After “decades in the making,” Epic Games’ MetaHuman Creator has entered early access. Powered by Unreal Engine, the cloud-based app allows anyone to create photorealistic digital humans in minutes, regardless of prior design experience. As of right now, to the program, with wait times dependent upon how much traffic the cloud can support.
Once accepted, users can select from a diverse range of starting characters, before sculpting and refining them to create near-infinite variations of MetaHumans. Best of all, Epic Games’ says the “MetaHuman Creator is so easy to use, you may not even need to open the user guide” to do so. However, if you’re still feeling a bit intimidated by the character creation process, Unreal Engine has also provided over 50 premade MetaHumans, ready to be downloaded for free through .
? The MetaHuman Creator Early Access program is now open!
Create your own high-fidelity digital humans in just minutes—plus, download 50 ready-made characters! #UE4 #MetaHumans
Sign up for free:https://t.co/2HXx5i5KPA
— Unreal Engine (@UnrealEngine) April 14, 2021
In the MetaHuman creator, users can customize everything from a character’s complexion to the size of their teeth. The program’s only limitations are what is “physically plausible,” as the creator derives data from real-world scans and is constrained to that database. While what is “physically possible” could potentially lead to issues in terms of diversity within the program, according to Unreal Engine’s website these constraints help ensure accuracy in traits such as skin tone and hair color.
After users are finished creating their MetaHuman, they can download their character for free using Quixel Bridge. In addition to your character model, this download will also provide you with the MetaHuman’s source data in the form of an Autodesk Maya file, with meshes, skeleton, facial rig, and animation controls all included. This data can then be input into Unreal Engine, where folks can animate their characters which will ultimately be able to “run in real time on high-end PCs with RTX graphics cards, even at their highest quality with strand-based hair and ray tracing enabled.”
If reading this has you feeling a bit overwhelmed, Unreal Engine has provided tutorial videos on how to ensure you’re getting the best performance out of your MetaHuman and how to properly rig and animate your character model. They have also provided a on how to use the creator itself, and have truly put in the work to make the application as accessible as possible.
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