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How Verso Live helped put the ‘viewer at the forefront’ of the Ryder Cup

The latest version of the company's eponymous graphics software was used to produce a number of innovations, including an on-screen-at-all-times leaderboard, providing information on the state of all matches

The latest version of Verso Live’s broadcast graphics software was used to produce all the graphics for the 44th Ryder Cup.

Verso’s parent company MST Systems served as the graphics platform across the entire tournament, including the All-Star matches and the main tournament.

One of its key innovations was making the Unreal Engine 5’s realtime 3D environment fit in with established broadcast workflows, said the company.

“This year’s Ryder Cup graphics package design and build was completely new,” explains Jeff Clark, managing director, Verso Live. “MST Systems worked across the original graphics design, whilst Verso Live worked closely with its team to assist in the build of graphics in Unreal Engine. All graphics were created in the native Unreal Engine editor using user widgets, after which they were loaded into Verso Live for data integration, control and playout.”

Among the updates for the Ryder Cup was an on-screen-at-all-times leaderboard, providing information on the state of all matches, whilst could also be transformed to show additional information such as individual pairings, match headshot graphics, or concise match information.

“A new update in Verso Live, motivated by The Ryder Cup, is our “state” system – this is where graphics artists are able to query the state of all graphics in Verso through Unreal Engine blueprints. It facilitates different animation states depending on what graphics are on-air,” added Clark.

The team also worked closely with Capgemini to ingest its “Outcome IQ” probability data model, which provided real-time updates on the probabilities of winning each hole, match, session, and the tournament itself. Outcome IQ also identified shots and holes that created the biggest swing in the match outlook, which was then fed to the graphic team to visualise on screen.

“Graphics channels can now be thought of as virtualised channels that can be combined into a single output KEY/FILL, or split over multiple KEY/FILLS, depending on requirements,” said Clark. “Graphics operators and production still receive their dedicated preview feed of each graphics channel, with final outputs kept separate or combined where appropriate. But what were previously separate graphics channels for the Ryder Cup have been rationalised into fewer physical servers.”

David Mould, director, European Tour, added: “I have a long-standing relationship with MST Systems that goes back over 20 years. The deployment of Verso Live enabled us to put the viewer at the forefront of coverage to ensure no matter what match was being featured on screen, viewers could still have visibility across the scores of all matches, adding to the viewer’s experience and excitement. The reaction online from fans to the new look was fantastic and we’re pleased we chose MST Systems and Verso Live to make this possible.”