Valve is putting their Source Filmmaker out there for everyone to try out and experiment with via a brand new beta. What is the Source Filmmaker? Well, you can use the Source Engine assets to create your very own movies, in real-time. You just need a decent CPU, a decent GPU and a lot of creative ingenuity.
According to the new press release, Bay Raitt, designer at Valve commented saying...
"The goal of the SFM was to develop a story telling tool that allowed us to create computer animated movies more efficiently, and with greater creative freedom"..."Over the past five years, we've produced more than 50 animated shorts with the SFM. The Source Filmmaker will allow our community to create their own movies in Team Fortress 2 and in their own Source SDK-created mods."
Given the scalability of the Source this means that any assets you can dump, pull, create, modify or use in Valve's highly lauded engine can be turned into a real-time movie. Really think about that for a minute...is that not amazing or what?
I'm betting there's a group of devCat fanboys already thinking about how they can create a full-fledged movie out of Vindictus.
To get an idea of how the Source Filmmaker works, check out this brief, promotional tutorial video below.
I'll be honest, when I read the press release for this I was not impressed at all. I know, I know, I'm lame. But after seeing the video above I have a completely newfound respect for the tool because you can see how easy and convenient it is to make movies. It's not just easy and convenient but it's gorgeous!
A lot of the movies have a high-end visual fidelity rarely seen in most other video game cinematics (not counting Blizzard or Axis Studios). Still, I can't get over how Valve is opening this up to the community like this. This will go a long way in helping a lot of up-and-coming filmmakers and game developers explore a cost efficient way to get movies, CG or storyboards done on a budget.
You can learn more about the Source Filmmaker or participate in the community beta by paying a visit to the Official Source Filmmaker Website.