GDC is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

View, browse and sort the ever-growing list of sessions by pass type, topic, and format. All registered attendees will be able to build their personal schedule in the mobile event app, once live early 2022.

GDC Masterclass courses require a paid pass to attend. Class sizes are kept intentionally small and seats are limited to ensure every student receives one-on-one assistance from the instructor. Pass pricing per course varies, please review the passes and pricing page for more details and secure your spot today!

Creating the many Faces of 'Horizon Forbidden West'

Arno Schmitz  (Principal Character Artist, Guerrilla Games)

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Core Pass - Get your pass now!

Topic: Visual Arts

Format: Session

Vault Recording: TBD

Audience Level: No

People have an intrinsic ability to identify the attributes of the human face and remember details. This is no different with the faces of a game character: we remember their names, attributes, and expressions. Building quality characters, with their faces as the most important graphical benchmarks, is, therefore, one of the core pillars of game development.

Guerrilla wants to share how they achieved the final quality of the characters' faces in Horizon Forbidden West and show off the incredibly high fidelity thanks to the power of the PlayStation 5. Most importantly, Guerrilla will discuss how to do all this to scale so that all faces in the Forbidden West’s open-world have a similarly high quality.


The attendees will gain insight into the many facets of the production pipeline of the faces of Horizon Forbidden West and learn best practices to increase the realism in the heads of their own projects. For example, how you can use your photogrammetry pictures as a look-dev tool.

Intended Audience

The target audience would be peers of the industry who are interested stepping up their game when it comes to realistic faces. Due to abundance of pictures, more beginning artist will also have plenty of takeaways. No prerequisites required.