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Author Topic: Documentary on Gaming  (Read 3364 times)
Mario
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Posts: 18


« on: April 12, 2002, 08:23:55 PM »

I didn't know where else to put this, so here it is.

I am presently working on the idea of doing a documentary on gaming. I would like to do most of the shooting this gencon if possible.

The reason I'm mentioning this, is that I want your input.  What do you think a documentary on gaming should be about?  I have several possible options already but I'd like to know what you'd be interested in seeing.

Heres a couple of ideas, as examples

A very broad discussion of the history and different types of Gaming. How the hobby got started and what it has become.

Explore the different subcultures of this subculture.  the White Wolf gamers, the geek gamers, the TTGers and CCGers.  compare the ways they play and act.

I am pretty serious about this project even if I don't get to it this year I will do it soon.  So I am open to any and all opinions you may have.

Thanks
Mario
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Nathan
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« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2002, 08:46:09 PM »

My brother and I were going to work on this.

I think you need to focus more on the level -- history and all is interesting, but may just be a small segment of it.

One segment would be:
1) A look at one gamer, his lifestyle, arriving at home, calling his friends, preparing for the game, expectations, and so on...
2) A group of gamers and their travel to Gencon, what they do there, how they react, how they soak it in, and so on...
3) Returning to the first gamer -- interviewing his family and friends, what they think about his gaming, and so on...

and etc..

Since gaming is a social activity, it should be looked at in that vein only. A documentary about gaming history is kind of strange and niche/niche. If you could capture the gaming culture in a social sense (meaning centered on real PEOPLE), you could capture something really cool.

Thanks,
Nathan
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J B Bell
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Posts: 267


« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2002, 08:59:44 PM »

Get footage (current, if they're still around; stock otherwise) of anti-gaming fanatics.  (Those wonderful Jack T. Chick pamphlets would be swell as still shots.)

Make sure to make them look as stupid as they are.

--JB
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Jared A. Sorensen
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« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2002, 09:56:01 PM »

Quote from: Nathan
Since gaming is a social activity, it should be looked at in that vein only. A documentary about gaming history is kind of strange and niche/niche. If you could capture the gaming culture in a social sense (meaning centered on real PEOPLE), you could capture something really cool.


I'm gonna agree witht his 100%. Look at the documentaries/good reality TV shows and you see basic human stories. Forget about what the doc is "really" about...successful ones show humanity (for better or worse).

Check out Trekkies for a similar subject (Star Trek geeks). Not only do you get the face to face inteviews, you also get footage of the trekker milling around with others, talking about Trek. It's pretty funny/interesting to see how people are.

Ah, movies are made in the editing room anyway.
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jared a. sorensen / www.memento-mori.com
greyorm
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« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2002, 07:59:57 AM »

I don't know if GenCon is the place for a gaming documentary...certainly none of my players are large, unwashed, poorly dressed and smell as though they have failed to shower (or perform any other hygiene-related activity) in weeks.

Ok, that's a little tongue-in-cheek...heh...but GenCon does seem to have more than its fair share of such individuals, as was noticed and commented upon last year by a couple folks passing by the WotC Castle.
Honestly, most groups these days don't contain such individuals, though such may have been more common years ago.
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 10459


« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2002, 06:58:40 AM »

Quote from: greyorm
I don't know if GenCon is the place for a gaming documentary...certainly none of my players are large, unwashed, poorly dressed and smell as though they have failed to shower (or perform any other hygiene-related activity) in weeks.

So, what, he should stay away from Con's in general, or display a sanitized version of Gaming? Mario's a gamer, too. I'm sure that it won't just focus on the lack of social skills that some gamers have. But to ignore it entirely would be to omit a significant segment of the gameing populace. Which would be dishonest.

Trekkies had a slight "ain't this bizarre behavior?" sort of slant. Given the prople who produced it, that's not surprising. Some of the people involved with Trek, tired of being scritinized by the fans, decided to scrutinize back. So, of course they focused on the strangest of the behavior. Not a totally biased look, they did make a stab at objectivity. But two of the people that they followed around, were selected soley based on their absolutely extreme behavior (like the woman who wore her uniform eveywhere including to work and jury duty and insisted upon being referred to by her ST "rank"). Which makes the entire subculture look insane, as opposed to what most really are, which is just interested in something as a hobby.

I'd trust Mario to include some commentary about how the social misfits exist, but are just a fraction of the total crowd who is, on the whole, pretty normal, if highly interested in a particular hobby.

Oh, and while the social aspects will probably make for better film, I wouldn't omit the history and such entirely. Some of that would put the social stuff in context. Especially intresting whould be to me the "aging" of he gaming populace (which parallels the aging of the comics market, for ex).

Mike
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Jared A. Sorensen
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« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2002, 07:09:08 AM »

Quote from: Mike Holmes
Trekkies had a slight "ain't this bizarre behavior?" sort of slant. Given the prople who produced it, that's not surprising. Some of the people involved with Trek, tired of being scritinized by the fans, decided to scrutinize back. So, of course they focused on the strangest of the behavior.


I dunno. The audience for Trekkies was probably composed mainly of Star Trek fans. The truly out-there fans were shown because: a) it's more entertaining and b) the people watching the film have at least a passing interest in All Things Trek and don't need to see peopl like them on-screen.

A gaming documentary, made for gamers, would probably be in the same vein. One made as a historical document would probably be a lot more broad-based.
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jared a. sorensen / www.memento-mori.com
Matt Gwinn
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« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2002, 07:49:53 AM »

Does anyone know what WOTC's stance is on video taping the CON?  You may have legal issues to deal with.  Plus, make sure you have plenty of release forms for people to sign.

Just thought it needed to be brought up :-)

,Matt G.
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Mario
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Posts: 18


« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2002, 01:50:05 PM »

I believe that focusing to much on one person or one group would be to narrow for the subject.  There are too many different people involved with the hobby for that.  You wouldn't be presenting a correct picture.  Nor would, I believe, it make for a very interesting story.  If it was a doc on what a gamer does to play than that would be fine, but I want it to be on the entire hobby.

History, I agree, will not be major focus, but since I'm not intending this to be only for other gamers some history will be needed to put the hobby in perspective for those who know nothing about it.  Thats why I would like to comment on the anti-gaming issues as a comparison to what its really like.

Matt, I will be contacting Wotc, but they no longer own the con, so I will also be contacting the new owners as well.  As far as any other legal issues, I've got it covered, I've been doing this for quite awhile.  But thanks for the reminder :)

Thanks to everyone, your all helping and I am considering every idea you have.

Thanks
Mario
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