Cage: LA Noire mo-cap tech 'a dead-end'

Cage: LA Noire mo-cap tech 'a dead-end'

By Rob Crossley

April 4th 2011 at 11:58AM

Quantic Dream creative boss backs performance capture, but not the Motion Scan way

The facial animation tech underpinning LA Noire is an “interesting dead end”, Quantic Dream boss David Cage has claimed.

The Heavy Rain director appears to be the first high-profile critic of Depth Analysis’ Motion Scan technology, which has otherwise won universal applause.

Speaking in an interview with CVG
, Cage alleged that the Depth Analysis system was prohibitively expensive and couldn’t be used to recreate full-body animations, though the claim has not been verified.

He slated the technology while at the same time praising Quantic Dream’s own in-house mocap system.

"What to say about L.A Noire? I think it's an interesting solution to a problem for now,” he said.

“But it's also an interesting dead end. That's exactly what I feel. Their technique is incredibly expensive and they will never be able to shoot body and face at the same time," he alleged.

The Motion Scan “performance capture” process uses in-game actors to re-record scenes whilst their head is filmed by 32 HD cameras from various angles.

The fruits of that process has been demonstrated in several LA Noire trailers, each winning near-universal applause.

Cage said Quantic Dream is already employing alternative technologies to capture full body performances in his next project.

"We are doing that now [at Quantic], and our next games will be shot with performance capture," he said.

"We see a huge difference between shooting the face and body separately and shooting everything at the same time. Suddenly you've got a real sense of acting that is consistent. You can't imagine how related what you say with your face is to what your body does."

Cage went on to make a string of unverified claims, such as Motion Scan tech cannot possibly capture full body performance.

“The other thing is that they can't have real time lighting,” he also alleged.

“Their technique means they can't have lighting the way I think we should do it.”