Deciding that SimsFilmFest should happen once a year has given the staff some much needed time off to consider where the festival has been, where it is now, and where it’s going.
When SimsFilmFest changed hands it wasn’t done smoothly and we, quite honestly, in survival mode. We needed to give the festival a new home and keep it going. The problem? We never really came out of survival mode. We’ve nearly burned out, the festival has suffered and quite honestly, sometimes it all seems more like work than fun.
We want the fun back.
When Gus Rockman mentioned that Season 18 would mark 10 years of the Sims International Film Festival we realized we were getting old. He and I have been around the festival almost since it’s beginning. We still love Sims machinima, we still believe in the festival, and we still want the world (or at least The Sims Community) to bare witness to all the awesome talent that the Sims Machinima Community has.
We discussed what attracted us to the festival and all the things that made it fun and we want many of those things back. We want people to come to SimsFilmFest and enjoy making and sharing and watching machinima.
So what does all this mean? Let’s take a look.
The website will be put to use for more than the basics of the festival. We are working on a small redesign (bare with us during the mess). There will be sections for Festival News, Machinima articles, Tutorials, and a blog. We will continue to update the site during festival off season. Our goal is to once again be the home of Sims Machinima.
This has always been a big thing. We love our magazines because they are easy to share across the social media platforms, but we don’t always have the time to get them together because of real life commitments, illness, people not having things to us by deadlines, and so forth. They go from fun to headache quickly.
We are going to combine Insider Magazine and Machinima Magazine into SimsFilmFest Machinima Magazine. The magazine is going to focus more on promoting projects and less on tutorials and festival news. Festival news will be exclusively on the website as well as tutorials. No one wants to have to dig through a magazine on Issuu to find a tutorial.
By changing magazine format and focus we hope to be able to reach more people and better promote your projects.
This is something we really lost sight of over the last few seasons. The personalities that SimsFilmFest had helped make it what it was. We had the paparazzi, we had Newt screaming about how no one understood punk music, at one point we even had a fashion reporter. We want to bring these things back. We are planning a whole new cast of characters for the upcoming season that everyone will hopefully fall in love with.
We have always struggled with social media. It’s a lot to keep up with, and to make sure we get everything we wanted posted everywhere. We also don’t get a ton a feedback or interaction on the social media sites so we don’t know what is reaching who. We really want to expand our social media presence and use Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram more, just not for festival news, but to share your content.
Everyone can find us on Discord with this link. Discord is the new forum. Come talk to other sims machinimators, get machinima help, promote your projects and participate in some fun things that we have planned.
Sims photography was another thing that we had a focus on back in the day. We had fun photography challenges and most of those pictures made their way into the pages of the magazines. We are planning on doing this again. All the details on this will be announced soon so stay tuned.
As always, SimsFilmFest is open to anyone who plays The Sims. We don’t care if it’s TS2, TS3, or TS4. We are looking forward to Season 18 and we hope you are as well.