Here is a list of advantages and disadvantages with using 'The Movies' as an engine for your machinima. Also along with a list of videos that have used 'The Movies'.

Advantages Edit

The Movies provides pre-set camera shots, animations, backgrounds, actors, and lip synching. Not all is perfect, but it's decent enough for a basic short video to show off to your family.

                                                                   ==The Movies Online==

The Movies Online ([1]) is the online aspect of The Movies. As well as its own section on the general Lionhead forums, TMO allows players to upload their own movies to the Internet for others to review and criticize. This translates into Virtual Credits (VCs), a form of virtual currency that is used to buy new props, costumes, sets and to advertise online movies.

Expansion packEdit

Template:Main Template:Advert The Movies: Stunts & Effects is the first expansion pack for The Movies, it adds stunts, stunt men, new sets and costumes to the game. It also now includes a 'free-cam'; giving total control over the camera position and movement (previously the camera was fixed in the scene presets). The game was released in June 2006.

New Features Include

  • 58 New Costumes
  • 15 New sets
  • Countless new props and backdrops
  • New features in advanced movie maker, for example a free-roaming camera
  • The use of overlays (animated or static) - essentially a screen effect that will appear in the very foreground of any scene.
  • Perhaps the biggest new feature to the game is being able to hire your own stuntmen. With new stunts that your stars are unable to attempt, you will need to hire a stuntman in order to safely complete that action.

One knock-on effect of the expansion pack is the utilisation of overlays. They are being used by many game-users to create the equivalent of full-screen 'flip-book' animations to fill in effects that would otherwise be impossible within the game. As the speed of animated overlays runs at approximately 10 frames per second, the animations can be somewhat crude, but often surprisingly effective.

ESRB Rating: T

There are currently no plans to make a "The Movies 2" or any other expansions for the first installment.

Console releaseEdit

The game was originally going to be ported to PlayStation 2, GameCube, and Xbox, but development of the console ports was halted immediately before acquisition of Lionhead by Microsoft. The game was officially cancelled on February 7, 2006. Poor sales was the reason cited for the cancellation. On February 8, 2006, Lionhead Studios announced that the console version may still be released, it just wouldn't be published by Activision. Some rumors are saying if it is released on consoles, it may get boosted up to next-gen systems: Wii, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

The Movies and MachinimaEdit

The connection between "The Movies" and Machinima has not been always crystal clear, as both online communities have not immediately accepted the premises of one another. However, movies made with "The Movies" do essentially fit the generic definition of machinima, even if the techniques used are vastly simplified.

One of the characteristics that is heavily promoted in Machinima - that a machinima movie can be produced cheaper and faster than traditional CGI animation - is even more pronounced when "The Movies" is used, since Lionhead provides all the tools in the game itself. One clear advantage is the availability of a library of scenes and shots that are designed to tell a story. The modifiability of the game contents is also on par with other game engines used in machinima. However, the movie editor provided by Lionhead is less powerful than outside editors, and the rendering and encoding of the video and audio much more restrictive. This may explain why many "The Movies" movie makers choose to use outside tools for post-production.

Given its recent release, there are already a lot of machinima movies made with "The Movies" that have been noticed outside of its isolated community. And given the breadth of the story telling capabilities of the game, there will certainly be more in the future even if Lionhead discontinues the game development.

The game has also made the genre of cinepoetry far more feasible for average poets who wish to display their poetry in the cinematic format due to the fact that anyone can easily create a movie without the need for actors, cameras, or money. [2]

Disadvantages Edit

Due to Lionhead Studios usually rushing their games, various versions of The Movies come with bugs that may or may not be replicatable by the company itself. This led the company to employ a tactic of cutting and running, including such delusional statements as 'there will be no patches [after the first one]' and 'the expansion pack will fix all bugs'.

While it is an amazing machinima tool in theory, the reality is that The Movies was never made for outside usage or distribution free of Lionhead and Activision's own online system, The Movies Online. External editing is hampered by a bug (some would say deliberatly put there) that shifts the audio by at least four seconds, immobilizing the revolutionary lip-syncing feature. Reportedly, this also appears ingame, as well.

Lionhead refuses to acknowledge these bugs, and once you mix in the lazy, unprofessional attitude that they have concerning negative feedback, one gets the impression that the obstacle course is not worth the prize.

One fatality to The Movies was Elm Way, a comedic drama set for thirteen episodes, which only reached four; two of those were done in The Movies.

Lists of SeriesEdit

Elm Way [3] [4]