All right, so we know the free-to-play model for a lot of different games and genres works well because gamers get to pay for things as they see fit: you want that new hat? Sure, it's only $3. You want that new gun? Sure, it's only $10. You want that fancy new car? Sure, it's only $25. The free-to-play model has ultimately given gamers the choice to pay for what they want when they want. So using that kind of monetary methodology, Mixamo is adapting the same principals to game development...yes, game development.
In an unprecedented move by Mixamo, a big-budget motion-capture production company, they announced that they will be offering AAA animations via online microtransactions. Developers of any and all sizes can purchase what they want, when they want and how they want.
I love this kind of approach because it gives a lot of indie devs the opportunity to pay for high-quality animations for various projects without requiring them to pay an arm and a leg to acquire the professional services of a motion-capture studio.
As stated in the press release...
It is very rare for gamers to have access to the actual assets used in a real game. Thanks to Mixamo and its key partnerships with AAA studios, game developers will now have exclusive access to an extensive repository of customizable AAA production-quality 3D animations. The animations - captured at Mixamo’s motion capture studio in San Francisco and further improved by Mixamo’s talented keyframe animators – are identified by the “AAA” tag on Mixamo’s website.
Many of the animations can be purchased for around $25, which is pretty much a steal if you're making a simple platforming or adventure game. You can also purchase Mixamo microtransaction credits through their subscription plan, which will only cost you anywhere between $6 through $10.
This will definitely quell some of the talk about "rising development" costs given this cost-effective, go-to solution provided by Mixamo. I'm definitely eager to see what the indie studios churn out now that they will have AAA quality animations at their disposal for a fraction of the cost that most big-budget studios pour into the animation department.
You can learn more about the animation suite and purchasing AAA motion-capture sets by visiting the Official Mixamo Website. If you have a game in the works using Mixamo's tools be sure to shoot us over the details so we can share it with our readers.