Designing a character avatar model for the Mermaids MMO

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Ead, Samer Omar
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This paper describes the technique formed for the creation of an efficient, simply rigged, customizable mermaid avatar model for the Mermaids massively multiplayer online game (MMOG). Our goal was to improve the in game customization of the player s 3D mermaid model, while maintaining rendering efficiency. We devised a procedure that utilizes the iterative nature of design without sacrificing the scientific and technical aspects of the project. Our procedure begins by a method known as Partitioning where we break down the model s body into distinct sub-models. During development, this partitioning allowed us to focus on smaller concise areas of interest, whereas during game-play this change granted the player greater strands of customization freedom. Since the model relied on a skeleton for its animations, it s partitioning required Skeletal Reformations to reassess the control scheme of the rig over the sub-models. In this method, individual sub-skeletons were designed to provide increased local control over their respective sub-models in contrast to the global control that the previous rig allowed. The sub-skeletons were then joined together forming a combined and complete skeletal rig for the mermaid model. We iterated through the previous methods refining their procedures in efforts of Balancing Customizability with Efficiency , which in turn provided us with the results of our novel technique. Our technique utilizes innovative methods that localize skeletal control over respective sub-models in a novel way, which allows increased customizability with limited costs to efficiency.
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