Author Topic: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread  (Read 57055 times)

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Offline newman

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
I have to agree with the above. Regardless of how the actors vs. greenscreen part turned out, the CGI here is plain bad in most places. And I'm being generous with "most".
You know what the chain of command is? It's the chain I go get and beat you with 'til ya understand who's in ruttin' command here! - Jayne Cobb

 
Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
cgc, there's more to CGI art than having a set of green walls and neat toys around you. If you disagree with my assessment on the utter terribadness of this show's CGI, then I'd guess we disagree with core values of aesthetics, production, management, etc., which is neither bad or good, just the way it is.

So, just so we're clear, you can't, as an amateur, make something better than one single test frame from Blood and Chrome, despite what you said. You aren't even willing to try and risk failure.

See, I've got no problem with you criticizing it. I'm not one of those people who responds to every bad review by saying, "Oh yeah, so let's see how great your movie was. Oh, you don't have one?" My problem is you boasting that any idiot off the street could do better, which is both an insult to the production team and to my field of work as a whole (a common one, at that. "Let's just get the neighbor kid to make our commercial, rather than paying someone! It'll be just as good!"). That's when you opened yourself to the, "Oh, yeah, let's see your movie" response. And you supported it by bringing up "Star Wreak," of all things. I could write a dissertation the technical and aesthetic issues with Star Wreak, and I would've if I thought you were actually serious. And it'd involve stuff like locked-off greenscreen shots with camera angles that don't match, and blatantly unbalanced frames with no sense of scale making mile-long starships look like toys, and embarrassingly spliney camera animation, not "eye stench rape," which sounds like a side effect from one of Stephen Colbert's medical segments.

 

Offline Luis Dias

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
What. Gcg, I am not a professional in making movies. My job, however, includes making renders for a frakkin living, I know the bits and bolts on what makes a goddamned image meh, good, pretty good and frakkin awesome. And B&C was awful, OK.

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See, I've got no problem with you criticizing it. I'm not one of those people who responds to every bad review by saying, "Oh yeah, so let's see how great your movie was. Oh, you don't have one?" My problem is you boasting that any idiot off the street could do better

I said "barely better", which means that I obviously agree it is better than a movie made with zero budget. The fact that I'm even reminded to make the comparison is what is the problem here, memories of crappy CGI works should not enter my mind when dealing with a BSG franchise.

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
Why do we need to spend 40% of this thread parsing exactly what 'bad' means, complete with historical contingencies dependent on BSG's past failures and attempts to position this badness vis a vis the badness of The Room/starving to death in the Sudan? When I sit down to watch something I want to see good art, period. Not art that falls within the top 10% of science fiction's good/bad distribution (skewed heavily bad), or art that's pretty good given the money and resources available, or art that is not as bad as the worst of its franchise. I just want something with a good script, a few challenging ideas, and a confident visual style that contributes to the storytelling - something that makes me think and feel. B&C didn't deliver.

 

Offline newman

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
B&C didn't deliver.

And at the end of the day, this is pretty much what it all boils down to for me.
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Offline Lt.Cannonfodder

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
And you supported it by bringing up "Star Wreak," of all things. I could write a dissertation the technical and aesthetic issues with Star Wreak, and I would've if I thought you were actually serious. And it'd involve stuff like locked-off greenscreen shots with camera angles that don't match, and blatantly unbalanced frames with no sense of scale making mile-long starships look like toys, and embarrassingly spliney camera animation, not "eye stench rape," which sounds like a side effect from one of Stephen Colbert's medical segments.

I would like to point out that Star Wreck's effects were made by one man with very limited computing power, not by a team with plenty of experience. Which makes comparing the two pointless.

 
Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
What. Gcg, I am not a professional in making movies. My job, however, includes making renders for a frakkin living, I know the bits and bolts on what makes a goddamned image meh, good, pretty good and frakkin awesome. And B&C was awful, OK.

Well, you must have to walk me through it, because apparently I'm wildly overpaid. Here, pick a screen cap and tell me precisely what's wrong with it, as if it we were doing weeklies and it's open floor for comments, criticisms, and revisions. I won't even complain if you pick a nonrepresentative but easy one, like the test render of the FTL engine or the basestar over the city.

Why do we need to spend 40% of this thread parsing exactly what 'bad' means, complete with historical contingencies dependent on BSG's past failures and attempts to position this badness vis a vis the badness of The Room/starving to death in the Sudan?

Because people say, "God this is horrible because" and then follow it up with the most asinine nitpicks or examples of things also done in the parent show (or, my favorite, asinine nitpicks of things also done in the parent show). And it never "weak" or "bad" or "Eh, 50/50." It's horrible, terrible, a failure on every level. Amateurs could do better (except, of course, when they didn't, but that's still damning, because this is a spin off of the greatest work of science fiction in history and the fact that the human brain can even comprehend a comparison between the two is a proof of a level of badness that Ed Wood could only dream of). Most of the effects (no, let's be unkind, all 1800 effects) were artistic and technical failures, not because of shoddy modeling, bad textures, bad lighting design, bad cinematography, sliding motion tracks, or green-screen artifacts, but because of bloom and color palette.

This is maddening. Actual problems are given perfunctory mentions, and then show is crucified on the basis of nitpicks that no one would've cared about in a better production (or occasionally, in a worse production). This board has had the most universally and stridently negative reaction to B&C I've seen, and it's wildly disproportionate to the actual deficiencies in the movie, and impossibly disproportionate to the cited deficiencies in the movie. You don't see why 40% of the topic is talking about how bad is bad? I don't see why 60% of this topic is railing about how this is the worst piece of crap ever produced when it's not even the worst piece of crap nuBSG ever produced.

I would like to point out that Star Wreck's effects were made by one man with very limited computing power, not by a team with plenty of experience. Which makes comparing the two pointless.

That's pretty much what I was getting at originally. Yeah, sure, B&C had a lot of bloom and occasionally dared to use the color blue, but was hardly at the point where "Frakkin amateurs can do a better job."

 

Offline newman

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
That's pretty much what I was getting at originally. Yeah, sure, B&C had a lot of bloom and occasionally dared to use the color blue, but was hardly at the point where "Frakkin amateurs can do a better job."

No, but it was at a point where professionals with a budget should do a much, much better job. But shoddy CGI would be completely forgivable if the rest was on the level. Which it isn't.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2012, 03:37:04 pm by newman »
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Offline swashmebuckle

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
It thought is was better than Caprica.

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
Sorry it's maddening, man. Unfortunately B&C was a failure on every level without the need for any particular external referent. It did not achieve anything it attempted to do, and it failed to attempt pretty much anything it needed to do.

This board has had the closest to a rational level-headed reaction to B&C I've seen, given that most other venues seem infested with SF/F genre fans who still believe Star Trek is a metric for watchable television and Starship Troopers an exemplar of passable writing. They'll eat anything they're given as long as it has a spaceship and some guns.

I did feel a spark of interest when Adama found out how callously he and everyone else had been used, but it just led him to reaffirm his belief in THE COLONIES, support are troops :911:

e: I should be fair in noting that his reaction was more fraternal than patriotic, but it was not a fresh or intelligent or interesting piece of writing that emerged from his experiences over the past hour of television.

 

Offline The E

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
Lots of words

Okay, fine, we get it, you do not think that B&C was as bad as we do. That's fine, that's certainly an opinion one could have, but please remember that your opinion does not equate to being absolute truth (Neither does ours, I hasten to add).

Now, you asked for criticisms about some of the shots in that facebook album. Fine, I'll give it a shot. Bear in mind though that I do not have any sort of training in making actual CG things, or camerawork, or design, or art direction. I am just someone who appreciates fine pixels.



This is one of the first shots we see. What came before was one of the most asinine things ever encoded into h264, for various conceptual reasons (Why would a flight simulator model damage from a handgun? It's something that was put in to show how cocky and talented our lead is, but still, there are better ways to do this!). What we see here is the sim "deconstructing". Now, my question is, why is there a giant screen behind the pilot showing the scorecard? Shouldn't it be somewhat smaller in front of the person being scored? Or, actually, somewhere for the instructor to see?
What we see here is the failed attempt to cram as much information into a scene as possible, without any regard to how things would actually look and work out. Compare this to the various briefing scenes we had in BSG, especially the stuff from Scar. Those scenes were quite simple in their setup, and immediately rang true to the audience because we've seen that before, in every WW2 flying aces movie ever.



This shot is interesting. There are several things that even an untrained eye can detect. One, it basically looks as if we're looking at a miniature set. Two, there's a group of three people a bit right of the center which has been copied and pasted right next to each other. Four, it's incredibly cluttered. There are Vipers in every corner of the screen; is it really necessary for all of them to be there to get the point across that this ship's fighter complement is larger than nuBSGs Galactica, or that the flight deck is incredibly busy? Wouldn't it have been possible to convey the same feelings with a much more modest attempt at set extension?



And here, the foreground and background feel completely disconnected from each other. I am not entirely sure why that is, which little telltales are telling my brain this, but they are there.
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Offline StarSlayer

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
I've thought about it, I think the vitriol stems from a couple factors that combine into a lot of vehemence for folks.  First and foremost NuBSG, at least the first two seasons, was very good and holds a warm fuzzy position in many viewers' hearts.  Anything that's BSG related automatically is going to be running up against high expectations.  I don't think you can easily disconnect those expectations.  Secondly NuBSG for the most part stuck to presenting a "real" feeling universe in its effects content coupled with very well presented CGI, especially for season 1 and 2 (even when there where technical screwups like missing Pegasus struts and such they where not blatant logic errors but mistakes).  The storylines and characters were typically very tight and interesting throughout the first two seasons.  Even if we threw out NuBSG as a comparison, if you juxtaposed B&C with SAAB I still think you would find B&C wanting.  SAAB actually probably would provide a good litmus test for B&C.  They both ostensibly portray total warfare against an implacable foe.  SAAB was a "war" show but built itself on a cadre of interesting characters, raised very interesting questions and presented quite a bit of depth.  It also had a CGI shot with the USS Eisenhower which is one of my favorite scenes ever. 

B&C presented a universe that didn't feel cohesive with what NuBSG built up.  Instead of being NuBSG set against the grander scale of 1CW it instead presented a relentless string of well, cartoon like gimmicks.  Shooting Raiders with sidearms, flying through a giant V8 engine, another Colonial ramming scene, Raptor flamethrower, Toasterconda.  It really was way too much silliness stuffed into too short a space.  Its especially vexing when contrasted against NuBSG which typically shied away from such antics.  If they had simply cut most of that stuff out and took the foot of the pedal B&C would have been much stronger for it.  I don't think its a coincidence that the episode that received the most praise had the least shenanigans.  Story wise it didn't really do anything new or interesting, and the charters were not as engaging as those from BSG.

For me personally, the special effects weren't as irksome because of how they where presented but what they presented.  As I mentioned before all the cartoon scenes where not in keeping with what I've come to expect from BSG.  Then couple that with a mess of what I can only describe as logic/engineering errors.  That hangar space is far larger than what is available in Galacitica's Pods.  The MK III probably doesn't fit the established Viper tube.  The Osiris was shown at the end of one episode to have box missile launchers which in the very next acted like KEWs.  The Valk, which was arguably a post 1CW ship is in the ghost fleet.  Galactica showing up with one crazy overgunned retcon after another.  I wouldn't care if the CGI wasn't as strong technically if they had presented something that was interesting and realistic and not riddled with fridge logic.  Again less would have been way more in B&C's case.  Standard MK IIs and interior and exterior Galactica would have removed many of the technical gripes right off the bat.

So is B&C the worst thing ever?  No, certainly not.  Does it deserve to be derided as much as it does here? Well that's more of a personal opinion.  I will say its facing the high expectations set by NuBSG and it really fell short for me at least.  Even if we removed all the hemming and hawing about the quality or lack there of is there really much left to discuss about the show?  I remember back in BTRL days we filled page after page with constructive posts discussing each episode, it was a lot of fun, I can't say the same for B&C.
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Offline Ace

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
Let's look at it this way, if they did to the Enterprise (no Abrams Trek snarky responses please) what they did to the Galactica there would be murder.
Ace
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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
^ They did. Read some of the 70s fanzines reactions to the Probert redesign sometime. Klingon warp engines! Low-tech push-buttons! It's all horrible now!

No, but it was at a point where professionals with a budget should do a much, much better job. But shoddy CGI would be completely forgivable if the rest was on the level. Which it isn't.

I can't agree with that assessment. Two million dollars and twenty-six people sounds like a lot (especially when you're used to a budget of zero and a staff made up entirely of love), but it really isn't. Luckily, history provides us with a guide of what a $2 million spin-off of a popular science fiction franchise with no stock sets or assets except for a couple of props and costumes looks like: Babylon 5's "Lost Tales." It's the most direct comparison available to B&C, and while it made a different (though similar) set of compromises with its limitations, those limitations were still very apparent in the final product, what with it taking place is a series of black or grey featureless rooms, short hallways, one full virtual set, or in front of two and a half digital matte paintings, and very small number of speaking roles and extras.

Sorry it's maddening, man. Unfortunately B&C was a failure on every level without the need for any particular external referent.

I see we still have incompatible definitions of "failure" and "every." This conversation has clearly been a failure on every level of communication. :p


Okay, fine, we get it, you do not think that B&C was as bad as we do. That's fine, that's certainly an opinion one could have, but please remember that your opinion does not equate to being absolute truth (Neither does ours, I hasten to add).

Actually, I don't think anything could be as bad as you guys think B&C is, which is why I'm being such a pain in the ass about it. ;) But fair enough.

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This is one of the first shots we see. What came before was one of the most asinine things ever encoded into h264, for various conceptual reasons (Why would a flight simulator model damage from a handgun? It's something that was put in to show how cocky and talented our lead is, but still, there are better ways to do this!).
Well, it is a flight sim programmed in an engine that can model human sacrifice and freaky sex.
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What we see here is the sim "deconstructing". Now, my question is, why is there a giant screen behind the pilot showing the scorecard? Shouldn't it be somewhat smaller in front of the person being scored? Or, actually, somewhere for the instructor to see?
That's more of a film theory question. From that perspective, we shouldn't have been able to see any of it, aside from the couple of shots from Adama's PoV. It applies to any VR or dream sequence, or even Doctor Who's Weeping Angels (thought it does give me an interesting idea of how to shoot one that takes the problem into account. I have a nagging feeling it's been done before, though). I can't provide a diegetic explanation for why the scorecard is there, because there's no diegetic way for the sequence to exist at all. I had a similar issue with the displays in Dead Space, which were present diegetically, but were calibrated to be read by someone about four feet behind and above the user's right shoulder for some strange reason.

"Excessive cleverness" is essentially how I would sum up all of my issues with B&C's effects. I'd bet a coke that those people had this exact conversation, came up with some in-universe justification for the sequence (it was a spectator view for instructors, for instance), and then moved on with their lives, satisfied that since they could justify it to themselves, it would magically communicate to the audience, as well. Same for the Rube Goldberg launch tubes and lack of Mark II Vipers, even in the background. Same thing happened in a short I was working on, and we were so wrapped up in it we forgot what it would look like to anyone seeing the movie without the benefit of being around for all of our script revisions. The result was unpleasant, and not just because I thought the earlier drafts were better. But that's neither here nor there.

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This shot is interesting. There are several things that even an untrained eye can detect. One, it basically looks as if we're looking at a miniature set. Two, there's a group of three people a bit right of the center which has been copied and pasted right next to each other. Four, it's incredibly cluttered. There are Vipers in every corner of the screen; is it really necessary for all of them to be there to get the point across that this ship's fighter complement is larger than nuBSGs Galactica, or that the flight deck is incredibly busy? Wouldn't it have been possible to convey the same feelings with a much more modest attempt at set extension?

I actually hadn't noticed the duplicated crowd plate. That's pretty sloppy. I think the impression of the small size comes from the large amount of depth of field separation, which is a constant theme in B&C. It might've been a trick to reduce render times (if the background is going to be blurred anyway, you can render it quicker with less detail), or it might've been intended to reduce the flattening effect greenscreen can have by giving the virtual set an overabundance of depth cues (which you'd normally only get photographing something very small very close, or with a specialized lens). I'd guess the clutter is to help play with sense of space, looking more claustrophobic and then opening up to reveal that there are stacks of Vipers going back hundreds of feet, not just this one right in front of you. It may just be that they went overboard with the idea of "bustling hangar deck," though.

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And here, the foreground and background feel completely disconnected from each other. I am not entirely sure why that is, which little telltales are telling my brain this, but they are there.

Probably the focus again. That's also a really chancy composition. You generally want to avoid that kind of flat, edge-on shot unless your name is Wes Anderson and you can actually pull it off. It's very hard to get an effective sense of space and depth without everything either looking flat, or everything looking like a series of cardboard cutouts arranged in a row. The long pull-in on Adama in compounds the issue. It's the kind of shot that looks good in a comic, painting, or storyboard, but doesn't usually work in film. I wouldn't have done it like that (I think I would've echoed the shot of Adama being shown his Viper from the beginning of the miniseries, come to think of it), and I'm pretty sure it would've looked weird if they did the shot on the hangar set with the physical Viper and no CG at all when the show was in production.

Thank you for the comments, though. When I'm talking about outrageously bad CGI, I was thinking more about some specific glitches from nuBSG that I can't find on Google Image Search at the moment. I'll grab some screen caps later on off the DVDs. It might make a good blog post.

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
There was that one shot in S4 with a literally untextured civilian ship in plain view, that cracked me up.

 

Offline Luis Dias

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
JJ made a good job regarding Trek.


Well, you must have to walk me through it, because apparently I'm wildly overpaid. Here, pick a screen cap and tell me precisely what's wrong with it, as if it we were doing weeklies and it's open floor for comments, criticisms, and revisions. I won't even complain if you pick a nonrepresentative but easy one, like the test render of the FTL engine or the basestar over the city.

You wanna go down discussing the dirt with me? Well why not.


Why is all blurred in this image (discounting the obvious movement)? The answer is simple. The "antialiasing" of the contours of the people in the set is constantly being repaired by the CGI crewmen, usually by color bleeding and lighting effects (lens flares in all kinds, from blatantly in your face to very very subtle hints). This problem pervades all the CGI shots, specially in the hangar sets and the "elevators", thus making it plainly obvious to the viewer we are watching a virtual set, not a real one.

Note that it is not a "problem" if someone realises there's CGI working, the problem is when the CGI gets in front of you and instead of helping you to see, it blocks your vision, unclarifies everything and you have to semi-close your eyes to make sure you understand what the hell you are watching. It is always there, irritating your eyes, annoying you on every single level.






Here, same problem. Notice how the CGI crew valiantly tried to hide the difference in lighting that usually pervades these kinds of shots with lens flares, blurs and color bleedings.



The exterior shots were okay. There are no fiddling humans there to distract the CGI people doing their jobs.



Everything blurred in the background, everything fazed, dessaturated, without contrast, no single hair will ever be shown correctly (nor can it, due to the green back set behind the hair).



The CGI guy commanding the lighting, bloom, lens flares, etc. was probably smoking too much marijuana here. Or always.

Anyways, as I've said earlier, it's not that there's no huge "Work" involved here. Clearly, lots of people had a hard time making those CGI models, texture them, polish them, all the management involved, the design, etc., etc. However, those people were betrayed by sheer lack of quality on the final product due to every problem that has been listed in this thread. Look at Babylon 5's CGI. It made me chuckle at the time. However, there was no lens flare, blurrs or blooms hiding the characters behind them, the people were crisp and clear, the shots were well executed and simple. And so, despite the sheer difference in terms of "polygons" and "green walls" and everything you seem to fancy so much, the end product was an amazing series that showed exactly what it wanted to show and how it wanted to show. This show has nothing of the sort. This is the kind of thing you *should* avoid to end up doing if you want to get on this type of work.

 

Offline newman

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread


I can't agree with that assessment. Two million dollars and twenty-six people sounds like a lot (especially when you're used to a budget of zero and a staff made up entirely of love), but it really isn't. Luckily, history provides us with a guide of what a $2 million spin-off of a popular science fiction franchise with no stock sets or assets except for a couple of props and costumes looks like: Babylon 5's "Lost Tales." It's the most direct comparison available to B&C, and while it made a different (though similar) set of compromises with its limitations, those limitations were still very apparent in the final product, what with it taking place is a series of black or grey featureless rooms, short hallways, one full virtual set, or in front of two and a half digital matte paintings, and very small number of speaking roles and extras.

Comparing modern CGI with something as old as B5 is problematic at best, and confusing the issue at worst. Technology has come a long way since, to a point where nowadays a single talented fan with one mid range system can do stuff that would have been nearly impossible, or extremely expensive back then.

Even so, a lower budget and no sets cannot justify the horrible, tasteless art direction and designs that take a radical deparure from what was establishes. Comparing this to The Lost Tales doesn't make much sense to me, as the time elapsed between the two make any CGI / budget comparisons meaningless.

What I find most perplexing, however, is the amount of energy you invested in defending something so poor. I'd have like to have seen that energy invested into something a bit more deserving. This flying around in circles, finding new and creative ways of saying the same things over and over is starting to feel like it's own purpose.
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Offline General Battuta

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Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
The Lost Tales had a couple really excellent CGI shots. I would even say there are quite a few original B5 CGI shots that are better than Blood and Chrome, because the viewer can accept them as natural rather than as artifice. While they're clearly technically inferior, they do their jobs better because they feel contiguous and whole with themselves, windows onto things actually happening rather than overwrought presentations.

 
Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
I have a theory about (part of) the Galactica redesign. Obviously the real reason is that they simply wanted the ship in its prime to be more impressive looking and didn't really think it through enough, but allow me to indulge in some fan wankery.

One of the obvious issues that others have pointed out with all the new guns they copy-pasted all over her is that the known structure of the ship doesn't allow for much ammo storage for most of them. Maybe that's intentional. Perhaps the plethora of guns are intended to put out a ton of fire in a very short period of time at the start of battle, hopefully decisively, gradually falling silent as a fight drags on, ultimately leaving only a core of well supplied weapons active. This would also explain the outer layer of retconned armor; it's there partly to minimize the danger of all that ammo exploding, a danger that goes down as the battle drags on and the ammo is used up. We see that Galactica operates as part of a group, with what are presumably support ships and escorts. Later on they changed their tactical thinking, reducing the number of guns (and possibly replacing them with better ones) and armor which had became superfluous, in the process making the ship leaner. This was possibly part of a general shift away from battlegroups and towards more self-sufficient battlestars.

 
Re: [Spoilers] Blood & Chrome - The Discussion Thread
And so, despite the sheer difference in terms of "polygons" and "green walls" and everything you seem to fancy so much, the end product was an amazing series that showed exactly what it wanted to show and how it wanted to show. This show has nothing of the sort. This is the kind of thing you *should* avoid to end up doing if you want to get on this type of work.

Right. Avoid feathering live-action mattes in my 3D work and don't view JJ Abrams as a trendsetter. To think, I wasted all that time in those photography classes, and agonizing over polyflow and UV maps, when I could've substituted knowledge of composition, lighting, and modeling with the three noes: No matte feathering, no bloom, and no compositing tricks from after 1998. I can feel my work in the parts of the pipeline I'm not involved with becoming better already.

I love, absolutely love that your detailed complaints about the CGI have absolutely nothing to do with the CGI. Look development and compositing, but not CGI. And then you mock me for foolishly thinking you were judging quality of the CGI by the quality of the CGI.

Jeeze. This is like if you were complaining about the acting, and when I finally pinned you down, you said it was bad because the costumes weren't well tailored and the loose fit distracted you from concentrating on the lines. It's disappointing, honestly.

Comparing modern CGI with something as old as B5 is problematic at best, and confusing the issue at worst. Technology has come a long way since, to a point where nowadays a single talented fan with one mid range system can do stuff that would have been nearly impossible, or extremely expensive back then.

The Lost Tales was 2007. That's only four years older than B&C (remember, it was completed a year ago). And I wasn't arguing the quality of B&C's VFX was better than TLT (In fact, I'd say TLT was better in some ways, in part because they chose to sacrifice scope to concentrate on fewer set pieces). As for the comparison, well, TLT also had a massively redesigned docking bay (though it was originally going to be lit in the dark grays of the series docking bay so it would've superficially matched, JMS was so thrilled with it he had them crank up the lighting to show it off).

Alec McCylmont has some HD screen caps in his portfolio if you'd like to compare. Luis Dias will be impressed by the sharp matte work and lack of bloom in the wide shot of the docking bay where Lochley and the Centauri Prince don't have feet.

What I find most perplexing, however, is the amount of energy you invested in defending something so poor. I'd have like to have seen that energy invested into something a bit more deserving. This flying around in circles, finding new and creative ways of saying the same things over and over is starting to feel like it's own purpose.

I enjoy fiction. Reading, watching it, making it in my own small ways, and discussing it with others. The creative act thrills me, and being in the audience is a form of that act. So is the discussing, speculating on, fanwanking, and debating that comes afterward. Even a bad installment can give something of worth to riff off of. For instance, it could establish the existence a civilian colonial ship with a large, conspicuous docking bay.

So it's just a little irritating when the most lively discussion about B&C is a half-dozen people running around in circles finding ever more inane reasons to say it's the suckiest piece of suck that ever sucked. Each treated equally, as unforgivable sins against drama. And it's the people you'd think would be the first ones to see a lackluster story as an opportunity, not a burden.

This isn't a defense. This is a (vain, apparently) attempt to discuss anything other than how much fun it is to bully the movie, deserving target though it may be. So, yeah, it is kind of it's own end, in that if talking about talking about B&C actually promotes a genuine discussion on any subject, it's a win for me. It's not the fun I wanted, but it's the tiniest bit of the ancillary amusement that should come with any new story. And maybe I'm taking it a little hard that the thread seems to have developed a life of it's own dedicated to raining on my parade.

Also, I've been doing a lot of troubleshooting on lengthy renders, which is giving me long stretches of downtime to read, share my thoughts on what counts as CGI, and not do much else.

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Whoops, didn't hit post. Well, here's a selection of my favorite BSG bad CG.

The infamous miniseries jump shot with the open flight pods. Also, with no shadows, which is a bit more of an issue for me. A corrected version appeared in a later episode.

A shadowless version of my favorite stock shot of the Galactica. It must've been someone else's, too, since it's the only one they rerendered precisely with the battle damage from season 3, and then against in season 4.

The crowd-pleasing entrance of the Pegaus in Exodus Part II, which is missing the smoke effects. Those shells look a lot less cool when they're just glowing cones. Also, it's got that extra turret, but the Pegasus was always a ship-of-the-week at heart. It grew all sorts of extra parts on a week-to-week basis that hadn't been anticipated when it was modeled. The smoke's the big problem with the shot. It was probably a render time thing, since it was an effects-heavy episode. The other two are the ones that have no apparent excuse.

And, a special bonus, an actual case of bad compositing from B&C (as opposed to "compositing I disagree with creatively"). Fie and shame on whoever let that slip through.