VFX breakdown

VFX Breakdown of "Fallout"

June 13, 2024
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The Amazon Prime series "Fallout" has captivated audiences with its stunning visual effects (VFX), bringing the iconic post-apocalyptic world from the video game franchise to the screen. The series utilizes a blend of practical effects, CGI, and state-of-the-art technology to create a visually immersive experience. This article delves into the key aspects of the VFX work, the studios involved, and highlights from important VFX breakdowns.

Key VFX Studios and Contributors


RISE FX played a significant role in creating the breathtaking environments and intricate details for the series. They were responsible for the depiction of nuclear explosions, realistic landscapes, and complex technological elements like the Power Armor and Brotherhood of Steel’s gadgets. Their work involved combining practical effects with CGI to achieve a realistic look that stayed true to the game's aesthetic​.

2. Framestore:

Known for their work on high-profile projects, Framestore handled some of the most challenging VFX shots in "Fallout." One of their standout contributions was the creation of the Yao Guai, a terrifying mutated bear. This involved detailed creature design, from initial sketches to final CGI implementation, ensuring the creature's movements and appearance were lifelike and menacing.

Additionally, Framestore worked on creating the Gulper, another mutated creature from the Fallout universe, showcasing their expertise in creature animation and realistic texturing.

3. Refuge VFX:

Refuge VFX contributed to various sequences throughout the series. They provided intricate environmental VFX and worked on some of the series' critical action scenes, enhancing the overall visual storytelling​.

4. Important Looking Pirates (ILP):

ILP focused on some of the series’ complex character animations and environmental effects, ensuring seamless integration between CGI and live-action footage​.

5. CoSA VFX:

Known for their meticulous attention to detail, CoSA VFX worked on several background enhancements and helped create the immersive, devastated landscapes that are a hallmark of the Fallout universe​.

6. Pinscreen:

Pinscreen's generative AI pipeline for de-aging was used for a flashback scene of Hank (played by Kyle MacLachlan) in the final episode of Fallout: Season 1. The current aged Kyle (65 years old) is de-aged to his 30s using advanced generative AI models trained using young footages of Kyle.

7. Mavericks VFX
8. One of Us
Highlights from VFX Breakdowns
  1. Nuclear Explosion Sequence: One of the most talked-about VFX scenes is the nuclear explosion that sets the tone for the series. RISE FX used a combination of practical effects, miniatures, and CGI to create this sequence. The explosion involved detailed simulations to depict the destruction realistically while maintaining visual continuity with the rest of the scene​​.
  2. Yao Guai Creature Creation: Framestore's breakdown of the Yao Guai highlights the process of bringing this creature to life. Starting from concept art, they moved to detailed 3D models and finally to realistic texturing and animation. The creature's interactions with the environment and characters were carefully choreographed to ensure believability​.
  3. Gulper Creature Creation: The Gulper, another monstrous creature from the Fallout series, was brought to life by Framestore. This involved creating a detailed model of the creature, applying lifelike textures, and animating it to move naturally within the scenes. The result was a terrifyingly realistic creature that added to the series' immersive experience​.
  4. Environmental VFX: The post-apocalyptic setting of "Fallout" required extensive environmental VFX. Refuge VFX and ILP were instrumental in creating these backgrounds. They used a mix of on-location footage and CGI to depict ruined cities, barren wastelands, and hazardous weather conditions, contributing to the series' immersive atmosphere​.
  5. Power Armor and Technology: The depiction of Power Armor and other technological elements required precise VFX work to blend seamlessly with live-action footage. RISE FX's detailed approach involved creating 3D models of the armor, ensuring that it moved realistically with the actors and interacted convincingly with the environment.
Credits and Recognition

The production of "Fallout" involved collaboration among several renowned VFX studios, each bringing their expertise to different aspects of the series. Key figures include:

  • Jay Worth, Production VFX Supervisor, who oversaw the entire VFX process to ensure a cohesive visual narrative.
  • Andrea Knoll, Production VFX Producer, who coordinated the efforts of various studios and managed the VFX pipeline.

"Fallout" stands as a testament to the power of visual effects in modern television, pushing the boundaries of what is possible and setting new standards for future productions. The meticulous work of the VFX teams has not only brought the game’s world to life but also set a high bar for visual storytelling in the genre.

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