The Graphics Technology of Fallout 4: Physically Based Renderer, Dynamic Lighting and More

When Fallout 4 was officially revealed at E3 back in June, plenty of people questioned whether or not the game looks good enough and whether or not it is a next-gen game in terms of graphics.

Fallout 4 is not the best looking game of this generation but by no means it is the worst. Compared to other graphicly strong titles available to us, Fallout 4 is not too far behind.

To explain how graphics have improved in Fallout 4, Bethesda has provided us with some new details regarding the graphics technology behind the game. The engine being used for Fallout 4 is an evolution of the Creation Engine. It adapts some of latest technologies in order to empower developers at Bethesda.

After Bethesda was done with Skyrim, the development team added a “physically based deferred renderer” to the Creation Engine. The renderer allowed developers to improve lighting, textures and use realistic materials on surfaces.

We want objects and characters in the world to feel tactile and grounded, and a big part of that is ensuring that these materials are distinct – that metal reflects light in a distinct manner from wood, for example.

Fallout 4 features full night and day cycle and weather system that uses volumetric light (God Rays). For this aspect of the game, developers worked with engineers from NVIDIA to make sure everything is done right.

Bethesda used a certain technique that uses hardware tessellation and runs on the GPU. The Wasteland atmosphere benefits heavily as it adds depth to the irradiated air.

The good news is that this graphical feature works across all platforms, something that wouldn’t have been easy to achieve.

When a rain storm rolls in, our new material system allows the surfaces of the world to get wet, and a new cloth simulation system makes cloth, hair, and vegetation blow in the wind.

Below is a list of features added to the Creation Engine:

  • Tiled Deferred Lighting
  • Temporal Anti-Aliasing
  • Screen Space Reflections
  • Bokeh Depth of Field
  • Screen Space Ambient Occlusion
  • Height Fog
  • Motion Blur
  • Filmic Tonemapping
  • Custom Skin and Hair Shading
  • Dynamic Dismemberment using Hardware Tessellation
  • Volumetric Lighting
  • Gamma Correct Physically Based Shading

Fallout 4 will provide users with dynamic, immersive experience across all platforms, thanks to the improvements made to the Creation Engine.