Remember, that was at E3 2008, Ubisoft won the award for the best trailer with the game I Am Alive, awarded by our colleague Gametrailers. Behind this success hides the French studio Mikros Image, who completely created this famous video, in just 3 months.
To get you back into the mix, here is the famous video:
Founded in 1985, Mikros Image is a company specializing in the creation of visual effects and a major player in post-production, which works in fields as varied as advertising (60% of their activity), feature films (30%), 10 % remaining divided between institutional films, video clips, short films, and video games. The studio is also working on 3D videos, and films in iMax format. In the feature films department, Mikros led – among other things – the post-production of the films “Between the walls” (Palme d’Or at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival), Suburb 36, and Asterix.
In its offices in Levallois-Perret and rue d’Hauteville in Paris, Mikros image employs 150 permanent employees and works with more than 70 freelancers. Since October 2007, Mikros image has supervised and carried out for its clients more than 300 projects in all fields (cinema, advertising, TV, institutional, video games, music videos).
The video games sector is a recent activity for Mikros, since she started in 2005 with Ubisoft and the famous Splinter Cell. Mikros also works closely with the internal production department of Ubisoft, Ubi factory, and their marketing department. Two big challenges had to be met to create the trailer for I Am Alive, the giant explosion and the photo realism of the faces and characters. 30 people collaborated on this trailer, which required almost 700 days of work, taking up 750GB of disk space and nearly 14,500 hours of computing time..
We thus met Frédéric Groetschel, the Business Manager, and Stephanie Aubriot, General supervisor.
The key stages of the project consisted of:
- the making of the city of Chicago, before and after the disaster, in matte painting and in 3D
- the animation of the characters in 3D, after being produced in Motion Capture by the company Atopos
- the realism of face rendering thanks to proprietary developments of Mikros image
- the creation of special effects on all levels to bring an atmosphere of apocalypse with a very thorough work on the realization of the fault which opens and engulfs a car, the smoke which invades the space, the dust, falls of rubble or the explosion of windows …
- the processing of the shots in compositing to give this aspect of photo realism to the film