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Anybody want to buy some rat meat?

You reckon Patrick Stewart is ever sorry he took that Star Trek gig? He’s done the voiceover for about half the games I’ve bought in the last ten years, including Emperor Apple Doll here.

Not knocking Oblivion, which is five or six years old. Even the latest and greatest games, they still haven’t got people quite down yet, especially faces. Dead Space 2 that I’ve been raving and drooling about is good in some scenes (the back of Isaac’s head looks spectacularly real) and creepy in others. I mean, unintentionally creepy (the intentionally creepy faces are excellent).

For the just-released L.A. Noire, they famously strapped real actors into chairs and made them act for some computerized facial scanning doohicky that reproduced the expressions later on game characters. Being able to perceive a liar is apparently important to the gameplay. Yet in all the trailers I’ve seen, the faces look ultra creepy.

I’m a great believer in the Uncanny Valley. Things that look alllllmost but not quite human are guaranteed to give people the jim-jamms. We’re wired to read changes in facial expression that can be measured in millimeters. It’s going to be a while before modeling programs get that good.

Though it would help if 3D modelers would stop making teeth and eyeballs self-illuminate.

July 18, 2011 — 11:35 pm
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