The lights are on
At his "Technologies To Support Emotion" talk at GDC, Quantic Dream's David Cage showed off a year-old demo of the company's new "Kara" motion capture engine. What we saw during the presentation was running in-game on Kara v1, but he says it's 50% more powerful in its current v3 state.
Cage mentioned that the capture technology seen in films like Avatar and TinTin is ideal, but prohibitively expensive for game production. Quantic Dream wanted something that was "high quality, very fast, and very cheap." Their solution was Kara, a motion-capture system that pipelines actors' performances directly into the game engine with little editing needed. With it, they're able to shoot footage on the motion capture stage and almost immediately see how it appears in-game.
Whereas the company had 28 cameras in the Heavy Rain capture sessions, Kara uses 65. Ninety markers are placed on the actors' face, and ninety more are placed on the body.
Cage clarified that the Kara demo is not indicative of the company's next title, as it's strictly a demo for the engine. The video shows a robotic female being assembled and describing her functions. She states that she doesn't need to be fed, her battery lasts for 173 years, can take care of kids, clean a house, and is available as a sexual partner. After prompting by the unseen "Operator," she speaks fluently in French and German before singing in Japanese.
Once the Operator has heard enough, he states that she's ready to be sold. Initially confused about this statement, she quickly realizes she's a piece of merchandise. The Operator is discouraged by this self-awareness, and orders robotic arms to start disassembling the "defective" model.
"I thought I was alive," Kara says. "I've only just been born. You can't kill me yet. Stop this, please stop! I'm scared!". As she says this, the robotic arms pause, retract, and the Operator tells her to "go and join the others." She's placed in a box with several identical models and whisked away.
With help from this engine, Cage wants to bring a potentially new demographic into gaming. He says that three markets exist right now - casual (with Angry Birds as an example), family (Wii games), and hardcore (Call of Duty). "We believe there is a space for adult games. Meaningful experiences for a mature audience," Cage said. "We don't need to deliver messages or whatever, we just need to create a moment in time that leaves an imprint on your mind."
Watch the demo below.
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This is.... Simply stunning. How much feeling can be transmitted from a computerized animation, a "game" nowadays... My eyes went teary, even though they were'nt shed, it just shows how much games have progressed as an art form since they were first conceived as pure entertainment. Its amazing.
Its a persecom lol. Its a dangerous prospect to release something like that.
STUNNING! just wanna know what happens to her after that
What does he mean "adult games"?
I want mature games! :D
This is good, but i need slmething more frostbite 2
Simply amazing...the animation and the narative. I look forward to great things...great things :)
This engine is made on the PS3?
Why are people in a rush for a new generation...?
Impressive tech, and very emotional vid.
Shes gonna escape and destroy humanity, t-1000 style .
No joke, I was completely engrossed in what was going on. That seriously looked like an animated Hollywood movie, and it was running in real time!
I DON`T WANT TO MISJUDGE IT BUT IT`S NOT A GOOD START AT ALL WITH MADISON PAIGE ALL OVER BUT CHANGING HER NAME TO KARA ????
I HOPE AM WRONG
IF THEIR NOT MAKING THIS INTO A GAME THEN AT LEAST MAKE IT INTO A MOVIE!
Tech wise it looks stunning, especially if they can take performances and render them with little effort. Her facial textures were a little blurry, but that may be off screen and what not. And with how the engine is evolving...it would be really nice to see it on PC as well. But I doubt Sony will allow that.
Story wise it was awesome, very iRobot/Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep-y. I hope they do something more with that idea.
This kind of tech is what we need to get more girl gamers going. And yeah, I suppose they fall into that "Adult" demo he's talking about. One of the reasons why there were so many girl gamers on PS2 were because of the abundance of RPGS - story, and character, driven titles. Shockingly, not everyone dreams of being a homicidal, roided-out, one-man army. It's kind of crazy that so many western developers are just catering to THAT fantasy, and that the story driven games have retreated to DS, PSP and the darkest corners of PC indie gamedom. We need about 99% less identical, derivative military shooters and more western developers trying to make story-driven stuff here.