A newly launched iOS app from Epic Games lets builders record facial expressions that may be imported straight into the Unreal Engine, utilizing little greater than an iPhone’s front-facing digital camera. The Live Link Face app, which is out there to obtain now from the App Store, can stream this facial animation information in actual time straight onto characters in Unreal Engine, which Epic hopes will make facial seize “simpler and extra accessible” for creators.
Epic’s app works by constructing on a few Apple’s current applied sciences, together with its ARKit augmented reality platform, and the TrueDepth digicam that Apple introduced with the iPhone X in 2017. It’s the identical know-how that powers Apple’s Animoji and Memoji, which map your facial expressions onto cartoon avatars. Solely now it may be used to animate avatars within the engine powering lots of the world’s hottest video games.
Epic isn’t the primary firm to have considered utilizing Apple’s know-how as an animation instrument. It didn’t take lengthy for builders to begin making facial capture apps after the iPhone X’s launch, and we additionally noticed it used to generate facial expressions for a Walking Dead augmented reality game in 2018. However having the performance constructed straight into the Unreal Engine, which is utilized by millions of developers world wide, may give it a a lot bigger attain, and make it a lot simpler for artists to make use of it of their work.
Epic says that its Live Link Face app can work in conditions starting from an artist’s house workplace to a soundstage with a number of actors in movement seize fits with head-mounted rigs, and that it will possibly natively alter between them. The app could be managed remotely, so Epic says you might set it as much as concurrently begin recording on a number of iPhones utilizing a single command. As soon as imported, the facial animation information could be adjusted in-engine.
For those who’re a developer who’s keen on attempting out the app for your self, the Epic’s documentation for the characteristic can be obtained from here.