Making faces in Unreal
The folks from Epic have updated their news page about the latest developments in the Unreal engine. This time around, they're showing off new facial and skeletal animation features, and the examples look impressively expressive. (See this picture.) Here's how they do it:
The Unreal Engine includes exporters for Discreet's 3D Studio Max and Alias|Wavefront's Maya. These allow you to export fully textured objects and fully textured and animated characters. We've created a character model, and more importantly, a skeleton, that we're going to provide licensees to help get them get quickly up to speed with facial animation techniques in Maya. The Maya model contains 85 bones and is completely set up for detailed facial animation.
I can't wait to see this stuff in action. To get a feel for that, you might want to check out this preview
of Unreal II. Thanks to the Shack
for the heads up.