Alan Wake has been a long time coming, but believe it or not, it’s arrival is right around the corner. This past week the press embargo was lifted and dozens upon dozens of early reviews spilled online, nearly all of which greatly sung the praises of the psychological-thriller.
It wasn’t all smooth sailing though as many reviews noted that the facial animations can be more than a little clunky at times. The good news is that developer, Remedy Entertainment, is well aware of the situation and hopes to remedy (see what I did there?) the problem in the upcoming downloadable content packs.
Speaking on the official Remedy Forums, developer, MarcusRMD said:
We have a few different methods of doing facial animation – in-game using FaceFX and motion capture used in cinematics. While I think it’ll always be possible to get “fugly” single frames out of any game we definitely learned a lot doing Alan Wake, and will try to improve the way we do things to get best possible looking facials. In fact, we’re using some of the improvements in the DLC production already.
It’s not alone a matter of the method how or where the facial capture is done, it’s about the run-time animation techniques available, skeleton setup and so on. It’s a complex problem trying to dodge the Uncanny Valley.
Personally, I am not too bothered about the quality of the Alan Wake’s facial animations, but it is really great to hear that Remedy plan on delivering improvements so quickly. I suppose that the somewhat dodgy animations currently in the game are down to the title spending five years in development.
Animations aside, Alan Wake looks to be one of the games of the year, and if, like me, the wait for it’s arrival is killing you, I strongly recommend checking out the live-action prequel series, Bright Falls, it should help you get your Alan Wake fix until release day rolls around.
Alan Wake will illuminate stores on May 14th in Europe & May 18th in North America, exclusively for Xbox 360.
Source: Remedy Forums