Advanced Animation techniques being put to good use in Uncharted 4.
I’m going to start this with a little bit of information to make sure you’re all informed on something that’s often overlooked. “IK” or Inverse Kinematics is not an animation technique, it’s an equation that will determine the parameters of Joints in their movement. Thus making it a better option for animators, where it’s referred to as “IK Animation”, to use over the use of rag-dolls because of the greater emulation of reality.
That’s why its inclusion in Uncharted 4 is actually something significant and worth talking about. The IK systems used in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End allow for actual working gun straps which allows for a realistic movement of the weapon which will in turn allow for more realistic movement of characters and NPC’s. It also allows player characters to react realistically to the world around them, rather than clipping onto an edge like in most games, fingertips will actually cling to the ledge.
In response to being asked did someone spot KI Fingertrips in the game, Jeremy Yates, of Naughty Dog, said via twitter, “Very observant. 🙂 Quite a few tools were developed because of the fingers in the new climbing system”.
The day before he had tweeted, “Very proud of our animation and programming team. Those details, fluidity and responsiveness don’t come w/o lots of commitment #Uncharted4.”