Taking Shape: My Machinima Film

Over the past couple of weeks, my conceptual ‘machinima’ video musings have crystallized into a more substantial plan of approach and I feel that I’ve all but locked down my thoughts and ideas for the project. I have settled on using Rainbow Six: Siege (2015) on the PC as the digital camera for my video, and will detail the direction I’m headed and utilities needed to get there.

What excites me the most about this undertaking, is that I haven’t seen a single other creative machinima work on the internet that has used Siege to convey a story or anything other than a gameplay video while I believe there’s much potential for the game to be used as a unique platform for specific genres of machinima film. Whether this is due to the small playerbase or still relatively simplistic spectator mode remains to be seen, hopefully I can overcome that particular boundary.

In preparation, I have downloaded the oft-ignored Ultra Texture pack buried deep within the bowels of uPlay’s sterile, digital catacombs. With it, my video should benefit from a visual bump in quality and will help establish a realistic atmosphere which will make it all the more tense and claustrophobic in key moments, as well as amusing if and when I decide to add a bit of comic relief to juxtapose the otherwise austere setting.

Ultra-High-Textured operator ‘Sledge’ kicking off the action.

With the simple disabling of the HUD in the settings, I can be left with a clear UI with which to frame my story with. To capture the events that I will edit into my final machinima, I’ve installed the screen-capture software Action! by Mirillis to make sure that I can grab the footage at the best possible settings achievable so the video is presented at a professional looking standard. To uphold that standard, I’ve settled on Adobe’s Premiere Pro software to edit the high quality footage and be able to handle implementing subtle graphical effects to help establish mood such as colour grading to accentuate darker areas and promote an anxious theme.

Films generally aren’t made with the efforts of a single person doing everything including filming every roll themselves. I acknowledge that I will absolutely need other players to play actual rolls in the video and help establish shots and fill a scene. For example, I want my opening shot to feature one of the terrorist characters on a couch appearing to be texting someone, or otherwise being completely unaware of his surroundings. To do this, I need other players to be hurrying about to fully emphasize the humor element as much as possible. With this in mind, I’ve enlisted the aid of a couple friends who are will be invaluable help when it comes time to play out some of the situations I have in mind.

Into the unknown: Editing the lighting to manipulate mood is key.

My next step is to take some test footage and experiment with it to understand the workflow and processes involved.



One thought on “Taking Shape: My Machinima Film

  1. This is a very bold and interesting undertaking. Cool to see you embracing a game like Rainbow 6 Siege which, while pretty damn good, didn’t get a tonne of attention. It seems to have a decent following online so there’s a good potential audience right there!

    If you’re looking for inspiration and good examples of machinima definitely go back and check out the original Red vs Blue. It’s still such a well executed and integral part of the medium, sure to give you some good ideas for technique no matter what your direction is. Very keen to see how it turns out!


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