After the LA Games Conference GBR spent time chatting with 3dSunshine founder Steven Schkolne, a downtown Los Angeles based company founded in 2015. 3dSunshine is bringing to market a unique twist on modding: a single modding toolset for creating user generated content (UGC) users/players can apply across multiple games.
You may recall some classic well-known mods such as Team Fortress from Quake and Counterstrike and Garry’s mod from Half-Life 2; in fact, Half-Life 2 has spawned more than a few popular mods. You can find these and many other popular mods represented in the Mod Hall of Fame.
Traditionally, modding stems directly from a popular PC game dependent on the game and it’s engine, and there has never been a tool available to help players make mods across different game engine ecosystems.
3DSunshine is a universal modding platform that will allow non-technical gamers to edit their favorite hit game worlds. Historically level and map editors worked with only a single game title and asked users unfamiliar with 3D modeling to use a mouse and keyboard or dual-shock controllers to place items in digital space. What makes 3dSunshine different is that it utilizes motion controllers to enable gamers to place objects in digital space much the same way they would place items in the real world.
Presently, if gamers want to mod game worlds they need to learn different tools of varying complexity. 3dSunshine eliminates the need to spend hundreds of hours learning modding tools that are highly technical and often cause games to malfunction.
Asked about the company’s mission, Steven says, “We’re making it possible for players to learn one intuitive toolset and apply it across many games.” Running on both Mac and Windows, players (aka: modders) may also be able to work within their favorite VR headset as well, since HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Touch are supported by 3D Sunshine.
Regarding market opportunity, Steven says, “Major gaming studios are beginning to embrace the importance of UGC. We see this in the success of MarioMaker, and the intentional inclusion of user created mods in current mainstream versions of popular games. Studios don’t yet have tools to make modding as easy as playing games, and that’s what we’re offering.”
This puts 3dSunshine in a unique position in that they don’t have any direct competitors presently. 3dSunshine also has some pretty big market potential. In 2016, Gaming is expected to become a $116 billion market. This said, 3D Sunshine faces some challenges, and as Steven himself offers, “The risks are many. We’re asking users to buy new hardware to do something that they’ve never done before. However, we think that the experience is compelling enough to make them do so.”
You can learn more about the tactile building experience 3dSunshine tools will offer users on their website, where you can sign up for updates as well. Also be sure to check out the 3dSunshine youtube channel.
GBR Analyst’s view:
Modding popularity tends to ebb and flow, but appears to be yet another piece of the gaming ecosystem that will likely benefit from VR. Besides being versatile with respect to a mod’s deployment, the 3dSunshine toolset may provide a straightforward way for modders who want to give building in VR a try.
About Steven Schlonke and 3dSunshine:
Steven Schkolne is one of the world’s experts in 3D interface design. Steven has deep roots in this space, having invented the first full body 3d drawing system in 1999. He wrote his PhD at Caltech on this topic, laying the foundation for many of today’s VR builders such as TiltBrush and Quill. Upon graduating, he launched a successful app agency, creating mobile applications for Fortune 500 brands including Hasbro, Coca-Cola, and Mattel. Low-cost hardware brought Dr. Schkolne back to VR with 3dSunshine, his next-generation vision for creative building in 3D.
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