Xbox ReCore Psyop | STASH MAGAZINE

Best of Stash 2015: Psyop “ReCore E3 Trailer”

Over the last decade, studios like Blur, Axis, Platige, and Digic have elevated the art and craft of CG game trailers to an extraordinary level. That exclusive club gained a new member in 2015 when Psyop flexed it’s 3D and narrative muscles on this trailer for Microsoft’s ReCore at E3.

From issue 114 of the Stash Permanent Collection:

Psyop director David Chontos in LA: “We worked with Microsoft and Armature Studios to not just write the script and produce the trailer, but also to help them design their lead character Joule, for the debut of their Xbox exclusive title ‘ReCore’ at E3 2015.

Xbox Recore Psyop | STASH MAGAZINE

“We were briefed to feature the unique game-play abilities of removing and swapping cores across your team, teamwork-based battle action, and a sense of discovery in a new world, all while weaving these characters into the start of a strong emotional relationship. It’s a hard thing to do in just a couple of minutes.”

Xbox Recore Psyop | STASH MAGAZINE

Psyop producer Lucy Clark: “We spent a lot of time cutting and refining the script and storyboards. We were still over length once moving into pre-vis, so we had a good chunk of time dedicated to that pre-vis time, looking at what shots we could combine, and how to tell such an action-packed yet emotional tale in such a short time span.”

Xbox Recore Psyop | STASH MAGAZINE

DC: “Working on any offshoot of a game that is still currently in development is always tricky, as the developers are often tinkering with characters, game-play mechanics, and storylines up until release.

“Being involved in the early stages of development, however, enabled us to form a stronger creative bond that made the rest of the process easier.”

Xbox Recore Psyop | STASH MAGAZINE

LC: “We worked with a lot of key members of the game team directly from concepting through to delivery. That relationship helped us problem-solve any issues earlier and resulted in a project the client was super happy with as they’d been so involved with us throughout each stage.”

DC: “Creating and simulating all of the sand in the environment was certainly the biggest challenge. Luckily for us, some new dynamic sand tools from Houdini were released right before we started production, and we ended up using them for all of the effects.”

Xbox Recore Psyop | STASH MAGAZINE

LC: “As a lot of the characters and FX were still in look dev for the game, we had a little more back and forth on their final look than we’d planned for. But we built this time into our schedule, and ended up with amazing characters and kickass FX that the client was super happy with, as were we.

“We were super excited when Microsoft told us how well the trailer had gone down internally, and they were bumping it up to an earlier slot in the Xbox briefing. It was so great to be at the event and hear the response from the crowd.”

Xbox Recore Psyop | STASH MAGAZINE

Schedule: DC: “The script writing and character design process began in November of last year, with actual production ramping up in January.”

LC: “We began with some testing on a shorter sequence for the piece in December – that completed in January. We then began boarding and pre-vis on our full trailer in late January, with animation kicking off in February. We delivered at the end of May, two weeks before E3.”

For Psyop
Director: David Chontos
Producer: Lucy Clark
Assistant producer: Sanaz Sattari-Tabrizi
VFX supervisor: Kyle Cassidy
2D supervisor: Matt Lavoy
Designers: Joe Ball, Kenneth Lee, Edmund Liang, Andrew Park
Storyboard artists: Jeffrey Errico, Raymond Harvie, Vince Lee
Matte painters: Maxx Burman, Nick Giassullo, Andrew Park
Editor: Lance Pereira
Pre-vis artists: Jeremy Butler, Chris Meek, Dan Vislocky
Modelers: Kyle Cassidy, Pete Coggeshall, Jonathan Iwata, Jose Martin, James Schauf, Randy Sharp, Rafael Zabala
Rigger: Sebastian Garcia, Sean Kealey, Nelio Naut
Texture artist: Jane Byrne, Jason Kim, Jose Martin, Yuo Tengara
3D animators: Delano Athias, Chris Barsamian, Jeremy Butler, Jean-Dominique Fievet, Timothy Kallok, Chris Meek, Stephanie Russell, Dan Vislocky
Lighter: Robby Branham, Kyle Cassidy, John Cook, Stephen DeLalla, Jonathan Iwata, Jose Martin
FX artists: James Atkinson, Robby Branham, Jeremy Butler, Kent Estep, Ryan Hurd, Jonathan Iwata, Nelio Naut, Mathew Rotman, Kelly Shay, Nathan Sims, Nico Sugleris, Alfred Urrutia
Compositors: Austin Brown, Krystal Chinn, Lane Jolly, Kevin Kim, Matt Lavoy

Mocap: Gain Productions
Executive producer: Scott Gagain
Technical director: Chuck Ghislandi

Mocap: Rouge Productions
Producer: Eiren Chong
Motion capture supervisor: Vince Argentine
Producer/mocap AD: Mari Ueda
Producer/script supervisor: Kumiko Ogawa
Associate producer: Daniel C.C. Chen

Mocap actress: Lauren Mary Kim @ Eleven33 Entertainment

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