A few months ago, I was at the 2015 Game Developers Conference (GDC), when a booth outside the main hall caught my eye.
A company called 3DPlusMe had a station set up where they were scanning the faces of attendees with a 3D camera array and then printing them on to custom 3D-printed vinyl action figures.
3DPlusMe partners with various companies for some recognisable licenses. At some Major League Baseball or Major League Soccer games, 3DPlusMe sets up shop you can get your face plastered on to a figure wearing your favourite team’s jersey. They have also offered Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings custom action figures.
At GDC, there were two action figure options: Marvel Super Heroes, where I could have had my face printed on to Iron Man or Captain America, or Halo 5: Guardians, based on Microsoft’s hit first-person shooter series, where I could make myself into a power-armoured Spartan II space marine.
I chose the shorter line. Halo 5 space marine glory awaited.
Here’s the final result, as arrived to my apartment last night. The final products usually takes between six and eight weeks to ship.
If you squint while looking at the photo above, you can see that they print your Xbox Live gamertag on the base. Here’s a close-up of the face:
My girlfriend says it’s pretty creepy and makes me look like a supervillain, but it looks just like the scan they took at the conference:
The real problem, however, is that they’re not very good action figures, since they’re basically stuck in place, and the vinyl 3DPlusMe uses has a weird, gritty texture.
Plus, the price is a little steep: A custom figure the size of mine runs about $US45, with prices varying based on the size. Still, it’s definitely a one-of-a-kind collectible.
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