Left On Stonehaven, The Machinima

Well, the day long awaited by Carol and me is here at last–Stonehaven just went live on YouTube:

I can’t believe I was actually nervous about releasing this video. I guess because so much heart and soul went into the project–not to mention all the hair that got jerked out by the roots, nails that got chewed down to nubs. . . .

Thanks for watching!

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16 responses to “Left On Stonehaven, The Machinima

  1. Doolittlesaymuch, this is FANTASTIC! Amazing! You bring to life that novel I’ve been working on for so long. You made it visually stunning. A feast for the senses – even the bad guys are easy on the eyes, and the good guys have me hitting pause to stare and stare some more. The Navajo boys, the “Who’s Your Daddy” Geronimo T-shirt, the lion imagery imbedded throughout (pause on the bride-vison’s blue cameo–a masterpiece). The dialogue and action you wrote work flawlessly to transform the story from written words to sound and visuals on a screen. The music you chose is haunting and perfect. The Sims 2 actors you created are full of surprises and play their parts so well, the characters from my novel are *real* now. I thought writers hated seeing their work on the big screen, but for me it’s thrilling. My words inspired images in someone else’s head, and thanks to this machinima, I get a glimpse of what you see when you read my novel. A Hollywood movie couldn’t accomplish what you did. “Bring Me to Life” — what an apt title and lyrics, and what a splendid job you do of linking music to actions and images. “Eyes Wide Open” — thank you, mine are, now!

  2. Wonderfully entertaining, visually pleasing and the story unfolds while I sit hanging onto every word. Every one of the senses are tantalized and treated. I could even smell the canine sweat of the angry dobermans.
    Well done.

  3. I’m absolutely blown away!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    The Story! Wow. It’s changed and grown from when I first read the drafts back when it was Stranded Hand. Powerful!
    The Machinima! Amazing! Just a work of art in itself.
    It’s kind of like a mixture of music video and animated film. It’s a whole new type of art, really.
    I am stunned! πŸ™‚
    Super great job, both of you! πŸ™‚

  4. Rhonda, I can’t get this message to post on you-tube!

  5. Sharon Spencer Schlesinger

    I had no idea how beautiful this could be. You both must be over the moon at how this came out. Congratulations
    Sharon

  6. Hey Rhonda and Carol,

    This is amazing. Very atmospheric. I’d certainly want to read the book after watching the Machinima. Fantastic job!

    Edith

  7. This bombards the viewer with one question after another. Good show!

    — Bob

  8. The amount of work that is involved in making this work of Art is incredible and I’m sure that because the finished product looks flawless and effortless that this might be lost on some! I however know exactly how much work was involved lol the animations and objects that you’ve created yourself alone is a significant achievement in the community and a skill set that few have!
    I simply have to read this Book!
    Gary

    • Gary, it might be selfish of me, but I am glad you pointed this out. Yes, the point of good machinima is definitely to make it look effortless and natural. But there’s a reason it took more than six months to produce this film. I’d estimate that a full 80% of the animations in this video, at least in the later half, were created by me. Not to mention the custom content. Some of you will remember the fits I had over that darn movie camera. So thank you so much for recognizing this. It means a lot.

  9. I think Carol and Rhonda should go out and celebrate! It is phenomenal and I would add to what Gary pointed out. The custom content and custom animations were not missed by me. It is a great achievement for one person in so short a space of time – I mean, it’s not like if you were just concentrating on making custom content for the community. You were making very specific content, specific animations, getting the story to flow right and making machinima all at the same time! Most simmers just try to do one at a time.
    I am blown away by the level of dedication you’ve shown here and the very high standard you set for yourself. You have attained it! Honestly, how and when did you do this? (and managed to nurse that groundhog back to health in the process) I now officially look up to you as a mentor.

    Carol:
    You have opened my eyes to another part of the world and as I said before, I am so heartbroken for Romany and now for … (sorry, forgot his name) the one who said, “I am nobody; and you are nobody,” it hurt. When you said that the doctor is “a lot of men”, it broadened my thinking in terms of how a novel could not just tell one story but open eyes to a universal sort of reality – one that I would have missed given the protected life I’ve lived. It’s scary but if all it does is make me aware enough to advise my students better or just whisper a prayer for an unknown girl or guy, then it is enough, wouldn’t you say?

    • Odara, God bless you and all other directors or Simmers or fans who see and recognize these things. I’ve heard a few cracks about Sim mouths and teeth and goofy stuff like that–hey, talk about paying attention to the wrong thing!! I’m not crazy about some of the stock Sims animation, either, but it’s better than some of the alternatives. Folks who have a problem with the way Sims animate should take it up with EA Games and Maxis, right?

      Nevertheless, folks like you and Gary and Melissa come along and notice all the things I hoped and I prayed that people would notice–along with the great storyline Carol has created. I’m being a little tongue-in-cheek tonight because I’m exhausted and happy and dizzy from the attention this video is getting, but in all truth I have been preaching for months about the difference between seasoned gamers/directors and mainstream audiences. I completely understand why someone expecting Toy Story C-gen type animation would balk at some aspects of machinima. If someone has an inkling of interest in the video, however, those reservations usually melt away pretty quickly. πŸ™‚

    • Odara, I can’t imagine a much higher compliment — Rhonda looked to you as *her* role model and inspiration long before you saw this and wrote, “I now officially look up to you as a mentor.” COOL!

  10. I’ve never played Sims or even watched my kids play, though I did hear them lament their Sims characters were starving to death or having illegitimate offspring. Count me among the ignorant who wonder about black teeth and jerky motions. Rhonda taught me so much, on so many levels! She leaves me trembling at the thought of living up to her high standards, hard work, and dedication. While Rhonda rightly glows in gratitude when you directors appreciate what she has achieved (average viewers have NO IDEA), I am most touched when someone feels for Romany and Quinn. Yes, Odara — you make me feel like a part of something bigger and greater if you are moved to whisper a prayer for an unknown girl or guy. They’re out there! And I’m looking for the right place to dedicate a portion of profits to the rescue and rehabilitation of sex trafficked kids. Not just girls. Somaly Mam’s book, Road to Lost Innocence, sent me on this path. Tom Davis, author of Priceless and 3 similar books, risks his life to rescue helpless girls trapped in the sex-slave industry. His ministry, Children’s HopeChest, is another great cause. Thank you for sharing my horror –sheltered as I am, to realize such evil goes on, not just across the sea but in our own backyards, hidden in plain sight.–it makes me so angry, and so helpless to stop it, all I could do was write. Thank you. And Rhonda, double-ditto all the praises that are coming in. Your sensitivity and understanding shine through. You, who can care enough to rescue a groundhog from your dog and nurse it back to health, have the heart for so much more. God bless you!

  11. Somaly Mam Foundation – β€Žthe fight against human trafficking in Cambodia– 50 years of humanitarian assistance worldwide.

    β€Ž” The world is waiting for your vision! The world is waiting for your dream! What are you waiting for?” – Tyler Perry

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