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Design your own 3D characters, choosing gender, clothing, pose and weaponry. Then download them for free and 3D print them yourself.
Design your own 3D characters, choosing gender, clothing, pose and weaponry. Then download them for free and 3D print them yourself.
323 backers pledged $7,878 to help bring this project to life.

About

DesktopHero: Free 3D-Printable Character Maker project video thumbnail
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$7,878

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For the latest DesktopHero updates, check out our Facebook page

 

Have you ever made up a character in your head, and wished you could make that character real? Physically hold them in your hand? 

DesktopHero is a web app that lets you easily design your own characters for 3D printing. You start with a basic 3D figure - then add armor, clothes, hair, and weapons, crafting your hero onscreen. 

When you're done, you can download the file and get it 3D printed into a real, physical object - to paint, to hold, to use in games... to keep on your desk and stare at while you should be working... ;-)

DesktopHero lets you turn your ideas into a physical reality, and we think you'll love it. 

Design your character, then choose from a variety of different poses.
Design your character, then choose from a variety of different poses.

 

We've already been working on DesktopHero for several months to develop a proof of concept. Check out this video to see it in action:

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Choose your character's gender, clothing, pose and weaponry.
Choose your character's gender, clothing, pose and weaponry.

 

We are aware that similar services do exist out there on the internet. Here are the things that make DesktopHero stand out!

It's Free and it's Yours. Once you design a character, you can download the file for free, then use it however you want - including commercially. 

Make as Many as You Want. There is no limit to how many characters you can download! That means you can make multiple versions of a character with different weapons or clothing, or print an entire party of different characters! It's still free. 

It's Easy to Use. We've tested this on middle schoolers and adults alike - no artistic or 3d modeling skills required. Just use the buttons and sliders in the app to load assets and poses designed by our artists. 

Export your character model with or without a base.
Export your character model with or without a base.

 

3D print your model, then paint it for full effect.
3D print your model, then paint it for full effect.

 

Great question! You're not alone - even though 3D printers are becoming more affordable, most people still don't have one at home. If that's your situation, consider the following:

  • You may know someone who does. Believe it or not, chances are good that someone you know has a 3D printer and would be willing to print a character for you. 
  • Many universities, schools and public libraries offer 3D printing services. Check online - often, these types of places will either print your model for you or teach you how to print it yourself. I can get my characters printed at a local library for about $2 each. 
  • You can order prints of your models online. Some commercial websites (Shapeways is a popular one) let you upload a 3D model, then have it printed and delivered to your home. This tends to be pricier, but also gives you plenty of options for how you want your character printed. 
Choose from a variety of weapons and handheld props.
Choose from a variety of weapons and handheld props.

 

So, what exactly can you do with DesktopHero? If we reach our funding goal of $2,000, we will be able to deliver the basic version of DesktopHero, which includes the following features:

  • Create a male or female character 
  • Choose hair/hairstyle 
  • Choose clothing, including shirt, pants and armor 
  • Choose handheld props and weapons 
  • Load character into different poses 
  • Save character to a 3D printable file 
  • 1 Asset Pack (which means 10 different hair options, 8 pants, 14 shirts, and 10 weapons/props)

 

Print your character as large or small as you want.
Print your character as large or small as you want.

 

Basic DesktopHero is cool, but additional funding will allow us to make DesktopHero even better! Check out some of the neat features we hope to add: 

 

 

3D printing is fun - if you've ever sat and watched something being 3D printed, you'll know what we mean. But it gets even more fun when it's your own design being printed. That's what we want to bring to people - the ability to turn your own idea into a real, physical object. 

Thank you for supporting DesktopHero. We're excited to see what you make!

 

Music credit: Oaklawn Dreams, from the Let 'Em In Sessions, www.wistia.com.
Music credit: Oaklawn Dreams, from the Let 'Em In Sessions, www.wistia.com.

Update: 3DPrint.com wrote an article about DesktopHero! Check it out! 

Important Announcement! Gaming legend, designer and artist Larry Dixon has stepped in and volunteered to do a number of designs for us! You may know him as a convention guest for over 30 years, a past Author GoH at Gencon, or for his novels with Mercedes Lackey. Or you might know his work on the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films, or the 60+ RPGs he’s contributed to since the 1970s.  

Larry has volunteered to give us the wing and tail reference used for the Great Eagles for the New Line films, to use in designing the 3D models for the Wings stretch goal! This is the same reference that was used to make the most detailed digital golden eagle model in the world.  

We're happy to have Larry's support. You can check out the cool work he's done on his website.

 

Risks and challenges

We are very confident in our ability to build and deliver DesktopHero.

The reason for this is because we've already created a fully working prototype, with all of the key features listed above. Future work involves refining and expanding DesktopHero, rather than creating it from scratch. In other words, the hard part is already done.

That said, the main challenge in this project is one of time. DesktopHero is not our full-time job, which means that there may be times when progress is slower. However, we are committed to making DesktopHero happen. If progress gets too slow, we will hire additional staff to keep things moving.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    SUPPORTER

    Thanks for your contribution! All backers will have their names listed on DesktopHero's Supporters page.

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    ARTSY

    Get a high-resolution digital wallpaper of your character to use as a background for your phone, computer or other device.

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    47 backers
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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    CENTER STAGE

    You and your character will be featured on the DesktopHero home page within the first year of DesktopHero's release.

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    GENEROUS BACKER

    Thank you for your support! All backers who pledge $20 or more get a star next to their name on the app's Supporters page.

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    15 backers
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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    EARLY ACCESS

    Backers who pledge $20 or more get access to the beta version of DesktopHero during development - before its public release!

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    BY GRABTHAR'S HAMMER

    You get to choose the name of one of the weapons/props included with DesktopHero! (e.g. "ThunderPunch Gauntlet" or "Jacob's Flask")

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    Reward no longer available 30 backers
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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    CHARACTER SKETCH BY TAYLOR

    Receive a black and white sketch of your character by professional artist Taylor Cleland (!!).

    Check out her work at https://www.facebook.com/TDCleland

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    19 backers
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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    MAKE IT LIKE THIS

    You give us a description of a weapon or handheld item - we'll design it and include it in DesktopHero with your name!

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    Reward no longer available 10 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    THAT ONE'S MINE

    The release version of DesktopHero will include your character as a preset - anyone will be able to load your character.

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    14 backers
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    Pledge $55 or more About $55

    MAKE IT LIKE THIS, 2

    Give us a description of ANY item - clothes, headgear, weapon, or prop - we'll design it and include it in DesktopHero with your name!

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    Reward no longer available 10 backers
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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    BENEFACTOR

    All backers who pledge $75 or more get their own section on the Supporters page for their picture, a full bio, and a link to their website.

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    7 backers
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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    CHARACTER PAINTING BY TAYLOR

    Receive a full-color digital painting of your character by professional artist Taylor Cleland!

    Check out her work at https://www.facebook.com/TDCleland

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    11 backers
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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    THE ONE

    Your character becomes the default starting character - the first thing you see when you load up DesktopHero.

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Funding period

- (30 days)