22nd April 2009
Manchester, England. Three former executives of animation company Image Metrics are launching a new venture in performance driven animation.
Cubic Motion is the brainchild of Dr Steven Dorning, Doug Tate and Mike Jones and aims to bring the latest methods in human capture and character animation to mainstream, high volume projects. Cubic Motion will be focused on providing a range of services and products to the animation sector to aid in many aspects of the pipeline, from character rigging through to completed animation.
According to Mike Jones:“Performance driven techniques are now accepted as key methods for creating high fidelity animation that faithfully mimics the emotional range of an actor. There’s a lot of need for this approach, especially in video games, where developers need hours of high quality content at affordable prices”.
Doug Tate adds:“We think that customers should have access to greater flexibility in capture and animation methods. Performance driven animation shouldn’t mean facing tough integration challenges. We’re working closely with audio and traditional motion capture partners, as well as our early customers, to ensure that anyone working with Cubic Motion has a hassle-free experience”.
Most importantly, Cubic motion wants to shake up traditional thinking on the costs associated with performance driven animation. Doug Tate believes that,“the very highest quality facial animation achievable in video games should be available at a price point that makes manual key framing uneconomic. The days when performance driven animation was seen as a high end solution, affordable to only the best funded projects, are over”.
According to Dr Dorning, the lead technologist:“this is the most exciting project I’ve ever worked on– delivering high quality animation, with a fast turnaround at a price point significantly lower than anything yet seen in the performance driven arena is some challenge, but one which can be met. We’ve turned around the existing paradigms and the way people think about the problem–attacking it from a new angle– our approach is unique, never seen before, and will deliver. A key part of our work is to make the core methodology independent of particular technologies, allowing us to access a much wider range of solutions in capture and animation than you get from current vendors of proprietary methods. Moreover, we bring exactly the right custom mix of technologies to each project, using video, audio, and motion capture all integrated under a common, portable framework. We confidently believe in supplying the best quality animation in the business, whilst sticking to our ground breaking pricing policy for the animation of moderate volumes or greater”.
Cubic Motion is currently in closed development projects with early clients– their service will be generally available from July. Studios interested in trials should contact Cubic Motion.