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Tuesday, December 1, 2015

I've Got A Rocket...


I've Got A Rocket VIDEO


Sometimes an idea comes along that you are burning to do and it just seems like its going to be a superhuman effort to pull it off.  Thanks to more  forward-leaps  in the development of The Artiste this year, I managed to make this one a {virtual} reality.

The idea for "Rocket" first came about  a couple of years ago when Jemma showed me a stage set that she had built with the "Sillywet" built into it.  The "Sillywet" is essentially just two prims linked together using transparency, which through a glitch of SL creates a silhouette image of the avatar.

I begged her for the stage, fired up with ideas of what I wanted to do with it, but it then sat on the shelf for a long time.  I periodically brought it out and looked at ideas again, but at the time the Artiste was not far enough along to accomplish all the things I wanted to do.

Eventually it was ready, with the first incarnation of Yummy's rezzer, which allowed a transition fade between one set and another.  It was all set up to go at the Artiste Venue but then other priorities took precedence and once again it was put away.

Although the transition between the sets in this video is done with camera fade, it gives a good representation of what it would have looked like as a live piece.  

Specific techniques:

Avatar mover:
Use of the palette mover to direct the avatar from behind the "Sillywet" and to the middle of the stage.

Doors and Lights:
Originally, the opening of the doors and the on/off switch for the down-lights was controlled with a separate HUD built by Jemma to go with the set.   By the time I put the routine together we were able to move doors and have the lights not only going on and off but flickering, by replacing them with palettes. The doors are on a simple MOVE command and the lights have a flicker and an on/off.

Planting the bomb:
Unfortunately this is one area where things have not caught up to us yet.  There are not sufficient subtle animations available to cover every eventuality of motion so I had to settle for a mere suggestion with a crouch. The mover palette was used to adjust for height differences in the avatar between the dances and the couch animation.

The bomb is detached from her hip by strip function and then appears on the floor in front of her.  The front of the bomb on the floor is an animated palette texture and the bomb "appears" with show/hide.  It then slides across the floor and bounces off the barrels (palette move).

Noxious fumes:
The "bomb" triggers a reaction with the "toxic" material in the containers and the "fumes" are particles from palettes, triggered by *autofx.  The one point I would have changed was the rising "green screen" which was meant to be the level of fumes rising up from the floor but perhaps a fading screen would have worked better. Our fearless astro-girl has adorned her gas-mask by this point and then by adorning a tunnel particle stream she teleports out of the doomed ship.

Safely back on board:
I took a copy of Jemma's set and redesigned it to make the interior of another ship, which was the target destination for the teleport.  In the live setting there was a fade between the two sets at this point, using the rezzer fade ability, so the two sets were aligned with each other for a smooth transition.  Our heroine gets to do her celebratory dance while we see the first ship in the window behind her shortly before it explodes.  The "ship" was a textured palette against a moving background. which then used fade/hide to "vanish" and had triggered particles to announce its destruction.

There were quite a lot of subtle effects used to create one routine.  I ended up with 10 palettes in all and it took a lot of planning and tweaking.  I think all the effort was well worth it from the feedback I have had from people who have seen the video.  

Many thanks to Jemma for the use of her set; to Yummy for answering so many technical questions and to Sterling who filmed and edited the project with a real vision and made it something really "awesome-sauce" as Jemz would say!

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