Ego Central to Machinima Filmmaker Ken Thain

Thursday, September 28, 2006

GameShadow Innovation Awards, including Best Machinima Movie

I'm not really aware of GameShadow but they are aware of machinima, as included in their Innovation in Games Festival and Awards. Check out the site to see the list of nominated machinima films up for best movie.
After many years complaining that there was too little innovation in new video games, here at GameShadow we’ve decided to do something about it. These awards highlight and reward titles that push the boundaries to deliver fun innovative gameplay, regardless of their size, budget or commercial success.
More awards for everyone!!

The Future of Storytelling

Over the last few weeks we just finished crunching for a public showing of Mass Effect game play for X06. This is a Microsoft marketing event to show off and talk about the latest and greatest things coming for xbox 360. I think some new screens will be floating around shortly.

One cool panel I just watched is a discussion between Peter Molyneux, Peter Jackson and one of our CEO's Greg Zeschuk on the future of storytelling. Its an interesting topic that I find myself more and more pondering over. I think machinima has a strong part in this somewhere (to the point of maybe it will evolve into a new form of media entertainment). In the meantime it's great to see such great cross-media discussion on it.

On a related note. Some mind blowing game play and trailers:
Alan Wake
Assassin's Creed
Halo Wars

Monday, September 25, 2006

We have a pulse

Well, I was just about to spark up some Oblivion then came across one more thing worth sharing which made me realize I should post some of this stuff.

Lets see. We'll first off I'm happy to share that it looks like I'll be making it to the 2006 Machinima Film Festival this year (finally after 5 years). I am super happy and excited that I'll finally get to catch up with and meet some fellow machinima comrads. I'm actually going to be doing a presentation on making Mass Effect from the machinima perspective, so it will be tres cool showing off some kickass stuff. I'm also extremely honoured and proud to be a judge for this year's festival with the Virtual Acting and Cinematography categories. I can't wait to see the final selections and pin them face to face in a battle of surpremecy. I hope you crossed your T's and dotted your I's, 'cause I'll be a watchin'!!

Some quality releases have come out recently but I admit, I'm behind on my viewing/listening. On deck for this week I'll be catching up on Episodes 7-9 of Bloodspell, BorgWars Episodes 1 - 3, the new OverCast, The Fixer: Chapter III, and in 2 weeks, with great anticipation, Edge of Remorse! (I always love the hyper-release machinima schedule this time of year, usually tied to the festival, but plus other schtuff this year)

What little I have caught over the last week or so has been Male Restroom Etiquette by Overman, a great little Sims 2 piece that I see as a mix of Monty Python meets Mike Judge (thanks for taking us outside the 'Sims'box and WoW! 173,364 views on Youtube! Nice!), the latest Gaming News with Lady Mainframe, and this cool not-little non-interactive movie of BioShock (WOW!)

There's a few other news pieces worth noting but chances are people are already in the know.


Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Gaming News Train Gaining Speed

So ya, back from Austin now after a 'I'll spare you the details of how a 7 hour flight turned into a 30+ hour nightmare' glad to be home trip. The presentation went well and I had a good time in Austin and representing BioWare. People really dug the Mass Effect fodder I was putting out there and it was great meeting other people in this little industry. ;)

Now back to our (ir)regularly scheduled program.

Over at Binary Picture Show they point to a great interview with Ignip.com on the newly revised Gaming News.
Leo “Dr. Nemesis” Lucien-Bay recently agreed to answer some of our questions about the show, which just underwent a huge overhaul in appearance and formatting. The Lady has gotten a makeover, or “graphical renovation.”
And while your at it make sure to check out Issue 3 of Gaming News with Lady Mainframe as this is one solid machinima series.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Next Gen Game Writing

Came across this article at the Hollywood Reporter that has a focus on writing within video games. The real cool part is it includes two of our writers at BioWare, Mac Walters and Mike Laidlaw (who will be on my panel at the Austin Game Conference which I leave for in about 45 minutes) as they mention the involvement of the Cinematic Designer at a few places.
"If you write a line that's a little too chatty, you need to be aware that you're forcing the cinematic designers to go back and re-do the animations after they'd just finished getting all the facial expressions exactly right."
Its a good read.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Mass Effect on Going Pro

So its a holiday here in Canada and I'm off to Austin tomorrow for the Game Conference which starts this week. Looking forward to seeing the city and hanging out at the conference.

Its been a busy last few weeks at BioWare but the cool part is some of that business has been in regards to interviewing people to fill out our Cinematic Design team. And the really cool part is that we picked up two people from the machinima community. We had a number of candidates from all different areas of game development, but these two guys really showed they were ready to make the leap into serious cinematic game production.

I believe many in the community will know of these two guys. Nathan Moller, aka Mu Nansen (Ours Again, Just a Game) and Jonathan Perry (Inside the Machinima, MachinimatedStudios) both accepted positions at BioWare. Both Nathan and Jonathan will be working with us on Mass Effect and will be deeply involved in giving it the most cinematic narrative ever seen in a game. I guess this makes BioWare the biggest employer of machinima artists! :)

It's one thing to get to do machinima related work full time, it's another to do so with a number of people who come from the same place artistically that have the same passion and drive to really make the best of it. For this, I'm really looking forward to working with Nathan and Jonathan in the (very) near future.

Congrats guys!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Gaming News Issue 2

The second issue of the rising again machinima news show, Gaming News with Lady Mainframe is up!
From: Binary Picture Show Delivering on time, Gaming News issue 2 is ready after another week of gaming. This week we take a look at Virtua Fighter 5, Unreal 2007, and many others.
If you check it out make sure to drop by the Binary Picture Show forums to leave your feedback. This is an important part of showing you want to keep the issues coming!!