A video game to help Notre-Dame? The assumption is seriously considered by the fans of "Assassin's Creed Unity". Marketed in 2014 by the French publisher Ubisoft, this album plunges its hero into a Paris at the time of the French Revolution. The City of Light is magnificently restored, with no less than fifty monuments modeled in every detail, from the Louvre to the Luxembourg Palace via the Sainte Chapelle, the Pantheon or the prison of the Bastille.
READ ALSO>This 3D modeling could help the reconstruction
Notre Dame Cathedral is not forgotten. A particular attention was even given to it: a team of three people looked at its modeling for two years, gathering historical documents, period engravings or various plans and cumulating photographic, colorimetric or brightness records directly within the l 'building. "This work allowed a very realistic rendering and, for the first time in a video game, at full size," said a spokesman for Ubisoft, whose headquarters are located in Montreuil (Seine-Saint-Denis).
The result is stunning. Three million virtual polygons had to be assembled to give Notre-Dame a majestic presence in the scenario of "Assassin's Creed Unity". The player, who embodies the hero Arno, can even afford the luxury of climbing with bare hands on the towers, roam the roofs and even climb to the top of the spire to enjoy a breathtaking view of Paris.
Another more realistic 3D modeling?
No racing anyway. "Our approach and that of our Montreal studio that led the project are not scientific but both historical and artistic," says Ubisoft. The arrow that appears in the game is for example anachronistic, since it was erected at the end of the nineteenth century by Viollet-le-Duc.
Maxime Durand, the Quebec historian recruited in 2011 by the company to oversee the franchise of successive episodes of "Assassin's Creed", drives the point. To consider using the cathedral as it is present in the game for the reconstruction of Notre Dame is an "unrealistic idea". "The monument we recreated has a great artistic freedom," he explains in an interview with the Montreal daily "La Presse". "I can not say that those who are going to rebuild will necessarily be interested in our modeling. "
If they want to take advantage of a 3D model to conduct their work, the architects who will be working on the rebirth of Notre Dame will instead rely on the work, much more specific, the American researcher Andrew Tallon. On the other hand, Ubisoft has decided to make a contribution by donating 500,000 €. The studio has also released the PC version of its game for a week, starting this Wednesday.