This Spartan Life: Machinima Talk Show

Gizmodo linked to a new machinima talk show: This Spartan Life

If you've seen Red vs. Blue, or some of the similar movies made using "in game" videography from some games like Halo or Quake3, you'll know what machinima is.

But This Spartan Life takes it one step further - instead of being a scripted "in-game play" being acted out, it's a full-blown talk show. Complete with guests, interviews, cameramen and crew, perimeter security snipers, stray rocket fire from nearby newbies, and the Solid Gold Elite Dancers.

The first episode includes an entertaining interview with Bob Stein, one of the pioneers of interactive media. It somehow adds to the conversation, watching him experiment with movement in Halo, and dodging newbie enemy fire. His entrance in a flying warthog was pretty funny, too...

What I'm really curious in, though, is how could this be used to bring guests into a class in a more interactive way than just piping them in via videoconference. Imagine your students being able to walk around with, interact with, and have personal discussions with invited guests. And, recording the session for later use/review...

This is along the lines of Mike and Rob's class project from a couple years ago, where they took a game engine, and modeled an ancient Yemeni temple for use as a setting for inquiry-based learning by groups of students. Professors and TAs could participate as well, and students were able to explore the temple and surrounding area, interacting with in-game characters and other students.

I'm not sure what ever came of their simulation, but the technology has come a LOOOONG way since then, so I'd love to see what they could do now...

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