Micro Monsters: mighty next-gen immersive content in stunning 8K
The clue’s in the name with Alchemy Immersive. Blending the latest immersive technologies and content, the award-winning studio concocts magical experiences that transport audiences to entirely new worlds—whether that be sunken depths of the ocean, or the outer depths of space.
Their latest project, Micro Monsters, may be smaller in scale, but is no less breathtaking in its delivery—especially as it allows Oculus users to experience live-action virtual environments in stunning 8K 3D at 60fps for the very first time.
Part of the Atlantic Production Group, Alchemy Immersive worked alongside Zoo VFX—also part of Atlantic Productions—to bring this five-part immersive series to life for the newly-released Quest 2. Viewers will join UK national treasure Sir David Attenborough to discover the real-life, hidden world of arthropods, from a completely unique perspective.
Such an unprecedented project required a novel approach to production. For this, both the Alchemy Immersive and Zoo VFX teams used a combination of specially developed 3D stereoscopic camera rigs, 180° live-action capture, and newly-developed VFX compositing techniques in a pioneering feat of immersive media production.
Happily, Foundry’s compositing tool Nuke counted itself a crucial part of this innovative process. The production pipeline for Micro Monsters was built in Nuke 12.0, with Nuke also acting as the main compositing pipeline for the team’s stereo 180 renders.
Overseeing the project was its director Elliot Graves, Alchemy Immersive’s Creative and Technical Lead. Working closely with David Barker, Head of Zoo VFX, the two worked tirelessly along with their teams to bring this microscopic world to life in glorious 8K resolution.
We caught up both Elliot and David to explore the accomplishments, challenges, and technicalities of Micro Monsters—and what they think is in store for the future of immersive content.