Raph Koster’s Playable Worlds adopts Didimo’s AI-based Popul8 to create 3D characters


Raph Koster’s Playable Worlds is making a massively multiplayer online (MMO) game, and it will used Didimo‘s AI-based Popul8 tool to automatically create 3D characters.

It’s a big win for Porto, Portugal-based Didimo, which uses AI to generate variations of 3D characters that are created by game artists. These variations can help game companies keep up with the enormous demand for diverse characters in 3D games.

Playable Worlds definitely needs a lot of such characters. Using AI to generate such characters could become controversial, particularly if it leads to fewer jobs for human artists. But Didimo’s leaders — whom I interviewed at the recent Dice Summit event — note that they complement the work of human artists as Didimo’s starting point for its tools is the artwork created by humans.

Didimo’s Popul8 tool uses AI to generate variations of game characters.

Didimo’s Popul8, introduced last year, stands out as a patented, AI-powered platform that automates and expedites the process of creating diverse and unique 3D characters for games and entertainment. The technology empowers developers and artists by enabling the rapid generation, editing, management, and loading of thousands of characters, each with distinct styles, efficiently into a game.

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This not only streamlines the character creation workflow but also adds diversity and uniqueness to in-game populations. Koster is a well-known game developer who created MMOs in the past like Star Wars Galaxies, Ultima Online and Metaplace. Didimo has also created character art for games such as Colossal Order’s Cities: Skylines II.

Didimo's tools can populate characters in games like Avalon.
Didimo’s tools can populate characters in games like Avalon.

Koster, CEO of Playable Worlds, said in a statement, “We are delighted that Popul8 has such flexible character customization that helps our character artists deliver their magic faster. This will help every player find a way to express who they want to be.”

Playable Worlds, founded by Koster and Eric Goldberg, is dedicated to creating immersive and diverse player experiences in cloud-native online worlds. The collaboration with Didimo aligns with Playable Worlds’ mission to enable players to create a broad range of unique virtual identities within their upcoming MMO.

The MMO being developed by Playable Worlds promises to set new benchmarks in world simulation, boasting a cloud computing-native architecture that transcends the limitations of traditional MMOs. The partnership with Didimo will bring powerful character customization options to this ambitious project.

Veronica Orvalho, CEO of Didimo, said in a statement, “Seeing the amazing game worlds that are possible using characters designed using Popul8 is so inspiring as we continue to refine and innovate to not only meet the changing needs of developers but also the hopes and expectations of players.”

This collaboration underscores the growing importance of advanced character creation technologies in the gaming industry and positions Popul8 as a key tool for developers looking to enhance efficiency, creativity, and player engagement.

Playable Worlds is based in San Marcos, California, with a focus on the multiverse, or creating immersive worlds with diverse player experiences, social integration, and higher retention.

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