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Creating Game Cinematics

Storylines and narrative are commonplace in modern games; epic tales accompany on-screen action to explain why we're planting C4 on walls, mowing people down with Flak-Cannons or hunting for the crystal/child of prophecy that'll save the world. Again.

Before PC and console platforms had the power to flex multimedia muscle, static bitmaps strung together from a limited palette and complimented by text dialog were the best devices around for getting the story across to the player. It seemed enough at the time to draw gamers into 16-bit greats like Shadow of the Beast, and the 90s stint of FMV (Full Motion Video) footage in games (starring actors best left to bootleg porn films) was quaint for a while, but in a world where Shader Model 3.0 can spit out luxury real-time 3D, cinematics have had to evolve to stay fresh.

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