Hyperbolic headline aside, there are few things I enjoy more than playing audience to the creative efforts of talented geeks with time on their hands and cameras at the ready. The results are often extremely watchable.
I've rounded up ten of the best such videos I've stumbled across in recent months below. They range from the imaginative (the superimposition of a complete Super Mario Bros. speed run onto a series of traffic barriers) to the nerdy (a StarCraft mission animated with Lego) to the warm and sappy (a video game designer proposing to his beloved via a home-made game).
Super Mario Bros.
Film student Andreas Heikaus' superimposes a speed run of Super Mario Bros. onto one long tracking shot of a series of traffic barriers. It's a highly professional effort; the screens look almost as though they have been painted onto the concrete. And it's a pretty good SMB speed run, to boot.
Lego StarCraft: Brick Rush
I just found this lovely bit of StarCraft-themed Lego animation via game blog Joystiq this morning. It ought to be instantly recognizable to anyone who has played Blizzard's popular strategy game. The filmmakers get extra points for including the fog of war and authentic sound effects.
The Multicolored Multitask (Guitar Hero + Rubik's Cube)
A kid solves two Rubik's Cubes while playing a Guitar Hero track on expert difficulty with his elbow on the strummer and looking at the screen in a mirror. Seriously.
Made by Rooster Teeth, the group behind the popular Red vs Blue Halo machinima, this live action video explores what it would be like to drive a car from a third person perspective. Also, Yakuza.
Red Dead Redemption Short Film by John Hillcoat
The director of Hollywood films The Proposition and The Road uses his considerable talent to splice together some of the narrative scenes from Rockstar's game, then adds a few touches of his own to create a compelling computer animated short film. It was broadcast on Fox earlier this summer.
Law Abiding Engineer
A ridiculously polished mashup, this short replaces key actors in the trailer for Law Abiding Citizen with characters from Team Fortress 2. Had the entire movie been filmed this way it likely would have been much more watchable.
Another Lego animated film, this one pays tribute to Pac-Man, Pong, and several other classic 8-Bit entertainments. It's as frantically paced as the games from which it took inspiration. Don't think about how many hours it must have taken to create; just enjoy.
MegaMan: Get Equipped
This feature-length fan film is a painfully earnest homage to everyone's favourite blue-clad side-scrolling hero. The cheesy script won't win any Oscars, and the actors make Pinocchio appear flesh and blood by comparison. In truth, it's a bit like watching a car wreck. However, by the end I was almost cheering that the filmmakers managed to complete this ambitious labour of love.
Batman Arkham Asylum
Mega64 has made a name for itself over the years by filming jokers who roam the real world pretending that they're living inside their favourite games. Not all of their videos work, but this Batman Arkham Asylum sendup does. The last three seconds made me laugh aloud.
I Proposed by Building a Video Game!
A nerd makes a game and uses it to propose to his beloved in front of his co-workers. Nothing like some good, wholesome geek love. This one ought to make any gamer well up a bit. You can play the game he made for his bride-to-be here.
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