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View Profile R1665

35, Male

Kentucky, USA

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R1665's News

Posted by R1665 - October 7th, 2009


Well, this has been a very productive month, indeed. At this moment, Episode 3 is just over a minute long. Half of that is the sprite part of the story intro without stops for text. The other half is, of course, pure fighting. I am amazed with how quickly this project is progressing. I am in full "animate" mode, meaning that a portion of every waking thought is dedicated to this project.

In this fight, I am incorporating new choreographic techniques due to the style of characters that I have selected. It will be unlike any other sprite fight ever created. It has an entirely different style, even from my previous works. The "style" is really the only thing I can change at this point. That fact was known to me long ago and my fight cards are planned in such a way as to challenge me to work with characters with varying abilities. By using different characters with different abilities, I avoid the trap of tedium and monotony that many animators fall into by using the same "type" of character over and over again. (I'm looking at you, shoto animators...)

That said, I am now working with some very interesting fighters. As you are probably already aware, this fight will be waged between MK and SF. I am not willing to divulge the identities of the fighters at this time, but I can give a few nonspecific bits of information to people to chew on.

My chosen Street Fighter is one that has been seen in flash before but, in my opinion, has never been used to their full potential. Looking at this character's sprites, I am shocked that they aren't used more often in fights like this. The choreographic options for this character are almost limitless. I look forward to unlocking this character's true awesomeness. I say "looking forward to" because I have yet to do it. Let's just say that the Mortal Kombat fighter is damn good and has pretty much owned the first thirty seconds. Heh... heh... heh...

Oh, and on a more shameless note, It's my birthday! Twenty-six isn't really a milestone, but I'll take any opportunity I can to celebrate. I started celebrating early by taking the entire week off from work. Paid vacation and all that. Considering that October 7th is one of the very few "holidays" that I actually bother to observe, I might as well make a week out of it!

R1665


Posted by R1665 - September 7th, 2009


My side projects are now complete! That means that I can now focus on flash without having other overdue responsibilities pecking at the back of my brain.

That said, production on VG EXILES EP. 3 begins TOMORROW! After three long years of waiting, I am finally going to do my dream fight! I can't stress enough how important this upcoming fight is to me.

( WARNING! Extremely long, personally reflective story ahead! )

When I first saw MK vs SF 2 by Proxicide, I imagined what kind of fight I would make if I had those kinds of skills. The match-up was no question. From the moment I learned that these kinds of videos were possible, I knew who I wanted to see fight. Part of my drive to learn was the thought that if I didn't make this match-up, nobody would.

Way WAY back before I even knew the first thing about flash, I had planned to make this match an unofficial sequel to Proxicide's series. It would have taken place weeks after Ryu returned to his home dimension and been fought between two characters not previously seen in the series. To that end, I got myself a copy of flash and prepared to animate this fight.

I got about twelve frames into it before I realized that I didn't have a clue what I was doing. I put the project on the back-burner to pursue a live-action movie project. I figured that I would someday return to flash and learn how to use it properly. In the meantime, I worked on this live-action movie project while constantly gathering all kinds of resources: sprites, sound effects, etc.

Fast-forward two years.

My first live-action movie had failed. It was a joint development between myself and my best friend. Very long story short, I realized that he was a jackass and ejected him from the production. I haven't spoken to him since and wouldn't care to. I wrote a second script and prepared to shoot it on my own, but the project never really got to the shooting stage. Scheduling complications, the onset of winter, and other such things.

After I made the announcement that this second movie would go on the backburner, I found myself with little to do. I soon decided that it would be a good time to revisit that old flash idea I had. THIS TIME, however, I would do it right.

I got a guide book to Flash 8 from my local bookstore and spent the next two weeks going through it cover-to-cover. As soon as I had finished it, I was ready to rock my first flash. By then, I had thought up my own story that was not connected to Proxicide's story. It was going to be called MK vs. SF: INVASION. It was going to be a six-part series and my original match-up idea was going to be fight #3. That way, I would likely have gained the experience needed to do the job right from the first two fights. I had read in an interview that Proxicide had regretted using his favorite character in his first video. That was a mistake that I would not make.

The problem was that INVASION was going to feature some of the less popular characters, including one of my own design (essentially a palette-swapped cyber ninja). I would have to make high-quality fights to give these characters extra appeal. At that time, I wasn't even sure that I could animate a good fight. To that end, I decided to make a test flash just to see if I had what it takes.

I spent the next eight weeks animating VG EXILES Episode 0.

The reason why I started with zero was because I had not planned on making any more afterward. I finished Episode Zero and submitted it to Newgrounds. Despite what one may think looking at the stats now, Episode Zero actually came out to a lukewarm reception (It initially passed judgment with a 3.22).

I needed practice. I needed to hone my skills further before tackling the juggernaut that was the INVASION project. That was when I decided to do another flash to show people what I had learned and what I could really do.

That flash was VG EXILES Episode 1.

Even though I knew what would happen in the story, I figured that I would return to it in a few years after completing INVASION. However, the more I thought about it, the less desire I had to animate INVASION (for reasons I outlined in my last post). Eventually, I scrapped the INVASION project and devoted myself to the series that was originally meant only to be practice - the VG EXILES.

Gambit and Talbain got their fight.

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This upcoming match-up started as an unofficial Proxicide sequel. It then became the planned bout for the third INVASION episode. Now, it will be adapted for the VG EXILES. Three years of planning are about to become reality.

I'm finally ready for it. Let's rock.

R1665


Posted by R1665 - August 11th, 2009


Well, my most recent flash is now off the front page and things are starting to calm down on my account. I guess now would be a good time for me to reflect on this last flash as well as my upcoming plans. I won't be front-page posting this because I have no screenshots. I also see no reason why I should bore complete strangers with my ramblings. Those of you who frequent my page should be used to it by now!

VG EXILES Episode 2...

I must say that I am THRILLED with the way this movie was received! I also wasn't expecting to get a weekly 5th out of it. I guess that's why two other top-notch animations showed up and knocked me down to third - competition for those weeklies. I might have to consider submitting on Tuesdays from now on! Yeah, the competition is fierce, but the rewards are great.

What surprised me most is how well the movie did considering all of the things that it had going against it. First of all, is was the first movie that didn't rely on the Proxicide influence in some way. (You know it. I know it. Let's not bullshit ourselves here.) It was the first movie in which the choreography and setup was all mine. It was the first movie that showed the real nature of my Exiles' series, meaning that B-listers and the underused got the glory while lots of "popular" characters bit the dust. (Although Ibuki and Makoto didn't appear because they were "popular". They appeared because they lost out on getting their own fights when I cancelled MK vs. SF: INVASION.)

For the record, I usually put more weight on how often a character appears in flash than their fandom when I determine "popularity". Since the cat is out of the bag on this flash, I will finally state for the record that I am sick to the teeth of seeing headswapped shotoclones being headlined all the time. Believe me when I say that I took GREAT pleasure in dispatching the two that showed up in Episode 2. I will only accept Ken as my "token headswap shotoclone". At least he has some personality I can work with. I find the rest to be completely without appeal for the VG Exiles. Sorry, Akuma fans.

In fact, that's one of the reasons why I canceled MK vs. SF: INVASION. The story I developed required two Ryu fights and an Akuma fight. By the time I reached the end of animating VG Exiles Ep. 1, I realized that I'd rather chew glass than spend a year and a half animating shoto fights. The thought of animating that actually started producing real symptoms of nausea. That's why INVASION went in the scrap heap and will stay there. What can I say? I guess I just developed a strong distaste for the status quo of sprite fighting somewhere between Episodes zero and one. With the entire roster of fighting game history open to me, it's kind of hard to generate any excitement for a half dozen jackasses with nearly identical moves and appearance. I'm not just picking on Street Fighter here. I hold MK ninjas to this standard as well. The only reason why I don't cringe when I see them like I do shotoclones is because I don't see them as often.

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Okay, I've covered reflections and ramblings. That leaves the future.

I have a few projects to tackle before I can get started on Episode 3. They shouldn't take long. I have to do them now because they are grossly overdue and I won't get them done if I start on the next flash. I am notorious for my inability to focus on more than one thing at a time.

As for the next flash, It will be another bout between Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter. This next fight is one that I have been planning, literally, for YEARS. The first sprite flash I ever laid eyes on was MK vs. SF 2. At that time, I thought of this upcoming match-up and wished that I had the knowledge and skill to pull it off. It was that dream fight in my head that fueled my desire to get into sprite animation. I put it off for so long because I didn't want to attempt it before I could be sure I was ready for it.

Well, now it's time. After three years of waiting, I'm finally going to do the fight I've wanted to do since the very beginning. The best part is that I can do this with no pressure. I have nothing left to prove to anyone.

I'll be going underground with this next episode. The identities of the fighters will remain secret. I may release a few tidbits here and there, but this next production will pretty much run silent. I probably won't do monthly updates with screenshots, but I will keep you guys informed.

For all of you folks who have stuck with me through this whole wild ride, I want to say, "Thank You". Those of you who actually read this whole long-winded rambling tirade of mine are extra special!

THE VG EXILES WILL RETURN.

R1665


Posted by R1665 - August 3rd, 2009


After roughly seven months of work, I am proud to announce that VG Exiles Episode 2 is finally complete! This 16.5 MB behemoth is over seventeen minutes long from "Play" to "Replay" and is the most ambitious project I have ever undertaken.

It could be described as a "season finale". It will signal the end of the current story arc. The question is, how will it end? When the dust settles, will Jon Talbain have avenged Sonya, or will Gambit have killed another Exile and escaped forever into the wilds of the Multiverse? Hopefully, you won't have to wait long to find out.

I have sent a PM to Tom Fulp regarding the file size. When, and if, I receive the "all-clear" from him, I will upload this monster around noon the following day (Eastern Standard Time).

It's time to unleash this beast!

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In accordance with my "Front Page Post Policy" I offer you yet another screenshot. Since you got to see Gambit getting a hit in on the last one, it's only fair to show the other side.

So, enjoy this image of Jon Talbain getting his shred on!

R1665

It is DONE.


Posted by R1665 - July 7th, 2009


It seems that I'm probably not going to hit my July 11th deadline after all.

However, the problem is due to quality, not a technical mistake. It seems to be taking a bit longer than anticipated for the original artwork to be completed. I can live with that setback, though. I'd rather have the work be a bit late and looking its best than on time and looking rushed.

I'm also having to re-record some of the voice work I did earlier. My previous recordings are not on par with the excellent lines that my voice actors submitted, quality-wise. Over the last weekend, I actually built a padded, fully-functional sound booth in my apartment and I hope to get some lines recorded very soon that sound on par with those of my outside contributors. Voice acting and the process of setting it up is relatively new to me, but I'm a VERY quick study.

Except for the art scene, the movie is pretty much done. Once I get that art in, it should only take me a couple of days to wrap this thing up. I'm afraid that I have to leave that deadine in the air, but you can rest assured that I will get VG Exiles Episode 2 out very soon.

In the meantime, enjoy the following screenshot...

R1665

Delays, delays...


Posted by R1665 - June 25th, 2009


VG EXILES Episode 2.

I'm so close to finishing this beast, I can taste it. Over the last week or so, I have done all of the menu stuff as well as finished the sounding on the fight. I tried out a new sound technique tonight that I thought up months ago, but couldn't implement until the main sounding was over. I'm proud to say that it shaved nearly a megabyte off the project with NO REDUCTION IN QUALITY! It is one of several techniques that I used to optimize file size.

It still won't be under 10 MB, but at least now I know I've done everything I can to optimize it without sacrificing quality.

I hope to get the artwork this weekend as well as some of the voicing. I've still got one voice actor to get lines from and I will be doing some live recording this weekend. Also, in case you were wondering, I will be lending my voice to one of the supporting roles. That's right, you'll get to hear what R1665 sounds like!

This will be my last news post until I have completed the project. It's been a long seven months since I released my last flash, and I'm just about ready to show everybody what I've been doing in the meantime.

R1665


Posted by R1665 - June 19th, 2009


The good news is that I've identified the cause of a pesky little problem that was keeping my first arena's backgrounds from synching up correctly. The bad news is that it is going to take a few extra days to fix it. I was working on a tight schedule to begin with and this new time requirement throws off my calculations.

I was hoping to have the arena work done tonight so I could start on the preloader and menu stuff tomorrow, but it looks like that's not going to happen now. Due to the methodology I developed for background synchronization, I must correct this problem before I can do anything else.

It's not a catastrophic failure, just enough to irritate me and screw with my plans.

Assuming no further complications arise and I get support from NG admin for the large file size, I estimate that VG Exiles Ep.2 will be released in early July.

Fingers crossed!

R1665


Posted by R1665 - June 1st, 2009


It's all over, folks! This fight is DONE! The last blow has been struck!

However, I still have a little ways to go before I'm done. I still have to add some effects to the final segment, animate the closing story segments, make the credits, do some general sound tweaking, synch up my backgrounds, build the preloader, make the menu interface, Insert and organize voice actor clips, and about half a dozen other steps.

That seems like a lengthy list, but the path in front of me is nothing compared to the path behind me. In the interest of padded estimates, I am hoping to release this video by the end of this month. Assuming that I experience no serious setbacks, this should be quite feasible.

------

I'd like to take a few moments to reflect upon this project.

Honestly, when I started this battle, I wasn't sure if I would be able to do a four-minute fight between Gambit and Talbain. I wasn't sure that I would be able to create enough new moves and new tactics to keep a four-minute fight from becoming repetitive and uninspired. In short, I had a whole lot of performance anxiety resting on my shoulders.

That fear didn't last long.

Over the last six months, I have created what I believe will be the most hardcore sprite fight ever witnessed. It has come together far better than I could have ever imagined. Quite frankly, I'm going to have a difficult time topping myself from here on in. Perhaps that is the fate for all who want to be the best at what they do.

Still, as long as I enjoy what I do and can share it with a few willing viewers, I won't be going anywhere. I just hope you guys enjoy the ride.

Prepare yourselves. VG Exiles Episode 2 is coming soon.

R1665


Posted by R1665 - May 2nd, 2009


Well, April was not as productive a month as I had hoped it would be. I was hoping to be finished with the fight portion of VG Exiles Ep.2 by now. However, there has been some progress.

The fight is now 75% done and stands at three minutes. While I am now officially in the home stretch, there is still a lot of work to be done before I can unleash this beast on the world. Even after I finish the fight (which will be within the next month if current trends continue), I will still need to do all of the menus and story-based stuff. I still need to recruit my potential voice actors (yeah, I said "voice actors"...).

As a matter of fact, I will be taking the third week of May off from work. Hopefully, the extra time will allow me to get this thing out sooner. (Yes, I use my vacation days for flashing. Ain't that sad?)

I also need to get with my Art Director and storyboard the script for the final art scene. You might remember Lee Drake's artwork from the "Panoptichron" scenes in Episode 1. Well, he is now the proud owner of a Wacom tablet and I must say that the concept art that he has provided me so far has been stunning! In fact, he made my cool new profile image!

-------

Now, on to the content of the fight. When I started Episode 2, I decided that I was going to make the most brutal, most violent, most savage, most hardcore sprite fight the world has ever seen. One would expect no less with a martial arts-trained werewolf taking on a criminally insane super-powered serial killer. Well, I believe that I will actually accomplish this goal!

I've shown the WIP to a couple of people and the feedback has been incredible. One friend of mine is a big Gambit fan and his reactions during the screening were priceless. To paraphrase him, "This isn't a fight. It's an ASSAULT!"

In other words, prepare to be blown away.

-----

Once more, I offer you a W.I.P. screenshot!

As you can see, both Chun-Li and Ryu make an appearance! But, wait a minute... whose side are they on?!... What the hell is going on here?!...

You'll just have to wait and see!

R1665

Another month, another minute...


Posted by R1665 - March 5th, 2009


It's official. I have passed the sixty second mark on VG Exiles Episode 2.

Looking at this beast, I have come to a few conclusions. First of all, I will not be putting life bars in this movie. The fact is that there are too many hits being exchanged to make life bars effective. Let's not forget the fact that it will push back the release of this movie by at least two weeks. I am already feeling the crunch of self-imposed time restraints and I would like to get this movie finished and released with as few roadblocks as possible.

Secondly, there is no way in hell that I am going to get this movie under 10 MB. I've got two "Capcom" fighters with over 1500 sprites each. I'm going to have over half a dozen cameo appearances adding to the file size as well. The musical track (and therefore the fight) is over a minute longer than that of Episode 1.

The fact that I got Episode 1 under 10 MB was a towering monument to sheer luck. Even though I have developed some new file size-saving techniques since then, the simple fact is that Episode 2 will require administrative approval from Newgrounds in order to appear here. This will not deter the project. I cannot help the file size, so my only recourse will be to make a battle so incredibly epic that it will be worthy of administrative upload.

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Now, I made a promise in my last news post that I would no longer place my news posts on the front page unless I had a screenshot to go with them. Since I want this to appear on the front page, I suppose I have to offer you guys a screenshot!

As you can see, Ibuki will be making a cameo appearance in Episode 2! In this particular image, she is looking into the soul of Remy Boudreaux, and she doesn't like what she sees. In this instant, she sees his true form as well as many of the people whose deaths he is responsible for, including four slain Exiles. You might remember a couple of them from Episode 1!

Oh, and he will be adding several more to his "collection" by the time this fight is over!

R1665

One-minute milestone!