Recently we learned via the former head of PlayStation Studios’ Virtual Arts Service Group, Michael Mumbauer, that The Callisto Protocol developer Striking Distance Studios had used PlayStation’s own motion capture studios, typically for use by two of the console manufacturers’ premiere studios in Naughty Dog and Santa Monica Studio. Now we learn a bit more about the process thanks to Karen Fukuhara, the voice of The Callisto Protocol‘s Dani Nakamura, about the process. For Karen, it was her first motion capture experience and so in a new interview with Gamerant she explains what the process was like to be a part of, and how it compares to her previous works in film and television, saying
I had a blast doing [The Callisto Protocol] because I had to work out these different muscles that I wasn’t really used to doing. It’s a lot like filming for film and television, more so than voiceover. I feel like a lot of times when I tell people that I worked on a video game project, they assume that it was just my voice, but for our project, it was full mo-cap dots on the face camera with the helmet right in front of you, and you know, you’re wearing the entire onesie outfit.
The biggest thing I had to learn doing mo-cap for this was having spatial awareness of where the props were going to be and where the sort of space was and what it was going to look like, because that was all kind of based on our imagination. Our team was wonderful because they were able to show us what the room would look like on artwork that they had done. But aside from that, we had to sort of know exactly where those stairs were going to be and like, “Okay, so this box represents this thing that we have to open.” And it’s not really the actual prop, right? So we had to use a lot of our imaginations. So yeah, I had a lot of fun working out that part of my muscles.
With games in the AAA realm so heavily depending on motion capture as a part of modern-day development, it is fantastic to hear that Fukuhara has both enjoyed the experience, but also been able to look upon it favourably compared to film and television experiences. A current trend in games has seen more renowned actors/actresses from traditional film media coming across to dip their toes into the industry, such as God Of War Ragnarok‘s Richard Schiff – hopefully with more experiences like Schiff’s as Fukuhara’s, the games industry can continue to serve as a home for incredibly talented actors elevating the games we play even further in the future.