Quantic Dream's "Kara" tech demo is beauty at its finest

We at Neowin admit we’re a day late with this news due to the large amount of articles based on Apple announcements but it’s still worth a look at. Developer David Cage, of Quantic Dream, showcased a demo of the company’s new motion capture tech at the Game Developer Conference yesterday, and it is called "Kara."

Kara is not a new game, but more a concept based on a video game engine – much like what we saw with The Casting that Quantic Dream released several years ago, prior to Heavy Rain. The video footage for Quantic Dream's tech demo can be viewed below:

The Kara footage shown is actually about a year old and is from an earlier version of the engine. The current version reportedly has 50% more features, and whatever game is built from this beautiful engine should be utterly gorgeous. I guess this proves that the PlayStation 3 definitely isn't going anywhere - after all, we've only just entered the second half of its ten year lifespan.

The Kara tech demo will be available for free to all PlayStation 3 users, but we have no idea when it will be available at this moment in time. We'll keep you posted if we hear more. Please share your thoughts.

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It looks good, but it's just a video. It's not 'in-game' anything.

I wish QD would keep quiet until they have something proper to show - it's a given that the visual quality of their 'in game/engine' preview videos and what their game actually ends up looking like are two completely different things.

I think the most impressive part about that tech demo was the character. She was very believable because of her emotions (as shown by her facial expressions). It's hard to imagine how they could improve upon that even more. I just wish they'd make a PC version of the game that uses this tech.

I have been a fan of Quantic Dream since the 2005 release of "Fahrenheit"; "Heavy Rain" is no exception to that, despite being a PS3 exclusive. I am kinda ****ed about the PS3 comment, because the console, just like Xbox, IS far into its age and needs an upgrade in hardware to bring glory to the developed games compared to PC games. Nevertheless, Quantic Dream certainly seem to have a lot of tricks up their sleeve.

Oh, and about the music: seeing (hearing!) as how it sounds familiar to the other two Quantic Dream games, I wouldn't be surprised if they hired Norman Corbeil to compose this piece, like he did everything in "Heavy Rain". Still, Angelo Badalamenti's music from "Fahrenheit" is probably the best piece of game music I've ever heard.

That story was the best I've heard in a video game since halo ce/half life. This better be a full fake. Or even a animated movie.

Xerax said,
That story was the best I've heard in a video game since halo ce/half life. This better be a full fake. Or even a animated movie.
full game*

Xerax said,
That story was the best I've heard in a video game since halo ce/half life. This better be a full fake. Or even a animated movie.

Sadly, it's just a demo, no plans to make it a game any time soon. I was gutted about that too.

Watched the whole video now...

Good Lord, the graphics and also the story are INTENSE!

I NEED and demand a game from that!
Quantic, I'm begging you!

GS:mac

Wow pretty cool, good animations and nice graphics, I wouldn't say that it can't be better but excellent job, and moreover, the story is outstanding, I was like O.O

holy smokes, that must be the most emotional tech demo that I have ever seen

Heavy Rain was a fine looking game, and to be honest...this looks alot just like heavy rain. I think current-gen console graphics has hit a wall. From what I've seen in Heavy Rain, I know that this engine is capable of pushing waaaaay more pixels than what we saw in this video.

Of note is the almost perfect Depth Of Field effect, which is nice, it looks cinematic.

Also, that tech demo was just as emotional as Heavy Rain. Looks like the developers have still got the hang of it

FalseAgent said,
holy smokes, that must be the most emotional tech demo that I have ever seen

Heavy Rain was a fine looking game, and to be honest...this looks alot just like heavy rain. I think current-gen console graphics has hit a wall. From what I've seen in Heavy Rain, I know that this engine is capable of pushing waaaaay more pixels than what we saw in this video.

Of note is the almost perfect Depth Of Field effect, which is nice, it looks cinematic.

Also, that tech demo was just as emotional as Heavy Rain. Looks like the developers have still got the hang of it

I actually had Pizza and beer with Pascal Langdale who played Ethan Mars in Heavy Rain and he said motion capturing is a ball-ache so the fact Quantic are willin to fully utilize its equipment shows a lot about the feeling the developer is trying to set out - Which is exactly why heavy Rain worked well. Everything is on point in this demo but this engine in this video is incomplete by like 50%. It's likely to have been improved dramatically.

While it was neat and there was a nice level of detail, was there really anything in this that couldn't be accomplished by other graphics engines? I mean, I understand that this is a year old, but the environment was bland and the textures used didn't look too demanding. Maybe I wasn't watching carefully enough, but the caustic lighting didn't seem too demanding, either. I thought that we were already at this point when the Playstation 3 was first released?

Ledgem said,
While it was neat and there was a nice level of detail, was there really anything in this that couldn't be accomplished by other graphics engines? I mean, I understand that this is a year old, but the environment was bland and the textures used didn't look too demanding. Maybe I wasn't watching carefully enough, but the caustic lighting didn't seem too demanding, either. I thought that we were already at this point when the Playstation 3 was first released?

Exactly. We are no longer pushing the limitations of what graphics engines can do, and instead we are focusing on versatility and peripherals. While that engine is very technically impressive, it's not graphically impressive.

And just think of what we could do on the PC with that! It would look uncannily real. Like very good CG.

Reacon said,

Exactly. We are no longer pushing the limitations of what graphics engines can do, and instead we are focusing on versatility and peripherals. While that engine is very technically impressive, it's not graphically impressive.

And just think of what we could do on the PC with that! It would look uncannily real. Like very good CG.

Partially, then again this is a year old and the engine has significantly been improved since then. The PC without doubt would floor most console games in graphics, but for a console this is great progress considering it's an old tech demo running on an old engine. Story was beautifully constructed though.

Yeah, I didn't think it looked too good compared to other engines (Although it is running on a console, so that's kinda expected)

The facial animation was good (Considering it's mocapped, it should be), but everything else was pretty meh (low res textures/models/etc.)

The_Decryptor said,
Yeah, I didn't think it looked too good compared to other engines (Although it is running on a console, so that's kinda expected)

The facial animation was good (Considering it's mocapped, it should be), but everything else was pretty meh (low res textures/models/etc.)

Agreed. Decent little story, but I was not impressed with the engine at all.

duddit2 said,
Very nice engine!

Yeah. Considering the tech demo is a year old and that it represents half of what the engine can do now, I'd say the next Quanic Dream game will have phenomenal visuals.

Tom said,
I didn't bother reading the title. I was lured in here by the logo...

The thing is... that looks very similar to the PS1 logo

Tom said,
I didn't bother reading the title. I was lured in here by the logo...

haha, same, I don't own a PS3, but this was interesting, and quite a beautiful looking engine