Heavy Rain Dev Calls L.A. Noire's MotionScan Tech a "Dead End"

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Heavy Rain Dev Calls L.A. Noire's MotionScan Tech a "Dead End"

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L.A. Noire might have the most realistic characters a videogame has ever seen, but Quantic Dream says it can do better.

Thanks to Rockstar Games' innovative MotionScan technology, the company says that L.A. Noire will blur the line between videogames and movies. After seeing the game in action at PAX East 2011, I agree. Quantic Dream's David Cage, known as the visionary behind Heavy Rain, commends Rockstar for trying to do something different, but says MotionScan is nothing compared to the technology Quantic is currently working on for its next game.

MotionScan uses dozens of HD cameras that currently capture an actor's face from all angles, allowing L.A. Noire to display every twitch, blink, and eye movement. Speaking to CVG, Cage called MotionScan an "interesting solution to a problem for now," but added that it's also an "interesting dead end."

"Their technique is incredibly expensive and they will never be able to shoot body and face at the same time," Cage said. "We are doing that now [at Quantic], and our next games will be shot with performance capture."

Cage's opinion is that there's a "huge difference" between shooting just an actor's face, versus an actor's entire body. "You can't imagine how related what you say with your face is to what your body does," he continued. In addition, Cage said MotionScan probably wouldn't be able to incorporate real-time lighting, or allow for developers to change important aspects such as eye direction in-game if necessary.

"I think L.A Noire looks good," Cage admitted. "Honestly, it does - but I don't think they'll go much further than where they are. With the technology we use, we can improve; there is a lot of room for improvement and we hope to show very soon where we are now."

Cage says Quantic Dream has come a long way since Heavy Rain, whose characters looked good enough to freak out plenty of fans. If it can do even better than Rockstar is doing with L.A. Noire, more power to Quantic Dream, but I hope this isn't a case of promising too much too soon.

Source: CVG

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Meh, I didn't care for Heavy Rain. I played up until just after I lost the kid in the shopping mall. At least LA Noire can be counted as a game.

Hmm, seems like he's just knocking on another company's game to try to cause hype for his own.

You know, I really dislike this guy. Doesn't have a good word to say about anyone else, shit-talks and generalises other games, and has the audacity to attack them for their stories; this from a person whose first game went batshit insane halfway through, and whose second had a story with more holes than Tiger Woods has put his junk in to.

Well I'll still play and buy LA Noire, you know why?
It probably has decent gameplay instead of some glorified quick-time events.

Well he better deliver now. That's a pretty serious claim.

The pile of evidence for "Quantic are pretentious dicks" is only getting bigger...

Meh whatev's i don't have a PS3 anyway

He has a point, sort of. Of course unless he shows us just how much better his tech is, he's just bullshiting, so...

I was impressed with the facial features of Heavy Rain's characters, but I don't think the issue on this case is whether the game's graphics are going to make the game. I actually enjoy the rediculous twists and turns of Indigo Prophecy despite the graphics being less than great.

The graphics in L.A. Noire look astonishing, but the issue here in the end is, even if the end product is pretty, will the game be worth playing because it is fun?

David Cage shouldn't get uppity about graphics; It's the game and how much fun it is to play that should stand up first, the graphics can be pretty after that. That's personally, how I run.

Hey, instead of talking crap like you got the better thing, and just prove it.

Or, better yet, why didn't you use this stuff for the game that could of really used it, you know, "Heavy Rain". The most I remember from that game that succeeded, was ensuring no one wanted to play through it twice, because you put in a massive, ungodly mass of a plothole should someone try and play it twice.

Meh, the game is not out yet so I don't think anyone can really complain/praise it. I loved Heavy Rain and I will give L.A. Noire a fair shot as well.

Quantic can bite the curb on this one.

Rockstar hasn't ever led me astray...too badly. LA Noire is shaping up to be something I'm genuinely interested in, and as for Quantic...well my single experience with Heavy Rain is enough for now. I'm not a fan of mouthpieces who have more bark than bite.

You know what? I'm going to wait before I call bullshit. Quantic Dream may actually be able to one-up Rockstar Games in terms of realism. However, a fight between two developers of who can produce the most realistic looking graphics is like a fight between two developers of who can produce the best game art. Sure, it's really nice if it looks really good and competition sure breeds results in terms of things like this, but it isn't a substitute for things like gameplay and story.

Tom Goldman:
"...but says MotionScan is nothing compared to the technology Quantic is currently working on for its next game.

I think you might have made a bit of a typo, I'm pretty sure that is supposed to say 'movie', not game. At least, if it anything like Heavy Rain..

Tom Goldman:
but says MotionScan is nothing compared to the technology Quantic is currently working on for its next game.

So it will look realistic, but will they fix the horrible voice acting, bad camera angles, and overall boringness? L.A. Noire, ehh... may give it a rent sometime. Nothing any it that really makes me interested, and that combined with the dozens of games I still haven't touched yet, probably mean that I'll never play this...

Man I love all of Heavy Rain's robot people. I thought they look awesome and not at all like ungodly abominations.

David Cage just seems like the kind of guy that gets pissed he doesn't have the technology he'd like, and so puts it down. A while ago, I remember he said that he didn't think Kinect would be able to do some of the things that Molyeneux said it would in the Milo demo. Now yeah, I'll agree that Peter does have a habit of over exaggerating, but I reckon, given Cage's desperate need for interactive drama, that he would LOVE to have something like that to work with Heavy Rain or similar. But, he's with Sony, and unfortunately, the Move doesn't do that sort of thing, so what does he do? Say the Kinect can't do those things.

I reckon it's the same deal here. He'd love to have that level of facial animation, but perhaps Rockstar have a deal, or perhaps QD can't afford it, but they can't use it. So what does Cage do? "Oh it's a dead end. Ours is better. You can't see it yet, but it is."

Maybe Cage should just take a step back and just make something before he starts calling people out on it.

As much as I don't like to encourage devs feuding like little boys... he does have a point. In the LA Noire trailer the hand animations are nasty.

"David Cage reminds everyone he's an asshole" as expected...

Every time he speaks to someone, it's always to tell people something pretentious (Heavy Rain is not a game, it's a whole new experience), condescending (Nintendo make games, we make adult experiences) or just plain prickish (this).

He's making me regret loving Fahrenheit as much as I did (haven't played Heavy Rain yet. The guy's just an asshole.

Woodsey:
You know, I really dislike this guy. Doesn't have a good word to say about anyone else, shit-talks and generalises other games, and has the audacity to attack them for their stories; this from a person whose first game went batshit insane halfway through, and whose second had a story with more holes than Tiger Woods has put his junk in to.

I think the day he said that he wasn't making games, is the day we lost him to his own ego. A shame too, if he took advice, he'd probably make something truly special.

And yes, when the first game went like that, I was kind of thinking "...The fuck?"

I don't think I've ever seen a story take that kind of turn before.

Woodsey:
You know, I really dislike this guy. Doesn't have a good word to say about anyone else, shit-talks and generalises other games, and has the audacity to attack them for their stories; this from a person whose first game went batshit insane halfway through, and whose second had a story with more holes than Tiger Woods has put his junk in to.

Agreed. His unashamed sense of self-importance really turned me off from ever giving a Quantic game another shot (this coming from a guy who thought Heavy Rain was decent).

This is the guy who said this:
"Game designers think that players can project themselves onto empty shell characters. I think this is a huge mistake."

mireko:
I prefer Destructoid's take on it.

Handwritten Destructoid should stay forever.

DustyDrB:

Woodsey:
You know, I really dislike this guy. Doesn't have a good word to say about anyone else, shit-talks and generalises other games, and has the audacity to attack them for their stories; this from a person whose first game went batshit insane halfway through, and whose second had a story with more holes than Tiger Woods has put his junk in to.

Agreed. His unashamed sense of self-importance really turned me off from ever giving a Quantic game another shot (this coming from a guy who thought Heavy Rain was decent).

This is the guy who said this:
"Game designers think that players can project themselves onto empty shell characters. I think this is a huge mistake."

I am now going to carry a copy of the Orange Box around with me wherever I go, just in case I run into the nob so I can slap him with it. That quote isn't even subjective, considering the amount of people that have said it works for them when done right.

The funniest thing is, I don't actually disagree with him about the LA Noire tech (facial textures look fairly poor, and the bodies do look separate to a certain extent), but he comes across as such an arrogant little cock that I'd happily ignore all those things to spite him.

I like this just because I despise rockstar.

In the end, technology is just a means to an end.
Just because you have super-awesome state of the art tech, doesn't automatically mean that your game becomes any better for it.
Look at Valve, they've been doing convincing facial-animation (animation in general, actually) since 2004 (and mostly done by hand, if I'm not mistaken).
Who cares if your tech is better than Rockstar's, it's the end result that counts.

He really should wait until he can demo his own tech before shitting on someone else's. He may be right, and the facial capture certainly sounds like it might be on the expensive side, but saying "I can do it better and cheaper" without backing it up makes him look like one hell of a pretentious git.

Woodsey:
You know, I really dislike this guy. Doesn't have a good word to say about anyone else, shit-talks and generalises other games, and has the audacity to attack them for their stories; this from a person whose first game went batshit insane halfway through, and whose second had a story with more holes than Tiger Woods has put his junk in to.

Exactly, I think he's just afraid other games are out-performing him in several areas. I won't mourn the loss of Heavy Rain at all, this is, like you put it a game at least.

Put up or shut up, Cage.

Seriously, what's with developers talking smack about other developers? Is the games industry run by a bunch of fucking toddlers going "WAAAAAAAH MY WATTLE'S BIGGER THAN YOUR WATTLE!"

Who cares? It looks awesome and is an actual game. This guy just knows how to make a pretty crappy movie.

He is seriously reminding me more and more of later years George Lucas.
Convinced of the brilliance of his own work, apparently unable to take advice from anyone, obsessed with tech and while admittedly full of good ideas, completly unable to tell a story thatīs actually worth something.

The proof as they say, is in the pudding. I've seen what L.A Noire is like (despite it being console only! MEH! :P) and I haven't seen what new technology this guy is talking about.

In the oft most cherished phrase of the Internet: "Pics or gtfo".

This is the equivalent to a school child saying his toy is better than the other kid's. Both of these are relative dead ends because there will be better versions to come, the idea is that you develop the idea with these games being baby steps.

Honestly, that guy wasted his breath. He has said almost nothing that we all didn't already know.

Stop twisting Gage's words. He's not shit talking, but bringing up a real concern. It's just a shame he's a professional and not entitled to the privilege to make simple comments that we all enjoy.

It's true, if you look at L.A. Noire's MotionScan technology, the actors are confined to a small sphere of stationary cameras and have to sit stiffly without actual real life interactions. That's not natural, and limits the acting and animation potential.

Compare that to say Jame's Cameron's Avatar or Resident Evil 5 where cameras were attached to the actor's heads and shooting their faces and had them actually move around and interact. That makes a load of difference.

Still this great motion capture technology still can't hold if your characters aren't believable. Naughty Dog, VALVe, and Pixar animate mostly by hand. No motion capture just, looking at references and moving sliders! And look where that has taken them.

So can he defend the decision of making Madison one of the main characters? I mean, seriously, she has NO RELEVANCE to the story. She's there to nearly get power drill raped by a ex-surgeon and recieve the "Ethan Mars seal of approval"

I just hope that Quantic Dream's next game has a better story... sheesh

"A shower will recreate the magic of sleep", what kind of writing is that? Do they even how real people speak?

Skopintsev:
So can he defend the decision of making Madison one of the main characters? I mean, seriously, she has NO RELEVANCE to the story. She's there to nearly get power drill raped by a ex-surgeon and recieve the "Ethan Mars seal of approval"

Also that

And all this coming from the guy who gave us this?

And he's saying this is a dead end?

No, go on, Mr. Cage. I'd love to hear more. Just pardon the stifling of my uproaring laughter.

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