Activision Publishing, Inc. (Santa Monica, CA)

The user can make a customized virtual character. This customized virtual character is then physically substantiated. In some embodiments the virtual character can be physically confirmed by creating a toy form of the virtual game character. The toy in certain instances contains computer-readable information about the virtual game character. In some embodiments , the toy is made by way of 3-D printing. In various embodiments portions of the toy that may be considered to thin to print with 3-D printers are extended. Some embodiments use internal ambient occlusion to determine if a piece is not large enough.

The invention is about the design and customization videogame objects as well as their physical substantiation.

Many people like videogames. Videogames permit players to take part in many simulated activities. Videogames also give videogame players the opportunity to take on characters or engage in activities they may not be able or desire to experience for reasons of the cost, danger, or equipment issues, or simply because the role or activity is a fantasy.

Videogames are typically provided via an electronic device (e.g. a game console) or display (e.g. TV screens). They usually lack a physical component that allows players to physically interact with the virtual world and virtual objects within. Despite the advancements in audiovisual technology made by videogames in recent times the experience of playing games remains two dimensional. Simply interacting with a simulation of the environment isn’t enough to allow players to fully be a part of the game, with a sharply distinct separation between a virtual and the world physically that is inhabited by videogame players.

Some videogames employ packaged toys that are like videogame objects (e.g. characters, items like vehicles, weapons or buildings, etc. This adds a real-world element to the videogame experience. It is possible that players will not be able modify pre-packaged toys in a way that reflects the changes made by the game. In addition, videogames may let players create their own virtual objects, however players may not be able readily bring these customvirtual objects into the real world. These virtual objects may include features that are hard to replicate in a real toy.

Certain embodiments that are in accordance with aspects of the invention provide the method of using at least one processor, useful in creation of a physical substantiation of a videogame character. The method includes receiving a variety of options relating to the visual appearance of a videogame character; creating, using the processor at least an electronic model of a character from a virtual game with a plurality of selections relating to the visual appearance of the game character and determining that the representation of the virtual model includes areas that are smaller than a minimum width predetermined; and increasing the width of those portions of the virtual model with a width that is below the minimum width that is predetermined.

In some embodiments the the virtual game character includes a virtual mesh which defines an outer surface of the virtual game character, a rig defining bones of the virtual character, and animations that are defined for animating the rig, andwherein the representation of the model is based on the mesh that defines the outer part of the virtual game character but not the rig or animations.

In certain embodiments, determining whether the representation of the model includes portions with a width below the predetermined minimum width comprises: determining an internal ambient occlusion of the representation of the model; and for each of at least a number of surfaces that are part of the representation of the model, comparing an indication of the ambient occlusion of the model with an indication of the minimum width predetermined.

In some embodiments the invention provides a method to create an toy that resembles the character of a videogame, which includes the following: a server that is configured with instructions in a program to receive a range of selections relating to a visual appearanceof an avatar character from a videogame; build the virtual model of the virtual game character using the plurality of choices that relate to the appearance of the game character to determine that the representation of the virtual model includes portions with awidth lower than a minimum predetermined width; and then increase the width of those portions of the representation of the virtual model that have an area that is smaller than the predetermined minimum width.

Certain examples of the invention comprise instructions for programming to determine if the model representation has portions that are smaller than the specified minimum width. The instructions for the program will determine the internal ambient occlusion of the model representation; and, for each surface of the representation model compare an indication for the ambient obstruction to an indication of the minimum width that is predetermined.

In certain embodiments, the program instructions for increasing the size of those parts of the model that have a width below the predetermined minimum width includes instructions to move vertices on the mesh which form the representation ofthe model normal to an outer part of the model.

These and other aspects of the invention are better understood upon a reading this disclosure.

Click here to view the patent on USPTO website.


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