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Have you been wondering exactly how Naughty Dog managed to bring the horses in The Last Of Us Part II to life so deftly? As it turns out, the developer called on the help of real horses, mocapping them in the studio to get their movements just right.
I have to confess, this is news to me. I knew that Naughty Dog used real-life pooches for the many dogs in the game that you're forced to savagely murder... but I never imagined I'd see a horse kitted out in mocap gear racing through a studio. What a time to be alive. And what a well-behaved horse. Bet you a fiver it took at least a dozen dumps on that studio floor though.
The Last Of Us Part II's lead animator Jeremy Yates shared some fascinating footage on Twitter. As you can see below, a gorgeous horse leaps and gallops around the studio. Does it know it's involved with one of the most divisive and controversial releases of all time? I doubt it. But I'm glad the horse has been spared the discourse.
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It also sounds like the same capture session was ultimately also used by Sucker Punch for the horses in the upcoming Ghost Of Tsushima, which is a really cool link between the two PS4 exclusives. Speaking of, you can check out our review of the open world samurai adventure right here, if you haven't already.
Hopefully these quantum leaps forward in horse motion capture have brought us one step closer to my ultimate dream of a game in which you are the horse. For too long, video games have been content to let you control a human riding a horse.
I want a game in which you're controlling the horse itself, free of humans and free to go on all kinds of adventures in an open world. That's my equestrian dream. Maybe lockdown has hit me harder than I thought.
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