Upon starting work at Studio Liddell, my first task was to create a range of VR samples that could be taken to the upcoming MIP Con, as well as future conferences. I had 5 weeks to create these samples and this experience was the first, and to date, the most successful.
The intention was to educate, engage and entertain the consumer.
The original model of the Argentinosaurus was created by Peter Minister - famed for his illustration work with DK books. Since the model itself was for a book illustration I had to do considerable work rebuilding the head and face to hold up to a degree of scrutiny when viewed up close. I also had to completely re-topologise and re-UV the model from the original ZBrush sculpt to be more suitable for realtime use and to yield clean deformation when rigged and animated.
All the interaction was built using Unity and a load of custom C# scripts. I also used a Unity extension called FinalIK to manipulate the posing of the neck and head allowing the dinosaur to visually follow its food around. Studio Liddell's Lead Animator did the main animation states for the dinosaur which I modified to work with the dynamic IK system for the feeding behaviour.
Narrating the piece is the Studio's Head of New Technologies, Peter Caddock. Some of the narration is skipped in this video so as to shorten the overall duration of the video.
Here's a screen grab of the animation rig in Maya.
One of the samples was taken to completion but wasn't shown due to it being quite scary. It involved a baby T-Rex chasing you around an abandoned warehouse in the dark. All you had was a torch. I've included a screen grab of the T-Rex's rig here as its somewhat related and was part of the same deliverable.