LOS ANGELES — At SIGGRAPH 2017, Academy Award-winning crowd simulation creators, Massive Software, is introducing its new Horse & Rider Agent, offering several new possibilities for crowd simulations. Capable of approximately 100 individual movements and actions, the Horse & Rider Agent gives artists the ability to create film-quality equine locomotion.
The Horse & Rider Agent joins Massive’s AI-controlled Ready to Run Agents series, offering artists the ability to create complex crowd simulations using pre-assembled “agents,” which operate using fuzzy logic to automate character responses. Artists working in Massive can choose the type of agent they want to rent or purchase – human, machine or animal – then set the agent’s motion and behaviors to determine movement, progression and variation. After establishing and customizing their characteristics to match the desired look of an agent, the artist assigns a route and a starting point to each agent within the simulation. From there, the agents take care of the rest.
All agents, including the new Horse & Rider Agent, are pre-built with a skeleton, motions, brains, geometry, cloth, textures, shaders and controls. Agents can also be customized to create a unique physical appearance. In the case of the Horse & Rider Agent, the pre-built package includes dynamic hair simulation for the manes and tails.
Mocap provider Profile Studios captured and mapped the movements of horses at various speeds, both in an indoor arena and outdoors in a large, open space.
The Ready to Run series currently includes the Locomotion, Stadium, Ambient, Mayhem, Combat Sword and Car Agents. Each agent can be purchased outright or rented for a limited time (for a minimum of 90 days with the option to increase the rental period in 30-day increments). Costs vary, starting from $500 to rent and $3,000 to purchase, depending on the agent.