BIGBITE Interviews: Josh Ornelas @ RTX 2016

Josh Ornelas

Transcribed by Matthew “Retrograder” VanDeZande and edited by Kelly Escalante

Matt: Good afternoon from RTX Day 2! I don’t actually know if it’s afternoon yet, but we’re going to run with it. I’m here with Josh Ornelas, producer and machinimator on Red vs. Blue. How’re doing today, Josh?

Josh: I’m doing okay! The coffee hasn’t kicked in yet, but all this is happening *indicates to the showroom floor* and it’s going to wake me up really quickly.

M: I can’t imagine how it wouldn’t! There’s all of this to take in.

J: A lot of sensory overload, but it’s all good.


M: So how’s this season of Red vs. Blue going for you?

J: Since it’s an anthology season, it’s a little more difficult than we anticipated. It’s also super nice to work with so many creative directions, as far as Freddie Wong and everybody we announced in that video at the beginning of the season.

M: All the name drops.

J: ALL THE NAME DROPS. But it’s super neat to see how they have their take of RvB. And there’re some times where they write something amazing and then are like, “Well, we defer to you in how it should be directed, since you guys know RvB a bit better than us, but this is our script.” But it’s super nice to see a fresh take on an existing IP that we have.


M: On the machinima side of things, which Halo titles have you personally worked on?

J: So we’ve done machinima in Halo 1 through 4. Halo 1 is interesting … it’s very solid mechanically, but here’s the problem with Halo 1: trying to use a controller — an Xbox 360 controller on Halo PC, and there’s no deadzone on a controller for Halo 1. So the thing is the stick has to be exactly zero-zero or else your character starts full-speed going off to the side somewhere. It’s so crazy. If you even just look at the controller wrong, boop! You’re gone. Just flying over.


M: Of the Halo games that you’ve worked with, obviously you said 1 through 4, which one is your favorite to work with and why?

J: Halo 2 was actually — codewise, mechanically and everything —  incredibly solid. Crazy solid. The only thing is I don’t have as fine of camera controls as I do in some of the other Halos, but otherwise — head bobs, the running and everything — it’s incredible. I love it to death. Halo 3 has been interesting to work in. It kind of has some of the quirks that Halo 4 does — little things here and there for capture, I have to relearn or learn again … and I just said “relearn” twice.

M: All the learning.



M: Do you guys plan on doing anything in Halo 5?

J: So we kind of looked into Halo 5 — of course, it’s Red vs. Blue, we have to look into every Halo. The removal of splitscreen shoots us in the foot a little bit, but the machinima functions in Halo 5 are incredible. Probably the best I’ve seen in any Halo and we can create pretty much whatever set we want given the environment. We might look into something later on, we’ll see.

M: Alright, that’s going to do it for us today! Thank you for sitting down — sitting down … we’re standing up.

J: It’s all the same.

M: Thank you for talking with us!

J: Thank you!


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