Motion and facial capture can be quite an expensive part of video game development. Traditionally requiring purpose-built rooms and expensive equipment, it has led to an increase in the cost of many video games looking to perfect the visual quality of their games.
With Epic Games releasing a new version of their Unreal Engine that is set to take video game development into an even brighter new graphical world, comes a newly released iOS app that will hopefully make it even easier to capture facial expressions for developers using nothing but their smartphone camera.
Epic’s app works by building on a couple of Apple’s existing technologies, including its ARKit augmented reality platform and the TrueDepth camera that Apple introduced with the iPhone X in 2017. Apple has used this technology for their Animoji and Memoji apps, which map your facial expressions onto cartoon avatars. Only now Epic is going to enable it to create even more detail for one of the world’s most powerful engines. Sadly, all that extra definition will mean I would look even uglier when capturing my face for games. A good thing that I perhaps don’t do that then.
According to The Verge, Epic says that its Live Link Face app can allow artists to work from their home office and at a sound stage with multiple actors where the phone can be shared around and natively adjust between them. The app can be controlled remotely, so Epic says you could set it up to simultaneously start recording on multiple iPhones using a single command. Once imported, the facial animation data can be adjusted in-engine.
If you’re a developer who’s interested in trying out the app for yourself, Epic’s documentation for the feature can be found here.
Last Updated: July 13, 2020