About this project
"You know that day-dream you had as a little kid? The one where you and your friends got together to battle the evil dragon? Well, these guys are kind of doing that. Every night."
The desire to produce this film has been weighing on my mind for about two years now.
I have always been fascinated with technology and its effect on social culture, but my exploration into the world of Massively Multiplayer Online Role-playing Games (MMORPG's) opened my eyes to a type of social organization I had never seen before. I experienced faceless communities capable of remarkable commitment, coordination, and success while never actually interacting physically.
Welcome to the world of online raiding. In certain MMORPG's, like Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft, gaming content is regularly created for the collaborative participation of up to twenty-five players at a time. Each player fulfills a particular role within the collective based on the skills attributed to their class of character in the game. Some play healers, some play damage dealers, and some play characters defensively designed to soak the large amounts of damage dealt by their virtual opponents. These players group together to form raids that routinely meet to test themselves against scripted game encounters. The technical design of these encounters is often so tightly tuned that it requires a remarkable amount of practice and planning for a raid to complete them, and the near flawless performance of each of its members.
“The Raid” will be a film about raiding and what it means to be a raider. We will capture the numerous hours invested by a diverse group of gamers in a complicated and choreographed digital environment, where every contribution weighs on their success or failure. We will watch, in person and virtually, as members strategize, fail, re-strategize, and inevitably find victory in their pursuits. We will sit with them in their homes and seek to understand the value this kind of commitment has in their daily lives, amidst their work, and within their families. We will question them about virtual achievements and their value. We will sit with social experts concerned about the growing issue of internet addiction and seek their opinions. We will question the future of the MMO experience and its place in the global landscape of culture, education, and business. Most of all, we will demonstrate and feel the excitement and energy of this kind of experience, which is so often criticized and misunderstood.
So...what's the money for?
We are aiming to produce a high-quality short film that will set the stage for a full length documentary in the future. This video will capture the subject, technique and feel intended for use in a larger scale, full-length production.
Why not just shoot the real film?
Great question. For a couple of reasons:
1.) We need to polish our technical approach.
The technical side of this film will require a remarkable amount of coordination and execution by the subjects being filmed. The players themselves will be responsible for running their own webcams and capturing their in-game experience through the use of special recording software. We need to polish our video-capture/collection workflow given the unique challenges that face a project of this nature. We want the process to be as simple and streamlined as possible for the members being filmed.
2.) As a potential full-length film, we want people to take us seriously.
This statement runs the gamut from licensing to future fundraising for the full-length film. If we can present a spectacular short film that captures the energy, excitement, and feel of the film we hope to make in the future, then we will have made our vision as clear as possible to those who would potentially come along side us.
Okay, sounds cool. Now, what's the money really going to be used for?
I have been loosely breaking the budget down with the following:
~ $4,500 for traveling/shooting expenses (a small production team for a few short trips) ~ $3,500 for graphic design (CGI) and editing work ~ $4,000 for technical needs (hardware, equipment, etc.)
Who is helping with this thing?
This film will be made in partnership with TankSpot. Associate Producer: Stewart McMichael with Grand Army Entertainment The graphic design/CGI will be contributed by CedarSplit design. Most importantly, this project will be made possible by you, the contributor!
Where else can I find you guys on the web?
Come hop in on the discussions found in the Discussions tab on our FB page (http://www.facebook.com/theraid...)! If you've got questions, don't hesitate to reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks for stopping by!
Kevin Michael Johnson Blue Loon Films
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