3D Vision Blog

A normal user's look into the world of 3D Stereo Technologies

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Developing Stereoscopic 3D Games and Apps for Mobile Devices

July 16th, 2012 · 1 Comment · General 3D News

If you are a game developer and you want to make a stereoscopic 3D-capable game there are three major platforms at the moment that should be your target, but unfortunately each of them is different and uses slightly different approach than the others. These are the two 3D-capable smartphones available from LG – Optimus 3D and Optimus 3D Max (available under slightly different name in some regions) along with the HTC EVO 3D. Then there are a few so far devices based on Nvidia’s Tegra 3 platform, however none of the already available smartphones or tablets based on Tegra 3 feature a stereoscopic 3D-capable display built-in, unlike the 3D smartphones from LG and HTC. So with Tegra 3 devices you need to use an external stereoscopic 3D-capable display, until some devices such as the Wikipad come out with a built-in 3D screen. There are of course multiple other smartphones with 3D-capable displays available in some countries, but the limited availability of these devices usually makes the development of stereoscopic 3D games or applications not very attractive. What is interesting to note here is that all of these devices are pretty much based on Android operating system, nothing from Apple yet (though there are constant rumors) or from Microsoft and their Windows-based solutions for mobile devices, though maybe with Windows 8 we can get something…

LG calls the stereoscopic 3D games for their mobile phones and applications Real 3D applications, they have a separate page for Real 3D app development along with their LG SDK. You can also find some examples and details about the stereoscopic 3D capabilities of LG’s smartphones, so you can quickly and easily get familiar with the way stereo 3D works on LG’s 3D smartphones – LG’s Real3D SDK. LG however also offers an alternative more targeted at users than developers, it is a software called LG 3D Game Converter that converts 3D games into stereoscopic 3D ones in real-time. This converter allows the users to play a normal game in stereoscopic 3D mode as the game is being converted in real-time by the phone, the results in terms of stereoscopic 3D effect vary and some games are unplayable due to the lack of performance to be converted it real-time by the device. Though this solution essentially extends the number of games that can be played in stereoscopic 3D mode on LG’s 3D smartphones significantly.

Next up is Nvidia and their Tegra 3 platform, a powerful and feature rich solution, though apparently Nvidia does not push the stereoscopic 3D capabilities of the platform a lot as an interesting extra, unlike what they are doing in the PC segment with 3D Vision. The interesting thing here is that Nvidia uses a similar approach to providing stereoscopic 3D support on Tegra 3 devices as they do on PC with 3D Vision, they kind of convert 3D games into stereoscopic 3D ones in real-time. But in order to be able to play a game in stereoscopic 3D format it apparently has to be developed for Tegra using Nvidia’s SDK and to have a profile telling the device that stereoscopic 3D mode can be enabled by the user. It is not like with LG’s game converter where you can try to convert any Android game, though the results may vary depending on the game, with Tegra 3 there is a limited number of Tegra-optimized games that can be played in stereo 3D mode. Unfortunately Nvidia does not share a lot of details regarding the stereoscopic 3D capabilities of Tegra 3, at least not with the general public, maybe developers get more information, so you should check out Nvidia’s Developer Zone for more info when it gets back online as it is currently down due to some issues.

HTC is not so active in the area of stereoscopic 3D support like LG is, and they are probably even less active than Nvidia, however they do offer developers information and support for developing stereoscopic 3D applications and games for their HTC EVO 3D smartphone. Here is a stereoscopic 3D overview of the features and capabilities that their device offers and for more details you will of course have to register in their Developer Center.

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Still Not a Lot of Games For LG Optimus 3D and HTC Evo 3D

September 15th, 2011 · 13 Comments · Other S3D Tech

I’ve decided to check what is the current situation with games specially made for the new 3D-capable Android-based smartphones such as the LG Optimus 3D and HTC Evo 3D that continue to generate a lot of buzz as they are becoming available on more and more markets worldwide. So I’ve went to Gameloft’s website to check what games they have made for these devices and more specifically what 3D titles are available. Why Gameloft, well, because they are one of the most active game developers that is focusing on making stereoscopic 3D games for 3D capable mobile devices. But you should also know that it is still hard to find stereoscopic 3D games for these devices if you go directly on the Android market with the reason for that being the fact that 3D in games is mostly used when referring to have offering 3D graphics and not stereoscopic 3D support. So finding stereoscopic 3D games for a 3D-capable smartphone is still something that might not be as easy as it seems…

HTC EVO 3D is still lagging a bit behind the Optimus 3D from LG as there are fewer games available for it, and we’ll have to wait and see if they will quickly pick up the pace, especially since Samsung is expected to soon join the race for 3D-capable smartphones as well. At the moment Gameloft has a total of six stereoscopic 3D games for the HTC Evo 3D smartphone, these are: Asphalt 6: Adrenaline 3D, Assassin’s Creed – Altaïr’s Chronicles 3D, GT Racing: Motor Academy 3D, Let’s Golf! 2 3D, N.O.V.A. Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance 3D, Spider-Man: Total Mayhem 3D. Furthermore you can also find Angry Bots 3D for HTC Evo 3D on the Android Market, available as a free demo and only for the HTC as it requires Android 2.3.3.

As I’ve mentioned LG is a bit ahead with 3D-capable applications for the Optimus 3D smartphone, but they have a bit strange policy in distributing the apps through different places. Gameloft has the most 3D games in one place, but even some of their titles are only available through the LG World’s 3D Zone (for some regions) and I couldn’t easily find any game on the Android Market that supports the phone’s 3D display. The 3D games that the LG Optimus 3D P920 smartphone currently has available (maybe not in all regions) on Gameloft’s site are 11 in total and these are: Assassin’s Creed – Altaïr’s Chronicles 3D, Dungeon Hunter 2 3D, Eternal Legacy 3D, Fishing Kings 3D, James Cameron’s Avatar 3D, Modern Combat 2: Black Pegasus 3D, Real Soccer 2011 3D, Shadow Guardian 3D, Shrek Kart 3D, Spider-Man: Total Mayhem 3D, Star Battalion 3D. That is of course on top of the few 3D titles you get preloaded on the phone. Furthermore you can find the free Archercraft S3D game on LG World’s website as well as some of the Gameloft’s games that you can also get from Gameloft directly.

To see all the games optimized for the HTC EVO 3D from Gameloft…
To see all the games optimized for the LG Optimus 3D from Gameloft…

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Some 3D Screenshots From Mobile Stereoscopic 3D Games

July 19th, 2011 · 1 Comment · Other S3D Tech

As per some requests I made some stereoscopic 3D screenshots from a mobile stereo 3D game and more specifically the game Asphalt 6: Adrenaline 3D by Gameloft on the LG Optimus 3D smartphone. The screenshots are with three different 3D volume levels – minimum, medium and maximum as all of Gameloft’s stereoscopic 3D games have a slider for user control of the three-dimensional depth. Click on the image to see the full resolution Side by Side pair, the screenshots are with half horizontal resolution (squashed). The first 3D screenshot with minimum depth you see above is making the game pretty much look the same as in 2D mode, so instead of minimal depth you better switch to 2D mode and enjoy the game in full resolution.

For taking the screenshots on the LG Optimus 3D smartphone I’ve used the free Android application called ShootMe that worked pretty well and was able to capture stereoscopic 3D screenshots without serious issues, although not all went perfect with all screenshots. The above 3D screenshot is with the default medium 3D depth level that is supposed to work well for most people, even if they are new to mobile stereo 3D gaming.

The third screenshot is with the maximum 3D depth level and it provides stronger feeling of volume, so you should not start with it generally if you are new to stereo 3D as you may get tired quickly, get dizzy or a headache. I have taken a few more screenshots from the games bundled with the LG Optimus 3D smartphone – Asphalt 6 3D, Let’s Golf! 2 3D and NOVA 3D, you will can download them from the link below. As you will notice due to the reduced horizontal resolution in stereo 3D mode the straight lines inside games and the sharpness of details may not be great when you are looking at the screenshots on your PC, but they do look much better on the autostereoscopic 3D screen of a 3D-capable mobile phone.

To download more stereoscopic 3D screenshots from mobile 3D games…

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