Animotive is a new immersive real-time animation tool that looks to seriously level up collaborative working in VR.
Okay, so we’re still going to be mopping up stuff from IBC for a while, but now that the show’s over, we can at least lift our heads from out of the Amsterdam tulips and see a bit of what else is happening in the world.
VR was in relatively short supply at the RAI; it was present in places but certainly not in the mass market breakthrough way that it was forecast to be only a few years ago. Elsewhere, though, some really nifty new tools could start to change that, and Animotive is one of them.
Now available on PC and winner of the ‘Best Innovation in Animation’ award at the Irish Animation Awards 2023 — no mean feat as the Irish animation industry is a fecund one — Animotive uses VR to help users collaborate on CG projects VR. The platform allows users to import their custom-built characters, props and sets. When the scene is ready, users can embody their characters and perform, light, shoot and export in just a few clicks.
As you can see from the main pic above, the tools are plenty intuitive for anyone who’s ever been near a film set or in a TV studio.
Here’s a quick demo to give you the idea.
Not only is it cool, it’s also productive. Developers Retinize say that the BBC used Animotive to produce a 10-part children’s education series and was able to capture all ten episodes in 2.5 days. Even if those episodes are really short, that’s impressive throughput for broadcast-standard animation.
The software’s been in beta for a while now, but at least the beta is now public. Anyone with a PC VR headset and a VR-ready PC can sign up and download the software for free today, and the company has given you two worlds to play in: the Dark World and the Light World.
It's definitely not just for cute animation...
The platform is also compatible with game engines like Unity and Unreal and industry-standard animation software, allowing users to design, refine and enhance their projects further throughout production. The free version is limited to 1080p and outputs watermarked video. Pro subscriptions start from $66.99 per month per user and add all the stuff you really need to produce at a professional level, including FBX and Unity export, longer capture time, and 4K video. Here’s the comparison table below.
It’s neat stuff. “With Animotive, creatives are able to work together from anywhere to produce quality, professional 3D animated content in a matter of minutes, not months,” says Phil Morrow, CEO of Retinize. "The cost savings are significant and immediate, enabling student animators, veteran studios, and anyone in between to create from the comfort of their VR headsets.”
All it needs now is for VR as a whole to begin to catch up…