Beaver Lava Leap
3D Animated Clip
Animate a brief three-dimensional action sequence to demonstrate the theme and character movement of a new Unfiltered Studios game, which involves a cartoon beaver making a daring leap over a pit of boiling lava.
Adobe After Effects
Jumping Through Hoops
Unfiltered Games was creating a new video game and needed an action sequence animated to demonstrate the game’s theme and character movement. Not much of the game had been built out, and the given textures/assets were not in optimal condition. Working with minimal assets under a strict time crunch, we were tasked to bring a bouncing ball-shaped beaver to life in Maya and animate his daring leap over a pit of boiling lava.
Movement that Tells a Story
Though all we were given was a simple character in a rudimentary scene, we capitalized on the principles of animation to turn a plastic ball with eyes into a dynamic and relatable character with fears, goals, and personality. The beaver's movement was highlighted with an emphasized use of squash & stretch, anticipation, follow-through, exaggeration, staging, and overlapping action. The camera staging was animated to illustrate moments of stress, courage, and relief that the character experiences along his journey.
Optimizing the Assets
Most of the given textures were used as the base for inspiration and replaced with higher quality materials plus bump and incandescent maps. The cliffs were refined with added edge loops and smoothing for a higher sense of realism. Lighting was added to the scene and animated to follow the beaver along his journey, creating a subtle spotlight effect.