SFV: Reinforcement Learning of Physical Skills from Videos

Transactions on Graphics (Proc. ACM SIGGRAPH Asia 2018)

Xue Bin Peng    Angjoo Kanazawa    Jitendra Malik    Pieter Abbeel    Sergey Levine
University of California, Berkeley


Data-driven character animation based on motion capture can produce highly naturalistic behaviors and, when combined with physics simulation, can provide for natural procedural responses to physical perturbations, environmental changes, and morphological discrepancies. Motion capture remains the most popular source of motion data, but collecting mocap data typically requires heavily instrumented environments and actors. In this paper, we propose a method that enables physically simulated characters to learn skills from videos (SFV). Our approach, based on deep pose estimation and deep reinforcement learning, allows data-driven animation to leverage the abundance of publicly available video clips from the web, such as those from YouTube. This has the potential to enable fast and easy design of character controllers simply by querying for video recordings of the desired behavior. The resulting controllers are robust to perturbations, can be adapted to new settings, can perform basic object interactions, and can be retargeted to new morphologies via reinforcement learning. We further demonstrate that our method can predict potential human motions from still images, by forward simulation of learned controllers initialized from the observed pose. Our framework is able to learn a broad range of dynamic skills, including locomotion, acrobatics, and martial arts.

Paper: [PDF]       Blog: [BAIR]       Preprint: [arXiv]



	author = {Peng, Xue Bin and Kanazawa, Angjoo and Malik, Jitendra and Abbeel, Pieter and Levine, Sergey},
	title = {SFV: Reinforcement Learning of Physical Skills from Videos},
	journal = {ACM Trans. Graph.},
	volume = {37},
	number = {6},
	month = nov,
	year = {2018},
	articleno = {178},
	numpages = {14},
	publisher = {ACM},
	address = {New York, NY, USA},
	keywords = {physics-based character animation, computer vision, video imitation, reinforcement learning, motion reconstruction}