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  • What's Next?

    3 months ago

    XXJones21

    As things start to come to a close on this chapter on my life, I really wanted to sit down and just tell my story about this magical thing with the Experience Team here with Rooster Teeth. Some people may have noticed on social media that both Jarrett and myself released some behind the scenes footage of our AR, MR and VR work. Those early prototypes contain some of the cool looking experiences, features and content we built. Our time with Rooster Teeth, and our Experience Team that we built is coming to an end. Nobody got fired and there is no bad blood, It was just time for a change and it’s for the better. I wanted to write about this year and the amazing ride it's been from spending hours in the morning locked up in a conference room to having created one of the most fun mixed reality experiences and pushing how people interact with content. I do hope you enjoy this story and a personal thank you to everyone for being the most passionate community on this planet.


    In the middle of production of RWBY 5, I kept having this single dream that played over and over in my mind. Every night it was the same, a giant robot just walking around a city. Looming over and casting this giant shadow as it blocked out the sun. Instead of fear, I felt excited and driven to see this happen in my lifetime. How do you bring a giant mech to the city so everyone can see? I knew after the dream kept happening, I needed to make this a reality.


    By now, Gen:Lock was just slowly becoming more than just an idea filled with giant mechs and crazy scientists. I would read the pitch doc over and over again,  just enraptured with its tech and I wanted to know how much of that is even remotely possible, Some of the concepts that are littered in their world is slowly starting to come out of its infancy. It was like adding a pinch of sugar to a fire, Gen:Lock was a way to make that dream come true and a lot sooner than I expected.


    At the end of December of 2017, I spent a lot of my after hours time looking at the infancy of the concept of mixed reality. With Pokemon GO, we saw the power of augmented reality swept the world by storm. Since AR is more just overlayed on top of your world, it didn't truly come to life, you couldn’t walk up to a Pikachu and take a close up picture with them at the time. I wanted to go a step further. What’s the next step I need to make this happen?


    I spent a lot of time working on how assets traveled through the pipe for the production of RWBY4 and RWBY5. Taking that with the knowledge of Unreal Engine I had previously, I started working on building a functioning pipeline to bring assets over to Unreal efficiently and without loss of quality. I worked with Apple ARKit system which had just recently released with no real applications out there yet taking advantage of its power. I brought Zwei from RWBY Chibi into Unreal and worked on the two first skills you teach a dog; sit and stay. It took a lot of trial and error, building formulas and starting from scratch again and again, until one night, Zwei learned to sit and stay.


    I started laughing like I heard the funniest joke in my life, I’m not one of original members of the animation team, I remember watching the Ruby trailer back in Chicago while in college. I was a fan and to see a character from a show I both admired as a fan and loved as something I worked on, it brought the biggest smile on my face. Zwei was now in our world, I could see him, I could get close to him, I could walk around him. Then I asked myself my favorite question; what’s next?

    The possibility of this tech just kept flowing through my mind and next thing I wanted to tackle was a tool to help see and review assets for the directors to be available to view and review before they even hit the pipe. At this point, other people in the office began to hear about what my crazy mind was doing those late nights. I showed Brian, one of our production coordinators and he immediately took my tablet and ran straight to Kerry with it. Then it kept traveling up in the animation team and I knew I need to keep pushing what was possible before anyone else can see.


    At this time, I brought in another person to this, as he will call it, “fever dream”. Jarrett started volunteering his time after hours to look at ways to improve what was in front of us. It didn't take long for me to start corrupting him when he used to tell me “no, we can’t do that” to “oh wait, I have an idea”. Without him coming into to project, I would still be just writing ideas on a wall at 4 a.m and tinkering, pushing and building random ideas.


    We brought in a new character and I loved that one late night, Gray took a selfie with that character and sent it up to the higher ups in the company. We wanted to continue to ask ourselves what’s next? What is our next step? We started bringing in short and small instances of sets, kind of like a Mario Party game board come to life, animated water, sounds, just pushing what was possible all on just a single tablet. I had one of my most “horrible” ideas because once it hit, it only took 5 mins to do in this pipe. Since I was using a rudimentary system of tracking to create what we know now as 6 degrees of freedom (tracking the position and rotation of the tablet) I could make a set I could make life size and walk around in this virtual environment.

    Weiss’ bedroom was brought into engine due to its small size, the beautiful lighting work done by our animation post team and mainly cause of the giant window that looked out over the mountains. It was a magical moment, like I had ripped opened a hole into the fabric of our reality and now I am apart of the world of Remnant. It was then we knew that night, that the possibilities were really truly limitless. We kept redefining our work and I decided it was time to make that little dream in the back of my head possible. I found a super early concept of a giant mech and decided we need to see this happen. One late night, Jarrett, Gray, Koen, Kerry and myself were standing outside in the cold night in the middle of the parking lot, looking at this massive robot. Finally. That little dream that kept playing in my head became so close to reality in just one month. What’s next?


    We continued to demo it in front of other people so they could see the tech and see how well our content could create this whole new way for people to interact with loved characters. I remember being in the mocap office where Gray and I was walking Gus through the application and just like everyone else, ideas kept flowing. “What if we did this?” “This would be cool”. They wanted us to pitch this to the top brass of the company. I was hesitant and nervous about it, but with my public speaking and theater background, I was going to have to do the talking, I sat in our little makeshift office that we used every night in the animation department and Koen would just rip into me to prepare me. Asking so many questions and aspects and to be confident. The tech speaks for itself. He reassured me that it would only be about 5 to 6 of them in a small little boardroom and I felt like I would be doing my best Charlie Day impression explaining a crazy conspiracy to others.

    The morning of the pitch, I found out the hard way that it did not have 5 to 6 people and it did not take place in a boardroom. I walked into the miniature movie theater and walked all the way down to the “stage” at the bottom of the theater. Looking up at the blinding light of the projector I could make out easily 15 people. I had cut the video together the previous night  for everyone to see each of the experiences mentioned above and had my tablet with everything on it so I could have people experience it themselves. I knew with most pitches, most people would have a pitch doc with artwork and story outlines or an idea of how an application could theoretically work. I don’t think anyone was really prepared to see a working example.


    Jarrett and I walked out of the room and we looked at each other and just screamed loudly. Like having a huge weight lifted of our shoulder, before we even got back to my car, Miles had slacked us both “Great Fucking Job”. I knew deep down that we did it, we were going to start doing this as kind of thing on the side but more officially. With the weight lifted, I could think more clearly. As good as that sounds, its not. It means that my mind is off to the races again to start thinking of that ever so sweet question. What’s next?


    By March of this year, machine learning was something that began hitting consumers in waves and the possibilities of what that brought to the market. From computer vision, prediction and image classification, many developers began digging their teeth into different aspects for their use. For me, it was like adding peanut butter to my chocolate. I went back to that little meeting room space and starting planning out ideas for how we can start merging our tech to other areas other than animation.


    I don’t know if anyone else noticed this yet, but Rooster Teeth makes some super cool merch. From t-shirts, posters, mugs, blankets, they make some of the best products. With movies like Ghost in the Shell, the Blade Runner series, and countless cyberpunk stories, we know the concept of immersive advertisement and how to gain more information and entice you to buy some products. For me, I wanted people to be able to see this awesome item and learn more about the content, and know exactly where to get it. Luckily, I knew just how I could achieve that.

    We were both waiting for the results of our initial pitch and still riding that wave of adrenaline from the experience of the pitch. Instead of idling our thumbs, we went to work. We began working with both Tensorflow and CoreML in order to begin development on image classification, and started training multiple models to handle this issue. I started work natively in XCode to work with the bare roots of ARKit in order to integrate the models easily and also still have our AR work as intended.


    We started with posters because they were vastly complex compared to other things available to us. In just a few days, I had one of the RWBY posters able to be detected on a phone. In just under a week, I was able to spawn a “TV” on the poster showcasing the RWBY 4 trailer. After that, I was able to have a second TV pop up with touch screen controls that would link directly to the product on the store.


    One of my favorite memories about this project was when I started working on shirts, I had to find people around the office who was wearing our merch that I could make them stand awkwardly without telling them what was happening. I saw Cesar, one of environment artists for RWBY, wearing an older shirt and thought to myself perfect. I trained the image classification to detect his shirt, I asked to him to turn around in the kitchen and just stand there. From there on, Cesar became our unofficial model for all of our content. You can see that footage exactly in some of the demos on both our websites.


    We sent in that footage to our internal marketing team and it kind of kept that flame alive in everyone’s mind. Everyone knew what we were doing. The only problem was that we were still waiting for feedback on our pitch. Still no idea what we are doing with this tech. By now, RTX was starting to ramp up planning for the Animation Festival, We knew that we were planning something big for RTX this year in order to show everyone this tech and we needed to be on the ground floor for the planning. We joined up with the planning team runned by members of Screw Attack and we worked hand in hand with them in order handle traffic, event planning and marketing. I had one goal in my mind and RTX was the perfect stage for it. Everything has been practice to this point.


    It was time to see that mech walking around downtown Austin.


    By May, we got the word. We were being pulled from Animation in order to be allocated to a special projects team of just the two of us working directly under Gus. We started planning out what we would be doing for RTX in Austin and to create something that was portable enough to be taken elsewhere for other conventions. It came down to the idea that we wanted to immerse the user in the world of RWBY, have them explore the full expo at each location, and be able to share their experiences with others. So the RTX Experience was ready for production.

    I switched our production to the Unity engine in order to have a deeper control of the engine, finer controls over the assets and Unity’s quick adoption of updates to ARCore and ARKit. While I still love Unreal Engine, I wouldn't use a saw to hammer in a nail. I spent time working with our animation art director for both Gen:Lock and RWBY in order to make sure I got the art style across. This required rewriting a cel shader solution and outline solution from scratch to match an art style beloved by people. We worked with various department for our icons that we used, I designed the UI and worked on assets and animation along with apple side of development.


    One of the biggest things that we did was our interactive crowd simulation tucked away in a hidden room at RTX. We wanted to showcase what sets us apart from everyone else. As someone who worked in crowds for parts of 3, all of 4 and 5 and leading into gen:lock, I knew the logic, behaviors and how we can make a very immersive world. I brought the Menagerie set from RWBY 5 and we spent a month getting it right, from the amount of Faunus walking around, to the skybox and lighting. Jarrett seriously knocked it out of the park with his pathfinding and collision detection based on that crowd logic. Finally, when we were able to boot it up on an iPhone, characters would walk out of the way of you, you could move in physical space and it would reflect in this little window of this world.


    Because of us working with Screw Attack in planning Animation Festival, we also lend a hand for the Rave saturday night. Chad had this amazing and horrible idea of having the RWBY girls perform in AR as the opening act, similar to a Miku vocaloid performance. We needed dance animation and Neither myself or Jarrett are light on our feet but luckily Chad had another idea that could work really well. Yssa, our lead 2D animator at the time was happy to do a new mocap the dance from RWBY Volume 2. I wanted to redo the mocap in order to test a new thing that was coming down the pipeline for us. Directing the mocap sequence was also something I always wanted to do and it was fun to finally do it. We decided to apply it to Ruby and two beowolves to act as back up dancers, knowing it would make everyone laugh. When the night came and the performance was shown, listening to everyone laugh and cheer something i'll never forget.

    RTX was also going to be the premiere of Gen:Lock and its Holons (giant mechs in the show). I needed this dream to happen. 


    After digging around, I reached out to the developers at Mapbox, a company that specializes in open source mapping and included an integration to Unity. Jarrett work on the magic to adapt the same crowd logic to a world scale solution. Outside our new office over at Stage 5, we had a holon that could walk around Austin, but we hit a pretty big snag. We couldn’t get occlusion working as intended and with RTX the very next week, I had to do a hot swap. In about an hour, I swapped it to the giant Sea Serpent Grimm from volume 4, one of my favorites, and it flew around Downtown at the Austin Convention Center.


    As for the Holon, I didn’t want to toss that work out the door. So as an incentive, If you found every item, went to every location, got your hands on the rave performance, you had a very special surprise waiting for you that would tower over you in all of its anime glory. So with RTX done, we did some minor things for London to include Camp Camp and RWBY Chibi. But after that, what’s next?


    This is where we catch up to right now, What is next? While we had some projects in various stages of production, ranging from some pretty cool at home VR experiences, field VR (like you see at The VOID) to some major AR and MR experiences that I’m still holding on to . We did set up the foundation for some pretty cool live action work for virtual production based on the new Unreal pipeline I helped build for Death Battle. Hopefully you will start seeing some of that put into production very soon. As for the Experience Team, we went from a dream keeping me up at night, to seeing our amazing community posting their findings and taking pics with their favorite characters. While my time with Rooster Teeth is coming to an end for now, I’m always going to be proud with the work I’ve done with Animation, and with creating the Experience Team.

    Let’s go find out what the next chapter is.

  • RWBY Lifestyle BTS

    3 months ago

    wesellis Staff Photographer

    Really stoked about some of this new RWBY Lifestyle merch that just released. I'm a huge fan of subtle representation of fandoms and this new collection really nails that in my opinion. If you haven't seen it already be sure to check out the merch here!


    When we were planning to shoot this campaign, we initially set out to pick the models we were going to use. Stoney, Cara, Hannah and Jonathan were so much fun to work with the day of. On top of shooting with some of my friends, I also shot some of it on 35mm. Specifically Portra 400 for those who care. Then I scanned it myself for the first time.


    Here are some of my favorite shots:


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    So stoked. Shop the collection here.

  • 2018 RT Community Stream for Extra Life - TUNE IN THIS WEEKEND!

    3 months ago

    Chelsea RT Community Manager

    This weekend we'll be kicking off Extra Life 2018 with our 25-hour RT Community stream! It'll be running from November 3, 8:00 a.m. CDT to November 4, 8:00 a.m. CST here on Rooster Teeth, YouTube, and Twitch!


    Along with the stream, we will be promoting two very special items. The #ForTheKids pin is coming back as an evergreen item - we'll be able to donate to Extra Life throughout the entire year. 


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    And we're also bringing back a very special Pin Set that premiered last year. For one day only, we will be selling the 2017 Extra Life Pin set in anticipation for the new set to be released on November 10.

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    What is the Community Stream? Every hour we will be patching in a different group from around the world in the middle of their own Extra Life stream for us to host and give them a hearty boost. Many of the below groups are local community groups that are always looking for new members like you. See below for the schedule and click a link or two if you want to join up with them. ;D


    ------------------- Saturday Nov 3 -------------------

    8:00 AM CDT      Beta Cats (Twitter Link)

    9:00 AM CDT      Rt Vancouver (Facebook Link)
    10:00 AM CDT    RT LGBT (RT Group Link)
    11:00 AM CDT    RT Maine (Facebook Link)
    12:00 PM CDT    409'd (Twitch Link)
    1:00 PM CDT      Team BIGBITE/RTSTL (RT Group Link)
    2:00 PM CDT      RTHouston (Twitter Link)
    3:00 PM CDT      RT Nebraska 
    4:00 PM CDT      Rooster Speak 
    5:00 PM CDT      g1 Gamedays (RT Group Link)
    6:00 PM CDT      The Cartographers Guild (Official Website)
    7:00 PM CDT      RT Michigan (Twitter Link)
    8:00 PM CDT      Rooster Buckeyes
    9:00 PM CDT      Arcana Major
    10:00 PM CDT    RWBY Nation (Facebook Link)
    11:00 PM CDT    RT Austin (Facebook Link)

    ------------------- Sunday Nov 4  -------------------
    12:00 AM CDT    Team Oklahoma

    1:00 AM CDT      RWBY Cosplayers of South East Florida
    2:00 AM CDT      itinkerbell

    ------------------- DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME  -------------------
    2:00 AM CST      RT Georgia (Facebook Link)
    3:00 AM CST      Bottom Shelf Nerds (Twitter Link)
    4:00 AM CST      RT Nova Scotia (Facebook Link)
    5:00 AM CST      Car Bomb Productions
    6:00 AM CST      RT Ontario (Facebook Link)
    7:00 AM CST      RT Florida (Facebook Link)


    Check us out and remember...


    It's For the Kids!! We can't wait to see you this weekend and for the EXTRAVAGANT WEEKEND on November 10 - 11 for the Official Rooster Teeth Extra Life Stream, 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. Central Time!


    <3


  • RWBY Rewind is back for season 2!

    3 months ago

    kriss Community Manager

    Incredibly humbled and happy to say that I am one of the co-hosts for RWBYRW (rooooooo!) Being alongside Chad James and Ellie Main and talking about all things RWBY Vol 6 is such a crazy, but awesome experience and I feel very blessed to have this opportunity. 


    What is RWBYRW? TL;DR is we watch the latest episode of RWBY and then we recap it in an open forum, answer questions from the community, and interview a special guest who works directly with the RWBY series. FIRST members can check it out here! https://roosterteeth.com/series/rwby-rewind?season=2


    Stepping back a bit...I really can't believe I'm here. I'm excited, nervous, happy, in shock, all the good emotions. I remember back when RWBY first premiered, advocating for each episode (remember when they were 5-7 minutes long??), and cheering for the animation department when each volume was completed. From the very beginning and to this day, everyone working on RWBY has poured their heart and soul into this series, so I want to do them justice and I want to do right by the community as well. 


    Season 2 episode 1 for RWBYRW has already aired, so I encourage you to check it out. Our first special guest is the one and only Barbara, and I couldn't be happier because she totally made me feel at ease and she was so supportive pre, during, and post recording. 


    I also have to give @ric601 props for his "the many expressions of Jackie" post he made during the live show. Hope y'all will give the show a watch and let me know what you think! And always feel free to send in your questions using #RWBYRW on Twitter. 


    <3


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  • New Things

    3 months ago

    GeorgeFromGeorgia RT Events Coordinator

    Oh neat!


    Logged in today and saw I got myself one of those staff badges.


    Sweet!

  • Achievement Haunter Title Design Breakdown

    3 months ago

    andrekrat Live Action VFX/Motion

    It’s been a little while since my last case study! Oops… Between our RTX panel, a whole ton of shows for FIRST Night, and a ton of new shows coming down the pipe things got a little away from me. So! That means we’ll be looking at something that premiered a little while back during our pilot month in May and will be returning for its first official season this Wednesday (tomorrow!): Achievement Haunter!


    Problem Solving

    I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that my job is 100% problem solving in varying capacities. When it comes to VFX shots the problem is usually “we shouldn’t see this boom mic/wire rig/green screen/crew in the reflection/license plate” or “we should see an explosion/blood hit/gunshot/muzzle flare/sunset/amputation”. When it comes to motion design though, the problems are a little more nuanced. It’s more about “how do we communicate the feeling of this show?” and “how can we best implement designed elements in a holistic way” or “what looks coolest but is still legible?”.


    These sorts of challenges are what excite me the most when working on the look and feel of a show. Achievement Haunter was a great project for this because we had to develop a fairly robust show package, including opening titles, lower thirds, supplemental on-screen displays and credits. And all of these elements had to be flexible enough to accommodate various different scenarios and be easily used and modified in subsequent episodes. Ultimately I made a lot of templates in After Effects for these assets, something I’ll probably break down from a technical standpoint in another post.


    The Intro - Ideation

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    The marketing design team provided us with some awesome key art and logo lockups for the show. Right off the bat we have some interesting variations to consider, and the first problem that needs to be solved is what looks best in a video format. 


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    For example, this circular lockup is awesome and plays really well with the ghost element, but can be awkward in a landscape frame. It’d look great on a t-shirt and for other merch/branding needs, but it leaves a lot of negative space on the left and right in a video frame, and there’s a lot of visual weight pulling to the center.


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    The horizontal lockups are definitely more suited for this medium, but again the ghost element holds a lot of visual weight that anchors the design to the left side (which we’ll take advantage of later).


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    This stacked vertical design with the type center justified works best for our purposes, so that’s what I moved ahead with. It sits very nicely in a 16x9 frame and the negative space is balanced well with the logotype.



    The first thing I explored with the logo was how to animate the ghost element. It’s such a fun, vibrant piece of design that it was just asking to have some exaggerated, almost silly motion to it. A few keyframes, some puppet morphing and a dash of displacement mapping and I ended up with this.


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    Daniel Fabelo (the co-creator, and director of the show) and I talked a lot about how light played into the design and style of the show, exploring ideas like the long shadows cast by a campfire’s glow, and the frantic motion of a flashlight held in a scared ghost hunter’s hand. So the next idea I played with was using the animated ghost element as a gobo of sorts for a flashlight. Here is a quick test I made to demonstrate how I thought that might look.


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    This ended up being a little too on-the-nose, the mood of the show is irreverent, but also avoids playing it all up as a joke, so the goal was to explore something a bit more subtle and creepy. It also doesn’t feature the logo and title in a really prominent, clear way, which is generally important for an intro animation so we scrapped this direction.


    At this point we’re starting to narrow down the look and feel of the intro. We know light is an important element to play with, but in a more subtle way and in a way that keeps the focus on the logo of the show. An important reference that I was moving forward with was the opening title to John Carpenter’s The Thing. Daniel really wanted to lean on what we could from The Thing’s design for a few reasons. It’s one of his favorite movies, it’s a horror story that takes place in a single location with a difficult to identify creature, and from a film history standpoint is kind of irreverent in itself, like our show.


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    They’re doing a really interesting reveal of the title by burning away the logotype and allowing the light behind it to shine through.This was definitely a practical effect, so it would seem they made the logo out of something like flash paper and ignited it, which revealed the light behind. My first attempts at recreating this was with a kind of hacky way in After Effects to simulate volumetric light.


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    Through this exploration we found that including the ghost element with the main title still felt very busy and overwhelming, so it was removed for the next version.


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    At this point we’re getting close, but it’s still not quite capturing the right feel. The fake in After Effects is decent, but it has some disadvantages. It’s tough to get the really long rays seen in The Thing’s intro, and there’s a lot of subtle detail happening with the real light that we’re missing. So the best way to match a real, practical effect, that uses accurate light casting (aside from actually doing it for real ourselves) is to simulate it in 3D.


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    Here’s what that setup looks like in Cinema 4D, it’s pretty straightforward because I had a good idea about how the effect was achieved in the first place, so it’s just a matter of emulating that setup digitally.


    And this is what the render looked like after processing in After Effects.


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    Hey, this is really close! One of the remaining issues is that the reveal is pretty slow, and on its own there isn’t a whole lot of visual interest beyond that animation. There is a bit of motion with the light and atmosphere that can definitely be cranked up more.


    This second attempt scraps The Thing’s “burn away” reveal effect and instead uses a light reveal that fills up the title from below. This is much better for two main reasons: 1) it’s a lot faster and 2) it emphasizes the focus on “light” more, acting almost as if it’s a flashlight discovering the logo and lighting it from behind. I also took the opportunity to really increase the motion and intensity of the atmosphere of the light to make it extra spooky.


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    The last piece of the puzzle was to add a creepy, woodsy background, some particles, and dump a whole lot of film grain and contrast over the entire composition.


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    Supplemental Graphics

    I mentioned that the ghost logo would return, and what better way to incorporate a design with a pretty heavy visual weight than with an element that needs to be anchored to the left or right of the frame? Here are a few iterations of the lower thirds, taking cues from the animation of the intro but simplified for legibility and speed’s sake.


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    Our spooky ghost also makes a featured return during the credits.


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    As always, I hope this helped provide some insight into how I like to approach problem solving and developing graphics for our many shows. I’d love to hear what you guys think, and if there’s anything specific you’d like the next journal to address. And be sure to check out the premiere of Achievement Haunter this Wednesday on Halloween! You’ll see some additional, very fun design work for the intro of the show that I’m not going to spoil here.

  • Not Halloweening this year

    3 months ago

    kriss Community Manager

    I'm pretty sure I'm going to be missing out on Halloween again this year. It's not that I am actively trying not to participate in it, but it's not something that I really grew up with. We didn't do much as far as wearing costumes and getting candy from strangers. We gave out candy for a number of years until a little girl decide to just walk right into the house because she wanted to touch our pet parrot and her dumbass dad thought it was hilarious she just stepped into a stranger's home and he continued to chug his beer in the street. That didn't bother me at all. 



    I've done some cosplay here and there, but there's been so much happening in the last couple months that I never really thought about this year. A lot of people are dressed up in the office today, and they look so good! I completely spaced that we have Halloween dress up today because I'm planning out some stuff to do with my parents when they fly in tomorrow. 


     Next year, I want to dress up as something, but I need ideas. I would also like to make something rather than buying a costume from a store. But I am also limited in my sewing ability. AAAAAAGH.

  • Captions and offline viewing are here!

    3 months ago

    ebregman Programming & SVOD

    It’s t-minus 2 days until Volume 6 of RWBY finally premieres! Are you excited? I most certainly am, especially because some new exciting updates are rolling out for the website and app. (Still don’t have the app? Why not try it out? Available on Android and iOS).


    First off, CAPTIONS ARE NOW LIVE ON RWBY VOLUME 5! Check it out right now!


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    Every episode of RWBY Volume 6 will premiere with captions in English, Spanish, Korean, German, French, and Portuguese. This is just the start. Slowly over the coming months you’ll see professionally made, fully QCd, English-language captions begin to appear on all seasons of our most popular animated series - available only here, our home, RoosterTeeth.com.


    Shout out to the masters of our video player and CMS, Adam (@lazy9669) and Gideon (@gidbot), as well as our content ops team led by Kara (@KaraAnn). They all responded to your feedback to make quick work of getting captioning up and running.


    But wait there’s more! OFFLINE VIEWING IS NOW AVAILABLE, ONLY in the Rooster Teeth mobile apps, ONLY for FIRST Members! Download or update your app now to see it!


    That’s right. If you have Rooster Teeth downloaded on your Android or iOS device and are a FIRST member, you can now download content straight to your phone to watch at your leisure any time.


    What is offline viewing? Offline viewing allows you to download an episode using mobile data or WiFi and save it to watch later. You can manage downloaded episodes in your library.


    The below image shows what the experience will look like as you’re downloading episodes. You will be able to see what episodes you have downloaded, denoted by the checkmark.


    i4la3nW.png


    Episodes that you have not yet downloaded will still have the download icon next to their appropriate video instead of the checkbox:


    VIH0xhd.png


    This is what your downloads page will look like as you begin to add more downloads to your library. 


    KUx57LM.png


    Next up from our FANTASTIC Engineering team is Tap to Advance. This will be coming out very soon (like in the next few weeks), and we can’t wait to show you more.


    Now, all of you shiny FIRST members, why don’t you get out there and start downloading some content for later, hmm? As always, ask me some questions in the comments!


    c1W2SOY.png


  • RTX PRESENTS: ACHIEVEMENT HUNTER LIVE

    3 months ago

    Clarissa.Gonzalez RT Live Events Manager

    Hey Aussies!


    Update (5 November): Here are the ticketing links for each venue!

    Sydney State Theatre

    Palais Theatre Melbourne

    Perth Concert Hall - Venue's site

    Perth Concert Hall - Ticketmaster

    *Note - Perth has 2 different ticketing site and have allocate different seats to each selling platform



    Update: Please reach out to rtxevent@RoosterTeeth.com if you have any questions.


    Get ready for a jam-packed night of non-stop comedy and gaming. Prepare to laugh your asses off as Achievement Hunter does what they do best (and worst). It's all of the insanity and energy of a rock show without the annoying drugs, vomit, and nudity.

     

    Regular Ticket Rates

    VIP $225 AUD

    Gold $75 AUD

    Silver $50 AUD

    *Venue Handling Fees per transaction will be applied


    VIP Perks

    Access to show

    VIP designated seating section

    VIP lanyard

    VIP badge

    Exclusive signed poster

    30 minute Q&A with cast prior to the show

    Jump the line access to merch table at the venue

    Guaranteed admittance to community meet-up (More info to come)

    Jump the line for pop-up shop (Offsite)


    Schedule

    Venue external doors open 6:00 PM

    Auditorium doors for VIP 6:30 PM

    VIP Q&A with cast 7:00 - 7:30 PM

    Auditorium doors for Gold and Silver 7:30 PM

    Start-time 8:00 PM


    Show Dates

    Wed. 23rd January 2019 | State Theatre Sydney


    Monday Oct 29th, 9 AM AEST: RTX Presents pre-sale (Promo-code needed) star

    Tuesday Oct 30th, 9 AM AEST: Ticketmaster pre-sale

    Thursday Nov 1st, 9 AM AEST: General Public on sale


    Fri. 25th January 2019 | Palais Theatre Melbourne


    Monday Oct 29th, 9 AM AEST: RTX Presents pre-sale (Promo-code needed) star

    Tuesday Oct 30th, 9 AM AEST: Ticketmaster pre-sale

    Thursday Nov 1st, 9 AM AEST: General Public on sale


    Sun. 27th January 2019 | Perth Concert Hall


    Monday Oct 29th, 9 AM AWST: RTX Presents pre-sale (Promo-code needed) star

    Tuesday Oct 30th, 9 AM AWST: Ticketmaster pre-sale

    Thursday Nov 1st, 9 AM AWST: General Public on sale


    Ticketing link: RoosterTeethLive.com 

    Gold and Silver rates are based on your seating location

    Keep an eye on the @RoosterTeeth Twitter and our FB event page for regular updates


     starFIRST, RT Box members, and past RTX Sydney attendees keep a look out for an email coming your way with your promo-code.star


    Get stoked for a solid night of gameplay, comedy, and conversations. Ya won’t want to miss this one! Pull a sickie if ya need to and come grab a coldie or an icy pole with your best cobbers.


    Cheers!

    Clarissa

  • Two Years Later...

    3 months ago

    Kdin

    November is fast approaching and it got me thinking “Where Did 2018 Go?”


    This year whizzed by with such aggressive speed and with unrelenting force that it’s left me a bit worse for wear and reeling in many facets of my life...which has caused me to stop and reflect on the past two years of my life and try to take it all in piece by piece.


    If 2017 was a year of rediscovery, reinventing, and revitalization... 2018 has been a year of rejection, failure, and loss.  Now, to be fair, a good chunk of those things happened in 2017 too, but I didn’t feel the full effect of it all until now, especially with all of the “NEW” and “HAPPY” that came from a single bold step.


    But now that 2018 is coming to a close, it’s all coming down a bit harder and faster than I would have liked.


    I’ve lost people who once stood by me “no matter what”, I felt the sting of rejection not for my abilities or lack thereof but for “who” and “what” I am, I saw the failure and breakdown of communication in already strained familial relationships, and I’m currently preparing myself for an inevitable upcoming loss.


    Before coming out, before transitioning, I knew that adversity paved the ground in front of me, it was part of the reason I had waited so long to do so.  How friends, family, those I looked up to, etc treated groups like that & how they spoke of them shaped my fears and worldview. An “act” is easiest to describe a younger me, someone who fit the role that those around me wanted me to be. Shedding that off, taking off the disguise, it was invigorating and filled me with a sense of purpose for myself, those around me, and those who may follow the path I began to create.


    The last 24 months have really tested me in ways I thought I was prepared for.  I knew hate, ignorance, and bigotry would greet me around every corner, both old and new, and I thought that greeting it with a smile would give me an upper hand.


    And yet...


    Arguments with what small remaining blood relatives I have became ever constant.

    Reading the news every morning broke my heart and filled me with continued dread.

    Prayers being made to “cure” me of what I had “become” were made.

    Long standing dreams, once within reach, zoomed away to a painfully far distance.

    Harassment became an everyday occurrence, and it was normalized.

    Professional doors closed, personal relationships died, internal struggles persisted.


    It’s no secret that I’ve spent the last year pouring myself fully into VO work, and I’ve met some amazingly talented and lovely people, I’ve gotten roles in projects I’m excited to be in with hardworking and compassionate folks...yet, despite those great moments, they are tainted by a few experiences of disrespect, unprofessionalism, and hate.


    To be direct, I was told “You cannot play a woman, because you’re not one. Our company doesn’t approve of men who audition for female roles.” The response went into more detail, and I don’t fully know if that was the company’s actual views or just the views of the vocal and casting director for the project, but you can understand why this has stuck in my mind and heart.


    So...with all that and the news that hit yesterday, I felt an all too familiar pain shoot through me, and it came at a time where I’m struggling to feel sympathy for those “closest to me” who are struggling yet continue to deny and persecute my existence as a woman, as a wife, as a daughter, as a person. To many, I don’t “exist”. Yet though these people may not have a place in my life anymore, I still hope the best for them.


    Though 2018 hasn’t been kind to me I’ll continue to be kind to those around me...and I’ll keep moving forward.

    P.S. - VOTE!

  • Brought Trash Falcore back home today

    4 months ago

    kriss Community Manager

    Bittersweet post for today. I picked up Chloe's ashes from the vet office and I am incredibly heartbroken though I am happy she is back home with us.


    I said goodbye to Chloe last week. She was diagnosed with a malignant mass in her lungs back in May, and since she was about 13 years old, it was decided that surgery was not an option. Her health declined over the last few months, and it was last week that her quality of life really took a turn. She wasn't eating well, she lost a lot of weight, and she was no longer acknowledging being pet or our existence. Whenever I came home from work, her tail would wag for a couple seconds, but then her attention would drift away and she would stare away for hours. So I decided to make that appointment with my vet. Before my vet came to the house, I got Chloe a double cheeseburger as a last meal. Funny but heartbreaking fact, I ordered it without onions without thinking. 


    I adopted Chloe back in October of 2012. I was working with a dog rescue back in Vegas, and they asked me to foster her. Apparently, her previous owner beat her, broke her leg, and left her like that. The rescue took her in, paid for a surgery to amputate her leg, and asked me if I could help her. My other dog, Wasabi, is also a tripod, so the rescue asked me specifically if I could rehabilitate Chloe. As soon as this little, white floof she saw me, she never left my side. And really, I couldn't give her up to another family, so I ended up adopting her. 


    When I wrote that she never left my side, she REALLY hated it when I left for work or to socialize. She hated it so much that she became a little beast of destruction. Trash cans, shoes, carpets, door frames... she even pushed through a puppy gate so hard (missing the back leg, btw) that she cracked the walls. That's when I found out how to spackle holes. When I tried crate training, she dug a large hole in the carpet (from inside the crate!) and managed to dig all the way to concrete. 

    I got mad at her many times, but she was my kid and I couldn't stay angry for very long. I never met a dog that loved me unconditionally like her. 


    It's weird coming home and not seeing her. Admittedly, I have my moments and I just have a good, cathartic cry. I do miss her very much, but I'm happy she's back home, and that I have beautiful mementos of her. 


    Nothing but good memories of my little Trash Falcore.


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  • This Week At ScrewAttack - 10/19/18

    4 months ago

    JoshuaKazemi @joshuakazemi

    The Desk of The Desk of Death Battle - Doctor Strange Screws Humanity - Writer & Editor Notes 

          

    • It's been a little while since I've had the chance to write a Desk of. I've missed it! 
    • The way this episode came about was actually pretty close to the premise of Desk of. I just remember when Sean was writing Doctor Strange VS Doctor Fate and how he kept coming across all of these crazy comics. So I just picked his brain and then came across this comic run (The Oath, 2007) Just like Joceyln!
    • I'm really happy my "soft taco chalupa crunchwrap sorcerer supreme" joke stayed in the final script. It's just so stupid. 
    • In the actual comic the story is told non-linearly. So there was a lot of discussion on how to layout the events and a lot of reshuffling. At the end of the day we picked the easiest way to tell the story quickly because our goal isn't to summarize the comic, we want to make fun of it as much as possible. 
    • For that reason I left out some pretty crazy stuff from the comic like how Strange fights a crazy monster to get the potion or how Strange went inside Brigard's mind and eventually locked in him inside his own brain. WEIRD STUFF. 
    • The thing that drove me nuts is all of the brief explanations of why magic can't heal Wong. It apparently has limitations except that Strange finds a magic potion that can cure every disease known to man. OKAY. 
    • Also the Nicodemus West stuff is so ridiculous.
    • I wish there was a camera on me when I wrote the "These two are two peas in a pod...or two rabbits in a hat...with a bat...and a six four Impala." line. I was trying to think of a way to compare Strange to West and the rest of the line just poured out of me with such glee. ALSO I HAVEN'T STOPPED SINGING I WISH BY SKEE-LO FOR WEEKS YOU  CAN ASK MY WIFE.
    • I'm not even going to start on the Magic Nazi Hitler Gun

    Watch the Episode!

  • Adding ReCaptcha to limit spam

    4 months ago

    Dave Engineering Data/Ops

    Trying out adding ReCaptcha to Post creation, in an attempt to limit spam which has gotten even crazier lately. Still working out some bugs, but it should be up and running soon.


    -- UPDATE --

    So I kind of shot that message out quickly to confirm the system was working correctly, which it now seems to, but I wanted to provide a bit more clarity as to why this is being put into place.


    I'm sure you've all seen and are very, very aware of the nefarious bots that love to spam junk posts with links all over our community section. This has been an ongoing battle for quite a while now, and given how bots are it will likely continue as long as bots exist.


    We've taken measures in the past to attempt to reduce their abilities to post, while trying to keep the experience as easy for users as possible. Sadly, those measures haven't proven as effective as we'd like, so we have to resort to using ReCaptcha since that's still a great tool in the fight against bots. It adds another step when trying to post, unfortunately, but overall reCaptcha has been streamlined quite a bit over the past couple years and most of the time, you just have to click the checkbox and you're on your way.


    Simply adding reCaptcha certainly isn't going to win us the war against spam bots, but it should absolutely level the playing field much more and greatly reduce the occurrence of such shenanigans. If you end up running into problems, reach out and let me know and I'll do my best to make sure the problem is addressed. I'm still hunting through all the various edge-cases that may arise as a result of this to ensure we provide the best experience possible, but things on the large scale seem to be working as expected right now.


    Engineering <3's you all!!! Except the bots. I vehemently hate the bots. Like... more than I can possibly express via a text-based post.

  • Rooster Teeth's Terms of Service

    4 months ago

    kriss Community Manager

    Hi fam! 


    I know we all like to have fun here, but I want to remind everyone that we do have a pretty awesome list of guidelines and policies aka our Terms of Service that help us create the best environment for our community here. I encourage you to read through them again as a refresher. 


    With the new community site on its way, I did feel like it was a good time to revisit the TOS and reiterate that our goal is to create a fun, healthy, and safe environment for all. In short, we do not tolerate bullying, threats of violence, or harassment on our video or community platforms. 


    If you do experience any of the above or see that someone is breaking the TOS, we do encourage you to report it to conduct@roosterteeth.com. As always, you can contact myself or Chelsea if you feel more comfortable taking that route, but I do want to let everyone know that our Conduct email address is available and it is an alternative for reporting instances that do not follow our TOS. 


    Be safe, be kind to each other, and let's continue to make the best community out there!

    <3


    Jackie 

  • Achieve 2 BTS

    4 months ago

    wesellis Staff Photographer

    Been a bit since I've shared BTS from a merch shoot! Bringing you some Achieve today. If you haven't see this incredible new merch drop make sure to shop it here


    So last month we brought in a friend of mine and fellow Austin photographer to shoot the Achievement Hunter boys. Her name is Megan Baker and here is a little introduction she sent me:


    My name’s Megan Baker, I’m a grad student at the School of Architecture at UT as well as a portrait conceptual photographer here in Austin. When I’m not in studio (Architectural or photo haha) you can find me at local shows! I wish I could nail down one person who inspires me but I think I’m more inspired by current culture, light, and sound, and how society responds with art all around us.

    Go be her friend: @megantbaker


    Now that you know a little more about Megan, here are some of my favorites from that shoot!


    46vROib.jpg


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    Don't forget to check out this collection only at the Rooster Teeth store!


    Also if you're curious to see more of Megan's work, check out her site:


    https://www.megantbaker.com

  • Come on

    4 months ago

    burnie

    Now Willem Dafoe has to defend the fact that he is playing a character younger than himself? Good lord. It’s called acting.


    >https://www.indiewire.com/2018/10/willem-dafoe-at-eternitys-gate-casting-age-gap-1202012415/

  • Dank Tunes for Dark Skies

    4 months ago

    BroadcastBryan Resident Beard

    I've started this playlist of chiptune type stuff for driving when it's rainy or late at night. Oddly specific, right? I kind of have an idea of what I want on it, but if people have suggestions for things to add, I'm listening.


    Check it out!

  • Dress up

    4 months ago

    burnie

    What’s everyone going to be for Halloween? I want to be Jessica Nigri.

  • Call of Duty

    4 months ago

    burnie

    I think I spent too much money on the new Call of Duty. I suck at this game. Someone come carry me through some zombie matches. 

  • #60: One Hundred - Death Battle's Road to 100

    4 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 100 Mario VS Sonic


    It feels strange to reach this point. Humbling and exciting, yes, but also strange. If you had told me back in 2010 that I’d be making more than one hundred episodes of this horribly nerdy show, I doubt I would have believed you. Honestly, I’m not sure if I would have wanted to believe you. When I started this show, I didn’t expect Death Battle to reach this level of achievement and pass such a milestone few other highly produced shows ever can. I actually didn’t want it to.


    This might sound strange, but when Death Battle first came to be, I didn’t view it as the thing that would define my career for the next decade, let alone the careers of dozens of other people alongside me. As I’ve said before, Death Battle was originally created to help catapult ScrewAttack’s then-waning notoriety, and after that I figured I would move on to something else. It was meant to be a stepping stone. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy working on it or didn’t put my all into every episode. I’m the kind of guy who gets really frustrated when someone takes the easy road on a project, so I don’t think I’m physically capable of allowing myself to do that! (If you’ve ever had to do a class group project all by yourself, you probably know what I mean.) The fact is, Death Battle was supposed to end at episode 26.


    I say all this because even now, 8 years later, I was caught a little off guard by your responses to my question yesterday of what Death Battle means to you. Not by the positivity itself, which I appreciate, but because of the variety of answers. It’s amazing that after all this time I’m still learning new things about this zany show, and I’m sure I will continue to do so.


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    Now let’s talk about next week’s Mario VS Sonic, shall we?


    It was interesting to watch all the speculation leading up to this episode’s announcement. A lot of people predicted that episode 100 would receive the same sort of treatment that a season finale might. Namely, that it would feature a long-awaited and popularly requested match-up. We’ve received thousands of requests to redo Mario VS Sonic, especially since we discussed the modern rules we use, but at this point  it wasn’t on most people’s radar. Insert evil laughter here. Bwahaha.


    We’re not treating this like a season finale. I mean, we’re going to have a pretty epic season finale just three episodes after this anyway! Episode 100 isn’t about making the biggest Death Battle that ever was in the history of the universe. This is a celebration of what Death Battle has become. How much we, the staff, have grown while making the show. How much you, the viewers, have supported us for so long. How much the show has evolved to become something of higher quality and more reliability than those early hectic days of seasons one and two. That is what I have been pouring into this episode day and night for the past few months. Plus, I've personally wanted to revisit this match-up for quite awhile!


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    Death Battle hasn’t been a completely smooth road. There have been many bumps and turns along the way, and even a few nasty crashes. However, the rewards found along the path have made this all worth it. 


    Seeing Torrian’s first 3D animation come in. Listening to Brandon’s “Titans of Magic” or Therewolf Media’s “Wings of Iron” on repeat. The first time we met all the Research Team members. The incredible fan art we show off on Death Battle Cast. Going to Chris Sabat’s studio to record his Solid Snake role. Wearing the original Death Battle shirt for the first time. Seeing Wiz and Boomstick finally get an official appearance. Every time we shout “It’s time for a Death Battle Panel!” at a convention. That day Goomba VS Koopa became the first episode to hit one million views. Creating my first custom sprites with no previous experience. Learning that Monty Oum, one of the largest inspirations for the show, appreciated our work to the point where he introduced us to the Rooster Teeth family we now find ourselves among every day.... and a wide assortment of other memories that would break the Rooster Teeth website if I tried typing them all up!


    Thank you everyone - viewers, writers, animators, researchers, editors, actors, producers, musicians, artists, so many others... and you. Here’s to 100 more.


    -Ben B. Singer


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  • #59: More Than Meets The Eye - Death Battle's Road to 100

    4 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episodes- 98 Optimus Prime VS Gundam, 99 Nightwing VS Daredevil


    Time for some giant fighting robots!


    Optimus Prime VS the RX-78-2 Gundam has been an incredibly popular request for a very long time, and one that I always knew we would do eventually. Well, either that or Optimus VS Burning Gundam, but I found pitting the original G1 Transformer against the first ever Gundam was a lot more thematically appropriate.


    Since Nick left Death Battle, we ran into some obstacles working around filling his role without affected the quality of the show. Despite everything he was already doing while running the brand, Sean stepped up to handle Nick’s dropped duties as best as he could. While he’d done a phenomenal job with his episodes thus far, managing ScrewAttack comes first, so for this one I jumped in to take some of the load off his back and help with the research and writing more than I usually do. I took on Gundam, watching and reading through all of the Universal Century Gundam franchise.


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    Years ago, I’d done all this for Gundam Wing to make Tigerzord VS Gundam Epyon. I had previously heard that Gundam Wing was the best Mobile Suit Gundam series out there, and while it was really cool, I was unfortunately a little underwhelmed. So I didn’t have stellar expectations for this giant robot story. But hot damn, it turns out this OG Gundam shit is my jam!! I had a blast working on this episode, and if I could I would gleefully dedicate an entire episode of Death Battle Cast just to praise Zeta Gundam in all its brilliance! Not even kidding, go watch the original series. Totally worth it.


    It’s not often that I’m a little sad about the victor we choose, but I was honestly a little bummed when it became clear the Gundam stood little chance against Optimus Prime. ‘Cuz you can’t spell Optimus without O P, am I right?


    This was the first Death Battle animation to use the Unreal Engine, which beefed up our lighting capabilities and made long render times a thing of the past, among many other things. Coupled with this was getting Kristina, David, and Alex their first go at a 3D fight without Torrian! (Though he did supervise, he only worked on a rare couple shots throughout the entire battle.) There’s certainly a different feel to this fight, as Torrian had his own unique style. But so do these animators, and I’m curious how their personal styles will grow and perform as they continue making these kickass fight scenes!


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    Last but not least, we have the penultimate episode on the Road to 100; Nightwing VS Daredevil. We went into so much detail on the behind the scenes in our Death Battle Cast with Danny that frankly I’d suggest you just watch that instead of making me type it all out all over again, but I did want to touch on how this episode started.


    After Death Battle started to grow in popularity in 2012, other versus shows began popping up around the internet. Most of them focused more on the fights than the analyses, but it was interesting to see other people and companies jumping on the wagon we pushed off on. Which, to be clear, we didn’t start ourselves. Sprite animations on Newgrounds kicked this party into orbit long before Death Battle made its mark. I just like to think we helped revive the craze a bit. Regardless, making characters fight to the death suddenly became a popular thing, and among the creators I saw, the live action fights really stood out to me. While Death Battle is more of an animated series than anything else, I am still a film major. I’ve studied film for nearly 2 decades and done plenty of my own film projects, including action scenes. So when I watch something like Ismahawk’s Minute Match-Ups, I could see a lot of the work, effort and money that went into making something like that...and I knew it was something ScrewAttack would never let me do. At least, not back then. It would be so expensive and require so many more people than ever before. It was impossible.


    Then along came 2016. We’re a part of Rooster Teeth, we get in touch with Ismahawk, and everything changes so much for the better!


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. There’s one more blog left on this Road to 100! For my last entry, I want to hear from you. What does Death Battle mean to you? Why do you keep watching? And what do you want to know that you’ve never heard me talk about before?

  • Introducing Gaming Weekly!

    4 months ago

    sirlarr

    Apologies for the delay, but we're finally ready to show you guys NEWSHAUS GAMING WEEKLY!


    The rollout is just a teensy bit complicated so I wanted to lay it all out for you guys. The show will broadcast this way every week --


    Thursday, 10:30 AM PDT -- Streamed LIVE on roosterteeth.com, free to watch for everyone!

    Thursday, 6:00(ish) PM PDT -- Livestream VOD will be available to watch for RT First members.

    Friday, 2:00 PM PDT -- A leaner, shorter version of the show will post on the Funhaus YouTube channel.


    Lots more details to discuss, obviously, but hopefully we'll address most of them in the show itself. Hope you guys tune in to watch live! 


    lawrence

  • #58: Samurai Carnage - Death Battle's Road to 100

    4 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episodes- 96 Samurai Jack VS Afro Samurai, 97 Carnage VS Lucy


    Inspiration may seem like an easy quality to gain, but also the easiest to quickly lose without dedication. Such dedication required of an animator to work for weeks or months on one thing that’s already been entirely planned shot-for-shot, leaving very little wiggle room or space for new creativity, is a feat often unsung. Let alone when that animator puts everything and every minute they have into a single piece of challenging work that previously seemed beyond their capability.

    Or in simple terms, Luis Cruz is a goddamn animation monster!


    When we planned out Season 5 near the end of 2017, Samurai Jack VS Afro Samurai wasn’t actually part of the list of episodes laid out. A few months into the year though, Rooster Teeth held a little event for its employees. A meet-and-greet sort of thing, since the company was growing quickly and there were a lot of new faces all about. And of course, you can’t work up the nerves to talk to a bunch of strangers without a little alcohol, right? That was when Luis walked up to me and said that this year he wanted to do a completely hand drawn battle with Samurai Jack. Turns out he was a little inebriated when he said that!


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    Still, when we all came to the office the next work day, he stuck to his guns. He was absolutely set on making this hand-drawn sword duel. I immediately thought of making Afro Samurai the opponent, as Jack vs Afro had been a very popular request for a long time. I had always set that request to the side, because I knew that with our current capabilities we would never be able to do such an animation justice without cutting corners or blowing up a budget we just didn’t have. But all of a sudden, it could be possible. Maybe.


    This was new to us. We’d never done this before. Sure, we’d done a hand-drawn battle with Blind Ferret the previous year, but that was a whole different ball game. Blind Ferret has a studio with multiple artists and animators to dedicate to their animations. In order for Jack vs Afro to happen, Luis would have to do the vast majority of the work all on his own. Most studios would have said no and shut down this idea right away. It’s a hell of a risk, especially when it would essentially take away our lead animator from any other projects for a couple months. Good thing we love taking these kind of risks!


    It was incredible to watch Luis weave this battle together from scratch to art. With a little help from Jerky on backgrounds and a loooot of late nights, he managed to pull it all together for one of our most beautiful animations we’ve ever shown.


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    Samurai Jack VS Afro Samurai is what sparked the idea for the Road to 100 blog. I noticed that the episodes leading up to the big one hundred were incredibly special to us and Death Battle overall. Ryu VS Jin was Torrian’s last hurrah, with Optimus Prime VS Gundam marking a changing of the guard as we enter a new era of the show. Nightwing VS Daredevil would be our first ever live action battle, and Carnage VS Lucy would be one of the riskiest battles we’ve ever done.


    There are a number of reasons Carnage VS Lucy could have blown up in our faces. First, this match-up isn’t exactly something a lot of people were requesting, much less thinking about. Second, Death Battle may obviously be all about violence, but we’ve never quite shown gore like Elfen Lied before… even Berserk wasn’t quite this bombastic. Third, this animation would be a challenge in and of itself, as one character doesn’t take lasting damage and the other fights with invisible weapons. It’s an odd combination, and difficult to maintain tension and weight to every moment throughout the fight. Fourth, a fan favorite Marvel character was going to lose to some anime waifu hardly anybody knows about.


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    After all that, I sort of expected a raging hurricane of controversy after the episode aired. Wonderfully enough, that didn’t actually happen! Despite being one of the few match-ups this year not based on fan request, Carnage VS Lucy has been one of Season 5’s most popular episodes! I really appreciate all of you being willing to give it a chance, even if it seemed like an odd choice from the start.


    I think this is what makes Death Battle special. We don’t settle for a universal standard. Sure, popular and straight-forward fights like Black Panther VS Batman or Ryu VS Jin will crop up every season because that’s what many people want to see. But we still like to get weird sometimes! Whether or not your favored character won the match shouldn’t be the only surprise when you watch an episode.


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. Marvel VS DC match-ups are always popular, but what's a unique match-up you'd like to see that pits a Marvel or DC character against something else?

  • Update on the new community site!

    4 months ago

    kriss Community Manager

    Hello community! 


    I know this update is a long time coming that many of you have been waiting for, myself included.


    We are NOW, OFFICIALLY in an internal beta for the new community site! This is a HUGE milestone for us, and all of us are excited for this achievement. Right now, we are going through the new platform with the goal to work with our amazing Engineering team, to figure out what works well (or...not so well), improve all sorts of aspects, and ultimately create a fantastic experience for you when the community site is able to go public. 


    We know you have been waiting for updates on the new site (some of you curious if it was even on our radar) and we want you to know that it has been, it is, and it will be because this is a huge priority for us. 


    For future updates and other news, myself, Chelsea, or Barbara will be making those announcements when we can. 


    That said, below is a sneak peek of the internal beta. Can't wait to show you more!


    <3

    Jackie 




    *SPECIAL NOTE* Please keep in mind that this is not a finalized version of the community site.



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  • #57: Torrian’s Last - Death Battle's Road to 100

    4 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episodes- 94 Strange VS Fate, 95 Ryu VS Jin


    We’ve analyzed and portrayed a number of characters with extraordinary powers for years now, but I’m not sure we had ever delved into any with powers so incalculable when we began Doctor Strange VS Doctor Fate. Not to make this any easier on the team, this was one of Sean’s first Death Battle episodes to take point on as writer and project lead. Nick had left Death Battle production after Raven VS Twilight Sparkle, leaving Sean to pick up where he left off. Fortunately, Sean didn’t have too much trouble getting into a groove to make his time and research count… because holy crap, he really needed to. Have you watched this episode lately? Strange and Fate are absolutely ridiculous!


    While researching for a Death Battle can be a long and arduous task, and there’s been more than a few occasions where our team has been frustrated over some feat that defies all sane logic, I have to admit that I really enjoy it when a new member first sits down for a particularly wild episode! There were multiple days where Sean would be quietly going over some comics or volumes… and then suddenly shoot back in his chair with a yelp of surprise, followed by some truly genuine excitement to share how Strange threw a star at a god made of black holes, or how Fate’s helmet bounced off the literal edge of all creation.


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    On a creative side, this made Strange VS Fate one of our most complicated episode to mold together. While they have measurable feats, they’ve each shown numerous powers that dwarf whatever numbers we could possibly attribute to them. They fight with magic, so the battle animation wouldn’t be straightforward. Also, their magic’s limits aren’t well defined, so the battle would have to be extremely complex. There was a lot of back and forth debating how we would present these characters and what basis we would use in our argument for the victor.


    Ryu VS Jin, on the other hand, seemed like a fairly straightforward episode. While the characters weren’t exactly simple, it was a far cry from the immeasurable power of our old wizard friends three weeks earlier. That being said, this episode’s result relied so much on scaling over actual proven feats that many of the team were hesitant to lock down Ryu as the victor. In fact, there was a good while where most of us agreed that Jin should take the win. However, it’s very important to me that all our Death Battle analysis and victor prediction end with a unanimous decision, so this one took quite a while to settle. It was worth it, though!


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    After 4 years of animating for the show, Ryu VS Jin marks Torrian’s final project to work as a lead on. He’s moved on to that sweet gen:LOCK showbiz! We all knew this was coming for a long time, honestly, so we were fully prepared for the transition. Joining him for this one was Kristina Christofferson and David Fisher, two incredibly talented animators who took up the reigns after his departure. For his last go, we also did something Torrian’s been wanted to do for a long time. We teamed up with Omega Sparx to create a rap soundtrack! Torrian had been such an essential part of the team for so long, it’s been weird going over fights with him and counting how many flips he slipped in when nobody was looking.


    This episode is extremely special to us.


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. If you could have just one of either Strange or Fate’s magic artifacts, along with all the powers it has, which one would you take and why? I’d take that kickin’ cloak! Hey, it’s stylish.