In the new 60-second spot teasing Bethesda’s highly-anticipated online survival RPG Fallout 76, Method Studios created a stunning visualization of the in-game world of post-apocalyptic Appalachia.
Incorporating live-action actors into fully CG surroundings, the spot’s hyper-real look artfully showcases gameplay in a way that imagines what a group of friends might experience if they were able to step inside Fallout 76’s West Virginia wasteland.
Led by VFX supervisor Jesse Bradstreet and real-time CG supervisor Juan Sebastian Gomez, the project tapped Method’s deep VFX and immersive talents and capabilities, using a customized real-time pipeline in combination with traditional VFX techniques to speed creative iteration and achieve a distinct stylized look.
The Method team collaborated closely with gnet. Bradstreet and director David Moodie, gnet EVP and creative director, started with a virtual scout inside the game to identify locations, actions, characters and elements to ensure the spot would accurately represent the gameplay experience. Method developed concept art based on gnet’s original storyboards and conducted lighting studies to nail down the hyper-real look.
They then previsualized the piece to create a precise blueprint for production, mapping out planned camera movements, rough animation, and pre-lighting. The real-time previs pipeline enabled Moodie and DP Dallas Sterling to view renders immediately, allowing for any necessary adjustments prior to the actual shoot days with actors and motion capture performers.
The final spot is about 98% CG, with live-action characters moving through an alluring but hostile fantasy world. Method artists worked with Bethesda’s game developers and in-game assets, regenerating them for higher fidelity. To create a stunning environment for the action, artists pushed the hyperrealism of the spot’s other components – fur, water, flora, explosions and more.
“When we thought about how we were going to achieve the hyperreal look that would balance live action and pure videogame worlds, we knew we could get the best results by combining a real-time pipeline with traditional VFX techniques,” said Bradstreet. “We set our developers and artists on the challenge and they pushed the technology into a hybrid workflow that let us deliver a piece with a totally unique feel.”
Fallout 76 at the end of 2018 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.