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Buddy of DoQ: Thoughts on Life, Machinima, and Everything - 2nd Place! Movie of the Month!
Buddy of DoQ: Thoughts on Life, Machinima, and Everything
2nd Place! Movie of the Month! 
Tuesday, November 7, 2006, 09:15 AM - Machinima
I just found out that Diet Cola has made 2nd in Machinima Premiere's Movie of the Month for October 2006!

Came as a complete surprise, and I'm sure Mike (the other director) will be as pleased as I am to hear that folks are watching, and enjoying our little film(s).

Thanks everyone!

Diet Cola @ Mprem
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MFF 2006 Pictures! 
Tuesday, November 7, 2006, 01:27 AM - Machinima
So, I took quite a few pictures, and they came out like crap. They had a no flash policy and the rooms were really dark, so... yeah... Also my batteries died and I forgot to snag my spares at the hotel. I've got a few on 35mm, but that cost money to develop and I'm fresh out ATM.

...but I said pix...

Pictures Here!

The blue power-points are from the Machinima 101 with Paul and Hugh, and the ones with the green guy is a group from Georgia Tech with a sweet puppet interface. Yes. A tangible character animation interface.

I'll update with more latter, it's midnight'oclock back home in Texas, and I'm f'ing sleepy so g'night all!
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2006 Machinima Film Festival -New York- 
Friday, November 3, 2006, 10:33 AM - Machinima
I'm going dark for a few days to attend the 2006 Machinima Film Festival in New York City. When I return, I will update the ol'blog with all the nit and gritty details of the Festival, complete with pictures.

For those of you who cannot make it, hopefully we can meet next year! For those of you who are going, see you tomorrow!
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Torque Game Engine 1.5 
Wednesday, October 25, 2006, 03:22 PM - Machinima
Heads up folks, a massive upgrade to the Torque Game Engine from Garage Games was released today. Includes all kinds of features that I feel make the TGE the most solid and well-rounded 3D game starting point.

Major Features:

Windows, Mac, and Linux support

Full engine Source Code //plenty of comments too!
BSP interior/object Support
Multi-Texture Terrain/hight map
Full featured light mapping
Seamless transition from indoors and outdoors
Create props and characters in Max/Maya/Milkshape/Blender, and more.
Includes a ton of ready to use example art for quick prototyping.
TDN: a massive Wiki for devs, and loads of other stand alone "getting started" docs included with the download.

And it now comes with ShowTool Pro. ShowTool Pro is a 3D model viewer that uses the Torque engine to render your models. You can test your props, characters, and animations as they really look, before you bring them into your game.

I'm starting to feel like a press release here, but I really do think Torque is worth $150, even if you've never done any game dev work. 3D Artist can use it to demo their props/sets/characters in a real 3D game setting. Machinima guys can use it as a fairly robust rendering engine. And of course, game designers can use it punch out games in significantly less man-hours.

But the biggest feature is the $150 license. I mean, a real honest to goodness game development platform license for 150 bucks. Create, release, collect!

They also have an advanced version for next-gen graphics, still in Early Adopters (beta) mode, it's not nearly as fleshed out as TGE, but Torque Advanced Tech (Still known as Torque Shader Engine, but the name change is coming) offers most of the TGE features, and adds many next-gen features. Normal maps, Dynamic lights/shadows, and shaders, just to name a few.

At any rate, the only thing missing is a Garage Games brand BSP editor... but that is on the way, and looks like a worthy competitor (feature-per-feature) for the Unreal Editor. Judging from the screen captures of the various beta versions, it certainly looks easier to use than the Unreal Editor too! It's currently called Constructor.
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Typical SummerTech Machinima Class Schedule 
Tuesday, October 24, 2006, 12:42 PM - SummerTech
Things to know: Only 3 Hours of "Class Time" each day. ST is a place to learn, but even more important than "classroom learning" is having fun. We interchange class time with game time every hour (closer to 40 minutes) until lunch. After lunch it's electives, dodgeball, dinner, and then more game time (or sports club outside.) Classes are college level intense, and the median student age is around 11. They soak it all right up. Dedicated pupils can opt to skip game time and work on their projects, and many do! (However, we never let them work too hard for too long. All work and no play = booo!)

Week One

Pre Production. Come up with ideas, concepts, and outlines
Propose ideas and concepts to instructors for approval and advice.

Script Writing. Once your project is approved, begin writing dialogue.
Submit script for proofing, advice, and approval.

Research game engines and collect resources, such as maps and models.

Week Two

Production phase. Assist classmates with filming as an actor, and direct classmates in your own film.

Audio Recording. Depending on multiple variables, either we pick an entire day, or interleave audio recording sessions between classes during game time.
Audio recording is setup to be fun and easy. A trained audio engineer mans the “box” while students simply go in and record their voices.

Week Three

Wrap up filming and audio recording, and begin editing!
We have a full day lesson in video editing, and the rest of the week is on your own to wrap your film.

Once a rough edit is made the instructors reviews it, issues pointers, and illustrates customized high-level techniques for additional polish.

By the end of Week Three, the film should be complete, and burned to a DVD!

Party Time!

At the end of each summer there is a SummerTech Film Festival where students can opt to show their film to friends, family, and the general public. There’s BBQ, live music, and movies going till late.

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