Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Voice Synthesis for Added Realism

Impossible Mission came out in 1983.  The moment I saw this running in my local computer store was a watershed moment in my life, akin to seeing Star Wars for the first time.

The fluidity of the main character animation was amazing.  It was the first time rotoscoping had been used to give the character realistic movement (Jordan Mechner's Prince of Persia came out 5 years later).  Before that most games I had played had 2-3 frames of animation.

Another great aspect of the game was the storytelling.  The game had an evil protagonist and you were working against time to infiltrate the computers in his base, piece together puzzles and confront the evil scientist at the end.  It was a simple but effective construct that was an example of character driven storytelling that worked.

Another huge innovation was the use of speech in the game.  Who could forget the evil genius challenge at the beginning of the game.

"Stay awhile...Stay forever!!!"

[UPDATE] cool interview with Dennis Caswell on the making of the game.

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