I often go on about how Machinima enables scale that you couldn’t get in conventional film. Indeed, it isn’t too many weeks since I got all excited over my ability to shoot an enormous helicopter shot into a floating castle. But there are other uses for enormous scale than massive landscapes and armies. Uses you might never think of. Like chorus lines. Big-ass chorus lines. It’s not a perfect video, but it’s bloody good.
It’s amazing how far you can get simply by just asking nicely. People will volunteer their time and skills, give you lots of free publicity - even send you money sometimes. BloodSpell, for example, would not have been possible without the insanely-enthusiastic fan community that built up around the film, who did some can’t-put-a-price-on-it grassroots publicity as well as some can’t-quite-believe-it fan remixes and artwork. We’ve said all along that, when it comes to casting your movie, if you have a specific actor in mind for a role, it’s always worth asking them to do it.
We received word of a Machinima festival with seven hours (!) of screenings happening in Second Life next weekend - here are the details: MMIF 2010 MaMachinima International Festival Saturday Feb. 20th , 2010 MMIF sims (SL) + Planetart, Amsterdam (NL) â€˜MMIF 2010’ is the second edition of an annual film festival in 3D cyberspace with a screening in physical space (‘RL’). A seven hour movie marathon with a two hour afterparty.
Runescape’s the 500lb gorilla in the MMO field right now, boasting arguably more players than World of Warcraft. As such, it’s very exciting to hear that the Runescape developers are adding a Machinima tool, the “Orb of Oculus”, to the game - looking forward to seeing what it can do! UPDATE - the forum thread on this is up to 29 pages already. This could spawn quite a lot of new Machinima…
Favourite films of 2008 - Hugh As I mentioned in my review of the year yesterday, it’s been rather a quiet year for Machinima. Nonetheless, there have been some simply fantastic films released, several of which haven’t recieved the kind of widespread acclaim that they deserve. Indeed, I’d say all of my favourite films this year deserve to have viewing figures in the hundreds of thousands - yet only one has, and that’s only barely over 100,000.
And so, it’s that time again - time for a round-up of the last year in Machinima. It’s quiet in here… It’s been a very quiet year, overall. We’ve seen a few notable additions to the Machinima world (Pixel Eyes Productions), but overall, as far as I know there have been less films that broke out of their Machinima area this year than any year previously. Why? I don’t have any answers on that one, just a few suggestions.
And the big news at the end of the year keeps on coming: Pixel Eyes Productions have been trying to get an answer out of Valve Entertainment forever on the subject on Machinima, and finally, they’ve got this: ”“We are not interested in licensing our technology or IP for machinima. This includes providing copyright approvals.“ (Emphasis mine) Wow. That’s kinda big news. The creators of arguably the best engine out there for high-quality Machinima has no interest in letting it extend beyond YouTube.
I’ve just noticed that Moviestorm have announced content rental options for their content packs, for subscribers. In short, rather than buying a content pack outright and being able to use it forever, you’re able to rent it for a day or a month to make your movie, for significantly less money. That’s a very interesting idea. Most Moviestorm movies won’t take years to make. Being able to rent props for a day or a month, particularly if you’re planning your film well, will significantly reduce your outlay on any given movie.
The big news this month in the Machinima world has been Moviestorm’s introduction of a subscription plan, the most controversial aspect of which is its lockout feature for mods. Obviously, Johnnie can’t really comment on this, what with being Product Manager for Moviestorm and all, so it’s just me. The highlights: A subscription costs $79 a year or $7.99 a month. Without a subscription, Moviestorm will not allow you to use third-party mods - apparently including ones you’ve created in the past.
OK, this falls into the “very big news” category - Epic have just announced that the Unreal Engine is now free to use for indie developers - presumably including Machinima creators. That’s very big indeed, since it’s been used for commercial Machinima already. Anyone know how much modding the engine requires before it’s Machinima-ready, if any?