Through the looking glass
  • So with 3D printing moving forward in leaps and bounds it strikes me as strange and just a little reckless that the large minifig/kit companies (I'm looking at you Games Workshop) have not started to redirect their core business. I see in the near future that hobby and model shops will move from stocking kits to maintaining a high quality 3D printer and stocking 3D printing compounds, a licence fee for each kit design they have on record and a royalty fee for each time that design is used. Even this would have limited practice as 3D printing becomes more affordable for home set-ups with the business model moving towards something more akin to iTunes for minifigs and kits. Maybe individual design companies will release an iTunes styled software front-end for 3D printers with a mix-match-n'-pose interface. You want a steampunk kungfu monk in the crane pose? Sure, go nuts. Print one, print a hundred.

    Because in the near future there will be a glut of 3D design alumni that can knock out incredibly detailed designs without a care in the world for what the old guard had planned.

    Just some thing to think about.
  • GMSkarkaGMSkarka +1 -1 (+4 / -0 )
    Once we've got the adventure game out, one of the things I'm thinking of doing for FAR WEST is offering on-demand miniatures via the SHAPEWAYS site.

    I wrote about the site on my blog here:

    http://gmskarka.com/2012/09/13/insurgent-creative-shapeways/
  • Mongoose are doing this with a handful of their new models. The STL files are on Wargames Vault for people who have access to a 3D printer and the miniatures are available from Shapeways. For what it's worth, the miniatures on Shapeways are approximately 50% more expensive than the standard metal ones.
  • The bleeding edge always costs more, it's also the companies that stick their neck out to support the new trends that will either profit or fail. I don't know how well Adamant Entertainment is positioned to take advantage of this, who ever takes this on would need to survive at a loss for some time, even with industry backing. Someone like GW, Revell or Tamiya are probably best positioned to pull a VALVE/STEAM revolution given their already large catalogue and IP/Licencing. As for mail order sites, they will only succeed as a service industry if the price of fine detail printers remains prohibitively high (think CNC/PAR machines). On the other hand they may become common place much like prosumer photo printing shops you find at the mall/supermarket. The big jump will happen with standardised drivers like the old twain drivers for scanning images into photoshop, or when a preferred file format is realised by community choice.

    I hadn't noticed the blog entry before and should have figured you would be paying attention to the evolution of your own industry. It's reassuring to know this game is in safe hands.
  • Sorry to necro post but found this on kickstarter. It's not quite what I was thinking of or what I think we need but it looks like an interesting step in that direction.

    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/heroforge/customizable-3d-printed-tabletop-miniatures
  • Funny enough, if you read through all of their material, you discover that they are using SHAPEWAYS for the actual production -- which is the same site I spoke about upthread in 2012....
  • It didn't go unnoticed. I was more interested in the UI they have.
  • GMSkarkaGMSkarka +1 -1 (+1 / -0 )
    Definitely. Takes care of the hard part -- the 3D design work. :)

    Plus: Puppetfox

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