Thursday 16 September 2010

Bleach bypass

I know we've had the filter packs around for a while, but it's not until you start actually using them in a movie that you really appreciate what they can do for you. I've tried them all out, of course, but that's not the same thing. This is a shot for a promo video I'm making. It's a perfectly good shot, and I'm quite happy with it.

Then, in an idle moment, while thinking of some different ways to cut the scene, I added a bleach bypass filter in the cutting room, just to see what would happen. It looked interesting, so I changed the preset to medium, and ended up with this instead.

It may not seem that different when you just look at the two stills, but once you see it as video in context, it completely changes the mood of the piece. It looks less like a piece of game-styled machinima, and more like a bit of actual film. As a result, the entire video feels more authoritative, and it's more as if I'm addressing the audience directly, not putting my words into an avatar. Sounds crazy, but it's true.

It's so simple. Just a couple of clicks, and your movie is completely transformed. Try it. It'll cost you just 5 points to test out each pack for a day.

Here's a tutorial if you want to find out how they work.

Wednesday 8 September 2010

The Moviestorm night shift

We're pulling out all the stops to get Moviestorm 1.4.1 to you as fast as possible. It definitely won't be today now but we're hoping that our super-secret stealth dev team will finish the job overnight so we can release it tomorrow morning.

Here they are in action, captured on our security cameras. I know we've never told you about them before, but apparently they just signed a kiss-and-tell book deal with HarperCollins so we're going to have to fire them anyway.

Oh, so close...

Update: we have the technology. We can rebuild it...

If you're interested, this is the killer bug.

Dressing Room View: If you add a new character, then replace the character with a stock character, you will no longer be able to delete the character from the movie.

Dave's fixed it. We're currently retesting, rebuilding the patch, and engaging our bionic superspeed to get this out to you.


Yes... no... yes... no... release cliffhanger!

It's been all quiet on the dev blog for a couple of weeks, largely because everyone was on holiday in much of August, and since they came back we've been focused 100% on shipping Moviestorm 1.4.1. (Yes, we decided to call it 1.4.1, not mess around with calling it 1.4 official release or, or 1.4a or anything. No big deal, it's just a number.)

So here we are, Wednesday afternoon, and it's all wrapped up, ready to go, and we're writing the release notes, when we hear a squawk from QA. They've found four more bugs. That's normal. If we waited until we cleared every single bug, we'd never release anything. If they're not too serious, we just log 'em, ship, and fix 'em later.

But this time, one of them is a blocker. That means we absolutely can't ship the update until it's fixed. If we're lucky, it's a quick fix. If we're not, it isn't.

So here's the current status: there's a deathly hush in the office as Dave frantically wrestles code. Nobody is allowed to breathe loudly, let alone speak. Bits are flying left and right, sweat pours from his furrowed brow, and smoke begins to pour from the overheating computers. A telephone rings. Andrew grabs it before the noise can break Dave's concentration, and listens for a moment. "No, Mister Chairman," he whispers. "We're still waiting."

For a moment, there is the sound of keys as Andrew sends a desperate message across the Atlantic. "Matt, tell the people we haven't forgotten them. Tell them our story. Tell them!"