20 February 2011

Designing Games With Style - by Joannes Truyens

      Posted 02/19/11 06:02:00 am  

This article examines the intent of a substantial amount of AAA games to craft a visual presentation that emulates realism as faithfully as possible. But before we can get to the core of the issue, we have to make a detour through the movie industry to ease us into it, and more specifically, the introduction of computer-generated imagery (CGI).

Before movies are released, their CGI aspects are often advertised and thus receive very specific attention. This foreknowledge alone can be enough to prevent any disbelief from being suspended. There are movies that are entirely CGI, but this level of attention is more apparent when a movie combines CGI with live-action. A recent example is Jeff Bridges' dual role in Tron: Legacy. He plays himself as an older Kevin Flynn, and his appearance in the original Tron is digitally recreated as his counterpart CLU 2.0 (who looks like his younger self). Many people were put off by CLU 2.0's representation, calling it "appalling", "eerie" and "creepy". A movie which suffered similar criticism is The Polar Express, which has become the poster movie for misfired results in attempted CGI realism. 

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