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Crowds and Pedestrians without Bumper-Car Syndrome

Ken Perlin, Jean-Charles Perrier, et al. on August 25, 2010

While animation and navigation technology has matured significantly over the years, combining the two together remains quite a challenge! Games like HEAVY RAIN include scenes with few pedestrians that must avoid each other (e.g. on a sidewalk), as well as huge groups that form the illusion of a crowd (e.g. in the station). What techniques are used to implement such situations, and how can the results be improved?

In this all-star panel from the Paris Game AI Conference 2010, you'll hear different perspectives on the problem, from the programming team at Quantic Dream (Bertrand Faure, Jean-Charles Perrier) to leading researchers on procedural animation (Ken Perlin), and one the best independent AI developers (Mikko Mononen)! With their combined wisdom you'll hear solutions to the crowd problem compared to smaller groups of agents, and the best way to integrate it with character animation.

About the Panelists

Bertrand Faure is the Lead AI Programmer at Quantic Dream, in particular responsible for the crowd implementation inside HEAVY RAIN.

Jean-Charles Perrier is currently the Lead Programmer at Quantic Dream, and also previously worked on FARENHEIT (aka. INDIGO PROPHECY).

Ken Perlin is Professor at New York University, famous for his work in procedural generation and character animation.

Mikko Mononen is an independent developer best known for his work on Recast and Detour. Previously, he was the Lead AI Programmer on CRYSIS at Crytek.

Audio/Video Recording

Downloadable Version

Here's a specialized format for you to download and play offline via a portable player:

Crowds and Pedestrians without Bumper-Car Syndrome — Video
Bertrand Faure, Jean-Charles Perrier, Ken Perlin, Mikko Mononen
Download MOV (QuickTime)

The MP3 file below is better quality than the streaming video above, and is a perfect candidate for listening to via a portable player (96 Kbps). The OGG file is the highest quality of all (128 KBps). You can download them both here:

If you have any questions feel free to post them below, or in the forum thread associated with this post!

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