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IN GAME COLLECTABLES

ROLE

Game Engine Integration Engineer

SUMMARY

In Game Collectables partners with game studios to enable players to create physical once-off edition collectables of their customised, in-game avatars. We use cutting edge NVIDIA differentiable rendering tech along with Stratasys additive manufacturing to produce production quality collectables of in-game avatars. We have partnerships with NVIDIA AI, Callaghan Innovation and work with some of New Zealand's best game studios.


I was solely responsible for developing the plugins for both Unreal Engine and Unity. They were used within games to enable us to recreate printable character meshes within the In Game Collectables platform. Some of my tasks included capturing and rendering images during runtime, creating JSON files and dealing with connecting and uploading files to the platform.


I maintained the repositories for the plugins and created user-friendly documents and instructions. I also collaborated with clients and provided support to figure out the ideal method of integration of our plugin into their game environment.

TOOLS

Unreal Engine, Unity, C++, C#, Blender, Github

YEAR

2023 - 2024

COMPANY

In Game Collectables

LINKS
FULLY INTEGRATED GAMES

Pipeline Summary

At In Game Collectables, we recreate a character mesh to become a 3D-printable collectable. To achieve this, we need to take multiple captures from different angles and record the camera positions at each angle within a JSON file. These files will then get uploaded to the In Game Collectables platform which will then process the information and recreate the mesh.

After the upload is done, the platform will return an image of a QR code, which will link to a checkout page that the user can purchase their soon-to-be printed character from.

Development

Game Engines

After our research into popular game engine amongst New Zealand game companies, I created lightweight plugins for both Unreal Engine and Unity, as these two engines had the highest demand.

The plugin for Unreal Engine was originally created in UE4.27 and I created a branch within Github for UE5. This way, both could be updated with the least amount of doubling up on work.

Capturing and Rendering

The In Game Collectables platform need image captures and a JSON file of camera information to create a mesh. To get an even capture of the whole mesh, I created an adjustable spiral to control the camera path.

Using the SceneCaptureComponent2D within Unreal Engine, I was able to get renders of characters. One issue was that the colour space and possible rendering methods are already preset within UE, and what we wanted was not available. To get around this, I used two different SceneCaptureComponent2Ds. One camera was used to capture the Final Colour, and one camera was used to capture the mask of the character. By using both of these cameras' render targets as textures within a material, the final masked image could be rendered out.