The 11 Transformers, human soldiers, vehicles and Shanghai CG environment were all shaded and rendered using V-Ray in 3ds Max. Creating the shaders for the iconic Transformers proved to be a huge task considering the movie is the benchmark.
To give the compositors maximum control, each character was rendered with a number of layers. These layers included lighting, global illumination, reflection, refraction, diffuse and specular passes.
The opening shot for Transformers, just like in the movie, shows the pods shooting toward earth. We used Fume FX for all flames emanating from the asteroids and Particle Flow for the sparks along with debris and finally Afterburn for the smoke trails.