animation of a scroll that has images of the creatures from fantastic beasts and where to find them

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: VR Experience

Delve into Newt Scamander’s magical world through an immersive virtual reality experience.

Inspired by the narrative of J.K. Rowling’s latest tale, Framestore VR Studio scripted the Fantastic Beasts experience to make the user truly feel like the protagonist: a wizard with a wand in their hand, able to cast spells and control their environment, whilst tending to their Graphorn, Erumpent, Thunderbird, Niffler, Occamy and Bowtruckle beasts.

fisheye perspective of a dimly lit wooden workroom

Following the success of 2016’s launch, Framestore recently expanded the experience with additional content to extend the story of Newt and his creatures. Our teams further developed the experience to include more creature environments, puzzles, and deeper gaming content in order to provide players with the chance to interact with three more Fantastic Beasts.

User-Experience Design

The experience begins with a suitcase laying on the floor of a dark room. With a flick of the wand, the case opens and players are transported to Newt’s Shed—full of mysterious objects, exotic plants, intriguing spell books, potions and jars of oddities. They interact with magical objects around the room using the wand to complete a series of challenges to help Newt take care of his fantastic beasts.

Once the basic wizard training has been completed players find themselves standing outside the shed in a courtyard surrounded by a series of fantastical enclosures. Within each enclosure fans can choose to have unique encounters with each of the beasts by casting a series of spells. Players return to the courtyard after meeting a creature. They can choose to enter another enclosure, return to the shed or catch a few Doxies.

graphorn creature from fantastic beasts and where to find them facing forward

With this project, we wanted to bring players into an immersive experience combining the graphic fidelity of the Fantastic Beasts brand with the interactivity of real-time games.
Julien Charlebois
Head of Production - VR, Montréal
dimly lit living room with a suitcase in the centre that has been highlighted by the spotlights

Interactive Gameplay

Users take hold of their VR hand controller to wave a wand, explore the magic of Newt’s case, cast spells and solve puzzles: totalling more than 30+ interactions, 20+ spells, gestures and challenges, across several magical worlds and captivating storylines which present six of Newt Scamander’s most fantastic beasts.  

Newt’s spectacular shed is full of mysterious objects, exotic plants, intriguing spell books, potions and jars of oddities. Using the controller players can interact with objects and creatures, and navigate through the gameplay with a series of gestures. Fans can aparate, charm, tame, explore and conjure, taking them deeper into the story than they ever imagined.

To deepen the user experience, players can complete two new creature puzzles, interact with a creature map or discover a portkey which reveals additional behind the scenes content. Players will have the ability to visit three additional beasts as well as catch Doxies from the Niffler Tree.

fisheye perspective of a dimly lit wooden workroom

Breathtaking Immersion

Using a photo­realistic style that combines real­-time elements and pre­-rendered environments, players will feel that they have been transported right into the very heart of Newt’s magical world. This was the first time the Framestore VR Studio had combined real­-time interactive elements with high quality pre-­rendered environments—pushing both the interactivity and the quality in mobile VR. The team invented specific techniques to allow embedded real-time game engine assets inside an environment that is rendered using an offline renderer. This allows interaction and play in an environment that feels real and tangible, with a level of visual fidelity that contributes to a greater feeling of presence.

The Framestore global teams started early on with the script, meticulously working through it with the film's VFX Supervisors as they worked on the feature films. Throughout the project the global VR Studio drew on their extensive previous experiences and the knowledge base built up from working in this field, as well as leveraging Framestore's fantastic in-house CG pipeline across Film and Integrated Advertising to ensure they spent the most time creating fantastic content—and very little time manually tracking assets, or on tasks that could be automated. The newest 2018 version relied heavily on the newly opened VR Studio in Framestore’s Montréal office, which also worked on the feature film.

vr headset with a mobile phone that is hovering in front of the lense and the controller on the side


You’re face to face with the Graphorn, apparated right inside her enclosure. It’s an amazing habitat, a type of beach-like scene with large, flat rocks jutting out of the sand. With the scroll in front of you, you can see there are three different spells you can use on the Graphorn. Come closer, feed meat, or mix a potion to help ease the nasty cold she’s caught.

graphorn creature from fantastic beasts and where to find them
graphorn creature from fantastic beasts and where to find them facing forward


Newt explains that this creature is quite lonely, and that you’ll have to coax her to you if you want to meet her. The scroll explains three reagents should be put into the mortar, using your wand - pointing at each in turn, they are picked up and put into the mortar. Once all three reagents are added in the correct order, you are then instructed to pick up the pestle and grind the ingredients together. As your final instruction, you place the inert charm in the mortar with the ground ingredients. Particles emit from the pestle and mortar, swirling around the room. Inside the Erumpent enclosure it’s a thick, steamy jungle. Plants and shrubs are everywhere, and a small pool of water is just about visible on the jungle floor.  There are three different spells you can use on the Erumpent: administer the potion, bring her closer, and roll on the ground.

erumpent creature from fantastic beasts and where to find them in a field that is surrounded by white sheets that reflect clouds

I really believe that this combination of interactivity and convincing environments marks a big step in the evolution of VR—especially in regards to VR on mobile devices.
Andy Rowan-Robinson
Head of CG & Creative Director
dimly lit workshop that has a map, two oil lamps and nick nacks inside
mandrake plant from harry potter hovering over a plant pot in a workroom


The scroll shows you how to assemble a box to release a rare bird call, an ancient Native American method of calling the powerful Thunderbird. On three sides of the box are three different symbols, but they’re scrambled. You see that the box is also split into three rotatable sections. The scroll transforms and shows you how to use your wand to move the rotatable sections so you can decipher the symbols. Puzzle complete, the box begins playing music, spinning faster and faster until eventually erupting into a brilliant light. Newt explains that though he’s fiercely independent, Frank needs taking care of like all his other creatures. Inside the Thunderbird’s enclosure lies an American desert. Cacti punctuate the landscape along with large rock structures rising from the sand with smaller rocks perched perilously atop. A flap of Frank’s wings has the power to create storms. Learning to get the Thunderbird to follow your command is a real test for any wizard. The scroll has two challenges: feeding the Thunderbird a bucket of giant worms, and making it rear up and down in front of you. Once Newt has congratulated you on your mastery, you apparate back out to the courtyard.

thunderbird creature from fantastic beasts and where to find them facing forward with a canyon in the background
thunderbird creature from fantastic beasts and where to find them standing proud with its six wings spread open in front of a canyon that has been propped up by sheets in a studio


The Occamy encounter is a discovered experience. In the shed Newt’s voice will encourage you to visit the Occamy enclosure to see if his egg has hatched. You arrive at the nest enclosure and see the empty silver egg, but no Occamy... Newt’s voice returns.

occamy creature from fantastic beasts and where to find tem standing in the centre of trees behind a nest made of spiral twigs inside of a studio


On selecting the Bowtruckle image on the creature scroll in Newt’s shed, Newt’s voice begins guiding you to collect some fairy eggs as a treat for the Bowtruckles since they are otherwise notoriously shy with strangers. Players use their wand to turn over leaves and pick off the eggs.

tree where the niffler lives


First introduced to Harry Potter fans by Hagrid in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the Niffler is described by J.K. Rowling as ‘a long-snouted, burrowing creature native to Britain with a penchant for anything shiny.’ In the virtual experience the Niffler’s burrow rests under a suspended tree within the courtyard. You are encouraged to look for shiny items to collect and return them to his burrow. In front of the burrow a scroll emerges and teaches you how to lure the Niffler out of his burrow, shake him to see what’s hidden in his pouch or watch him play with his collection.

perspective of the niffler creature from fantastic beasts and where to find them underground under a tree in a studio

In The End

Back in the courtyard Newt praises you, the wizard, on caring for his creatures, despite their curious ways. The film's theme music starts to play softly in the background and you are left to play with the creatures. Are you ready to reveal the wizard in you? It’s time to find out.

potions and a magnifying glass hovering in the air through a wand in a workroom


Creative Director
Resh Sidhu, Andy Rowan-Robinson
Executive Producer
Christine Cattano
Senior Producer
Karen Czukerberg, Pete Jones
Development Producer
Michael Doonan, Kent Rausch
VFX Supervisor
Andy Rowan-Robinson, Patrick Ross
Animation Supervisor
Laurent Laban
VR Supervisor
Michael Cable
CG Supervisor
JP Li, Mathieu Bertrand
VFX Producer
PJ Stegall
VFX Line Producer
Molly McLaren
VFX Floor Supervisor
John Montefusco
Lead Game Designer
Jesse Johansen
VR Lead
Claude Dareau
Animation Lead
Shayne Ryan, Jim Hundertmark
Compositing Lead
Corinna Wilson
Senior VR Developer
Ben Archard, Danny LePage, Martin Barrette
VR Developer
Alex Perry, Omar Mohamed Ali Mudhir, Etienne Babin, Nicolas Sola
Senior Technical Artist
Makoto Tanaka
Technical Artist
Gera Rusinoff, Eliane Pregent
Junior Technical Artist
Will Arterton, Andrew Trout
Audio Programmer
Joey Hernandez
Additional Programming
Bill Davey
Technical Director
Patrick Ross, Russell Miller, Michi Inoue, Charlotte Bae
FX Technical Director
Nathan Diehl, Mark Ingle
Senior Rigger
James Dick
Nick Miller, Minji Sohn
Junior Rigger
Minji Sohn
Junior Asset TD
Joseph Szokoli, Xiaolai Zheng, Xiaowei Tan, Andrew Trout, Paul Kim, Nicholas De La Fuente, Jaime Klein
CG Intern
Luci Cooke, Stefania Cancemi
Senior Animator
Seth Gollub
Jon Burke, Francisco Dias, Nico Cappuccio, Nicolas Dabos, Will Frazier, Steven Johnson, Luke Angus, Laurent Laban, Simon Thistlethwaite, Mariano Mendiburu, Hennadii Prykhodko, Aulo Licinio, Gez Wright, Joseph Kane, Jed Fisher
Animator Intern
Alejandra Alvarez, Luke Angus
Senior Compositor
Steve Drew, Matt Pascuzzi
Karch Coon, Sebastien Boulange
Junior Compositor
Elaina Brillantes, Ranran Meng
Senior Digital Matte Painter
Callum McKeveny
Digital Matte Painter
Robert Go
Senior Designer
Dan Solomon
Zack Lydon
Junior Designer
Jaime Klein, Yi Zhou, Hui Kai Su
Creative Consultant
Gavin Fox, Jason Fox, Rob Auten
Sound Design
Jonathan Flaum, Jonathan Lewis
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