Responsive Animation – An Examination of Character Animation for Responsive Game Feel

Justin T Carter Part of CW18

The animation of player controlled characters in real-time video games plays a key role in shaping player perception. The game system’s ability to offer an instantaneous response by reacting quickly and positively to input from the player can influence how a game feels to play. Animation techniques adopted in traditional high fidelity forms such as film possess the potential to introduce effects such as system latency or lag which can create a form of dissonance between the player input and the sensation of control in the game. The challenge for animators is that they must use animation techniques specific to real-time control in order to create realistic high fidelity illusions of motion and physical actions while maintaining system responsiveness. This paper investigates the contemporary animation techniques applied in order to maintain and enhance sensations of control in real-time games.