How AI technology can help reduce man hours in the animation department
The problems that has plagued NBA Live over the years have mainly been a lack of depth and animation quality. As many of us know their development team is relatively small, so the amount of work was probably staggering in order to keep up with not only NBA 2K, but games under the EA umbrella. NBA Live 17 was canceled so the devs could get more time to work on NBA Live 18, which in my eyes was a success, but it still came up short, same can be said for NBA Live 19. Sebastian Starke who is a Ph.D student and an AI scientist over at EA along with others has been working to fix a lot of the issues in an outdated animation system. Working towards a solution to the problems was to enable studios to save hundreds of animation hours while keeping them realistic, smooth and responsive, they have succeeded. So I believe in order to fully maximize this new way of working is why they canceled NBA Live. I will post the videos below you can get a better explanation from the man himself on his work. If NBA Live can clean up a lot of the locomotion work and reduce canned animations this is already a win. Most companies operate on budgeting hours so if they can reduce the amount of budget on animations and put those hours somewhere else, we may finally get a real fully loaded NBA Live game.
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Check out my NBA Live Gen Legacy Trailer | NBA Live 15-19