It's called WotRank, here it is in action:
I've been waiting for someone to make something like this for years and I finally gave up and decided to do it myself! It's designed to save you from having to search for each player one by one, which can be difficult in the short amount of time you have during the prep phase (and especially considering the crazy variety of random usernames out there…I'm a blazing fast touch typer and even I struggle).
Development has been quite a journey. The biggest challenge has been with the OCR / image recognition tech. I've used Google's Tesseract OCR libraries which is one of the best out there, but it still has its limitations unfortunately. If this app does well my plan is to invest the money into using machine learning to perform some really comprehensive image detection training, but it will require thousands of sample images and many, many hours of testing and tuning so I'm going to see how well this first version is received before going ahead with this.
In its current state, some of the challenges I'm dealing with are: because of the font used by the game, it cannot distinguish between a capitalised i and a lowercase L, double underscores or double hyphens will also cause this app some grief, and weird clusterings of letters and numbers and / or completely capitalised usernames can throw it off as well. And finally I've had to work hard at dealing with perspective issues – when people were standing up over their screens and looking down with their cameras, the skewed images were throwing it off, but I eventually found a solution for that. Suffice to say a lot of work has gone into getting this working, but more is needed – this is only the beginning. I've recently introduced a manual correction feature so if the scanner doesn’t successfully detect all the characters, you can tap on the “Not Found” link to manually correct the username.
With all this being said, the way I see it is even a 80-90% success rate tells you a lot about the opposing team. It's more about finding out broadly what you're up against – a team full of diamonds? Or a mix of golds and silvers? So at a quick glance you're able to see what you're in for, and you can then adjust your strategy accordingly.
I've made it free to use 3 times a day – I figure most casual players don't play more than about 3 games a day especially given how long ranked games can be. For serious players it's a small fee to unlock, which I think is fair considering the amount of time I've dedicated to making this, and all the expenses incurred from app store and business name registration fees and so forth, as well as the phones and tablets I had to buy to test this (I don't use Android so I had to buy all the gear just for this). I don't see this as a solely commercial endeavour, I made it because I'm a fan of the game and I simply wanted something like this for myself first and foremost. I've got plans to upgrade this over time with new features and I'm hoping for just enough revenue to cover ongoing app development, maintenance and testing expenses.
I'd love to know what you all think!
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© Post "I made a mobile app that lets you scan players’ names to reveal their ranks" for game Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege.
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