Deep Learning is now powering numerous AI technologies in daily life, and convolutional neural networks (CNNs) can apply complex treatments to images at high speeds. At Unity, we aim to propose seamless integration of CNN inference in the 3D rendering pipeline. Unity Labs, therefore, works on improving state-of-the-art research and developing an efficient neural inference engine called Barracuda. In this post, we experiment with a challenging use case: multi-style in-game style transfer. Deep learning has long been confined to supercomputers and offline computation, but their usability at real-time on consumer hardware is fast approaching thanks to ever-increasing compute capability. With Barracuda, Unity Labs hopes to accelerate its arrival in creators’ hands. While neural networks are already being used for game AI thanks to ML-Agents, there are many applications to rendering which have yet to be demonstrated in real-time game engines. For example: deep-learned supersampling, ambient occlusion, global illumination, style transfer, etc. We chose the latter to demonstrate the full pipeline going from training the network to integration in Unity’s rendering loop.
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