Machinima Competition #2 Interview

Earlier this month, Jagex held the second Machinima Competition, and offered us to send in any questions we might have. As a follow-up to the question topic, we now have our completed interview ready! A big thanks goes to Mod Paul M. and Mod Hohbein for answering our questions!

Published on: February 15, 2010 12:10 AM UTC

Table of Contents

The Interview

In your eyes, how successful was the first competition? – Desireful
It was hugely successful! Sure we had lots of entries, lots of video views, a great prize and some very deserving winners but as perhaps our first ‘big’ competition, it paved the way for the competitions we have up our sleeve ready to launch over the course of the year. I think it also really highlighted to us and the rest of RuneScape community how RuneScape is used for creative gameplay by many players which in turn has resulted in the community thinking more about different ways to enjoy RuneScape. There are loads more reasons I could list off but you get the idea. =) – Mod Paul M
What have you learned from the first competition that you changed in the second? (behind the scenes stuff I guess) – Desireful
Good question! I guess the first major change was that this time we had a theme (RuneScape Ads) and the reason for that based on the feedback we had, we actually made it harder to enter as there were so many options for creativity. Having a theme has helped to guide that creativity to an extent and looking at the number of entries we’ve had, I think we removed a barrier there to an extent. For us too, it’s much easier to judge using a theme rather than trying to decide between videos that might be poles apart.

Another change was the “30 second rule”. 30 seconds works well with adverts/commercials for a start but also, I don’t think my girlfriend or sleep pattern was ready for 1000’s of two minute videos this time. ;) – Mod Paul M
Do you have a "team" dedicated to just watching and/or judging the videos for the competition? – Desireful
A large proportion of the Community Management team were hugely keen to be involved so we’ve been taking it in turns to review videos and create short list for final judging. It’s at that point when we’re down to around our 50 favourites that we then get input from the rest of the company and from there, get it down to the finalists. – Mod Paul M
Do you plan to do more competitions in the future? If so, will there be more "no-themed" machinima competitions? – Desireful
Absolutely, we have lots of competitions that we can’t wait to run that give the community chance to flex their creative muscles in a variety of ways. Next month for example, we’ll be launching the next story competition. ; ) I think having a theme for machinima works well but I’d certainly never say never to another free form competition either. – Mod Paul M
Was the Orb of Oculus specifically released for the Machinima competitions? Or, was it always going to come out? – As
The Orb of Oculus came about as a result of feedback from the first machinima competition. So had we not had the feedback and interest from the community, I can’t say that we would have the Orb we have today. – Mod Paul M
Will the prizes ever change? – As
The actual prizes we offer may change, but we’re keen to make sure the value of prizes remains fairly constant. - Mod Hohbein
Do you feel you have connected more with the community after the first competition? – As
We were pretty well connected with the community prior to the competition, but yea, I do think the last competition helped the Community Management team reach out to more players and generate a lot of interest in RuneScape. We do make a conscious effort to recognise and build communities, and running competitions is just one thread in an overall tapestry that’ll allow us to do just that. - Mod Hohbein
Do you plan to release more items into the game to enhance video making? – As
As ever we can’t talk about future content, sorry! - Mod Hohbein
Is there a set number of competitions you plan to have? Surely you can't keep handing out life time memberships and plane trips forever. – As
Not really, we have plans for competitions and so have a set number in a schedule right now but when an opportunity to reward players for creativity or pwnage skills shows itself, we’re more than happy to add it to the schedule. So if you’ve any ideas for great competitions, we’d love to hear them. – Mod Paul M
Will you ever branch into different machinima, such as faking (editing screenshots) or podcasts/radio? – Easl
Never say never! We’re totally open to ideas and suggestions for different styles of competition whether that’s machinima based or otherwise. To an large extent, we’ll go where the community takes us. – Mod Hohbein
This competition round you had the time limit put down by a minute and a half. Is this because you had difficulty getting through the number of entries you had last year? Or was it just to make it more ad-like? - Helm360
It was a bit of both to be honest. I think a two minute advertisement would be a bit intense but after the success of the last machinima comp, I also wanted to give ourselves plenty of time to review entries without the need to sit in front of a computer till 5am for weeks on end. ; ) - Mod Paul M
When the Orb of Oculus was released, several videomakers felt it was incredibly hard to control. Do you have any plans to fix this? - Helm360
Funny you should say that, Mod Mod Hohbein mentioned that very bit of feedback to Mod Fnord (Orb of Oculus developer) in his recent Q&A video which you can find (shameless plug!=D) on our youtube channel ( . – Mod Paul M
What are your criteria when judging the videos? (Besides the given rules) - Dr Skull
We’re pretty loose in terms of criteria – there aren’t any formal boxes to tick or anything like that. Generally speaking though, a few things we consider are: how technically well made the video is, how funny it is and how good the idea/script is. - Mod Hohbein
How did you come up with the idea of having the theme of the competition as "advertisements?" - Dr Skull
Perhaps rather selfishly, I’d seen lots in the past, loved them and wanted to see more. I also wanted something that was accessible, that the whole community would know about and also worked with some of the time related concerns I mention to Helm 360 and Desireful. – Mod Paul M
Will the winning advertisement be used for anything "official?" - Dr Skull
No but I think it would be fun to use some for “commercial breaks” in future Community Management videos. Not only would that give you a break from looking at our faces for a bit but it’s a good opportunity to credit more video makers that would be a shame to waste. – Mod Paul M
Do you feel that having players voting for the winner is fair to the other finalists? For instance, last year was a bit obvious that the winner had a huge advantage over everyone else and there were a lot of people who admitted to not watching the other entries. - Fudge G00d
I don’t subscribe to some of the concerns that were raised on that one to be honest as to me, I’d like to think that the community would pick a video on its merits alone. Having said that, as that was a perception that was raised to us, we’ve taken a slightly different approach this time around to dispel that perception as much as possible. Ultimately though, players will have the final say. ; ) – Mod Paul M
Is the Machinima trend going to be expanded more in RuneScape and have its own community; possibly a forum category? - Fudge G00d
There already is a RuneScape machinima community that come together on our YouTube channel regularly so although a forum would be nice, I don’t know if that’s entirely necessary. However, if the community were to outgrow the YouTube channel and needed a bit more space to spread their creative wings then we certainly wouldn’t rule out offering additional support. – Mod Paul M

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