Name: entik
Notable Work(s): eHero, The Contenders 2

Tell us a little bit about yourself, your background, interests, etc.?
My name is Matthew Grady and I'm from Brooklyn, New York. I grew up playing Counter-Strike, Day of Defeat, Aliens vs Predator, Starcraft, UT and various other PC games. After becoming frustrated with the team aspect of CS and wanting something more free-form and movement based, I discovered the Half-Life mod The Specialists and just started playing that non-stop. Through TS I made my first bad frag movie and that was my entry way into learning more about movie making. I also met famed CPMers mew and LuGia through TS and they in turn introduced me to Quake 3 CPM and trained me in the movement. After playing CPM for some time and meeting the Quake community, I learned of Q3MME. I messed around with that for a while, making short clips here and there, and then eventually made some movies.

When I'm not gaming or editing I work at a bar, fix arcade cabinets, and drink too much.

Are you self-taught or have you taken formal classes on editing?
Self-taught.

What software do you use?
Vegas, After Effects, Photoshop, Illustrator.

When starting a project, what is your approach like? Do you have a specific workflow?
I always start with a song that I've been really enjoying and replaying constantly. I'll listen to it a couple hundred times, mostly unknowingly, and just play out frag scenes in my head to the song as it plays. Sometimes the more intense parts of a song can trigger a thought to somehow use frag footage along with it, and then the plan for the rest of the song comes after.

After selecting a song I'll workout the layout roughly in my head, and then lay down some markers for important beats and different stages of the song. I usually focus on editing the most vivid / intense parts of the song first, but for some projects I've done the intro first, so it depends.

Contract work can be more tricky because you can't just pick whatever you're listening to in your free time, but the same formula applies. I'll decide on a song based on what I think I can do with it and how it will feel with the footage.

What has inspired you in your work? Are there specific movies or moviemakers that changed the way you approach your own work?
Basically wanting to create movies to songs or genres that I never saw being used. Or maybe the genres were being used, but not in a very watchable edit, lacking intensity and care. So I started making my own.

As far as movies:
Frag or Die (CS)
aAa The Movie (CS)
Get Quaked 3
Mercurial
Unity
Cattuthaj Jhana
Aerodynamic 2
CPMA done by Vo0

Which of your own projects are you most proud of? Which do you think were most instrumental in your development as a moviemaker?
The Reflex footage in eHero (LAN), Reflex Trailer, The Contenders 2, Work.

The Contenders 2 is where I learned a lot and had my editing style really show through. It's the one movie where I feel like I almost did everything I set out to do.

Working on eHero was a real eye-opener in cinematography, setting up shots, workflow, coherent story editing, etc. The amount of work and time we put in to make Reflex look as good as it could was almost mind numbing to where just thinking about it hurts my head, lol. Especially with all the restrictions we had with the replay editor in terms of camera pathing and camera options.

There is a range of game movies in terms of editing styles and structure. Some you could call some "old school" (minimal editing) and then there are very elaborate projects with significant amounts of editing. Where do you think your movies fall? In your opinion, is there an ideal balance between editing and content?
I'd say somewhere in the middle, but leaning towards minimal. My style definitely keeps the frags at the forefront, figuring out a way to present the content in the most visceral, intense way with the music. I'm not the biggest fan of the slower 'artsy' style movies that a lot of people are doing these days, but I think if I found the right track for it, I could give it a go.

Yes I do believe there is a balance. Go too far in either direction and things become pretty unwatchable, in my opinion at least.

What do you think the future holds for game movies? Are there new styles/techniques possible?
Not sure about actual techniques. Making Twitch highlight compilations seems to be the trend these days and I'm not a huge fan of it. It kind of removes the quality, creatively and visually, that movies used to be known for. There are some channels I've seen do it well though.

What advice do you have for new moviemakers?
Take your time and and don't rush things. Frag movies can be a very painstaking process and sometimes infuriating, but thinking things out with a plan will get you more value and sense of accomplishment at the end of the day.

Any last comments/shoutouts?
Thanks to everyone who watches and enjoys my work. Thanks to lolograde, Reflex community, CPM community.

TC3 some day, a Reflex short, Reflex race movie, and probably some QC stuff down the road.
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