Heyo, I'm boutta go to sleep but I had an idea for something. I've been grappling on it for a bit now, but I think I wanna propose it to gather a good idea of what people would think about it and to also gain feedback early. I've run things before (not always the best, I'll admit), but I've never really created a competition from scratch.
At least, mostly from scratch.
Truth be told, the idea isn't fully my own, but it does root off of something else that happened before. Back in 2019, @CoachFro hosted a special kind of NG Monthly Writing Competition - he hosted plenty of monthly competitions before, but the difference with this one was that it would have the end goal of turning into an animation here on NG. It went through four phases - the writing phase, the art/character reference stage, the music & VA stage, and the animation stage. The competition as a whole went well, but it started to die out when it got to us musicians and was completely untouched when the animation phase rolled in. It's definitely not something I'd say is Fro's fault at all, but it's something I wanna avoid this time around. After all, the NG community went through some growth since then because of things like the Sponjibobbu episode given a copyright strike on YouTube and, more recently, FNF - we have more people on NG and probably more interest to get together and make something fun since then.
So with that said, how would this iteration of the competition work? Somewhat similar as before, but with some changes.
Phase 1: Writing/Concept
Similar to the competition that started it all, the idea is that writers would be tasked with writing a script for an animation. However, I would want to open it up to any animation ideas whatsoever, not just pilot episodes. My only rule would be for it to only use original characters and scenarios, since it allows for more creative freedom in the later stages. I'd also allow for it to either be a drama, comedy, whatever the writer wants to be. I'm considering a rating limit as well (maybe M at most), but nothing's solid yet.
Phase 2: Art/Reference
Pretty much similar to the other competition, where artists would take a character or few and come up with reference sheets for them. The goal is to be unique in style but also tied to the script in terms of what the character looks like, how they act, etc.
Phase 3: Music & VA
Instead of strictly doing a theme song (although the musician can do that if they want to), the musician can pick out any part in the script and make a 1:30 to 2:00 song following the events of the script in that part. It could be ambiance music, something that blends with action, whatever they want it to be. For VAs, they would choose a few lines that make up around 1:00 of a track and voice the character, again keeping in mind what the script says for their personality.
Phase 4: Animation
Instead of doing a trailer, my thought is to have the animation competitors choose a portion of the script and animate 1:30 - 2:00 of that portion. It can be storyboard animations, full animations, whatever they see fit for the time they have. They would have to utilize the style of the artist, maybe include the music track from the musician, and if possible also include lines from the VAs. Their goal is to bring everything together and bring the vision to life.
Other misc stuff
- I'd probably aim to start this on January 1st. I don't want to interfere with other NG happenings too much, and I know I'm gonna be busy up until that point as well.
- Like before, the person or people who win one of the phases have a say in the later phases for who they think portrays the script the best.
- Phases 1-3 would last around 2 weeks each, while phase 4 would last 4 weeks (to give ample time to animate that much).
- I'm considering running phases 2 and 3 together, but I'm hesitant because the musicians and VAs can bounce off of the artist's work on the reference sheets.
- I will not be distancing myself from the group once it is fully assembled, and instead I'll help in whatever ways is needed and possible for me.
- I'm considering, if this goes well, of also starting a game variant of this competition. The main inclusion would be the final phase of coders placing assets and music into the game, but I still would need to figure things out and learn from this competition.
- The whole point of the competition is to bring people on NG together in a unique way and to have fun while doing so! I can include prizes too, such as some Supporter statuses, but again it's about having fun and making some friends while working on something passionate.
That's what I got so far. Again, I'm still tweaking some things and I want to get an idea of what I need to change before the competition potentially starts, or if the idea isn't going to work. I'm interested, and I'm down to hear your guys' thoughts!