Look Alive: A plugin that makes character eyes easy.

The eyes are the window to the soul, or in some cases, the window to believing an npc is a dead fish wearing pants.

Look Alive plugin adds a single component, the LookAliveComponent. Adding one of these to your characters give you instant, life-filled eyes. They eyes use their own animation independent from the rest of the actor. They automatically make eye contact with each other based on distance and viewing angle. They sometimes wander around, or sometimes stare blankly for a moment. These eyes will make your character look alive. All you need to do is add this component to your character, adjust the position, IPD, and radius of the eyes. You can set the location for the eyes to focus on from your blueprint, and you can turn autofocus on for eye contact to occur automatically.

For characters from the marketplace, you can simply export the mesh, delete the stock eyes, and reimport. I did this with the Dark Military Characters.


Will this be using the new eye shader that came with 4.11?

Those Unreal dummies were very unsettling! Good work!

Does this have a ‘googly eye’ mode?

Not yet, it is using my own trial and error setup, but I may change it as soon as I find an actual example of the eye shader they are talking about in the 4.11 release notes.

It doesn’t yet but I see no reason not to add one.

You can find the new eye shader examples in the updated 4.11 Content examples (under the learn tab!) inside the Character_Rendering map.



I added Jiggle Eyes mode. Enjoy.

I see that the eye movements use saccads.

Firstly, that’s awesome!
Secondly, does this effect disable when the eyes actually track an object?

I ask because typical “scanning” of your environment will cause saccads, while tracking a specific object would cause smooth movements of the eyes.

I’m curious if this plugin will handle this.

When you are supplying a focus location, you also set HasFocus to true, which will cause they eyes to track perfectly with no other motions. When the eyes are making eye contact through AutoFocus, they glance away occasionally to avoid creepy staring effect. With no focus at all, the eyes change between wandering motions and blank stares.

I noticed the irises had gotten a bit large during the texturing process so I shrank them a bit, but I am leaving in the material with the larger irises. The eye shader in the content example is pretty good, but a lot of it is for simulating features I modeled into the mesh. Besides that, its fairly similar to what I have now. I added some more controls to the material for changing eye color and such.

Hoping to hear back from the Marketplace Team soon.


Thought I should add a picture of the adjusted shaders.

As cool as this plugin is,

Is nightmare fuel.

I’ll take that as a compliment.

You should. :smiley:
Because it means that the eyes look real enough to trigger the uncanny valley when placed on non-living characters. :slight_smile:

I hope to see a new video with more human characters, (with a higher bit rate for the video, any video higher than 30fps get’s compressed really badly on Youtube because it doesn’t scale up the bit rate).