By Stefan Curtis Jones
RELATED: Q & A With Duke Skywalka
Ballislife East Coast Squad member, Dazeran Jaquon “Duke Skywalka” Jones, was invited to the 2K Games headquarters in Petaluma, Calif., on Nov. 2, 2022 to create motion capture moves for the artificial intelligence (AI) set to be used in the popular video game NBA 2K24, which is developed annually by Visual Concepts Entertainment.
Jones, a high-flying dunker out of Haines City, Fla., joined Ballislife in Jan. 2020 and has amassed over 300,000 fans on YouTube, Instagram, and Tik Tok. Skywalka was initially approached with the NBA 2K24 opportunity by Zach Timmerman, producer of the NBA 2K Series, after Timmerman learned NBA 2K Motion Capture Actor, Tyler Idowu, and his son have been longtime fans of Skywalka and Ballislife.
“He approached me because his son is a fan,” Jones said. “He actually sent me a voice memo of his son telling me how he’s a huge fan and so I sent one back and it made his son’s day.”
Duke Skywalka participated in a five-hour motion capture process alongside other motion capture actors and professional overseas basketball players. The actors and ballplayers recorded a series of simple crossovers, contact finishes, and defensive movements. He will return to video game production site in early 2023 to record dunks and other moves.
The Ballislife streetball star expects to remain involved with the 2K Games motion capture team for future iterations of the NBA 2K series. For now, Duke Skywalka is excited to grow the business partnership and expressed deep gratitude for the offer extended by Timmerman and the rest of the NBA 2K team.
“Connecting with people leads to more opportunities; networking is the key thing,” Duke Skywalka said.
Stay up-to-date with Skywalka’s Ballislife content on his personal social pages, the main Ballislife YouTube channel, and the East Coast Squad YouTube channel. He will also be playing in the next Ballislife 5 vs. 5 livestream event on Dec. 28, 2022 in partnership with Caffeine.