Sony is powering the critical camera and virtual production technologies needed to build Epic's grand metaverse.
The metaverse is still many years away, but Epic Games and Sony are laying the foundations right now. Sony recently supplied the Epic Games Lab with its new high-end VENICE Camera and Crystal LED B-series panel to fuel the games-maker's virtual production initiatives. Epic's Unreal Engine is used for a number of productions including video games and filmmaking, the latter of which is largely transitioning to virtualized production that limits set-making and specific interactions during the global pandemic.
"What's been interesting to see is how believable the images you see on the new panels, because of the resolution, because of the color accuracy. When we see it through the VENICE camera, the fact that these two are matched well together, really does make you believe you're looking at a realm image as oppose to a total illusion...which is basically what virtual production is,"said Epic Games Chief Technology Officer Kim Liberi.
The new Crystal LED B-series displays were built specifically for VP environments to help power the new age of filmmaking and content creation, Sony says, but the sky is the limit. They can also be used for games, and eventually a new wave of interactive experiences.
Sony's cameras have an exciting potential outside of filmmaking, though, and Epic Games plans to use these new VENICE cameras to help facilitate its vision for the metaverse.
Even Sony Pictures is excited about the metaverse.
"I'm excited about the next level of [synergy between Sony and Sony Pictures], what's next beyond virtual production because I think when we talk about the Metaverse, and VR, and a lot of the other products that start to come along...a lot of what we're doing in virtual production is completely applicable to that," said Sony Pictures EVP and CTO of Technology Development Bill Baggelaar.
Epic CTO Kim Liberi also delivers off-the-cuff ambitions on the metaverse and how Sony's new tech could help bring it to life:
"There's another place that we live and play inside of and it's game consoles and video gaming. I'd love to see simultaneous events that bring the virtual world around the real-world and the real-world into the virtual world. I think there's tons and tons of room for innovation on simultaneous events, digitization of actors and characters and cinematography all blending together to make a sort of metaverse of entertainment."
Game developers are also excited about the intiative: