to images and marks in the real life. And it’s so easy, anyone can do it! With Entiti’s visual programing nodes, even I had some success with augmenting reality!
But why would you want stock 3D models? Well, that’s because you don’t want to model the stuff yourself! Modeling items takes time and money, and makes you hire additional people, which, again, costs money! Meanwhile, stock 3D marketplaces are time-efficient, letting you get models cheaper than you could ever achieve with having an in-house artist. This is especially poignant if you’re trying for a realistic project that doesn’t rely much on custom assets. It works perfectly for games or architectural presentations. And now that we’ve touched VR, we also have to mention one thing: games and VR experiences love, nay, need low polygon models (also known as real-time 3D assets). Games must run at least at 30 FPS, while VR needs whooping 90 FPS. Do you have the experience to optimize assets for your products? No! But modelers have and they’re almost dying for you to buy their products.
So what are you waiting for? If you have an idea, you have the tools you need to develop it at your fingertips. Download that editor, read that documentation, get onto a stock 3D marketplace! Who knows, maybe you’ll get lucky and all the models you need will be free. And that’s a low, low price for the success in the modern day of interactivity and VR!