Epic Games has acquired SkookumScript developers Agog Labs and Serbia-based graphics firm 3Lateral for undisclosed sums.
Agog Labs developed its scripting and direction solution following an Unreal Dev Grant in 2015, while 3Lateral is best known for its realistic animation of human character modelling. According to GI.biz, the SkookumScript developers will now stop working on the Unreal Engine 4 plugin and instead refocus their efforts on "exciting new projects" with Epic, while 3Lateral will continue "working to advance the state of the art in Unreal Engine’s support for virtual humans and creatures" and working with partners across the video games, film, and television industries.
"Here at Agog Labs our goal has always been to create authoring and development tools that allow people to focus on bringing their passionate imaginings to life," said Conan Reis, CEO of Agog Labs. "We melt our brains so you don’t have to. Epic has the same goals and spark of mad science, which makes it easy to align our paths. We’re honoured to become part of the Epic family."
"Creating digital humans requires deep understanding of every aspect of our appearance and motion, both of which portray our inner self and tell stories around us," said 3Lateral founder and director, Vladimir Mastilovic. "We read all these visual cues with great precision as instinct to analyse an image of another human being is deeply embedded in our DNA. Observing, analysing and reconstructing these mechanisms has always fascinated us at 3Lateral, and we are excited to have joined a like-minded team at Epic Games with such strong desire to solve this near impossible problem."
"Real-time 3D experiences are reshaping the entire entertainment industry, and digital human technology is at the forefront," added Epic CEO and founder Tim Sweeney added. "Fortnite shows that 200 million people can experience a 3D world together. Reaching the next level requires capturing, personalising, and conveying individual human faces and emotions."