The Source Engine: From games... to movies?

Gahars

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Valve introduced the world to the Source engine in 2004, and it's been chugging along ever since. It's a handy engine, powering some of the greatest games of the past ten years and providing a versatility that modders have come to love. Until now, though, it has only been used in the realm of video games.

Well, it looks like a little movie is going to change all of that.

Valve's Source engine will make its big screen debut in a movie called Deep, Variety reported on Saturday. The small-budget animated movie will use Valve's engine as a low-cost solution for real-time rendering and editing, an unusual approach that may grow in popularity for smaller studios. The partnership between the developer and the film production team may also result in the release of the movie on Steam.

...Valve has a working relationship with production studio Brown Bag Films, according to Kotaku, and agreed to license the engine for Deep. The animated film is set in the post-apocalyptic landscape of World War III, where the remainder of mankind huddles in abandoned ship hulls and struggles to survive.

Deep has a budget of €15 million ($18.7 million)—sizeable by European standards, but small by American ones. Companies like Pixar spend well into the hundreds of millions on their 3D animated films. By using Source, Deep may well be one of the first feature film instances of beginning-to-endmachinima, a type of animation that involves using game engines to animate (usually short) movies.Red vs. Blue is the canonical of machinima, and the style was used throughout the World of Warcraft-themed South Park episode, "Make Love Not Warcraft."
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Ars Technica

It hasn't been confirmed yet, but there have been hints that the movie will be distributed through Valve's own gaming distribution service, which would be another important first.

I don't know about you, but I'm getting all steamed up about this. The movie sounds interesting enough, and it would be really cool if others followed their lead. Who knows, we could see a lot of smaller studios using Source as a cost effective way of producing their films.

And who knows, maybe Valve will branch out into other mediums as well. Prepare yourselves; the Gaben Conquest has just begun.
 

Qtis

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Read about it on Ars a few hours ago. Sounds interesting, basically this is something that could be used in many ways (special effects, etc.). Pre-rendered images are so much easier to produce compared to real time rendering :P
 

Jamstruth

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I remember there was a "Cinematic Mod" for HL2 which pushed the Source Engine to its complete limit and it was really pretty but you required a beast of a computer to run it. It was pretty damn good looking too.
Without a limit of rendering the movie in real time I wonder just what they'll come up with.
 

Gahars

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If they decide to make an adaptation of Concerned: The Half-Life and Death of Gordon Frohman this way (either a movie or, if the fates smile upon us, a web series), I would throw all of my money in Valve's direction.
 

Guild McCommunist

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inb4 "lol engine from 2004", that was the initial version, source has been updated repeatedly without changing the name (just the model year).

Anyways this isn't really a bad idea as far as making it easy and quick (relatively) to make a 3D movie...

Considering Unreal Engine has been used for animation, Source isn't a stretch. Plus most of what we've seen from Source is basic animation, nothing scripted and stuff. It can look rather good, Source still holds up after 8 years.
 
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BORTZ

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inb4 "lol engine from 2004", that was the initial version, source has been updated repeatedly without changing the name (just the model year).

Anyways this isn't really a bad idea as far as making it easy and quick (relatively) to make a 3D movie...

Considering Unreal Engine has been used for animation, Source isn't a stretch. Plus most of what we've seen from Source is basic animation, nothing scripted and stuff. It can look rather good, Source still holds up after 8 years.
I wonder if it will be used as just a real time render engine or if that term (realtime) is a squishy term and will have a few seconds or minutes after the physics have been worked out.
 

Celice

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I've been watching some animators like MaxofS2D and R33MIX who use the source engine, and it's pretty snazzy to see what they've been coming up with over the years. It's not all choppy screenshot-fests like other Garry's Mod videos.
 

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