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WoW Moviewatch: Dynamic Action Team Ep 3: Fitting In


Oxhorn's got a new series of movies out which he's posted under the name BMD over at WeGame.com. His latest flick is the third episode in the Dynamic Action Team series, called Fitting In. It's a bit of a hybrid movie for us to show here at WoW Moviewatch, since its premise revolves around three characters from Team Fortress 2 who try to find their way around our beloved World of Warcraft, but we love the nearly seemless blending of the two games.

Episode 3 follows the team's attempt to fit in with guilds and arena teams. Let's just say their social skills come with a 3-day waiting period and their classes are definitely OP. I'd absolutely want these guys on my side against the zombie scourge, but I'm not so sure I'd want to pal around with them. I like to see Oxhorn playing with the medium's possibilities; moviewatchers can only benefit as he continues to stretch his talents.

You don't need to know anything about Team Fortress 2 to enjoy this film, much like you didn't need to know about any version of The Sims to enjoy Releasing the Beast. It's a great way to poke fun at WoW's foibles while at the same time winking at us with some inside jokes.

[Via WeGame. Thanks, Jeff! ]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Machinima, Humor, WoW Moviewatch

WoW Moviewatch: The Little White Poney Inn



More Hallow's End spirit to end your week, in the form of a little horror flick called The Little White Poney Inn from Olibith. It's a silent horror film that was originally made in French for Le Grand Prix MMO Machinima in 2007, which won the grand prize. (Anyone surprised? This guy eats awards for breakfast.) This version contains English subtitles over the French dialog cards (subtitles for the subtitles?) and a dialed-down "old film effect" compared to the version he entered into the contest. For this year's version of the same contest, Olibith won a finalist spot for The Noob Song.) If you like to be spooked, you'll have fun with this film and I have to admit that the ending made me laugh.

Oh, and someone please go give the guy a chair so he can get back to work! We want more movies, dangit!

[Via Vimeo]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Machinima, WoW Moviewatch

WoW Moviewatch: Redshift: Pursuit Trailer



Fresh off of winning an Oswald award at BlizzCon 2008, the filmmakers at Slashdance have released a trailer for their next movie, Redshift: Pursuit. Pursuit will be a sequel to their first movie, Redshift. (The award-winning Interlude was a prequel to the same movie.)

The premise appears to be revolve around the conflict that arises when the clairvoyant Aislynn (a former Night Elf turned Undead) foresees the death of another Night Elf in her visions and tries to prevent it, putting her at odds with her fellow Horde. That's all the trailer really hints at, but it's a gripping teaser for what's to come. On their website, Slashdance says that the full film version of Pursuit will be released on October 31. We'll keep a look out for it.

[Via Vimeo]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Machinima, WoW Moviewatch

WoW Moviewatch: The Grasshappa Chronicles



Happy Hallow's End! Today we bring you a fluffy treat from TRiBViDs called The Grasshappa Chronicles. The most recent installment to the series, Episode 4, is linked above. (Previous episodes are 1, 2, and 3.) These movies are all treat, no trick, like the G.N.E.R.D.S. handed out these days by Innkeepers. A tasty, not too filling, but definitely an enjoyable confection featuring two dudes who pay the price for ripping off intellectual properties in previous episodes. The guys are goofy and have amusing songs running through their heads starring Justin Timberlake and Vanessa Carlton. Oh, and there's also a Hello Kitty reference for good measure.

I think we all have some guilty pleasures like this in our movie-watching closets. My favorite guilty pleasures contain ram-a-lama ding-dong, Brando singing, and R.O.U.S.'s in them. I know some of you out there are Goonies freaks. Confess!

[Via Machinima.com]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Machinima, Humor, WoW Moviewatch

WoW Moviewatch: The Gnomeregan Revenge: Red Alert



The Gnomeregan Revenge: Red Alert is an original tale told in pre-Arthas Azeroth, the first of a new trilogy by filmmaker Odessa. The Gnomish race is cast in the role of Soviet revolutionaries against the Alliance. In this episode they use their technological superiority to stage a surprise attack on Ironforge. The Gnomes even speak Russian, albeit with English subtitles.

The machinima is excellent and the handheld out-of-focus shots work superbly to convey the surprise and confusion of the first wave of copter attacks. Since I don't speak French or Russian, it's difficult to tell the quality of the voice acting but the other sound effects are deftly done. (The English subtitles need some work; there are a lot of typos.) Still, I think it's possible to follow the story just from the visuals. The cliffhanger at the end prepares us for the next two episodes which promise to show us the war and its outcome. From just this first episode, it's difficult to tell if the film will have an allegoric theme with a larger message or if this was merely a creative tangent invented by the filmmaker. The follow-up episodes should come before the end of the year, so I guess we'll find out soon enough.

[Via WarcraftMovies]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Alliance, Gnomes, Machinima, WoW Moviewatch

WoW Moviewatch: Releasing the Beast II: Don't Call me Huntard


Warning: This video contains harsh language.


Today we're featuring Releasing the Beast II: Don't Call me Huntard! by Sazabi. It's an intriguing, mesmerizing, hilarious, self-aware take on a PvP movie -- following up the hugely successful Releasing the Beast. Now, wait! Don't tune out if you don't like PvP movies. It's not actually a PvP movie, per se. It's a comedy all the way, including the filmmaker showing his own failures in the battlegrounds and making fun of his arena rating. It's certainly not a how-to movie. In fact, the story goes out of its way to demonstrate that it is NOT a model of PvP play tactics.

The premise is this: after brutally failing during a PvE raid (with a very funny guest voice appearance from the star of Onyxia Wipe Animation) caused by his hobby as a Fraps-aholic machinima filmmaker, our hero decides to try his hand at the battlegrounds and arena scene at the urging of his main character, an Orc hunter. (Hence, the subtitle: Don't call me huntard!) The PvP scenes are interludes within the arc of the bigger story and are set to some great music, mostly from the Naruto Original Soundtrack. These battle scenes are slickly filmed with split-screen punctuations of the action. (My only complaint about them is at times the camera angle is too high to see well.)

The battle fray is framed by the comedic conflict between the Sims 2 avatar of the filmmaker and his WoW creation (or so he believes), Sazabi. The story folds in on itself so many times that you feel like you're in a Möbius strip that's been flagged in enemy territory. But that's exactly the fun here. Even though the film is 27 minutes long, you need to wait for the twist at the end which presents a fine comeuppance for our hero. (Which hero you'll have to find out for yourself.) I also recommend downloading the FileFront version because the subtitles are a bit difficult to read in the streaming version and they help clear up some of the European accents at times.

[Via WarcraftMovies -- Thanks Zac!]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Hunter, Machinima, PvP, Humor, WoW Moviewatch

WoW Moviewatch: Fruit of Elune


Warning: Parts of this film may be offensive to some viewers.

It's sad that we have to end the Moviewatch week with the film Fruit of Elune by Tivas & Gobbler of Myndflame and Dementia Studio. The filmmaker's description is this: "Elune, diety of the night elves, rains love from the heavens creating peace." My take? No. It's neither love nor peace. It's just another commercial parody, this time without much imagination and with the same underwear joke over and over again. If it were merely immature, I would shrug it off, roll my eyes, and forget about it. But on top of not being very funny or original, the filmmakers attempt a joke about domestic violence which I find entirely unhumorous and offensive to boot. I'm astounded and saddened that the judges picked this film as a Runner Up in the Comedy category for the BlizzCon 2008 movie contest. If it hadn't won a prize in the contest, you wouldn't be seeing it here on Moviewatch. Not on my watch, anyway. Not cool, Blizzard, not cool at all.

[Via WarcraftMovies]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

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Filed under: Machinima, Humor, WoW Moviewatch, BlizzCon

Elemental Shaman talent builds for Patch 3.0.2

So you logged in on Tuesday and all your talent points were gone. (Let's hope you noticed this fact before you went out to attack someone or something.) If you're looking at the new Elemental tree and wondering what talents to pick, here's a little help for you from someone who's been speccing and respeccing almost pure Elemental on the beta servers for several months now. (That would be me.)

The first thing you should do is go read what our resident shaman expert, Matt Rossi, says about the overall changes to our class in Echoes of Doom, just to make sure you still want to stay Elemental (Part 1 and Part 2). For my part, I leveled to 70 as Elemental and saw no reason to switch as I worked my way up the new Wrath talent tree. Since we've already been over the new spells, the point of this post is to simply recommend a build for you. So let's get a-buildin'!

Tier 1
Both the PvE and the PvP specs start the same way. Take all 10 talents on the first row of the Elemental tree (Convection and Concussion) and put 5 points in Improved Healing Wave on the Resto tree. This is probably no different than your spec before Echoes of Doom.

Tier 2
PvE and PvP are the same here too. Max out both Call of Flame and Elemental Warding, which will improve both your DPS and your ability to survive. (That's right, elemental shamans are all about FIRE now.) Raiding shamans, on this tier you should also put 3 points into Ancestral Healing so that when you off-heal, your targets can reap this potential armor-increasing benefit.

Tier 3
On the third level, both PvE and PvP should take Elemental Focus and all 5 points in Elemental Fury, which are both talents you probably had before the patch. PvE can take all 5 points in Reverberation, but PvP should save 3 of these points for later.

Tier 4
Both play styles should max out the points in this tier for Eye of the Storm (familiar talent) and the new Improved Fire Nova Totem. Now some of you will say that PvE shouldn't be using Fire Nova totem and I'll partially agree with you. No, you shouldn't be using it in raids or instances. However, you can use it carefully in PvE and questing (which I've done) and it can be extremely useful because of its slowing effect if you get mobbed.

Read more →

Filed under: Shaman, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Guides, Talents

WoW Moviewatch: Mercy of the Sea


Mercy of the Sea, Runner Up in the Action/Adventure category of the BlizzCon 2008 movie contest, is a long film, clocking in at over 23 minutes. The clip embedded above is only the first act of three acts total. You can watch the entire film by streaming it, downloading it, or watching the three YouTube clips in order. Sleeping Dogs Productions, headed by J. Joshua Diltz, which also created Rise of the Living Dead and The Island, now brings us the tale of High Priestess Elunari as she tries to rescue her kidnapped child from her power-hungry husband, the Arch Druid. Of the BlizzCon-entered movies I've watched this year, this one is my least favorite.

While it is an undoubtedly polished production -- the voice talents, music, and sound design stand out in particular -- the story struggled to keep my interest, sometimes from plain confusion. The backstory takes up the first 3-1/2 minutes of the film and is told without animation, via what is essentially a slide show. It moves very slowly and provides little that we don't understand from context later. (As such, I would recommend axing the narrated backstory altogether.)

Then, ironically, much of the action in the main portion of the film was difficult for me to follow. The battle scenes were too cluttered with closeups and blur-effects to make much sense to me. Most times I couldn't even tell what spells were being cast or who was fighting whom. I never figured out how the Priestess escaped, who died overall, or why the "core" meltdown occurred. Nor was I able to follow the action well enough to figure out how the Arch Druid caught up to the Priestess at the end of the film, much less why either of them were still alive after their fiery collision. Without adding spoilers, I also can't figure out how the ending events occurred either. There were too many quick cuts, too many out-of-context closeups, too much deus ex machina, too much backstory and not enough battle context for me to enjoy the film.

Tomorrow we'll take a look at Fruit of Elune by Myndflame to wrap up our BlizzCon movie contest coverage.

[Via WarcraftMovies]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Druid, Priest, Machinima, WoW Moviewatch, BlizzCon

WoW Moviewatch: Dead Rain 2: Deader


In case there was any confusion about yesterday's post, I intentionally linked only to the films featured previously here on WoW Insider. The other three movies will be covered as we go along this week and the original post will be updated as such. Today you'll see Dead Rain 2: Deader from Bear on a Trampoline, which took Runner Up in the Drama/Romance Category for the BlizzCon 2008 movie contest. Although I'm not a horror/zombie movie fan, I was incredibly impressed with this film, a sequel to last year's Dead Rain. Even though I love the Snacky films, I don't think it's fair that Dead Rain was included in the same category with those films since it's impossible to compare the two films.

Deader's story picks up where the first one left off, with our two heroes mourning their losses and continuing to fight off zombies. There are so many things to like about this film: the grainy black-and-white film style, the high-contrast dramatic flashes, the genre homages (forced perspective camera angles, peeking through holes at the zombies, pop-up gotchas), and the wonderful cinematography. The only thing I wish is that the audio volumes were more stable. I had to ride my dial a few times to hear the dialog over the music or sound-effects. But the storyline was fantastic. The twist caught me completely by surprise and made me say, "Holy cow!" (Only, of course, "cow" was not the word I used. I live in a PG-13 household, so sue me.) I thought, "How the heck are they gonna get out of this?" Well, you have to watch it yourself to see.

Tomorrow we'll look at Mercy of the Sea by Sleeping Dog Productions and Friday we'll see Fruit of Elune by Myndflame.

[Via WeGame]

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Machinima, WoW Moviewatch, BlizzCon