Monthly Archives: September 2023

S3 E96 Unreal Engine: Backrooms medley (Sept 2023)

Tracy Harwood Podcast Episodes September 27, 2023 Leave a reply

In this week’s episode, we discuss the phenomenal Backrooms meme that has emerged ever since  @kanepixels  original film (and the much awaited Netflix version was announced). We review three examples of the works being created, variously using levels of the rapidly evolving game: Chaos in the Hub by  @BackroomsMerchant  is probably the most close to the original horror vibe; Endless Escalators by  @ReturnToRender  is an example of great comedic timing; and Crab Rave – Backrooms Edition by  @Madlykeanu  is just pure fun, and an example of a meme upon a meme. As Phil suggests, however, has it gone too far, a la Poltergeist and Alien, and what does this astonishing level of response to the original film mean for the success of the Netflex release? We have mixed views and yet geniusly, somehow, Ricky manages to invoke Kafka into the discussion!

YouTube Version of This Episode

Show Notes and Links

Film selection – Chaos in the Hub by Backrooms Merchant, released 1 August 2022 –

Endless Escalators, by Return to Render, released 24 October 2022 –

Crab Rave – Backrooms Edition by Madkeanu, released 2 June 2022 –

and here’s the meme this was based on too, Crab Rave by Noisestorm, 2015 –

And, our original review of The Backrooms, released on the channel in Feb –

S3 E95 UE: Terra & ED: Into Black (Sept 2023)

Tracy Harwood Podcast Episodes September 20, 2023 Leave a reply

This week Damien has picked two space exploration shorts for us to review: one is made in UE called Terra by  @j.thomaswilson3543  and the other is an ED film called Into Black by  @indigointoblack . The film sequencing of the craft in flight in Into Black shows the competence of the creator whereas the human element encapsulated by the robot in Terra is particularly engaging and adds a different dimension to the storytelling. We discuss the similarities and differences of these approaches to space operas in general, and also how it contrasts to the Pixar approach of building in cuteness and sentimentality. In the end, however, we agree (with the exception of Tracy’s perspective) that these are great cinematic examples of machinima… but maybe you settle on Tracy’s side of the discussion?

YouTube Version of This Episode

Show Notes & Links

Films – Terra, by J Thomas Wilson, released 10 July 2020, is made in Unreal Engine –

and Into Black, by Indigo, released 19 August 2023, is made in Elite Dangerous –

We also mention to the release of Starfield, launched on 6 September 2023 – find it here on Steam.

S3 E94 Half Life 2: Shelf Life (September 2023)

Tracy Harwood Podcast Episodes September 13, 2023 Leave a reply

This week we discuss one of the best HL2 films from the 2009 era – Shelf Life by Pixel Eyes Productions. The film, which is in two episodes, won a heap of creator awards back in the day and has definitely stood the test of time for us. There are some fun sci-fi and weird tropes integrated into the story, which we discuss, as well as the very well done sound design and original music. We’d love to see these guys pick this project back up, although of course, none of the issues they faced back then will be a problem now – just a whole set of new ones to overcome!

YouTube Version of This Episode

Show Notes and Links


Chapter 1 Shelf Life: You Are What You Remember, by Pixel Eyes Productions, released 6 July 2009

and Chapter 2 Shelf Life: After the Scan

Music video by Pixel Eyes to E V Kain’s Yes No Maybe, made in iClone –

S3 E93 Twin Peaks (Sept 2023)

Tracy Harwood Podcast Episodes September 6, 2023 Leave a reply

An homage and ‘unofficial tribute’ to the classic 90s TV series, this week’s review discusses a film of a game demo created by Blue Rose Team for the PS1. The demo covers the intro and events surrounding Special Agent Cooper’s arrival at Twin Peaks and his encounter with Laura Palmer and the Black Lodge. Steeped in the mythos of the virtual world that has been created, well, at least that applies to some of the CM crew more than other/s, we discuss how well it translates to contemporary times, the story portrayed and the issues that arise from this type of transformative work.

YouTube Version of this Episode

Show Notes & Links

Preliminary discussion, Convergence Mod here

Sony’s update on its Ghostbuster’s Unreal test –

Twin Peaks film, released 8 August 2023 –

Download demo from here

Original Twin Peaks intro here –