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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Christmas with Dad - Special Effects

“It’ll be fun!  We’ll go to the fireworks, wave sparklers around, have a blast! You’ll love it!”

“Yeah, right, Dad….”

OK, so it’s not exactly Christmas right now, but we’re trying to think ahead for a change.  More goodies from the Special Effects pack: sparklers, fireworks, and snow.  You can change the colours of the fireworks, as well as their height and intensity, and you can adjust the snow to give you anything from a light dusting to a full-on blizzard.

As always, this is 100% Moviestorm. No mods, no post-processing, no third party editors or software.

Music by Bob and Barn.  Snowman, trees, snowdrifts and outfit from the Happy Holidays pack.

(0) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

Monday, July 13, 2009

BongoBodies - free costume texture changing mod

This is a great little mod from bongoman: it allows you to retexture the costumes in Moviestorm without needing any custom software or the modder’s workshop.  It only covers a few of the costumes at the moment (and they’re all paid-for add-ons, so it won’t do you much good if you only have the basic free set-up), but it really opens up a world of possibilities.


Take, for example, the “Mr Big” costume from the Criminals set.

1. The basic costume as supplied
2. Click on it, switch to variant 2, and you can tint it using Change Colour
3. The Bongo version: now you have the option to Change Image as well
4. Click on the hands, and you can tint them or change the image.  (You can’t do the heads, though, that’s a separate body part)
5. Brown hands for that leather gloves look
6. Using a pale granite texture created with the free texture editor Genetica to give him a slightly odd stone look
7. Adding the same granite texture to the coat and tinting it brown for a totally different feel.

Of course, if you’re a bit more advanced, you can open up the original textures and modify those.  With minimal Photoshop skills, and almost no effort, you can quickly and easily make simple changes such as changing the colour of the shirt or giving him a different pattern tie.

Nice one, bongoman!

Free download from Machinimods.

(1) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

Friday, July 10, 2009

Storm Rocks - Moviestorm Special Effects

Put your hands together for guitar legend Storm! And now, he has the stage show that any real rock band needs!

The majority of the effects are pyros made with the fully customisable flash pots, with added ambience from the smoke and flame tools. The incredible versatility of these effects is demonstrated by the floaty lights.  These are actually highly customised flames.  To create these, we set up a flame area, changed the colours to white/blue, etc, and reduced the size to minimal, and the result was these wonderful floaty stars.  With creative use of just a few effects, you’ll soon have your movies looking completely different, and transformed from simple theatrical performances to full-on movie extravaganzas!

As with all the other special effects demos we’ve shown you this week, the entire scene was shot in one take, completely within Moviestorm. No cutaways, no splicing between scenes, and no third party editing or post processing. 

Once again, the music is from the forthcoming Bob & Barn music packs.

(0) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

The Clarks: A Perfect Gift

If you’re a Facebook user, you’re in for yet another treat - here’s our third Moviestorm MovieGift app!

The Clarks MovieGift collection includes all fifteen episodes of the first season of this hilarious series by Moviestormer act3scene24.  He describes it as a show that progressed from “a one-liner type show, to a deep, deep character-driven drama about sex, drugs and whatever the hell the kids are doing these days.”  As you might guess, it’s not suitable for minors.

Watch them all, and send your favorites to your friends!

(And don’t forget to check out our first two MovieGifts apps if you haven’t already - Moviestorm Shorts and Northern Lasses - and stop by our Facebook fan club and say hello!)

(0) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

Vanuatu update

As you may know, Moviestorm is proud to support the Wan Smolbag Theatre in Vanuatu, and we’re always interested to hear about what they’re up to.  This came last night from John Herd, who you may know as primaveranz on our forums.

Hi there,

I am still chomping at the bit, waiting for decent graphics cards coming from Australia. There are all sorts of Customs hoops to jump through, etc!. Loving all the new stuff you have coming out and saving my pennies (well vatu, actually) for the special effects pack especially!

Had several kids gawping over my shoulder today itching to have a play on MS, and my own log jam is gradually loosening up, so expect a deluge of garbage (from me) as soon as I have mastered the re-texturing of Sketch-up models, and hopefully some interesting takes on the world from the WSB youth!

I’m flying up north to Luganville on Espiritu Santo this Monday to the Youth Centre there, and will sow a few seeds by showing the kids SketchUp as a starter.

Several overseas acts came to WSB for the 20th anniversary festival, including Nuffield Theatre from Southampton. I took the opportunity to demo Moviestorm to their director, Sharon Lawless, who was intrigued. She mentioned a community group called City Eye with whom Nuffield have worked several times.  She’ll be attending their “Oscar ceremony” tonight, and will bring up Moviestorm as a possible tool for their work. I’m glad that we can help spread the word from our little island!

All the best and keep up the excellent work!


Ain’t it great to see how small the world truly is in this incredible digital age? People in the UK, a hundred miles away from us, are finding out about Moviestorm from people on the other side of the planet, ten thousand miles away.  So, let’s hope they can get their graphics cards soon and the kids can start playing with Moviestorm.  We’re looking forward to the next update!

(No, we’ve never seen a vatu before, either. This is worth just under $2 (US), £1.20 (UK) or €1.40.  See, the handy things you learn from Moviestorm!)

(0) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

Thursday, July 09, 2009

A Spell In Prison - Moviestorm Special Effects

Yesterday we showed you some of the lighting effects you can get from the static props in the Special Effects pack.  Today, we’re going to pick some props up and use them. If you’ve been following our dev blog, you may have seen characters wandering around with burning torches, so we decided to give you a new prop.  In fact, we’ll show you two of the four versions of it.  (No, we won’t tell you what it is. That’d spoil it for you!)  As well as this, there’s also a sparkler, which, unsurprisingly, makes pretty sparkles when you wave it around.

The scene also features the weather effect. This is also fully customisable, with weather ranging from light drizzle to heavy rain, hail, ice, and snow.  On top of that, we’ve got a funky little particle effect making its debut.  And yes, that’s customisable too - you can mess with the colour, size, shape, timing, and so on, just with a few sliders.

And remember, the entire scene is shot in one take, completely within Moviestorm. No cutaways, no splicing between scenes, and no third party editing or post processing. 

(4) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

Northern Lasses MovieGifts

If you’re a Facebook user, there’s a new Moviestorm MovieGift app just for you.

The Northern Lasses MovieGift collection includes all six episodes of this very British comedy series by Moviestorm stalwart, LuxAeternam. Watch them, and send them on to your friends with just one click!

(And don’t forget to check out our first MovieGifts app if you haven’t already!)

(0) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Burning Streets - Moviestorm Special Effects

Movies are all about atmosphere.  Get that right, and you’ve got your audience hooked. Even the most dramatic of scenes can fall flat in a boring environment. But adding visual interest to the scene can completely change it.  Making a moving image is about more than just moving the camera around a static set.  The flicker of fire, the swirl of smoke, the hiss of steam - all these touch the senses and bring your movie to life.

This short sequence uses the static props from the forthcoming Special Effects pack (plus costumes from the two Wardrobe packs).  These include:

- Barrels, with and without fires inside
- Fires and bonfires
- Vents and outlet pipes
- Toxic goo

You’ll see that these can all be customised: you can set up what sort of flames they have, and how much smoke they emit - look at the pipes on the wall, for example.

All the lighting in the scene comes from the fires.  There’s no ambient or directional light, and no light sources on set.  As a result, everything’s in motion, even when nothing’s happening.

This is completely made in Moviestorm.  There’s no third party software, no mods, no editing, no post-processing.  Just Moviestorm and nothing else - and you’ll be able to get your hands on all this goodness very, very soon! 

There’s much more in the Special Effects pack - keep checking back to see what else we have in store for you!


(1) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Moviestorm 1.1.6 goes live!

Next time you start Moviestorm, you should see a screen that looks like this.  Go on, press that little update button, and enjoy the goodness!

Important: after you do the update, if you press Start, Moviestorm will close and you will need to restart it.  THIS IS NOT A BUG.  Close Moviestorm manually (or press Start), and then start Moviestorm again, and all should be fine.


Most of what’s in the update is support for the upcoming pyros, hairstyles and music packs, and there’s an improved modder’s workshop, plus a load of bug fixes.

Moviestorm 1.1.6

  • After this update has finished, you will need to restart the Launcher prior to pressing the Start button.

New features

  • The Moviestorm EULA has been updated, and a new EULA covering the user of the Modders Workshop has been added.
  • Held Props are now customisable. When your character is holding a held prop (in the Director’s View), either click on the character and select Customise Prop from the ring menu, or click on the held prop activity on the timeline, and select Customise [Name of Prop].
  • Cutting Room View: When adding audio, you may now select any of the audio within Moviestorm’s content packs, by using the Insert Audio from: Content Pack tab.
  • You can now replace a stock set you have created by saving a new stock set with the same name.
  • Modders workshop - added Wizard to retexture template-based objects.
  • Modders workshop - added Wizard to create wall, ceiling or floor materials.
  • Modders workshop (PC only) - replaced sketchup import with Import Wizard for sketchup 6. This now allows interactive resizing and correctly creates thumbnails for the newly imported props.
  • Support for upcoming content packs - morphable hairstyles and particle effects.
  • New hair colour variations.

Resolved issues

  • Tintable materials with emissive or specular textures no longer lose their emissives and speculars after being tinted, saved and reloaded.
  • Changing face expression sliders in the Advanced Mood Customiser now provides direct visual feedback if the timeline marker is after the Mood Change activity.
  • The sound system now works better, allowing multiple occurrences of the same sound playing at the same time. This was previously causing significant problems with Police Cars.
  • Looping 3D Sound on mobile objects (such as Police Cars) now works when playing from part-way through the motion.
  • Characters aiming a gun at an object below or above the normal horizontal aim should no longer stop aiming prior to firing.
  • Depth-of-field should no longer cause crashes.
  • Modders workshop - Renaming materials now works correctly.
  • Modders workshop now has a Close button.
  • Tinting objects or changing images on objects should now only affect the object being edited.
  • Only the static version of the mobile phone can be placed on set; the version which sat part way into tables can now only be used as a held prop.

Known issues

  • No more support for pre-1.1 walk activities. Movies created prior to Moviestorm version 1.1 will not work with 1.1.6. Prior to updating you might be able to convert the Movie to use the updated walk system by going to the setting tab of the Script Editor, and selecting the ‘Convert to new walks’ button.
  • Moviestorm still has memory issues, although they should no longer be triggered by using the tag cloud. See forums for details as to how to increase the memory available to Moviestorm, if you have a computer above minimum spec.
  • When running Moviestorm on an Apple Mac Mini, the program will sometimes crash while being started.
  • Targeted camera shots can produce inconsistent results when targeted at characters.
  • The undo/redo functionality does not work with character or vehicle movement commands, when one changes the curve being followed by the character or vehicle.
  • Gestures or Improvisations can stop the Handcuffing activities from starting. If you encounter problems with trying to put in a Handcuff animation, try stopping the prisoner from improvising (using change mood, or by turning off improvisation for the whole scene via the script editor > settings tab).
  • Reordering dutch tilt camera keyframes causes problems.
  • Movies rendered directly from Moviestorm will play back without sound if played through Quicktime on a Mac.

General Cars for Moviestorm 1.1.6

New features

  • Single male or single female driver option now available for each car.

Happy Holidays for Moviestorm 1.1.6

New features

  • New hair colour variations (female only).

LawAndOrder for Moviestorm 1.1.6

New features

  • New hair colour variations.

Resolved issues

  • When a male cop handcuffs a male prisoner, the characters’ lungs now correctly stay in their chests.
  • The Police Van 03 should now be usable on Mac systems.

MusicVideo01 for Moviestorm 1.1.6

New features

  • New hair colour variations.

MusicVideo02 for Moviestorm 1.1.6

New features

  • New hair colour variations.

Resolved issues

  • The Turntables no longer animate their ambient shadow when the DJ spins the records.
  • The Nightclub 02 stock set now has a working dancefloor and mirrorballs.
  • The Follow Spot should now turn off correctly at the end of its activity.

Wardrobe01 for Moviestorm 1.1.6

New features

  • New hair colour variations.

Resolved issues

  • Update to Short Sleeve Shirt and Jeans to correct a gap in the neck.

Wardrobe02 for Moviestorm 1.1.6

New features

  • New hair colour variations.

(1) Comments | Permalink | Posted by Matt Kelland

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