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    2021.04.08 The Originality

    Game AI, Moon-won Yoo

    Creating a game is to create a world that does not exist. It is the hard work of many people that becomes the building blocks for the wonderful world that we view on the screen. 

    It is not an easy work; however, NC firmly believes in the value of ‘fun’. Professionals from various fields are gathered in NC, making serious efforts to think and imagine new fun. This persistent efforts to create fun determines the quality of the output.

    NC never makes a compromise on quality. The foundation of NC’s quality lies in its ‘originality.'

    Whenever I played games, I never went through stages without figuring out how they were composed. I was more interested in their composition than clearing them. I went backwards and hit all the blocks, wondering what was in them. I wanted to understand everything that was in each stage. I still wonder how the world is composed.

    Game AI Researcher Moon-won Yoo
    Game AI Lab

    We are interested in ways to improve efficiency in game development. Through AI technologies, we aim to reduce the volume of repetitive manual work that is required in the process of game development. Motion AI Team to which I belong thinks about ways to improve efficiency in animation work.

    Motion Style Transfer

    It is a technology to create a new motion through reconfiguration of two existing motions. It transfers the style extracted from a certain motion into another. Using this technology, we do not have to draw every single motion for game development, regardless of the number of monster types. It is to reduce product costs through recycling the motions that we have.

    We have filed for patents both at home and abroad, under the title of < APPARATUS AND METHOD FOR MOTION SYNTHESIZATION >.

    * Motion AI team's blog  https://nc-moai.github.io/ 

    To Help Artists Focus on More Creative Works

    Animators are destined to carry out repetitive works, as such works are required. The objective of our technology is to have AI technology conduct such work so that artists could focus on more creative works. To this end, we are studying more natural movements that serve the needs of gaming environment.

    A Creator That Creates Problems

    A researcher should be able to visualize a complex phenomenon and design it in a systematic way. After then, they should find the problems that they could resolve and the methods. I believe adequate creation of the problems that one could resolve is the capability required to researchers.

    Anyone May Express Their Opinions

    I would have felt frustrated if NC had been a company where all I had to do was to do what I was asked to do. The atmosphere of our organization lets people freely express their opinions and listen to other’s opinions. I may carry out my research in the way I intended. I have never thought that I was a part of a device or could be replaced by anyone.

    The AI That Has Practical Use

    In NDC 2019, I gave a presentation on “the technology for real-time motion creation adapting to the landscape based on inverse kinematics”. It is to create motions of a character that climbs up the bumpy wall surface on a real-time basis. It felt rewarding, since it felt as if it proved that our research was proceeding in the right direction.

    I now dream of applying the technology that I studied to game development. The technology will soon be applied to a game under development. I am further sophisticating the technology with much delight.

    The One Enjoying the Research Journey

    A Boy with Much Curiosity

    I wondered how the world was built. I observed the things that seemed curious and carried out experiments to tackle curiosity. Such personality affected the way I played games. Whenever I played games, I never went through stages without figuring out how they were composed. I was more interested in their composition than clearing them. I went backwards and hit all the blocks, wondering what was in them. I wanted to understand everything that was in each stage.

    Working Persistently Until the Ideas Are Materialized

    I work persistently once I get interested. I wanted to take a photo of the milk crown phenomenon featured in a milk advertisement. I wondered if it was CG or real. I continued the experiment until I actually captured it in a photo. I ran the tap in the kitchen, removing and adding the flashlight. I finally succeeded through covering the surface with much toilet paper and turning on the flashlight. I once built a device to open a padlock, because I wanted to understand how it worked. It is the most interesting when I materialize the ideas in my head. Once I get focused on an idea, I work persistently to materialize it.

    Once I Find Something Fun, I Follow Through

    When I was an undergraduate student, I developed an app with a startup. They invited undergraduate students and gave them an opportunity to build apps they wanted. At the time, I built an app called “Mouse Kit”. It was an app enabling the user to move cursors on their mobile phones using their motions. It also generated much profit. It was fun to see my idea actually generating responses from the market. I ran the app through periodic updates before I joined NC.

    Looking back, I wonder why I worked so hard. I think I did so, because it was fun.

    I started crocheting as a hobby. I crocheted Airpods cases and gave them as presents to the team members.

    An Environment That Makes Research Fun

    Researchers find meanings in data. Games are entirely composed of data. In that regard, the game industry offers a good environment to researchers. There are areas where researchers themselves should create data on their own.

    In graduate school, I analyzed brain waves using AI. It was a research on creation of a certification system that used brain waves. I tried to find ways to continue my research after graduation. I liked games and research also suited for my aptitude. I joined the company without any hesitation.

    A Person Born to Be A Researcher

    I always wonder ‘why’ and try to tackle my curiosity. Meanwhile, it is fun to design processes to deliver results. Research suits for my aptitude. I am not forced to do this, and I have never tried to. I do research, because it is fun.

    Becoming A Person of Higher Level

    Games That the Users Could Admire

    I get inspired by the works where the creator’s intention is clearly represented. Like well-made puzzles. I like the works that their creators put much of their thoughts into. It is exciting to see something that exceeds my expectation.

    I recently enjoy playing . There is no end to the things and the contents that I should know about. I look for strategy books on the internet. Once I tackle an obstacle, the game presents another. The game keeps presenting unimaginable obstacles, while I try to find and resolve them one by one. It is difficult. However, such stress becomes a positive stimulus.

    A well-made music, a well-developed game. I like the works that represent their creators’ ideas and that their creators put much of their efforts into.

    But Never to Brag

    Even though he is a fictional character, I believe that Tony Stark looks great. He never brags, even though he has the perfect suit, and that is because everyone knows that it is a perfect suit without him bragging about it. It is because the suit is made perfect. Reaching the level that anyone would recognize. I think it is an aspiration that engineering majors would have.

    I would like to successfully apply the technology that I am currently working on to games. Unlike research, this requires much manual work. It would be difficult for me to become “Iron Man”, but I would like to develop this technology as best as I can.