Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Recording Gameplay: So Obvious, It Never Occurred to Me

So much of this new pilot has been challenging for me, especially because I'm new to the technical side of computers and IT. Teachers don't generally have to modify permissions and read Java, so my brain is often overloaded with information that I would normally never need (or want) to know.

I knew I needed to figure out how to record gameplay so we can show off the products the students are creating and the worlds my team and I make. I figured this would be just as difficult to learn as some of the other things I've encountered so I've been putting it off.

Turns out, it is simple. REALLY simple.

I create screencasts all the time for my teachers, usually using Jing, which records what's going on in my screen while I talk about it. This is EXACTLY what I needed for recording Minecraft - it just didn't occur to me that the tool I use all the time was the perfect thing for this too!

I just tested it out, and it works great! So now in my screencast.com account there's a lovely video of me cooking steak. (Ok, it's not really very interesting, but I figured I should prove it.)

Questions or thoughts I have about using this with students:

  • I don't want my kids to have screencast.com accounts. It looks like they can save their videos as .swf files. I can get them to save to their H: drives, then I can go in and grab them and upload as needed.
  • The movies made in Jing aren't editable. We might need better capturing/editing software (like Camtasia?) in the future.
  • Jing movies are limited to 5 minutes. Would we need more than that? 
  • I saw a few student-created movies on YouTube where it looks like they just pause the recording in-between narrators. This seems like the easiest solution for group presentations. 
There's probably a much better way to record Minecraft game play, but this works for now!

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