Body Language GamePlay

Marco Gillies of GoldSmith college was spurred into launching a new computer gaming project that works with actors because he thinks that “games shouldn’t be designed by programming experts, but by experts in movement.”

Programming companies have already successfully aimed at creating gaming characters with realistic-looking movements.  However, Gillies and his colleagues are developing characters that can recognize subtle movements and express them in a very natural way.

This system will hopefully be the first truly interactive gaming system of its kind with the algorithm’s ability to react to social behaviors and subtle body movements.

 “Writing software to recognise complex and subtle movements like human body language is notoriously difficult.  We are taking a different approach, which allows people to design movement interfaces directly by moving,” Gillies told

The project works with actors attached to motion sensors that are tracked by Kinect cameras to create natural movements via a machine learning algorithm program that tracks their movements.

Gillies goes on to comment that, “Actors understand movement implicitly in their bodies, they understand movement by moving.  It would be almost impossible to turn that kind of implicit understanding into rules that we can explicitly program into some software.”

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After testing their system using non-thespian gamers, they found that within three hours the subjects had begun designing simple games based on their body movements.

What do you think about being the designer of your own game ?  

What are other applications of such technology? 


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