Wednesday 24 November 2010

Moviestorm user manual

We've been asked several times for a proper user manual than you can print out and read at your leisure. Finally, Moviestorm has become stable enough that we've been able to write one and not have it change before we've finished. 36 pages of it, in PDF format.

You can find it at (or click Documentation in the Web page footer).

Let us know if there's anything that doesn't make sense or which you think should be covered in future updates.

Monday 22 November 2010

Moviestorm on DVD

This little stack of goodies arrived in the office today. It's Moviestorm on a disk. Well, seven different disks, if you want to be picky. We've got one for each of the six new themed bundles, and one for Moviestorm Complete 2010.

Some time very soon, you'll be able to order your copy of Moviestorm on disk, and have it shipped to you anywhere in the world. That way, you won't need to worry if you've got a slow or unreliable Net connection. You'll have a lovely DVD case to put on your bookshelf, so you can casually say to people, "yes, I make movies," and impress the hell out of them. And, of course, you can use it if you ever need a backup or you want to put Moviestorm onto another computer.

Oh, yes, and don't forget Christmas is just around the corner. Just in case you were wondering what to get someone. Imagine their surprise and delight when they think you've got them The Last Airbender and it turns out to be a whole movie studio!

Friday 19 November 2010

Web site planned outage - Mon 22 Nov

On Monday Nov 22, we will be doing some serious work on the back end of the Moviestorm Web site.

It will go down at about 10am GMT, and will probably be unavailable for most of the working day in the UK. Of course, if everything goes perfectly to plan, we'll get it back up much earlier in the day, and some bits may be restored sooner than others, but we'd prefer to be a little cautious (and realistic) and give ourselves a little leeway.

Sorry for any inconvenience.

(Image from boagworld - a podcast for those who design, develop & run Web sites.)

Thursday 18 November 2010


One of the things we've been dropping occasional hints about for a while now is a sword fighting pack. It's well under way now. We can't actually show you any fighting yet (in Chris's words, "all the Max files are men in their underpants"), but take a look at these little beauties.

They're all one-handed weapons (although yes, some of them would take extraordinary biceps to wield with one hand). We do have some two-handed stances and animations, but those are more poses rather than actual fighting moves. The idea is that the swords will also be tintable, so you can have black blades, silver pommels, or whatever takes your fancy.

That thing on the left, if you hadn't noticed it, is a light saber. (Well, when I say "light saber", I mean "a glowy sword-shaped weapon inspired by a light saber", of course. We don't have a license to do an actual light saber. Phew! The lawyers can stand down now.) Anyways, we're not entirely happy with it yet. We're trying to make it glow properly, but it's not really working as well as we'd like, so that may not make the initial release and may get held over for a later update. We'll see how it goes.

It's going to take a small update to Moviestorm to support all the new sword-fighting stuff, but we're aiming to ship this to you in early December.

En garde!

Friday 5 November 2010

Damn Limeys! Can't you speak English?

If you were paying close attention, you'd have noticed that we updated the Happy Holidays pack yesterday, and added in a whole bunch of new things, including a big pile of assets suitable for a fabulous Thanksgiving spread.

Like this. Pretty, isn't it?

And then we realised what we'd done.

On the table there, if you look carefully, you'll see a bunch of tasty veggies including aubergines, courgettes, and gourds. Which is all very well, except, of course, in America, they're eggplants, zucchini and squashes. Normally, of course, we'd defiantly assert our Britishness and leave the English* words in, but we don't do Thanksgiving in the UK. It's a purely American festival, so it would make sense to use the American words.

So, after a bit of humming and hahing, and a certain amount of finger-pointing, with a little bit of agonizing and buck-passing for good measure, we decided we'd better put out an update to the update with American words in. That's now been built and tested, and we'll ship it early next week. So, if you want to see an aubergine in Moviestorm, grab it now, because at midnight** it turns back into an eggplant.
* Courgette is, of course, a French word. Unlike zucchini, which is Italian. That's the English language for you.
** By midnight, we mean some arbitrary time of day at some point next week. It'll be midnight somewhere in the world.

Tuesday 2 November 2010

Well, thank you!

We're currently working through the closing stages of the next pack release. This is an update to the Happy Holidays pack, and will include a bunch of stuff from the old Photostorm and Greetingstorm packs. It will also have some extra material that was made for those packs but never made it in, such as completed versions of the sofa animations, the Santa chair animationss, mutual versions of pulling a cracker and kissing with mistletoe.

But that's not all, nossirree! We've also added in a load of totally new things suitable for a Christmas dinner: roast turkey and all the trimmings. Our American friends will, of course, get double value out of those, as they're perfect for Thanksgiving meals as well. There are some more Thanksgiving-related items in too.

To make this stuff work, it's going to be necessary to patch Core and Base , and there will also be patches for a number of art updates in other content packs, mostly fixes for textures and body meshes so that neck seams work better, that were done shortly after 1.4.1 was released.

Here's the good news. If you've got the Happy Holidays pack already, all this extra stuff will be a free update.