The Last Guardian is set to be sort of a technical marvel. Years in the making, one of the impressive aspects of the game is that it’s all animated totally by hand. Speaking in Edge #294, lead animator Masanobu Tanaka had this to say:
“That’s an area we’ve struggled with greatly. We don’t use motion capture, only handmade animation, but we try to follow the rules of physics as much as possible. One thing we do is instead of playing just a normal animation, we have a very complex set of animations that are layered and blended, so even just for the gesture of laying a hand off the wall, we’re using the PS4’s processing power to achieve it.”
But doing it this way has its trade-offs. “We don’t place too much focus on the personality of the characters when we’re working on the animations. We think about the kinds of things that the character might be thinking, what kind of emotions the character might be feeling uncertain situations – for example, in the opening section the character of thinking ‘Where am I?’ so we do take into consideration those kind of situations.
“We focus more on their limitations and capabilities – this boy is perhaps in the early years of elementary school, so we think about what kind of actions are possible for a child like this in terms of physical ability.”
One of the revolutionary elements of the game involves Trico, its AI companion. For more on the The Last Guardian, keep checking back right here on Gamespresso.