Golaem Crowd 3.3, facial animation & deformation for your crowds

Golaem Crowd 3.3 introduces blend shapes on crowd characters. This new functionality opens the way to a myriad of possibilities, including facial animation, muscles systems, corrective blend shapes...

Golaem Crowd skeletal animation features have been extensively used by major vfx studios to animate all sorts of characters in their feature films, including spectators, soldiers and horses made by Milk VFX and Cinesite for Brett Ratner’s Hercules.

With crowds getting closer and closer to the camera, the ability to go beyond skeletal animation is a huge enabler to meet realism needs. Golaem Crowd builds on Maya blend shapes animation tools to let artists create their characters with the tools they know best.

Blend shapes are then read by Golaem Crowd at the same time as skeletal animation, which enables easy synchronization as well as benefiting from most of the functionalities already offered by the Golaem Crowd animation engine: motion blending, start frame and speed randomization…

Golaem in-house artist, Axel Domenger, has taken advantage of the blend shapes support to animate mouths of angry hairy blobs in this demo video

He created a rigged character and added both corrective and expression blend shapes. The character was then animated to create a 100 frames long loop, later randomized by Golaem Crowd to get animation diversity.

Domenger then exploited Golaem Crowd’s ability to interact with Maya particles to drive the crowd simulation using a nParticle system constrained by a sphere envelope and a few colliders.

Finally, the crowd was exported to a geometry cache to be used for Yeti fur replication before being rendered in Arnold thanks to Yeti and Golaem Crowd procedurals.

This demo as well as the latest Golaem Crowd features and demo reels will be shown this week at Siggraph Vancouver, booth #921.
See Golaem's Siggraph schedule