Tokyo-based Robot Communications relied on Discreets
3ds max to create the introductory cinematic opening sequence for ONIMUSHA 3: DEMON SIEGE, the final installment in the critically acclaimed game series from Capcom. The game, running on Sony Computer Ent.s PlayStation 2 platform, has been available in Japan since February 2004, and is expected to be available April 2004 in North America.
ONIMUSHA 3 spans four centuriesfrom ancient feudal Japan to modern day France as the main characters, Samanosuke Akechi (played by Asian film star Takeshi Kaneshiro) and Jacques Blanc (played by French film star Jean Reno) try to save the world from the evil warlord Oda Nobunaga and his army of Genma warriors. In the opening cinematic, Samanosuke engages all-out battles with the Genma army, climaxing in a battle with the old enemy, Gargant.
Its very gratifying to see Discreet 3ds max software used both for core game play development in PC and console games and also to create motion-picture like cinematic opening sequences as exemplified so beautifully in ONIMUSHA 3, said Martin Vann, vp of worldwide sales and marketing for Discreet. Discreets 200,000-plus registered users continue to inspire us with their artistic visions, and it is very rewarding to see them exploit the rich feature set of all of Discreets software solutions," added Vann.
In the final episode of the ONIMUSHA series, our intension was to produce the best 3D cinematic opening entertainment ever, and captivate the game players, said Ikuo Nishii from Robot, Japan. Takashi Yamazaki, a film director of RETURNER, and Donnie Yen, legendary martial arts choreographer in Hollywood and Hong Kong [Blade 2, HERO], co-directed the production with Shirogumi and Kaihei Hayano, who both completed CG creations for both ONIMUSHA 2 and ONIMUSHA 3.
Yamazaki directed the creative elements of the opening sequence with jaw dropping motion picture realism, and Yen choreographed stunning martial arts movements. A year in the making, the opening sequence also required 10 days of motion capture sessions. Using 3ds max and character studio software, the ROBOT team created a visually rich CG universe intended to rival effects-laden Hollywood blockbusters.
Another strength and level of excellence for 3ds max software is that you have the liberty of choosing from different renderers depending on the style of animation you are creating, said Ryuichi Yagi, director of CG at Shirogumi. For this project, after we tried several renderers to create photorealistic images, we chose VRay rendering solution from Chaos Group. It can render displacement quickly, produce beautiful motion blurs, and represent photorealistic highlights. To create 3D hair, we used the Shag: Hair plug-in to create each fine hair as an object. Without
3ds max software, we could not have depicted the highlights on the black hair of the characters so realistically.
Hayano created mostly outdoor scenes and the scenes of the gigantic Genma Tank, symbolic to the game. The crowd scene of the warriors for the Genma army was in fact, all hand created. We assembled objects one by one, such as small tanks and set lighting to utilize HDRI (High Dynamic Range Imaging) and GI (Global Illumination). I did most of the work myself. Of course, many times, the process is trial and error, but with 3ds max, ultimately, you can find a way or ways to customize the result exactly to what you want.
Providing fascinating content for TV commercials, theatrical movies, character animation, game, Website designs and Music, Robot (www.robot.co.jp
) is a well-known production company known for its radical achievements.
Discreet's award-winning solutions are designed for digital media creation, management and deliveryacross all disciplines from film and television visual effects, color grading and editing to animation, game development, Web/interactive and design visualization. Discreet, based in Montreal, Quebec (www.discreet.com
), is a division of Autodesk Inc., the leading design and digital media creation, management and distribution company.