Categories: Articles

What is Blender Used For

today we are going see some examples of Blender being used in production pipelines for game development, VFX for Film productions animation and more.

1_Game Development

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when it comes to game development Blender is heavily used for indie game development studios, first of all, because it is free which is great for a small budget, also it is open source which allows studios to create new tools if needed and of course, it is a complete 3D package that can everything smoothly. blender, for the most part, is not really part of the software that game developers use for AAA video games in big game development Studios for now but this might change in the future.

here are some examples of blender in some cool video games:


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Biomutant is the first game of the Swedish development studio Experiment 101, that uses Blender which was established in the Summer of 2015 by former Avalanche Studios employees. After working on the Just Cause series for many years, the founders of the studio wanted to go back to the basics of video game development and create a game that is “fun in a good way”. The little hero character was modeled in Zbrush and Blender. Grooming of the fur was done in Blender.

Raid: World War 2

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Several environments were done in Blender for the Cinematic trailer of Raid: World War 2 Video game.

They started the layout process using Greace pencil. The greace pencil sketches were later linked into each environment artist’s scene so they had a good reference when building it. The environment artists did also link each others scenes so that they could see each others work update. and This made it easy to tie the separate rooms together.

Mass Effect: The Andromeda Initiative

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in Mass Effect: The Andromeda Initiative The Moon environment was made in Blender. Being able to sculpt the ground at the same time as scattering out rocks made it easy to iterate the shot and see how everything looked in the camera. By importing the character animation with Alembic from Maya to Blender, the environment artist could makesure that nothing intersected the character’s feet while they were walking. This also enabled them to create the environment simultaneously as they were animating the shots.

2_Visual effects in film

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in visual effects and film, blender is used by a lot of freelance artists and independent artists that do gigs for VFX studios.

For now, there are few Vfx studios using blender as one of the main tools in their pipeline which is a nice the progress that took place in recent years.

Barnstorm VFX

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Barnstorm VFX did an outstanding work on the TV series “The Man in the High Castle”, and they have been Blender as an integral part of their pipeline.

they’ve experimented with a variety of programs over the years, but for 3D work, they settled on using Blender few years ago. It’s very unusual for VFX houses to use Blender, but there are a number of great

features that caused them to switch over to it.

One of them was the Cycles render engine, that they’ve used for their rendering of most of the 3D elements in High Castle and other shows. In order to deal with the huge rendering needs of High Castle, they set up cloud rendering using Amazon’s own AWS servers through the Deadline, which allowed them to have as many as 150 machines

working at a time to render some of the big sequences.

In addition to Blender, they occasionally use other 3D programs, including Houdini for particle systems. their texturing and material work is done in Substance Painter, and compositing is done in Nuke and After Effects.

They use Blender for modeling, animation, and rendering. also, they use Blender’s fluid system and particle system and render everything in Cycles.

they still use Houdini for the stuff that it’s good at.they also started using Substance Painter and Substance Designer for texture work.

They use Cycles for exporting render layers, which they composited mostly in Nuke.

Wonder woman

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Artist Joseph Conover is a 3D artist at Greenhaus GFX who worked on the Wonder Woman’s end title sequence. and many other random things using Blender.

Wonder Woman’s director thought that many scenes in the sequence were too warlike and wanted some uplifting moments, so he 3D projected this view of the home to Wonder Woman and the Amazons based on a painted version. also he worked on other 3d models that were used in other Various Scenes using Blender. Wonder woman was based on the actress Gal Gadot – sculpted in Zbrush and refined in Blender. For the plane, he took inspiration from the WWII German Biplane. He also worked on the Sword structure, in which he used arrays and curve modifiers to create a rotating structure effect.


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the animation studio of Blender Institute produced 12 Short films so far, the last one is Spring which is the story of a shepherd girl and her dog, who face ancient spirits in order to continue the cycle of life. This poetic and visually stunning short film was completely created used the development version of Blender 2.80 for the entire production, even before the software was in official Beta.

Blender Institute is currently developing its first animated feature film, based on the celebrated Dutch comic character Agent 327.

On May 15, 2017, the Blender Foundation released a teaser trailer that was almost four minutes long, for an upcoming computer-animated feature film based on the comic. It stars 327 as he investigates a barbershop,and learns the dangerous truth about the shop.The 3-minute film was released online as a proof of concept to attract funding for a feature-length adaptation.

Goodbye Kansas Studios

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Goodbye Kansas Studios is a VFX studio that creates award-winning visual effects, digital animation and motion capture for movies, game trailers, and commercials. at Goodbye Kansas studios artists use several 3D packages like Houdini, Zbrush and Maya. and there were also some artists using Blender as well.

they use Blender for hard surface and props and environment work.they also use it in parts of their environment workflow for scattering objects. The studio noticed that blender artists are producing more models faster and because of that Blender is becoming more and more popular in the modeling department at the Stockholm office.

Goodbye Kansas say that Blender fits nicely in their pipeline because of its modeling tools, they also use it for hair grooming, which is exported later to other programs to be used for procedural hair setups. they created a short film called ADAM in which Characters were modeled in Blender and Zbrush. The low poly version of the character was entirely done in Blender.

also one of the reasons they say that Blender has a mix of procedural tools, standard box modeling, and sculpting in the walking dead season, 8 Retopology Goodbye Kansas did UV-mapping of human actor scans in Zbrush and Blender. Grooming of hairstyles was also done in Blender.

Khara & Project Studio Q

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3D CG is essential to modern Anime productions. it’s now common for 3D CG to be used in many Anime films. 3D CG and hand-drawing make a great combination that improves productivity and quality of Anime.

Khara and Anime/CG production company “Project Studio Q” are preparing to switch their primary 3D CG tools to Blender. Blender will be used for some parts of “EVANGELION 3 they are currently working on.

Khara has been using Autodesk “3ds Max” as their primary tool so far. “EVANGELION 3” production is mainly done with 3ds Max. They are now starting to switch from 3ds Max to Blender. Usually, the reason being “due to differences such as quality and functionalities”, but Khara’s reason is different.

Different tools are used depending on the studios and works in Anime production. Productivity decreases unless they use the same tools and assets . Due to this, they tend to work with companies that use the same tools.

3ds Max is an excellent tool and one of the industry standards, but in some cases, it causes a “lack of artists” due to its high costs.

Onitsuka: “As a matter of course, we can produce with the same quality and schedule to maximize the efficiency of our limited budget. Blender is an open source software and available for free. Also, it has almost the same functionalities with other software, so it was undoubtedly attractive to us.While we still have the challenge or whether a new partner company can use Blender or not, but at least, cost-wise is much simpler, so we are proposing them to use Blender as we use it.”

“I feel the latest Blender 2.8 is intentionally ‘filling the gap’ with 3ds Max to make those users feel at home when coming to Blender. I think the learning curve should be no problem.”

– Takumi Shigyo

And there was a key functionality that brought Khara to Blender as production studio of “2D Anime works”. It was “Grease Pencil”.

You can draw lines in 3D space directly with a pen, and not only by making 3D models but you can also draw extra details in the animations themselves.

ONiRiXEL 3D Animation Studio

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ONiRiXEL 3D Animation Studio is a small startup based in Toulouse, France 3D animation is the most suitable way to explain technical principles and to give a clear picture of the situation in space”. Thus, the agency entrusted the creation of a 3D animation movie about space debris to ONiRiXEL 3D Studio.

specialized in the production of 3D CGI animation films, mainly for corporate or institutional films and commercials, but they also love to work on fiction and documentaries, shoot live-action, create VFX, perform film preproduction and/or postproduction, or create 3D VR or AR apps as well.

4_VR & AR

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when it comes to Virtual reality and augmented reality Blender has seen good progress in recent progress which allowed some small studios to use it for their work.


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BlendFX is a small studio for 3D, VR, AR and VFX based in Germany. They produce virtual and augmented reality applications, architectural visualizations, 3d reconstructions, and animations & visual effects for TV and cinema, with a focus on high-quality content for mobile VR.

They started working with virtual reality in 2014. then they began focusing on pre-rendered content, using stereoscopic panoramas. they developed a workflow with Blender and Unity, where they integrate interactive

elements and 3d animations into stereoscopic panoramas.“Rochlitz VR” is a virtual reality app BlendFX created. It’s a virtual reconstruction of one of the chambers from an old castle in Germany. they used Blender for the entire process of modeling, texturing and rendering.


Image Source : Youtube/Emiliano Colantoni

there are a lot of architectural visualization artists around the world using Bender for their freelance

or contract work, also there are some small archviz studios that use it to do work for their clients.


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e-interiores. is a Brazilian interior design e-commerce startup that uses Blender for their interior design work. They developed a new platform based on a semi-vanilla Blender, Fluid Designer, and their own pipelines.

During its initial years, e-interiores focused on delivering top-notch projects, with state of the art 3d rendering. Back then, this would involve a pantheon of software, namely: AutoCAD, SketchUp, VRay, Photoshop.

Now they are using Blender but they needed some changes to take place in order for them to extract the most out of it, and since it is open-source it was possible. The development started by cleaning up the Blender Interface completely. They wanted the user to be unaware of the software being used underneath. they took a few hints from Fluid Designer, but they focused on making the interface tied to the specifics of e-interiores working steps.

they have the tools to create the unchanged elements of the space like walls, floor, …, the render point of view, the dynamic elements of the project, and the library. Besides that, there are a whole different set of tools dedicated to create the final boards, add notations
and measurements


Image Source : udemy/modern-interior-blender

Blender is also used to create commercial and promotional ads for television. Artist Joseph Conover is a 3D artist at Greenhaus GFX who worked on a promotional ad for the 2017 NHL All-Star Weekend.

This was a good example of Blender’s versatility. For the two shots he had to hand model the scenes to match the Cinerama Dome and the Hollywood Sign. Blender allowed him to quickly draft out his ideas fromanimation to the final lighting before he exported it to Maya and rendered in V-ray.


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