Intergalactic visual effects helped the movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens to impress audiences worldwide. What you may not know is that the movie team at Virtuos, a gaming company with studios in Shanghai, Chengdu, and Xi’an, played a part in generating the visuals of Star Wars as well as other several other blockbuster movies and AAA games.

Started in Shanghai in 2004 by former Ubisoft executive Gilles Langourieux, Virtuos’ forté is providing game development and 3D art production services to other gaming firms or film companies. It counts major titles such as Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac AgeAssassin’s Creed: The Ezio Collection, and Horizon Zero Dawn amongst its portfolio.

Virtuos founder and CEO Gilles Langourieux first came to China in 1997 as the General Manager for French gaming firm Ubisoft’s China operations. He remembers Ubisoft was particularly encouraged by the Chinese market after a trip to Jiaotong University.

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Linda Lew

Linda Lew is a Beijing-based journalist who covers technology, start-ups and business in China. You can reach her at lindalew at aliyun dot com.