Rockstar’s Amazing Facial Expression Technology [ VIDEO ]

Since I haven’t been keeping up with anything about Rockstar Games’ L.A. Noire this video comes as complete surprise to me. Nonetheless, this development video looks friggin’ awesome and I can honestly say that L.A. Noire is on my personal radar now.


  • Nuckel

    They used a similar technologie for Resident Evil 5 but without reaching this quality. This is bringing games way further to life and it should spread throughout the whole industrie.

    • rohan

      learn to fucking spell.

  • Rob

    Is that the dad from Bill and Ted’s excellent adventure at 3:25? I think it is… but it doesn’t say his name or anything.

  • KommieCid

    this is a game? holy crap- I thought it was a bloody movie!

  • Anonymous

    That was friggin unbelievable. If only it was possible to do that technologie WITHOUT using actors… It would be one step forward for creating the real Matrix!

    • once they do this enough they’ll get enough data points to accurately apply them to virtual characters without the need for real actors and that’s when shit starts to get crazy, imagine applying that kind of knowledge to sci-fi characters e.g. aliens everything get’s a whole lot more realistic!

  • muyfuerte

    Looks Awesome!

  • TomTom

    Now will the game be any good? Rockstar has been pretty consistently good, so I think it should be. But it’s almost worth owning just because of the ridiculous facial expression technology. Given personable characters and a good story and we have a runner that matches Mass Effect 2 here.

  • casketsalesman

    that is an incredible thing, i gotta play it

  • amckern

    Good to see there are still Aussie studios making there own IP

  • jaxsun

    It’s a bit of a shame really, the great quality of the faces trumps the rest of the visuals making them look archaic in contrast :P

  • Dave Kliman

    The way the heads move is still not realistic… maybe this comes from recording people while seated for standing dialog… but whatever it is, the head moves around unnaturally… this problem is also evident in some spots in avatar… it’s going to be a holy grail for programmers to figure out what they’re doing wrong.

  • genewitch

    Kliman: i think you are right, it is almost as if they were pasting the 2d video onto a 3d sphere (the face in game) – some things looked really good, some looked really weird.

    They should literally just hire people to walk around and speak lines to cover the motion capture for standing scenes. the nice thing is, you can have a different voice actor than body actor and face actor…

  • This is what I thought games should do for ages! Sure, the technology wasn’t the best, but you know… I always thought at least around lips and things! This looks great!

  • Ooops, don’t know what happened with my last comment :S

  • TuxRug

    Too bad I don’t have a PS3 or an XBox360… Of course the Wii isn’t powerful enough to do this kind of stuff, and there’s too many variables in PC performance for them to release a PC version, I guess.

  • Radioactive24

    I half-expected to see Quantum Dreams tagged on there. It looked similar to Heavy Rain.

  • Kirk

    @Kliman: I agree, it might not be the best idea to film the actors faces while sitting. They should’ve done it like they did with Avatar. If an actor acts the entire scene in one take, and the facial data is captured at the same time as the rest of the body, the result will look much more natural.

    The problem with overdubbing a scene that was captured by some other actor is, that it never sounds natural. The people who did “Uncharted” actually realized that, and did motion capture and voice tracks at the same time, with the same actors. The result sounds much more convincing.

    • zwenkwiel

      don’t think they can do that at the same time though
      the guy has to sit down because he’s surrounded by camera’s and lights
      a lot of head movement would probably mess up the scan

  • Well, Avatar did use about the same technology for capturing the actors face. They had a head-camera and motion-capture points on their faces, as well as many cameras everywhere to capture their body movement.

  • Lord of Numa

    Walter, what are you doing in L.A.? Come on, Olivia needs us back at the lab

  • the rick

    fix that issue and give the tech to bethesda softworks :) they need it

  • OK… so the “stupid” question has to be asked… why not just shoot video instead?

    • jmack

      cuz its a video game

  • KC

    @Lord of Numa – I was thinking that exact same thing.

  • Gonz

    So, my mind was just blown and this is one of the most awesome things i’ve ever seen but, i think this still leaves out nonhuman characters unless they are very humanlike. which thinking about it now… they mostly would be.

  • bobo

    Oh my god…some of the animations look so real. yet so dead.

  • jmack

    the head does kinda look off from the body still looks great but why cant they use that same technology to just capture the actors full body movement instead of just the head if they can capture the face with that much detail then why not the body movement. i mean even the kinect can pretty much sense the movement of your body pretty accurately and thats only one camera. then games can have real actors in them that would be awesome. once they figure this out it will change alot of things in the gaming industry and movie industry

  • Overlord

    mind = blown