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Unreal Engine 4’s Sequencer Promising to ‘revolutionise the VR industry’

At the SIGGRAPH 2016 event this week in Anaheim, California, Epic Games along with Ninja Theory showcased a new demonstration that expanded upon the Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice live performance-driven scene from the Game Developers Conference 2016. This highlighted Unreal Engine’s new Sequencer tool, with the collaboration also receiving the SIGGRAPH award for Best Real-Time Graphics and Interactivity.

Titled: “From Previs to Final in Five Minutes: A Breakthrough in Live Performance Capture,” the demonstration also featured, Cubic Motion and 3Lateral as the companies reunited to demonstrate a new way of shooting computer generated scenes in real-time dubbed Real-Time Cinematography.

Hellblade Senua's Sacrifice

Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, was shot, edited and rendered to final quality in minutes, rather than weeks, then with with real-time cinematography every nuance of the digital character’s facial expressions, lighting, visual effects and sets are visible. All the digital 3D data is then directly sent to Unreal Engine 4 to use its Sequencer tool.

“We’re honoured to receive the Best Real-Time Graphics and Interactivity Award for the second year in a row here at Real-Time Live! during SIGGRAPH 2016,” said Epic Games CTO Kim Libreri. “This demonstration required the teams at Epic Games, Ninja Theory, Cubic Motion and 3Lateral to challenge ourselves both technically and creatively to think about the future for real-time cinematography and deliver a working example of what is now possible through the power of Unreal Engine 4 and the Sequencer tool.

“Now, our hope is that artists and technicians are empowered to employ these technologies and techniques to usher in a whole new generation of real-time cinematography that will take interactive entertainment and storytelling to a level of efficiency and quality that has never been achieved before.”

Tameem Antoniades of Ninja Theory said, “Our end goal is to find ways to create fully interactive 3D experiences for future games and virtual reality experiences that feature incredible, immersive worlds and believable characters. This amazing collaboration between our teams had brought the dream a huge step forward to everyone’s benefit.”

Speaking of Ninja Theory’s ambitions, CEO Nina Kristensen commented, “We’re looking to work with partners that are interested in using this new technique for their projects, whether this be in games, movies, VR or live performance. We see this new technology as a game changer and are proud to be pushing the boundaries of possibility in this space.”

While Cubic Motion CEO Dr. Gareth Edwards stated, “The value of the new system launched at SIGGRAPH lies in live digital humans for virtual and augmented reality. Epic’s Unreal Engine has been key to making this technology produce the incredible results we’re all so excited to present – and it’s been a pleasure to work alongside their team, led by Kim Libreri. Ninja Theory’s compelling world of Hellblade makes a great platform to demonstrate believable digital humans, based on the world-class scanning, modelling and rigging of our friends at3Lateral. Live-driving is an excellent way to visualize performance on set, and stereo solving pushes our quality bar even higher.”

For all the latest VR news from SIGGRAPH 2016, keep reading VRFocus.