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Movie & game should be combined to create a perfect gaming experience!

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Bah that topic should've been: Movie & game should be combined to create a perfect gaming experience. You know how hard it is to create a deep RPG/First person game that has a complicated world and much stuff that the player should understand and be aware of. Normally a player is just thrown in some strange environment with no background or knowledge of the world where (s)he is. This is why a movie and a game should be combined so that when you start the game you would have to watch a full 90-120 minutes long movie that would have a full story and it would be quite interesting also. But the movie wouldn't have a proper ending. Then you would understand lots about the world (if the movie is made right) and you would immediately know your attitude/position towards the world when the game-part begins. And the game-part would actually finish the movie, depending on your desicions and actions. However the player you actually control in the game should not be shown in the movie-part, because this would make the game too objective and you wouldn't make the desicions like you normally would (if you controlled the movie's hero, you would try to act like the hero in the movie, which is bad). The player you play with should be thrown in the movie during the last moments of it. Then the actual game-part would start. And the movie can be done with the game's own 3d-engine, because 3d-engines can already show enough details. This way the movie-part would be cheaper to make and it would look the same as the game (=good thing). You could see many of the same places where you play, already in the movie. I know there are many game's that are based on movies, like the Bladerunner & Terminator & Die hard & James Bond etc... But the movie-part should be made in tight co-operation with the game-part, so that the plot would be continuous and clever. The movie-part would be there to make you understand and get you in to the game's world, not just for a good movie experience. -Hans Edited by - Hans on 6/19/00 9:32:33 AM

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Who would want to sit through a 90-120 minute movie just to play your RPG? And think how much memory, even if it is programmed it would take up. In fact, programming it would be much harder, it would be easier to make an avi file, but that would take up loads of space. It just isn''t feasible with how big avi''s are to how big harddrives are today.

-----------------------------

A wise man once said "A person with half a clue is more dangerous than a person with or without one."

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I like the idea about having movies tied in tightly with the actual game but there are a few draw backs to having full length movies. The first and most obvious one would be that a player probably doesn''t want to sit at their computer for an hour or two just watching a movie about the game they are about to play. Most people just want to load it up, hit New Game and be on their way. I mean, how many people even read the manual the first time they try a game? They just dive right in.

Most people would just skip the movie and therefore the company that is making the game would not see it as a valuable asset for the game to have and therefore would cut it out. They would probably not want to spend the time and resources on making the movie as well. If something about the game changed, like the main character is a girl now instead of a guy, the entire movie is scrapped and has to be done again.

The second thing would be that it would require a huge amount of space to store the movie, even if it was done in the games 3d engine. If you have an hour and a half movie at the beginning and say 5 hours of movie through-out the game ( thats a very small amount for what you are talking about) that would probably require almost an entire CD probably just for the scripting of it. That just increase''s the companies cost because they now have to ship an additional CD with every game they sell and they also have to hire people to make the movie and what-not. Also, much like a lot of people, I hate changing CD''s in the middle of the game. It just seems to interrupt play when a pop-up saying "Insert Movie CD #2 Into CD Drive" pop-ups right after an intense battle with a major character. It just ruins the whole mood that the battle put you in.

Another thing of importance is the different movies that would be required. Let''s say someone tried your idea of having movies through out the game based on what the player is doing. You are looking at hundred''s if not thousands of movies that need to be created and incorporated into the game. This add''s a lot of time that the player is just sitting there watching stuff wizz by on the screen. I know when I am playing a game and I am watching a movie and I start to lose interest, I just click it away and be on my way. I have never seen an in-game movie that has been able to hold my attention for more than 5 minutes in total. That may be just me but I don''t know.

But I am not trying to put you down at all, I am just pointing out a few things that came to mind when I read your post. I do like the idea about tying movies and other things into the game more. Whenever I start a new game that I just got, I see a movie and than go into the game and I have no clue how the movie relates to the actual game. I mean, there is a story about the characters history and all this stuff and than inside the game, we never need the history. It just seems pointless to me. What I think would be a neat idea for someone to try is to get speech through out the game. Just thoughts that the player may have. Like say you are walking in a forest or something, the character could make a comment on how scary/beautiful the forest looks at night or whatever. It would add a little more realism to the character because they would seem real. Everyone makes little comments to ourselfs every second of the day, when we walk around, when we sit down. I would like to see that implemented in a game.

Thats my 2 cents anyways.

Shawn ( aka Spanky )

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If the movie is good, I would . I mean that many gamers like to watch movies, at least I do . Then why wouldn''t I watch a movie that comes with a game?

And the movie would of course use as much memory as the game, since they use the same engine. The movie wouldn''t really have to look any better than the game itself, if the plot is clever.

Of course you can make it an avi, but if you don''t use dvd''s the quality of a 120 min-movie is horrible.


-Hans

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I love cutscenes and FMV (this is the reason why I play FF games), and I think that if the movie is nice looking, well made and not too long (about 30 min very max) this may help.

In fact I use FMV as introduction to the world and of the heroes.

The idea of creating a movie-like FMV to introduce the world is interesting...

But how to show the world ?
And won''t your heroes discover that the world his (at least) slightly different that what they thought, and if it''s the case what will be the player reaction to the introduction movie if it shows ''fool'' vision of the world ?

A solution could be to make the player see by the eyes of a character, that way he''ll understand that the movie was ''an introduction to the world seen with someone else eyes''.


Think about your life, and any movie character one, notice the differences ?
This must/will be the same with your introduction movie and the game itself...

Comments, suggestion ? I''m open minded.


-* Sounds, music and story makes the difference between good and great games *-

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Some of my favorite games have had some incredible movie sequences. The biggest ones that come to mind are the last three Wing Commander games.

Each of these games have a 10-15 minute intro, followed by cut-scenes that build the story through-out the game.

Of course, having these scenes really add to the game size (5-6 CD''s or so). I seem to remember that the budget for WC4 was somewhere around $10 million. If a full length movie was put into a game, what would the production cost be?

Since the game would not get theater revenues (like full length movies), the cost would have to be put into the game. I believe that the game industry still has a quite a low sales volume compared to movies. So, the game would probablly sell for $200 per copy or more.

Based on this, I don''t really think we will see any full length movies in our games for some time (if ever). But it''s nice to dream about it.

Note: If anyone out there has Wing Commander 4, play it and see if you recognize who is playing the Catscratch character. It''s a young Marc Ducacos (forgive my spelling) from the TV Series the Crow.

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ARGH I wrote a huge reply and then Netscape crashed.. I wonder if it would help if I sent a couple of bombs (real bombs I mean) to Netscapes headquarters!

Well anyway here''s a summary :

Spanky: if the movie is very important to the game, you''ll HAVE to watch it. Otherwise you''ll be complitely lost. And about that cd-changing: one cd=movie, one cd=game. So you don''t have to change too often (only once per game). And there would be only one movie in the game, the 2-hour-long introduction movie. No ingame movies. No history needed? If the game is deeper than Quake & Half-life, it is vital to know about the political situation of the game (sounds boring? well gangs and corporations belong also under the word political ) and some general knowledge about the world.

Character talking to himself in a first person game? But why can''t you talk to yourself why you play the game? Why should the game character talk? (btw. Duke Nukem throws some comments in the game)

Ingenu: the movie should be made so objective that you could make your own desicions on who is good and who is bad. This is hard to archive though.

Movie made in eyes of a character? Sounds cool but could be pretty boring in practice. Wild camera action makes many movies alive .

borngamer: it''s cheap to make a movie if it uses the game''s 3d engine, the game''s graphics, the game''s models and so on. So no expensive actors a''la Wing Commander (mark hamill) needed. Only some more animating (lots actually) and a good writer to do the job. The real work would still be on the game itself.


And the introduction movie doesn''t have to have a hero of any kind. Some real movies also have many characters but none of them is a hero. The hero is the player, and he makes his first appearance at the end of the film. And then saves the world =) (or something like that)

Sorry didn''t mean to sound this rude but this is just a summary and I''m still pissed off because of Netscape. Thanks for the great replies, everyone.

-Hans

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Hans, my buddy, do two things for me before you try to make this idea work.

1- Play Panzer Dragoon Saga on the Sega Saturn. It is a great example of cinematic gaming and one of my (if not the) favorite games of all time.

2- Learn something about movies before you attempt this. We are very used to movies as a culture, and so creating a 90 minute piece with no clear resolution will just piss people off. I think we are evolving toward this format:

You will likely find that movies would be best spliced into the plot, reflecting those aspects of the story too complex to be dealt with in engine (character emotions, etc.) What you might get is something like this...

Opening: 10-15 minute cinema

2-3 30 sec to 3 minute cinemas

1st act reversal: 5-10 minutes

(act two) 4-5 30sec/3minute cinemas

Act two reversal: 10-15 minutes

(act three) 2-3 30sec to 3 minutes

Conclusion: 10-15 minutes


Certainly not exact, but should remain somewhat relative to eachother. If you want to make the opening cinema a half hour long, be prepared to place just as much more emphasis on the rest of the story. Remember, the game needs meat, too!

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Landfish,
1- where the hell I''m gonna get me a Sega Saturn?-) Not to mention Panzer Dragoon?

2- well, I''m not the right guy to do a movie anyway, at least not yet . But there are however people that can write excellent 90 minute pieces (obviously) and one of those should be the one that does the movie. A real writer and a real director should be hired to do the job. Uh, again this idea is becoming more expensive..

And I''m not that much into splicing movies into the plot. That would mean the game would be quite linear, and I don''t like linear games very much (contrary to you, according to your "Linear Vs. Interactive!"-thread). If there''s only this opening movie, the game itself could be as non-linear as the gamemakers want.

Of course the gamemakers would focus mostly on the game, and the movie would be "just" an introduction. But it should be done well of course so that people wouldn''t just skip it.

--

But talking about character emotions in a 3d-engine, I think that emotions would be the best way to improve current 3d-engines (except if the engine is only used for killing-games). Many current 3d-engines can''t even make the characters open their lips! It would be really nice to see their eyebrows go up & down, their lips would turn into grinning & smiling positions and you could see their dimples . Boy would that add much emotion to the game! And adding some environment-mapped tear-drops in sad places.. The current computers are capable to do this, but no-one has done this to a game yet (as far as I recall). Ah well, 3d-engines aren''t that wildly used in adventure/rp-games anyway.


-Hans

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All the characters in PDS were rendered with facial expressions as you implied. You can prolly get a good saturn for $30-$40 on E-bay. Shop around, you might get way cheaper. Careful, though, Panzer Dragoon is one of the few game series worth buying on that system. Most notably #3 Panzer Dragoon Saga

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Being Australian - I think I''m supposed to be trying to be like america, and embrace all this hollywood gossip (do you have any idea how crap the newspapers are down here nowadays). We get al sorts of garbage about who is dating who in hollywood.

But frankly my dear, I don''t give a damn. (I don''t know if that''s correct)

But anyway. Hollywood thinks it has somethign to offer every industry in the world. As soon as you give it a huge window into "offering" something to the gaming industry it''ll take it. Movie to game adaptations have never worked, and this could be disastrous.

The idea might work fine to begin with, as long as the continuation is good and the movie doesn''t cover too much ground (90 minutes would be a little too long) but soon enough we''ll see a whole bunch of wierd ass B-grade gamovies (pronounced gay-movies hehe) and this could damage the games industry more than it already is.

Doom would''ve seemed like a good idea at the time too, and it sold well, and now we just have clone after clone even in these modern times so many years later.

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Actually - before anyone takes that post the wrong way, I''m saying that it may start out as having nothing to do with hollywood movies and stuff, but it wouldn''t be too long before it does.

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I remember when DVD drives first came out for PCs there were "movie/games" but I only remeber playing one about the navy for a few minutes. I think that the only answer for this solution would be to have the game not on CDs but DVDs

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Hollywood has forgotten how to break it''s own rules. But people are sheep. They will continue to suckle at the proverbail tit of mass media until if they are lucky, they will break free into the vast expanse of thier own intelligence.

We are trained from birth to be part of a whole. Sometimes we forget that the whole is made up of individuals. It''s not about being "part of the herd" or "an individual", they are one and the same. Money loves to define people as it''s vessel to move back and forth in the world. Sometimes it doesn''t seem at all like we invented it.

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For a truly awful example of how not to make a cinematic game, check out Tender Loving Care.

About memory requirements - why have the movie run via the game''s engine? It''s a movie, no variables, why not just prerender the whole thing and put it on a dvd?

One other vitally important thing - put in a pause button!

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You''re a little late Hans. I''ve already started one. I call it an Interactive Movie. It''s a lot like the Choose Your Own Adventure books. You choose what to do and where to go, and it plays for you. Some of it you play yourself, like battle scenes and stuff, but mostly it''s a movie. There''ll be more info on that at my new site when it comes up later this summer.


Top quality games don''t kick ass as well as these.

http://danavision.homestead.com

Prepare to be blown away!
-------------------------

Magic Card

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''For a truly awful example of how not to make a game...''

That means its a good example of how to make a game. I think you mean:

''For a truly awful example of how to make a game...''

-----------------------------

A wise man once said "A person with half a clue is more dangerous than a person with or without one."

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90-120 min movie, must have a DVD writer to do this amount of video.

Besides, most people just want to get in there and hack a few limbs off.

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For my two bits, I think this is a good idea, and I may try to use it someday. I don''t think the movie should be absolutely necessary - that kind of violates the KISS principle. If the movie clarifies the events of the game, that''s enough for me.

If I did something like this, I might ship two editions of the game, one with and one without the movie. Taking a loss on a new format is a common way to create a new niche, after all, and once you''d gone through the process once, you''d be poised to seize the day if it panned out.

mikey

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Blah! Why would anyone want to use a 3D engine for movie cut-scenes? I don''t know about anyone else but I feel that the hype around current 3D technology is getting a little overrated.

Don''t get me wrong, I have seen some nice 3D game graphics, but to use that technology for making a movie clip that someone has to sit through would be suicide. I think gamers (myself included) would only accept this for short 30 second clips.

People want to interact with their games, not watch them, and I think the only way to successfully get away with long in game clips is to use expensive actors (or a cool cartoon).

Man was born to game, we only work to pay for our toys!

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I don''t mean to hassle you here Hans but this is something to consider.

The power of Next Gen Consoles are going to be so powerful in repect to 3D. The ingame images are going to be near TV quality anyhow. So why would someone want to watch this when they can play it?

Were you thinking of using something like 3Dmax for the movie images? Just remember, gamers are also a different audience to movie buffs so what you''d have to show in the movie would have to act as a stimulant to getting people to want to play the game.

You will run into problems however when it comes to 3D character animation. This is HUGE work!!



WE are their,
"Sons of the Free"

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quote:
Original post by ImmaGNUman

''For a truly awful example of how not to make a game...''

That means its a good example of how to make a game. I think you mean:

''For a truly awful example of how to make a game...''



This is not a double-negative because ''awful'' modifies ''example'' and ''not'' modifies ''to make''.

I was thinking that there are good examples of how not to make a game. These being the examples with the most clear-cut problems, thus the examples that it''s easiest to learn from. Tender Loving Care would be a bad example of how not to make the game because it has so many things wrong with it that it would be confusing to figure out all the changes that would be necessary to make a good game.

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Paul C.:
I like to watch movies even though I could also play Q3 (which looks better than some movies ). There''s just huge difference between a movie and a game.
It''s just stupid to play an RPG or adventure game where when you start there are two options:
1) you can''t remember anything (was insomnia the word?)
2) you''re a new man in town

And the movie-storytelling (no, I''m still not talking about that interactive crap) would be a quite fresh idea.

Well, you can always use motion capture to make character animations. (use netcamera, put some pingpong balls in your limbs and then make a small program that notices the pingpong-ball movement). Seriously, this could work

--

Huh, just about everyone seems to be misunderstanding that topic. It''s not about little movies all over the game or about a "movie game"/interactive CD crap. It''s about a real game with the one big beginning movie that tells about background etc. Okay 60 minutes is maybe enough

And I also believe that movie audience doesn''t differ too much from game audience.


-Hans

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I wouldn't sit through it. If I feel like watching a movie, I watch one on my TV.

I like how TR does their movies. Also, in TRII, you have to watch the movie to know how to beat the dragon at the end of the game. (You can't see the knife, but in the movie, it shows a guy pulling it from the dragon.)

BTW: They used the game engine for some of their short movies too.

E:cb woof!

Edited by - dog135 on June 29, 2000 3:59:19 PM

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