Want to spend as little time as possible creating avatars for a project? There are a variety of ways you can go about that, the latest coming from Tafi. The company specialises custom 3D content for avatar and emoji systems, announcing today the launch of its Astra software development kit (SDK) for content creators.
You may already be familiar with Tafi if you’re a fan of social platform VRChat thanks to its TafiAvatars app, enabling users to create their own using the company’s 3D library of content. The Astra SDK, on the other hand, is designed for developers, whether that’s small indies or more established studios.
The software allows content creators to automatically load, modify, morph, and customize various styles of avatars, reducing the normal time and cost it usually takes. Other features include: “automatic refitting of clothing, automatic hiding of skin behind clothing, streaming assets on demand, dynamic decals, a full ecommerce platform for developers to instantly unlock.” Monetisation is a key part of the SDK, to developers can sell their digital characters.
“Custom-built avatar systems typically require dedicated teams of developers and artists to spend many months, if not years, to complete. Even then, these avatar systems are often very limited in feature sets and capabilities,” said James Thornton, CEO of Tafi. “Our Astra SDK is plug-and-play while delivering comprehensive functionality, a large library of pre-loaded content, and built-in monetization capabilities. This frees up developers to focus on building the best possible game and app experience for their customers. We are proud to announce the launch of our Astra SDK.”
“The power of our SDK is borne from years of experience developing solutions around digital characters, which we’ve distilled into a suite of solutions with features for total customization unlocked at runtime,” said Jon Middleton, Chief Technical Officer of Tafi. “For instance, our smart technology enables the creation of a single wearable asset to be used across any number of avatars that have different body shapes and art styles, while maintaining its visual fidelity. Beyond saving developers valuable hours and resources, the underlying technology, combined with our proven digital goods pipeline and e-commerce backend, allows developers to instantly unlock a world-class avatar system with only a few lines of code — speeding up development, reducing costs, and unlocking new revenue paths.”
Tafi’s Astra SDK has been the only avatar news this week for VR developers. Epic Games announced the Early Access launch of its MetaHuman Creator, a cloud-based platform for building highly realistic characters. If you’re not a videogame developer and just want something simple then there’s always Wolf3D’s Ready Player Me which has just added support for VRChat. For further updates on this topic, keep reading VRFocus.