Ever since season four, the team at Mackevision has been producing visual effects for Game of Thrones, receiving an Emmy for their work in 2014. And for season seven of the award-winning US television epic, Mackevision’s artists not only created castles, water, and ships, but also breathed life into thousands of soldiers.
A team of 40 experienced international artists worked for six months, applying their magic to bring the world of Westeros to life for millions of fans. In all, Mackevision produced 116 visual effects shots for five episodes of season seven.
As Tyrion and Jon Snow sail toward King’s Landing in episode seven, the play of light on the Red Keep heightens the mood of expectancy in the shot.
Complex crowd animation is not generally used in television productions, but this is another area where Game of Thrones is setting new standards. In episode three, thousands of soldiers, digitally created by Mackevision, storm the stronghold of Casterly Rock.
The Mackevision visual effects team developed a comprehensive and unique sequence of movements for each individual soldier. This complex individuality, which is almost 70 percent animated by hand using Autodesk Maya graphics software in combination with the Golaem Crowd plug-in, is what makes the scene look so realistic.
After Daenerys’ troops have taken Casterly Rock, Grey Worm, the commander of her troops, can only look on as Euron and the Iron Fleet destroy his ships.
The Mackevision team created a gigantic sea battle, complete with burning fleets of ships, flying cannonballs, and smoke and ashes filling the air.
When Tyrion and Davos reach the shore in King’s Landing in episode five, the city walls tower majestically over the head of the bay. The walls were fully computer-animated and seamlessly integrated into the real-world setting.