In this groundbreaking collection, Dr. Jenna Ng brings together academics and award-winning artists and machinima makers to explore the fascinating combination of cinema, animation and games in machinima (the use of computer game engines to produce animated films in cost- and time-efficient ways). Book-ended by a preface by Henry Lowood (curator for history of science and technology collections at Stanford University) and an interview with Isabelle Arvers (machinima artist, trainer, critic, and curator), the collection features wide-ranging discussions addressing machinima not only from diverse theoretical perspectives, but also in its many dimensions as game art, First Nations media art, documentary, and pedagogical tool. Making use of interactive multimedia to enhance the text, each chapter features a QR code which leads to a mobile website cross-referencing with its print text, integrating digital and print content while also taking into account the portability of digital devices in resonance with machinima's mobile digital forms. Exploring the many dimensions of machinima production and reception, Understanding Machinima extends machinima's critical scholarship and debate, underscoring the exciting potential of this emerging media form.
Jenna Ng is Anniversary Research Lecturer in Film and Interactive Media at the University of York, UK. She was previously a Newton Trust/Leverhulme Early Career Fellow at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH), University of Cambridge, UK.
Acknowledgements Preface Henry Lowood Introduction Jenna Ng I. Thinking Machinima 1. Machinima: Cinema in a minor or multitudinous key? William Brown and Matthew Holtmeier 2. Beyond Bullet Time: Media in the knowable space Chris Burke 3. Be(ing)Dazzled: Living in machinima Sheldon Brown 4. Moving Digital Puppets Michael Nitsche, Ali Mazalek and Paul Clifton 5. Facing the Audience: A dialogic perspective on the hybrid animated film Lisbeth Frolunde 6. Dangerous Sim Crossings: Framing the Second Life art machinima Sarah Higley II. Using Machinima 7. The Art of Games: Machinima and the limits of art games Larissa Hjorth 8. Playing Politics: Machinima as live performance and document Joseph DeLappe 9. Virtual Lens of Exposure: Aesthetics, theory, and ethics of documentary filmmaking in Second Life Sandra Danilovic 10. Call It a Vision Quest: Machinima in a First Nations context Beth Aileen Dillon and Jason Edward Lewis 11. World of Chaucer: Adaptation, pedagogy, and interdisciplinarity Chris Moore and Graham Barwell 12. A Pedagogy of Craft: Teaching Culture Analysis with machinima Jenna Ng and James Barrett Agency, Simulation, Gamification, Machinima: An interview with Isabelle Arvers Isabelle Arvers and Jenna Ng Notes on Contributors Glossary Index