Archives For April 2015


@Vincent_Martel —  April 30, 2015 — Leave a comment


“Brothers will fight

and kill each other,

sisters’ children

will defile kinship.

It is harsh in the world,

whoredom rife

–an axe age, a sword age

–shields are riven–

a wind age, a wolf age–

before the world goes headlong.

No man will have

mercy on another.”

The Poetic Edda


Hello guys,

Vincent went down to the CDRIN ( Digital Imagery Research and Development Center ) to try out their installations. We’re lucky to have the largest motion capture studio dedicated to research in North America just a couple hours away from the studio.

2015-02-12 13.09.552015-02-12 16.33.04

During our visit we experimented a few things, here’s an example of a Mocap Rig we will be using for our cart:

2015-02-12 12.39.37Chariot

The cat is out of the bag now, we will be using Motion Capture for FATED! We believe that using motion capture for our characters will positively improve the sense of presence in the game and bring a level of emotions for our scenes that only a real-life actor can achieve.

Here’s a quick look of what we made in just a couple of hours. Keep in mind that this is very preliminary stuff.

What do you think?

Laurent Mercure
Community Manager / @laurentmercure

Forging Worlds

louispatalano —  April 16, 2015 — Leave a comment

Hi all,

My name is Louis Patalano. I’m the Associate Producer, and “Lore Master”, on Fated, and I’ll talk about how we came up with the concept for Fated.

Making a VR game is more than just a quest for an appealing mechanic; for us, it’s a fusion of experience and imagination.

Experience: We knew we wanted to tell a deep and touching story, but we also wanted to showcase the best that VR has to offer and provide a unique experience only possible in VR. So we tried to think up as many concepts as we could for a VR world, and while a lot of pioneers out there were already working on awesome VR experiences of their own, we wanted ours to have its own unique twist. Strangely, we constantly ended up coming back to giants. From steampunk metal giants to Greek titans and gargantuan behemoths, we weren’t sure what we wanted exactly, but we knew we wanted something BIG!

Imagination: Then we looked at the kind of universe we wanted, one that would feed our desire to create a touching story, but also provide the perfect setting for an amazing VR experience. We had always found Norse mythology very compelling, not to mention that we had yet to stumble upon a Norse game that did any level of justice to Ragnarök. We tried to imagine how mindboggling it would have been to be part of such a rich and powerful mythos, filled with gods, monsters and, of course, giants, all locked in a final battle destined to bring about the end the world.


So we went with what appealed to us most: awesome giant creatures and the rich universe of the Norse gods. And so was born Fated.

Here is a glimpse of what the first story has to offer:

We follow in the footsteps of a simple man who must do the impossible to ensure the survival of his family in a world where gods and giants have descended upon the nine realms to wage the great battle that would end the world.

We hope you’ll have the chance to see our game firsthand and accompany us on all the journeys that VR has yet to unravel!

Oh, and one last thing: trust me when I tell you that being charged by a 50-foot giant in VR will change your life forever!

Louis Patalano
IP Associate Producer

This game has been out for a while but they recently added VR support. The experience is amazing and refreshing as it is not placing the player in first person but rather in a top-down view. It works pretty well. I’ll leave you with the impressions of GameMuscleVideos.

There is so much more to VR than first-person perspective.

Hello everyone,

This week, the team is a little bit swamped so we can’t go into the details of what we’re working on. On the programming side, we’re working on finalizing the demo we will be presenting to medias and potential partners at the SVVR Conference & Expo (Silicon Valley Virtual Reality) in May.


Our upcoming demo will feature a complete chunk of the story, new animations as well as amazing new visual effects. We’re eager to find out what the VR savvy community at SVVR will think of FATED.


On the art side, we’re working on several props that will come into play in the puzzle-solving part of the game.


Please let us know if there are topics you would like us to cover in future entries.

Stay tuned to our Facebook and Twitter to catch all the updates on the development of FATED.

See you later!

Laurent Mercure / Community Manager / @laurentmercure

The team got to try this silly demo this week. Taking the role of a chicken just living the chicken life sure is interesting. What struck us though was the clever use of what we call the “Virtual Nose”. By creating the impression that the player has a nose (or a beak in this case), you reduce the effects related to simulation sickness. As we discussed in one of our first entry, simulation sickness is something we need to eliminate as much as possible.

Ars technica explains that: “Offering a fixed object that doesn’t shift as you move around a virtual world has been shown to help anchor many VR users, reducing the apparent difference between visual and sensorimotor stimuli that can lead to simulation sickness.”

Try it out and tell us how you enjoy living as a chicken!


Hi! Étienne Carrier, here. I’m the Technical Artist on FATED.

Developing graphics for VR is an awesome challenge! It’s an all new playing field with whole new constraints and rules. I’m learning new tricks every day, and through this blog I aim to share them with you.


When we started developing the graphic pipeline, it was clear that we needed a visual style that would help us reach our performance target. In VR, there’s no slacking off. If the framerate drops even for a second, you get a hefty dose of simulation sickness. It was therefore a lot more natural to go with a stylized art style that would not only help us with performance, but also look good in VR. Smooth and non-noisy texture feels great in virtual reality, and it helped the 3D stay faithful to the awesome artwork that Marianne Martin (Art Director) and Marie-Hélène Morin-Fafard (Concept Artist) created.



Applying tricks learned while developing mobile games can turn out to be a lifesaver when you have to run at 75+ fps. The art really needs to be planned accordingly. We built our environments in a way that limits the view distance and allows the occlusion culling to work for us. Normal maps only work well for micro details or from far away. We actually want to fade details out with distance, as it tends to get noisy due to the pixels density on VR headsets. The micro details go against our soft texture style, and the distant normal maps go against the fade of details in the distance. So we decided to never use normal maps, which also helps us get more performance.


We chose Unreal Engine 4 to develop our game. We began by setting up our basic scenes, because even the default template scene was not reaching 75 fps on some PCs. We removed most of the post-process, screen space reflection, and anti-aliasing. We also used static directional lights, then built from there while profiling every step of the way.

static directionnal lightspost process


Unreal has a great many tools to help us build our environments efficiently. Here is a video showing how we used some of these tools together. Along with Unreal’s landscape and foliage, we built a material that projects a texture on top of props like rocks to help them blend with the terrain. The blueprints allow us to dynamically create a material instance for each static mesh, so they can all have their specific settings. Using the same texture as the landscape helps to blend them seamlessly.


That’s it for now, we’ll have more tips & tricks coming up later!


Etienne Carrier
Technical Artist