Epic Games revealed a first look at MetaHuman Creator, a new browser-based app that offers game developers and creators of real-time 3D content a quick and easy way of creating high quality, photorealistic digital humans, in a fraction of time compared to traditional process.
Creating high-quality digital humans is hard. It can take months or even years of painstaking research and talented artistry to craft even a single convincing real-time human. MetaHuman Creator enables users to easily create new characters through intuitive workflows that let them sculpt and craft results as desired. As adjustments are made, MetaHuman Creator blends between actual examples in the library in a plausible, data-constrained way. Users can choose a starting point by selecting a number of preset faces to contribute to their human from the range of samples available in the database.
Users are able to apply a variety of hair styles that use Unreal Engine’s strand-based hair system, or hair cards for lower-end platforms. A set of example clothing is available and 18 differently proportioned body types. Finished asset can be downloaded via Quixel Bridge, fully rigged and ready for animation and motion capture in Unreal Engine, complete with LODs. The files will include source data in the form of a Maya file, including meshes, skeleton, facial rig, animation controls, and materials.
Once in Unreal Engine, the digital human asset can be animated using a range of performance capture tools—Unreal Engine’s Live Link Face iOS app can be used, and Epic is also currently working with vendors on providing support for ARKit, Faceware, JALI Inc., Speech Graphics, Dynamixyz, DI4D, Digital Domain, and Cubic Motion solutions—or to keyframe it manually. Animations created for one MetaHuman will run on other MetaHumans, enabling users to easily reuse a single performance across multiple Unreal Engine characters or projects.
To illustrate the quality of the digital humans made possible with MetaHuman Creator, Epic is releasing two fully finished sample characters available to explore, modify, and use in projects running on Unreal Engine 4.26.1 and later. MetaHuman Creator will be ready for test-driving as an Early Access program within the next few months.