Animation for Movies

What is the only similarity between the movie Frozen and the game PUBg? The fact that they both are animated creations and that is it. You might think that animation used for movies would be similar to the animation used for games, however, that is quite a common misconception.

Even though both are produced from a similar set of tools and principles, the processes and techniques differ immensely between the two. It’s important to know that animation in games and movies is evolving at an exceptional speed. With every passing moment, the smoothness of playing games and the experience of watching movies are continuously enhancing and excelling. 

Thus, it’s of utmost importance for animators to understand the difference between the two to work efficiently in their respective industries. So, this article will update you with the basic difference between animation for games and movies to pursue a successful career as an animator.

1) Game Animation Has More Camera Angles Than Movie Animation

The very first difference is that game animation comparatively has far more camera angles than movie animation because games tend to have several shot angles depending upon how the player controls the character and whether the game is shot in first, second, or third-person perspective. 

While in movie animation the viewer experiences a series of scenes as desired by the makers of the animated movies. Though several angles can be presented, the movie animators are fully responsible and in charge of all the angles and movements. 

2) Game Animation Includes Cycles Whereas Movie Animation Has Sequence 

As the characters in games are dependent on the gamer, there are many different potential scenarios that exist. Each possible scenario must include an animation, for example, when the character runs and then goes back to idle mode, or when a character shoots a gun then re-holsters it later. 

On the other hand, animated movies are sequential which means no cycles can occur since multiple scenarios cannot take place outside of the created animation frames. Both cycles and sequences are essential in an animator’s job, but each one is approached distinctively in the creative process. 

3) Game Animation is Reliant Upon Programmed AI Scripts and Users while Movie Animation Controls what the Viewers see 

Interestingly, the objects present in games in the background are programmed to respond to the user’s movement. Though there might be fixed sequences in the game, they won’t move until the character arrives at the scene. 

For instance, programming the enemy to follow or chase you once your character is within sight. In addition, in some episodic adventure games, AI scripts and programming are greatly beneficial in allowing the game to change its story path.

4) Movie Animation Usually Has Higher Polygon Budget Capability Than Game Animation

Before you start to wonder what a polygon budget is, it’s the amount of cash spent to show an animated character’s geometric qualities. The higher the definition of the animation, the more expensive it is. 

However, in movies, the chances of improving the quality of animation are almost endless as it can be edited and displayed by video animators as per their desire. 

5) Game Animation is Restricted by Game Consoles’ Hardware Potential while Movie Animation has Fewer Technical Limitations 

Real game animators would know that game animation majorly relies on real-time rendering thus there is a restriction on the level of quality animated characters can have, depending on the consoles’ hardware like inbuilt video cards and chips. 

This means that game animators, as well as developers and programmers, are heavily dependent on the progress of consoles. But, the good news is they do progress swiftly.

6) Movie Animation needs no Programming Knowledge while Game Animation Does 

The central idea of any movie is to be watched and not interacted with, hence, the majority of the software used in making the film is directed towards producing favorable results that will be visible and pleasing to its viewers. 

Whereas, in games, where the user is in control of each movement, the individual’s pressing of a single button acts as a stimulus for an animation action to be performed. This requires having a strong understanding of programming and how to use it effectively in creating a suitable animated motion as per the game’s logical sequence. 

7) Mistakes are Easier to Catch in Movie Animation while Glitches in Game Animation are Harder to Identify

You might have noticed that sometimes while watching a movie you can catch certain mistakes in them or you might’ve run your eyes through videos listing the mistakes in movies such as ‘100 mistakes in Avengers.’ This apparently is less common in games. Why does this happen? Because a movie animation includes a single sequence of events, quality checkers and creative directors run through the animated film in several ways. 

The quality of animated films is so detailed and refined that for a 90-minute movie it takes approximately 3-4 years of hard work by at least 200 to up to 600 people. Whilst, in-game animation, producers cannot afford to spend this much amount of time and money for every single sequence inside the game as there exists so many. 

Thus, most of the time glitches and small mistakes or detailed lapses are displayed in the game either by viewing or by interacting with the environment as the gamer.

The Conclusion

Games and movies are two opposite fields. The games are supposed to be interactive with the gamer responsible for every action. Movies are what the producer wants the viewers to see so he is in control of everything. This doesn’t mean one is difficult while the other is simple. Both have distinct characteristics that an animator needs to acknowledge. 

Whether you’re into game or movie animation, what’s important is loving what you do and excelling at it. Hence, knowing the differences will make you understand your animation career deeply.

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