Imagine animating another hyperrealistic person using just your iPhone. That’s exactly what Epic is saying you’ll be able to do later this year.
Today, Epic Games hosted the State of Unreal at GDC, its event where the company unveils the latest technology powering Unreal Engine. At the event, the team announced that it will bring its Metahuman Animation technology to iPhones. The new Metahuman Animator feature set promises to make performance capture easier and more accessible for game creators.
The company says that users will soon be able to use just an iPhone for performance capture. The performance caught using the iPhone will be used to animate a MetaHuman character, which can be chosen from the company’s premade characters or custom ones created by developers.
MetaHuman Animator will enable you to use your iPhone or stereo helmet-mounted camera (HMC) to reproduce any facial performance as high-fidelity animation on MetaHuman characters. With it, you’ll be able to capture the individuality, realism, and fidelity of your actor’s performance, and transfer every detail and nuance onto any MetaHuman to bring them to life in Unreal Engine.
You can check out some of the performances caught using an iPhone below:
The company says that the feature will make AAA character animation quality available to more people, including indie game developers and even hobbyists. The company says that the technology is also able to sync with mocap systems for full-body motion capture:
MetaHuman Animator also works with any professional vertical stereo HMC capture solution, including those from Technoprops, delivering even higher-quality results. And if you also have a mocap system for body capture, MetaHuman Animator’s support for timecode means that the facial performance animation can be easily aligned with body motion capture and audio to deliver a full character performance. It can even use the audio to produce convincing tongue animation.
To show what is possible with its latest technology, Epic showed off a quick clip from Ninja Theory which used the animation tech to capture a performance from Hellblade. You can check that out below:
The company says that it will work with the iPhone 11 or later and will launch in the summer of 2023.