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Newsflash: Inanimate 3D figure comes to life once hearing #socamusic for the first time! After much Kinect 3D cam experimentation, trialing a dozen motion capture apps and following a ton of DIY tutorials, this eureka moment made it so worthwhile! Bringing our first Hero to life for the first time was so gratifying to see. My eyes opened like saucers with excitement once it worked. The possibilities and promise of the experience we’re creating keep coming closer to reality!

Full disclosure: what you see isn’t a product of any dance moves I personally performed for the camera. You’ll see those cutting room floor clips in the future. Instead, it was due to the very fortunate discovery of some amazing motion capture libraries containing thousands of pre-recorded moves. This particular dance loop is courtesy of Adobe Mixamo’s huge online repository, which joins other free and public domain collections for creators to use. Pay-to-use libraries also exist and contain even more complex and detailed movements, but the Mixamo collection has everything we need. I naturally had to pair this with one of my faves this year, Machel Montano’s ? “Jammin”, to make it ?!

These library-sourced motions will make the bulk of key poses. I’ll use Kinect-captured movements (i.e. me spinning and kicking for some confused and surely concerned neighbours) to fill in the gaps. In the hands of a talented storyboard artist and video editor (more resources I’ll have to begin hunting for), cutting it all together with some dynamic camera work should produce very special results.

Future plans are to build Playmaas’s own unique library of movements, mannerisms and signature styles for each character.

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