Cascadeur - is it possible to substitute the stuntman?
Once it seemed that the movie stunts will be done without stuntmen. However, it's still wrong. The computer animation always uses the motion capture technology to capture the stuntman motion.
Even the the most advanced blockbusters to make the animation that exceeds the stuntman capabilities when shooting motion capture use the steel ropes, trampolines and other tricks. Is the animation possibility limited to that?
We want to tell about our Cascadeur program for creating 3D animation. The basic idea is that the animators could take into account the laws of physics when working on the animation. Physics allows creating the realistic animation without the help of motion capture. In the future if it would be possible to substitute the stuntman, then we could try to exceed the stuntman capabilities to make the movements and the stunts that any stuntman will not be able to do in the world. At least we set this goal.
Presently, we have used the Cascadeur program for the animation in our Shadow Fight game and our new project about Parkour. While working on these games it turned out that the program is quite easy to learn, compared with professional software, and its size is only 2 MB. Namely, even people with no experience can do the good quality animation in a few months.
We have a character model that consists of joints (each of them has its own weight) and the bones that connect these joints. Also, the character has muscles, at the picture they look like the stretched strings, but the essence is the same as a live person. The character can take any position changing the length of the muscles.
The animators use a special tool that shows the necessary tension of the character muscles in each frame of animation. The more muscle is stretched, the brighter color is. The animators can find their errors using the distribution of load on the body.
There are the tools that allow correcting most errors related to the physics. For example, the animator can control directly the center of the character mass and an angular momentum.
Here's a video of Vector game, which we are being designed for the social and mobile platforms. Despite the fact that the graphics is 2D in the game and the character is represented as a silhouette, the character animation is being done in 3D. The game animation puts over its conditionality, but the realistic effect is still present.
In the future articles we will try to give a detailed account of the working process in Cascadeur.
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