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Gurnaphics Card: NVIDIA's Face Works

STARING EYES!

Faces are everywhere in games. NVIDIA noticed this and has been on a 20-year odyssey to make faces more facey and less unfacey (while making boobs less booby, if you’ll remember the elf-lady Dawn). Every few years they push out more facey and less unfacey face tech and make it gurn for our fetishistic graphicsface pleasure. Last night at NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference, NVIDIA founder Jen-Hsun Huang showed off Face Works, the latest iteration. Want to see how less unfacey games faces can be?

As is the way of impressive tech demos, it’s done in a setting divorced from gaming: this was demonstrated live on stage, but not pre-rendered, using NVIDIA’s latest face-model, a bald man named Ira. I am sort of impressed. There’s a lot of detail in the character’s face, and the skin and underlying musculature are well rendered (less unfacey, some might say). But let’s not forget that this is a demo, it’s not rendering anything but that hairless face (I’ll bet they went bald to not worry about rendering hair), and the tech that takes about half a Titan graphics card’s power to run.

Because I’m not a tech journalist, I’ve collected some out-of-context quotes from the presentation instead of going into the implications and detailing all the teraflops.

She is the mother of Grendel.
It took us nearly 20 years to be able to create what appears to be a fairy.
Look at her pores!
Here comes the miracle.
His eyes!
Every important person on Earth should have this done.
It’s supposed to be half fruit and half yogurt.
Show me Zoolander.
Only all the Asians laughed.

Here. Have a video that looks like a dry-run for an Apple product launch. Skip to 8m39s if all you’re interested in is Ira’s dimples.

I hope ex-PCG Ross Atherton is aware they stole his face for this.

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Craig Pearson

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