Saturday, April 20, 2013

Interview with Ross Scott

Mr. Scott (right), looking remarkably like the character he voices (left)
This is the last interview for a while.  I will try to do more over the summer, but this is the last of all the ones I have done over the past year.
Humor is a tricky thing.  Sometimes, it can be as complicated, intricate, and subtle as the satire of Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels, to vulgar and base as…well, Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels.  It can come in many forms, and a comedian will never know if they will strike gold with an idea for a comedy short.  Ross Scott, the creator of the Machinima series, Freeman’s Mind, struck gold.  And all it took was Valve’s Half-Life, a microphone, a bit of creativity, and an endless stream of utter nonsense and criminal psychosis.
The Series's Iconic Logo
For the uninformed, Freeman’s Mind is a series featured on Youtube, where Gordon Freeman (voiced by Scott) goes about the events of Half-Life­, constantly narrating his activities and going on random tangents of his days at MIT, his fantasies of world domination, his constant yearning for shotguns and explosions, and his chastising of the aliens trying to eat his face.  It’s a bizarre romp into the psyche of everyone’s silent scientist protagonist with hilarious and sometimes even fascinating results. 
In this interview, Scott discusses how the idea for Freeman’s Mind (and his other series, Civil Protection) started, his process for making each episode, his past, his reaction to the imitator’s of the “Freeman’s mind style”, and many other topics.   
Again, apologies for the low quality of this interview.  Despite the late release date, this was actually the first interview I did.  I was still figuring out the microphone and internet connections that worked best.


Saturday, April 13, 2013

Interview with College Humor Best Friends Video Game Club

In addition to making a living at College Humor, one of the most popular sites on the Internet, the Best Friends Video Game Club – composed of Caldwell Tanner (artist of, Brian Murphy, Owen Parsons, and Marina Cockenberg – started their own video series, focusing on their bizarre lives, terrible friendships, and rage-filled game nights.  So far, the best friends have had a failed intervention about Marina’s multiplayer gloating, invited a homeless man with a knife to their apartment, started a fight at a party, and other things you would not believe. 
The "Best Friends" (Clockwise: Caldwell, Brian, Marina, and Owen; From the Episode "Split Screen")
            However, this is not the only video game focused material the four have made.  From their partner site, Dorkly, the crew (along with the other staff at College Humor), has made a number of video game videos called “Dorkly Bits.”  These videos have been all the rage online, garnering millions of views on Dorkly and YouTube.
            In this interview, the crew discusses their comedic influences, the origins of the series, what it’s like to work at College Humor, and other topics.  Check it out!

Interview with the BFVGC:
Brian Murphy's Twitter:
Owen Parson's Twitter:
Caldwell's Twitter:

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Interview with Extra Credits' James Portnow

The Many Faces of Mr. Portnow
James Portnow is a huge presence in the video game industry and its advancement.  A professor at Digipen, a game designer (who has helped), and a writer and the main force behind the popular web series Extra Credits, James is a man of many hats and talents.

The Animated Extra Credits Team (From Left to Right
LeeLee, James, Daniel, and Allison)
       Extra Credits is one of the biggest resources the Internet has for game design, featuring the modulated voice of Daniel Floyd and the art of various artists, including Allison Theus and Elisa "LeeLee"Scaldaferri.  On each episode, the crew explores concepts in game design and culture, from the simplistic (like Achievements) to the complex (such as the Hero’s Journey and the relationship between story and mechanics).  With the visual aids of Scaldaferri and Theus’s art and Portnow’s writing, Extra Credits becomes a perfect learning tool for all those who are interested in the gaming industry. 

The EC team (From Left to Right: James, Dan, and Allison)

            In this interview, James and I discuss many things, including the first game to create his passion for gaming, his views on the gaming industry, and other topics.  An eloquent and in-depth interview with a man who is probably the biggest advocate for the artistic side  of video games in modern era.  Check it out!

Mr. Portnow's Twitter:
Extra Credits Facebook Page: