Different types of vfx?

Hello i was just wondering if there are different categories when it comes to vfx and if theres a proper terminology for each one since its very hard to look for turorials and any info about each.

So far this is the only way i could come up with to describe them

Self contained vfx (for attack abilities and whatnot)

Super ultra vfx ( crazy vfx happens where it could distor the world make an object dissolve basically a vfx that could dynamically interact with other my best guest is it requires another mesh that would act as proximity mask)

Z depth vfx( this also falls on the super ultra vfx but i feel like zepth vfx is used more towards landscape and big environments)

I tried to categorize it that will but obviously that wont work if i want to look for more info i would really appreciate any feedback for this!

The way you’d group and organize effects in a project depends widely on the game. The most usual way is splitting them by the parts of the game they exist in, or which other dev departments intersect with them.

The most common way to do this is Environment VFX and Gameplay VFX. The difference here is made mostly by how they are placed in the game. Environmental ones are usually placed in the levels as a part of setdressing, and play in the background creating game’s atmosphere. Gameplay effects are spawned by things happening in the gameplay, usually it’s characters.

If you’re looking of an easier way of finding information of a specific way an effect is made, I’d look into different types of techniques. This categorization is different from the Environment/Gameplay split, because you will use the same techniques for both of those categories.

There’s been some tries before to give popular techniques recognizable names, but for a lot of them there is no standard. In the past, every game company would have their own unique names, and now that more people talk about them online some became standardised. Here’s an example of a pretty good list of standard technique names that should be more google-able: Realtime VFX Dictionary Project


hello thank you for this! its better to have somehwere to start than not have any clue about where to take the first step hahahahaha