This article was published for ULTIMATE members, available by subscription. You can join here in a minute or less. If you're already a member, log-in from the top right menu.

Ultimate Teaser

Intimate Conversations with Interactive Animated Characters in WORLD OF ZOO

Bruce Blumberg on April 30, 2011

How do you make a virtual koala or zebra fun to interact with? Koalas can be rather static even in real life, so what's the solution for video games? What does the player expect when given the opportunity to watch and play with those animals? In a way, these moments are intimate conversations that the player has with the animals on screen.

In this inspiring Keynote from the Paris Game/AI Conference 2010, you'll hear Bruce Blumberg talk about the design and implementation of the animals in WORLD OF ZOO. Bruce was Chief Scientist at Blue Fang games, and from his experience at the MIT Media Lab's Synthetic Character's group, found numerous ways to bring the zoo animals to life and make them enjoyable to interact with. You'll learn what techniques worked well, how the behavior was built using a combination of simple tricks and cutting edge research in the field!