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Iron & Ice-Steampunk series-demo-typical episode

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#1 writerly


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Posted 27 August 2016 - 03:11 PM

Here is the demo for my steampunk Moviestorm-animated series "Iron & Ice"




Iron & Ice” is a smart, exciting, and sometimes funny, computer-animated Steampunk series which follows the adventures of the Victorian crew of an ice-burrowing ship exploring an alternative Earth after 500 years of glaciation.


On the orders of Queen Victoria, they are trying to make contact with other humans who have survived the ice in isolated pockets around the globe. They have to be careful because the aliens who caused the new ice age are still around. Worse, there are human traitors who have thrown in with the aliens who could betray the crew at any moment.


It is a dangerous world of civilizations who have adapted to the new reality. Some have gone back to older days, like the Egyptian cult which worships Ra the sun god . Others have taken radical steps to stabilize their populations, like the new Minoan civilization which treats men like dangerous animals. There are air pirates who swoop down from the clouds in one person dirigibles and ornithopters. A latter-day Captain Nemo roams the open seas in his Nautilus.


The crew travel in the HMS Ice Factor, a remarkable steam-powered ship with interchangeable modules tailored to each mission. As well as cutting through glacial ice like a hot knife through butter, the Ice Factor can be reconfigured as a submarine, an airship, a war ship, a portable science lab, a search and rescue vessel, and much more.



#2 primaveranz


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Posted 27 August 2016 - 10:40 PM

What a great premise for a story Craig! Look forward to watching.

"If we only use 1/3 of our brain, what's the other 1/3 for?"

#3 primaveranz


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Posted 27 August 2016 - 11:14 PM

That's the first long-ish MS movie I have watched all the way through for quite some time. Very enjoyable!

My gripes would only be small small ones:-

I couldn't figure out if Mr Roe was Scottish or Irish (but then I do have a particular viewpoint there ;)

I also think you could make better use of texturing and lighting in some places (jaggy shadows and not 3D enough) and the fight scenes were a bit underdone.


On the plus side...

I enjoyed the story and the character interactions and I want to know more (which is all you can ask really).

Some really good VA acting there  (where did you find them? as I need some British voices for a movie).


Full steam ahead!






"If we only use 1/3 of our brain, what's the other 1/3 for?"

#4 sosberg


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Posted 31 August 2016 - 06:08 AM

Wow, looks great!

I would like to see us get this place right first before we have the arrogance to put significantly flawed civilizations out onto other planets, even though they may be utterly uninhabited.

#5 Nahton


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Posted 03 September 2016 - 02:40 PM

Well done Craig!


I streamed it to my TV last night. It breezed by quickly for a 23 minute video. 



It was highly imaginative and the plot was fast paced.

The voice acting was excellent, which contributed to it's watch-ability.




This may be due to the "demo" nature of the video but some more attention to the overall production values could have really elevated this to higher level style video.

The reliance on using well known historical characters and the explanation of how this was possible did not resonate with me and I found the non-historical characters more compelling.


Overall, the cons were minor and the positive aspects of this were far greater. Good luck on future episodes!



#6 writerly


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Posted 20 September 2016 - 11:26 AM

A very big thank you to everyone who took the time to watch my "Iron &  Ice" demo.

Your notes were most welcome and I am taking them to heart.

I have been working on the basic concept for this show, a group of explorers rediscovering a glaciated Earth, for more than forty years.

Not quite there  yet.

Getting closer.


Did discover several things as I worked on it.


1) As a designer I'm a pretty good writer. (Next time I'll get someone with a much better and innovative visual sense to help me)

2) It IS possible to do almost everything yourself...but not necessarily a good idea.

3) Having a great sound engineer/composer/musican pays off incredibly. My guy, Rich  Goyette, scored the two episodes I produced like feature films. He also did all the foley work and many, many other things. It has been scientifically proven that good sound actually makes people think you have improved the picture quality.

4) You can get really good voice actors just by asking around. I have connections with local amateur theatre and that is where I found most of mine.

5) Plot IS important, but not nearly as important as having good characters with strong relationships. I dropped the relationship ball on this one because I was too worried about getting the plot rolling.

6) Half an hour is NOT a good length for a serious science-fiction show. It is no accident that (my hero) Gerry Anderson's best, most successful show was the hour-long Thunderbirds.

7) The Uncanny Valley is real and sadly Moviestorm puppets seem to fall in the Marianas Trench of it. Even though the animation is technically better than "South Park" or pretty much any anime out there, people judged it against Pixar. Even when I asked people not to comment on the animation because my beloved Moviestorm was the only affordable way I could do the demo, they still told me how much they hated, yes, hated, the look.

8) There is absolutely no other program as easy to use as Moviestorm. Doing these demos would have been impossible without it. I called the demos "Pre-Viz" hoping that would mitigate some of the resistance. Industry people seemed more accepting than average viewers.


I wrote and produced two demo episodes of "Iron & Ice". This one, the typical episode, is better to my mind than the pilot, but for those interested here is a link to that pilot episode.



Thanks again to everyone who took the time to watch and give me feedback.



Craig AKA Writerly

#7 jamoram62


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Posted 21 September 2016 - 06:03 PM

Hi, Craig.


Thanks a lot for sharing your thoughts and impression about the creative process of your work, As a wannabe producer and actual puppet-pusher I greatly appreciate your insightful comments.


Perhaps, if there is a point I disagree about is your comment about the location of Moviestorm in the emotional response curve that defines the (in)famous Uncanny Valley effect. Animation of puppets in Moviestorm may be quite awkward and mechanical-looking most of the time, even unsthetic. But the degree of human likeness of their characters doesn't suffice to trigger such an unpleasant feeling.


Now, if you'd really like to watch something that will give you the creeps, take a look at any movie made with iClone 6 using the latest generation of puppets (the G6 ones and those created with the Character Creator), such as this one:  https://youtu.be/y9eLNh6JU4s




ars longa vita brevis - Hippocrates (attributed)
If you want to tell jokes then use Muvizu; if you want to make 'Movies', use iClone; but if you want to tell stories, use Moviestorm - PrimaveraNZ
Shared addons & stuff for Moviestorm: https://drive.google...aTNsSFBuN0sxZHM

#8 colour


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Posted 08 October 2016 - 08:22 PM

Best  MovieStorm clip I've seen.


A fine production, considering Moviestorm's limitations, due to lack of development over the years. You've made up for that, with excellent use of different camera angles. More prodigious use of self-cast shadows & lighting, will transform MovieStorm's flat 2D look, into more realistic 3D look.


Excellent script & voice acting, with matching  gestures & facial animation. A perfect Queen Victoria.


Great Storyline, that flows-along nicely, holding the viewer's attention to the end (I'm English, BTW).


Very entertaining. Thanks.




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