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Reverse the Verse: 2.16 - Austin Written Friday 9th of December 2016 at 09:58am by CanadianSyrup, StormyWinters and

As per usual, anything said during the show is subject to change by CIG and may not always be accurate at the time of posting. Also any mistakes you see that I may have missed, please let me know so I can correct them. Enjoy the show!

TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)

  • Today's RTV featured Bryan Brewer, Animation Lead, and Chris Smith, Lead 3D Vehicle Artist.
  • Bryan has been with CIG since almost the beginning in Jan, 2013. He's also worked with Chris Smith on and off since 2006.
  • Animations with animations (Animateption) are possible. You'll be able to sit at a bar for example, then order a drink or other options. This also applies to AI which has many uses such as making repairs more fluid and natural. Instead of one animation, the AI will be able to go up to a ship to repair, then switch between different tools as it sees fit as an example.
  • Certain animations will not have variations such as entry and exit animations like dancing does. There will be different entry/exit animations based on speed, but it'll be the same one each time you execute them.
  • Animations for the female will be unique for the most part when she's complete, but for now as certain animations need to be made, they re-target male animations to fit the female and when said female animation is ready, they'll replace it down the line so it allows the female to be in the game and later they'll give her her feminine charm.
  • Chris Smith will be doing the 300i rework after the F8 is done. He will also be working on something that may resemble a motorcycle given his animation of revving a motorcycle engine.
  • The new Hornet has not changed in functionality, just Aesthetic, and everyone Hornet owners get the new Hornet for free
  • "Masters of Flight" is only the beginning to colours, you'll be able to use custom colours and designs down the road as the system comes online.


  • Good morning, afternoon, and evening folks! It's almost time for RTV, Your transcribers today are myself CanadianSyrup, and StormyWinters. Enjoy the show!

  • They're currently showing some footage from yesterday's ATV of the Catapult launch from the Idris

  • They're live! Hosting today's RTV is Tyler Witkin with Bryan Brewer as today's first guest.

  • Bryan Brewer is an Animation Lead for the Austin studio. He's been with the project since January of 2013, essentially the beginning. He's never worked with Chris prior, but knew many people who have worked with him. He's worked with Chris Smith over the years since 2006 however.

[Do fast exit animations include bailing out in flight?]

Ejection seats are exactly that.

[What's the most complicated animation you've done yet?]

It's hard one to nail down in particular as each animation has its own complexity that makes it difficult, but he says ships are probably some of the most difficult ones because they're building the ships at the same time they have to animate them.

One that's difficult they're doing right now is sitting at consoles on a ship because when you sit down in a chair you have to get comfortable to make it look natural. So for some ships with chairs that aren't static, you have to create an animation for them to sit in the chair and scoot that chair forward to where the character gets "comfortable".

[Will there be button, throttle, and joystick animations?]

That's actually in the game in the game right now, there's a lot of work in making sure it works right.

[Can you have an animation within an animation? Can I sit at a bar and then initiate another animation such as ordering a drink?]

Absolutely, you could sit on a toilet and then have a variety of options on top of that.

This also applies to AI and they're working on making it so if an AI is going to repair a ship, they'll go to a spot, and then reach into their toolbox, grab a tool, use that tool, put it back, etc.

[Many emotes have variations such as dance 1, 2, 3, 4, will ships have a different entry/exit animations?]

They'll be the same because of standardisation, you'll have different speeds that alter how the animation is played, but not different kinds of the same one.

[We have heard that you guys use full sized cockpits as a prop when doing mocap, do you use any other interesting props?] 

Motion capture is really interesting because for movies you build all these neat sets for actors, but for them they use PVC pipe and duct tape and scaffolding for climbing up stuff. If you want to do stuff on the fly, you literally take what you need to have the correct metric. It could be a simple as taking two buckets and a plank and nailing them together.

[Are we likely to see animations linked to chat? Such as something typing hello and your character reacting?]

That's a design question.

[How does planning for a mocap shoot work? You talk about doing such large quantities of animation capture, who decides what goes on that list?] 

Production mostly. They look at what's a priority, Squadron 42, 3.0 etc, then the higher ups look at what they have and if they can reuse, then they'll make that work. If they need something new then they look into the metrics of making it work. Bryan describes a cafeteria scene and all the things that go into it, the size of the tray, the height it's at, placing an apple on the tray and where, etc. There's a lot of pre-production that goes into making sure the mocap is doing how they need it. 

[Will all the current animation being done to the male model apply to the female model as well or will it require additional work?]

There are some things that you can apply to the female without much work and looks okay, but other animations can look awkward and rough. Currently they're retargeting male animations to female when male animations are done, and then later on they'll be putting in the actual female animations. Not every animation will be female, but they'll do as much as they can to make them feel feminine and stand out.

  • That's all with Bryan Brewer, up next is Chris Smith!

  • They're currently showing the Hornet rework, Chris hasn't changed anything with the model, but brought the visuals up to the standard that current ships have today.

  • Chris Smith is a Vehicle 3D Artist and they're jumping into questions right away.

  • Or not. Chris has been with the company since the early days of the project, he was hired to do spaceships and that's what he's still doing. Some of the ships he's worked on is the Hornet, the 300i, the Constellation, Mustang, M50, a lot of the smaller ships.

[When will the 300i series be getting its polish pass]

Chris said it's not going to happen until after the F8 is done, but once that's done he'll get working on it.

[How does a rework of a ship work?]

With the Hornet, the MK1 took a lot of work because you were creating something brand new where the rework you can build on top of the existing one as a guide and bring it to where it needs to be with the new tech that's come along.

The Super Hornet will be getting a rework as well.

[What is your favourite ship and why is it the 350R?]

The new F7-A is one he likes a lot. The 350R has always been one of his favourites, but when it gets reworked it'll be at the top again.

[Will there be additional paint options apart from the "Masters of Flight" variants?] 

This is just the beginning, down the line you'll be able to choose custom colours and designs.

[Do you think generations ahead when making a ship as to have multiple generations of ships down the line follow a path or is it on the go?]

They evolve, it's about getting it out. They don't assume they'll be making a revision, but rather have ideas that they may not get to do, but apply later on.

[Were you able to reduce the poly count of the new Hornet?]

Yes, that's one of the main reasons they do the reworks.

[Will the functionality change or is it just aesthetics for the Hornet]

Aesthetics as far as Chris Smith's work goes.

[How will ageing states affect ship models?]

They've set the materials to have wear and tear states so as you battle and fly through space, they'll get worn down over time with scratches, burns, tears, etc.

[What's up next in your pipeline?]

The F8, and then 300i rework and something in the middle of that. Chris Smith made a motorcycle reving animation.

That's all for today's show, RTV will be on hiatus until January where it will resume after the Christmas break.


Director of Transcripts

A polite Canadian who takes pride in making other peoples day brighter. He enjoys waffles with Maplesyrup, making delicious puns and striving for perfection in screaming at the T.V. during hockey games.


Director of Fiction

Moonlighting as a writer in her spare time StormyWinters combines her passion for the written word and love of science fiction resulting in innumerable works of fiction. As the Director of Fiction, she works with a fantastic team of writers to bring you amazing stories that transport you to new places week after week.