it would be nice to update the camera so it defaults to a 1280 X 720 resolution instead of the current D1 4X3 camera
I see that in A:M the setting for 1280x720 resolution is HD 720p.
That's easy enough to change as a default. We just set the desired settings and save the Choreography as Default.cho in the A:M installation directory.
Customizing things like resolution changes and making them stick would make for a nice introductory lesson in a 'Hacking A:M' series.
These topics would cover things that generally we might not want to have installed by default for everyone that uses A:M but might want to be able to do ourselves.
To keep this somewhat on topic...
Perhaps one of the requirements of this contest could be altered a little in light of a minor obstacle rendering directly out of A:M.
The thought being that entries for this contest should be (optimally and designed to be) rendered straight out of A:M.
The issue would be that of resolution... in that the target resolution is "1440 x 1920 and keep the 3:4 aspect ratio"
This bit of technicalese is a barrier to entering the contest in that it is a custom setting that can't be found in A:M's list of default resolutions.
Now of course, A:M can render to any resolution needed... just adjust as needed... but my point here is that if this requirement is routinely needed (i.e. for every contest) then it would be nice to see that option available as a resolution in A:M. This is an example a 'story driven' need. The story is set as the contest where the actors (users) bring their performances (characters) to the stage.
The second part of the contest's requirement is easy enough: "the winner must summit a rendered image with no background of 480 x 640"
That's the setting VGA out of A:M although... technically that'd be 640 x 480... which I assume is why Robert asked the question about portrait vs landscape (height vs width).
Here we run into an obstacle when faced with available render settings out of A:M. There is a default option for landscape but not for portrait.
So some customization of render settings is needed.
I suppose what I'm saying is that recurring contests should very likely target easy to access resolutions rendered directly out of A:M with no customization.
The alternative would be to make a requirment of the contest be 'Entrants must include the full project file' which I must assume would also be an obstacle against some folks entering.
I must say in the case of the mascot contest though that sharing of mascots with the community would very likely be a good thing.
I do recognize that some folks cannot share their characters for many different reasons.
The example of this could be that of the contest rule being amended to state:
"Entries should be rendered out to at least DV 720p and scaled x2 (or at a minimum 1440 x 1920 and keep the 3:4 aspect ratio) along with a second render at VGA resolution (640x480) with no background for potential use as A:M's splash screen."*
All of this should underline the fact that while A:M is capable of highly technical things most of that tech isn't required to be known or even considered by A:M users.
Of course, this all assumes that being able to figure out custom resolutions isn't loosely designed to raise the technical bar of quality for all entries.
*Can we see the difficultly in the requirement for rendering entries to 1440x1920 with 3:4 aspect ratio? I might be the only one but I really don't know what all of that means. The first time that requirement appeared I was a little confused and apparently after many years I'm still looking for that setting in A:M.
Sorry for the wall of text that will make this post harder to read!