The Last Invention
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The Last Invention

„The Last Invention“ is the final bachelor project of five students of the University of Applied Sciences Salzburg, which deals with the destruction of humanities future.

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THE LAST INVENTION

The Last Invention“ – the final bachelor project of five students of the University of Applied Sciences Salzburg – deals with the destruction of humanities future. It is a fully computer-generated animation short, which was produced during the studies of the students from July 2020 until May 2021. Actual Production due to an obligatory internship semester and other university related projects started in January 2021. In the short the main protagonist wanted to create an invention – seen as the reactor in the film – that would be a solution for an environmental-friendly, cheap and inexhaustible energy source by manipulating the time and gaining energy from the future. Even though he already knows that there could be destructive consequences of his invention – seen in the foreshadowing scenes in the short – he still activates his machine and obliterates the whole humanity. The main theme of this short are the destructive consequences of inventions, which should be a metaphor for the current extensive destruction of our planet – and our future – caused by constant striving for creation and producing new things. Success and the own advantages of newly created inventions are far more important for business nowadays than the survival of our planet and the future of humanity.

Some Stills

Pre-Production

Storyboard

2D Animatic | 3D Animatic | Final Shot

Visual Development of our main protoganist – Mr. X

For our main protagonist we wanted to give him a cliché "business man" look, but with some old school touches. He went through a lot of iterations where we tried to find a design mixed with the crazy scientist image and the business man image. He should be determined, focused and a little bit grumpy and evil. You should see that all the work on his machine and the struggle within him left their marks.


Final design

Visual Development Interior

Visual Development Guards and Scientists

Since we didn’t have enough time for this project to make all characters from scratch we used Mixamo characters as a base for the side characters. The design of those were modified and they were re-modeled and re-textured in Blender and Substance Painter.


Production

Mr. X – Sculpting the base and blendshapes in ZBrush

Mr. X – Grooming

Mr. X – Texturing with Substance Painter, Shading in Cinema4D with Redshift

Mr. X - Garment Design and Cloth Simulation in Marvelous Designer

The biggest problem with the cloth simulation was that his clothes had multiple layers with his shirt, vest, tie and jacket. So we had to skin those parts who wouldn't be so much visible and then we had to simulate the vest and trousers first and with a new alembic we simulated the jacket onto everything. With this technique we could avoid as much glitches in the simulations as possible and got a pretty good result.

Mr. X - Rigging and Animation in Maya with Advanced Skeleton

VFX made in Houdini FX


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