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Standing Guard

Graham Stark | 26 Apr 2012 16:00
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We have always been fans of sketches born from conversational musings. This week's offering was clearly a product of the age-old stealth gaming question, "Why can't the guards see me? I'm right here!"

It was probably obvious once it became clear that these were video game guards, but the reason they can't see Andy's character, even though he's standing well within the peripheral vision of a normal human, is that he's standing outside their cone of vision. This, for us at least, harkens back to the original Metal Gear Solid, and the little vision cones on the radar. You could be standing directly beside someone, and they wouldn't be able to see you. Of course, you could just shoot the guards and they'd forget after a moment so, not the brightest dudes.

We've shot many, many videos at the University of Victoria over the years (a slice of which you can see in the previous Loading Time for PTA Meeting), and it's usually never a problem because we shoot on the weekend so there's no one around. This too, was shot on the weekend, after classes were over for the semester, so there should have been even less people, but we hadn't factored exams into the equation.

Once we finally found a location we were happy with, that satisfied our weirdly specific blocking needs, we set up the camera and got to shooting. We then almost immediately discovered that there was exam just about to start in that building and we were interrupted every 2-3 minutes by someone entering or exiting. We can't get too upset, it's not their fault, we're the ones getting in their business, but it can be very frustrating. In a video like this, shot in a small number of long takes, having someone amble through shot at the very end of an otherwise good take, is very galling.

However, Paul, Matt, Andy and James all nailed their performances, and once we finally got started, it only took us about 90 minutes to shoot the whole video. The upside to doing this for as long as we have is that you get quite efficient. So that's something!

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