A Bit of Animation for Astro Bot
Astro Bot : Rescue Mission lets you team-up with a little robot on a VR mission by SIE Japan Studio.
Alexander Smith (Animation Lead) talks about the creation via animation of the game’s visual style.
Here’s the extract from the Playstation Blog :
« Another big area is character animation as we sought to bring a believable world to life. The game features a big cast of fun characters, friends and foes to support the gameplay and make the game a fun, interactive diorama. Nearly every object in the game reacts to touching or punching it, which cements the player’s presence in the world, while turning it into an interactive sandbox.
Prototyping became crucial for Jamie and the animation team. For example, they found out exaggerated animations, similar to classic cartoons, did not bode well in VR. Timings had to be adjusted for animations to translate well and this took some iterations. They played a lot on the duality of characters. For the bots, they balanced the cuteness with mischievous undertones: The Bots end of level celebrations are a good example of this sweet, yet edgy style. For Bosses, they followed a similar approach. The battle would start with a scary, intimidating arrival, then, as the player hits back, the bosses’ weakness would start appearing, making them look vulnerable and a little bit silly. This contrast not only empowered the player in their effort but also served as a ramp towards a humorous outcome ».