QD & ME – ÉMELINE GOT
QD: Please introduce yourself! What’s your name, where are you from, and what is your role at QD?
Émeline: Hi, my name is Emeline Got, I’m 25 years old and I come from a small town near Orleans, in France. I’ve been working at Quantic Dream for a little over two years, first as an intern to do my Master’s thesis and then I was hired in the Maya team. I recently left this team following the creation of a new department: Research & Innovation (R&I), where there are only two of us at the moment: Thomas Léglantier and I. We’re working on what will be the new facial capture technology for our future motion capture shoots.
QD: How did you come to work in the video games industry? Was it a lifelong dream, or did you luckily stumble into it?
Émeline: I ended up here a bit by accident, to be honest. Basically, I’m mostly into animation – I’m a huge Pixar fan. I didn’t really have an artistic skill and was more interested in mathematics, so I decided to study science. Right after high school, I didn’t really know what to do; I gave myself more time before specialising in one field, by going to a preparatory class and then to a general engineering school, the École Centrale de Lyon. This school has a partnership with another university in Barcelona, where I did a Master’s degree in Computer Science Research with a specialisation in computer graphics. It was a true revelation, I had finally found the specialisation that suited me! It was therefore within the framework of this Master’s degree that I applied to Quantic Dream to do my thesis on a research subject. And as I liked it there, I stayed 🙂
QD: Let’s talk about your job at Quantic Dream! Could you elaborate more on your role, and the role of your team?
Émeline: I’m doing scientific research on facial capture technologies, which we use for motion capture with the actors in our games. The idea is to evolve the system used in previous games – the use of markers to capture every facial animation – into a new system with less loss of information, based on the use of cameras filming these faces. These are technologies already widely used in the film industry and in various video game studios. So my colleague and I read any scientific research paper we can, to find the technological solution that is best suited to our needs and that meets our expectations in terms of actor comfort, data accuracy, processing time, etc.
QD: Tell us more about the members of your team. Any fun story to share?
Émeline: There are only two of us for now, so that limits the anecdotes a little, even if Thomas’ (my teammate) taste for raisins often generates heated debates at lunchtime! Otherwise, more generally, I have many anecdotes with our other colleagues: Monday morning cakes, carpooling to the studio, sports outings to the swimming pool, badminton, squash, epic Mario Kart 8 Deluxe competitions at lunchtime, the laughter heard throughout the open space… There’s no time to get bored!
QD: Can you describe to us a typical day for you? Does a typical day even exist for you?
Émeline: There’s not really a typical day, we work on long-term projects, so it’s a lot of problem solving, trial and error, testing, improving, but also failing and questioning our choices. We also have to keep an eye on technological advances in the industry, new releases, new research papers, conferences, etc.
QD: What are your external inspirations that are reflected in your job?
Émeline: In my work, directly, it’s a bit complicated because it’s a rather technical and theoretical field, which doesn’t leave much room for imagination. And let’s just say I’m not usually inspired by one equation over another, ahah!
QD: Be careful, BIG question… What are your favourite games?
Émeline: The games that really made an impression on me were the games I played as a child. My colleagues can confirm that I’ve already told them too much about Super Mario Sunshine, a big hit when I played it at a friend’s house and which made me ask my parents for the GameCube. I also have many fond memories of playing Star Wars Pod Racer and Droid Works (I’m looking for people who share my passion for this unknown game, by the way!) and the battles with my brother to alternate games on our PC. Otherwise, I’m a real fan of the Animal Crossing series which saved me during college and confinement! And I also really like The Legend of Zelda games, especially Ocarina of Time.
QD: Tell us more about your hobbies outside of work.
Émeline: Wow, the question not to ask me, ahah! Let’s just say that I don’t really stand still and that I always want or need to learn new things. So outside of work, I like to cook and bake, I sew to make new clothes, I’m trying to learn the guitar, I read a lot (currently the Shadow and Bone saga ❤️), I ride my bike, I’m tinkering with decorating stuff for my house… My latest thing: learning to longboard dance. To be continued! Oh, and I play the flute on TikTok, sometimes!
QD: All right! What does your perfect Friday night look like?
Émeline: Going to see a good film with my favourite cinema sidekick and a big bucket of popcorn. Obviously, I’m looking forward to the reopening dates [post-pandemic] and my list of films to see is growing all the time. In the meantime, it’s popcorn at home and some animated movie I’ve probably already seen 50 times on Disney+. Or just trying to get through The Last Of Us 2 (I promise you Stéphane, I’ll bring the game back to you eventually!).
QD: Do you have a message for our readers?
Émeline: I would say, don’t put limits on yourself and always be curious. I was lucky to be brought up in an environment where I was always encouraged to do what I wanted to do and to choose the path I liked. This is a strong message that has pushed me to be where I am today and that’s why I would like to share it. It’s all the more important when you’re a woman, because when you’re one of two women in a class of 45 in college, or 20% in engineering school, or 14% in the French gaming industry, it’s easy to think that you don’t have a place. So hang in there, change the statistics and the mentality, and above all do what you want!
QD: Final question! Chocolate cake or Fruit pie?
Émeline: Ouch, this is also not the question you wanna ask me! I’m sorry, I’m on the “no chocolate” team, though I know that it’s not something to be shared in public, but hey… :p I’ll pick the fruit tart, then! And if we’re talking red fruits, just hand 15 slices over!