Unity Keynote at GDC 2019: Lorne Lanning & Bennie Terry — “Oddworld: Soulstorm”

Date: 18/03/2019

Source: https://youtu.be/TY_krxdA5WY

Lorne Lanning: Hi, everybody. It’s great to be here today and we’re showing a glimpse of Oddworld: Soulstorm. It’s a brand new game in the Oddworld series, and in Soulstorm we wanted to break new ground; big visual and cinematic leaps were important to us and so as a storyteller I need to stay focused on the things that bring that narrative to life and in this case this is where Unity’s breath of real-time lighting and technologies, and the amazing teams working with us around the world are making this possible. So today we’re showing you a sneak peek of a cinematic from the game that demonstrates some of Unity’s latest rendering techniques. Then, when that’s done, Bennie terry, Executive producing partner on the project is going to show you how Unity has elevated the graphical quality of Oddworld: Soulstorm. Thank you!

[Sneak peek of a cinematic from the game]

[Vancouver – Mobile Conversions | Quebec – Engineering and Art | California – Creative | Austin – Character Rigging | New York – Marketing | D.C. – Sound Design | U.K. – Visual Development and Design | Australia – Engineering]

Bennie Terry: Hello, everyone, it’s an honor to be here with you today. Building our cinematics is a global endeavor. Through Unity, our teams of talented creatives and engineers are collaborating in real time. When you are as distributed in Unity as we are, the tools are a critical component and how we produce economy CG. Unity provides a sandbox of powerful cinematic tools to choreograph the narrative and polish our visuals — called timeline and post process stack. In our scene breakdown, the process starts simple but very quickly grows in complexity. In engine parallel workflow is the key to reducing production costs and increasing the quality of CG that we produce. Instead of waiting hours to render, our iteration speed from review to direct, an approval happens in real time.

For Oddworld, the richness and our visuals and imagery is very important to us as creatives. When we started Soulstorm 3 years ago, the team focused on how far we could elevate that bar — utilizing the built-in renderer, which is still used in many components of our production today. Our characters like the Shaman have significantly improved since our last IP New ‘n’ Tasty. As a team, we aspire to reach further: built in rendering, while great, wasn’t designed for the types of heavy graphical complexity and realism that our creative director had envisioned for the cinematics. The team wanted more control to refine the visuals and give the Shaman that stylized Oddworld look. High-definition rendering pipeline in Unity 2019 is a huge leap in graphical realism and ease of use. And in our split screen tests, the differences are immediately apparent: the Shaman doesn’t feel so flat and washed out, the way light behaves while interacting with the Shaman’s skin and features is more physically accurate. We’re able to color grade the image in engine and in real time which gives our visual a more cinematic right out-of-the-box look. But light doesn’t just touch the surface, it goes deeper: scattering before it returns back to your eye. HDRP + Subsurface scattering was the solution that we gave for the Shaman to give that rich Oddworld style. We explored these opportunities to make our characters feel like they were a part of you. The work that Unity is done to mature its rendering technology is outstanding. Please follow us at Oddworld.com, thank you so much.