Delivering immersive VR to PSVR2 Crossfire: Sierra Squad game trailer

Delivering immersive VR to PSVR2 Crossfire: Sierra Squad game trailer

Created for the Sony PlayStation VR2 headset, the new teaser merges live action with gameplay and was shot against an LED volume with our ARFX plugin.

Developed for the PlayStation VR2 headset, the first-person shooter is the latest in the Crossfire series from developer Smilegate Entertainment. Bringing the dynamic experience that the franchise is known for into virtual reality for the first time, the game sees players take on the role of leader of the elite paramilitary Sierra Squad, going head to head with a rival faction.

This is the first project we have both performed virtual production dept and production company on, with our veteran Virtual Production Supervisors Rene Amador and Jocelyn Hsu also serving as producers.

The crew used Virtual Production techniques to recreate the qualities of VR on a physical shoot. Filmed at Soapbox Films in Burbank, California, the trailer was shot against a 30x12ft 1.5mm 6K Absen AX Pro LED video wall powered by ARwall's own ARFX Pro Plugin for Unreal Engine, ARFX Pro Server System, and the HTC Vive.

Bringing Crossfire’s characters and game explosions on set with VP

We worked closely with the team at Crossfire so that actual levels from the game, with fully integrated characters and explosions, could be used on set, for the actors to interact with. The collaboration started with the Director, Jonny Zeller, and Director of Photography, David Klassen, on virtual scouting, exploring the in-game world and deciding on the framing, before ever stepping foot on set. Virtual elements included environments, explosions, gunfire, digital characters, digital vehicles, and more.

To complement the LED wall, the team used practical effects including synced lighting systems, a treadmill, and a turntable, along with dirt explosions and fog. The actors also had physical props to interact with in front of the VP volume. These modest physical elements completed the virtual environments on the LED screen.

Director Jonny Zeller says: “This was my first time working with a Virtual Production setup, and it deserves every ounce of the hype I’d been hearing. It brought a sense of immediacy and tangibility to the process that you just can't get with green screens. It’s a different way of thinking, and it took a little time for me to adjust how I approached the project. ARwall’s technical capabilities gave me peace of mind, which meant I was free to focus on the creative vision and getting the best performance out of the talent.”

“What could have taken days or weeks to shoot, was captured in a couple of days with gratifying results – for a more accessible price,” says Luis Perozo, Producer at Ayzenberg/ “ARwall helped us achieve the results we were looking for thanks to their expertise using 3D computer graphics technology, like Unreal Engine, and allowing us to bring the environments of a VR game into a live-action set.”

Filmmaker panel and behind the scenes video

Following the shoot, we hosted a panel for the producers and director of the commercial at its 7th Annual Open House, at Soapbox Films in Burbank. At the panel, Jonny Zeller, Rene Amador, and Jocelyn Hsu showed the behind the scenes footage of the shoot and discussed how Virtual Production was the integral part of the campaign that made it all happen.

You can watch the panel on “Virtual Production Doing the Impossible: Indie Budgets & Tight Schedules” here: 

Check out the Behind the Scenes video:

Do you need help with your Virtual Production shoot? Contact us today!