If you're going to make a pvp video, then obviously one of the things you're going to need is a way to capture the video clips. Fraps (www.fraps.com) is pretty much the standard in the pvp movie circuit.
You can get a free copy from the site, but it only takes short-length clips and throws an ugly watermark on the footage. You're better off buying the thing. It isn't very expensive and, honestly, if you don't suck ass at PvP and plan doing this for an extended period of time, it's worth it. If you plan on only releasing one video, you're better off just stealing the damn thing from a friend or finding an alternative program (I don't know of many, so don't ask).
Keep in mind that running Fraps does take a tiny beast of a machine. It's possible to run the thing on a mediocre computer, but only with a sacrifice of frame rates and video settings. Most people aren't going to upgrade their computer to be able to make a PvP movie, so if your computer sucks you are probably out of luck. Sorry.
Also, keep in mind that Fraps' .avi files are humongous. You will not be able to make a 20 minute pvp video if you only have 4g of free space. I usually have around 20gigs free when I make a video and I'm always constantly running out of space. Most people aren't budget and have larger hard drives than I do. :]
Using Fraps once you've obtained a copy is actually pretty easy. You set the keybind to begin video capture (mine is the tilda, `, if you're curious), set the frame rate at which video is captured (I use 50, but honestly 30 is fine). Turn off the recording of your in-game cursor by checking No Cursor. It helps to hide the clicking, you newb. :]
The most complicated thing about using Fraps is getting your resolution straight. I fucked around with this for a long time before I figured it all out. Maybe I'm just retarded, but chances are you'll have issues with it to.
There are two settings for video capture resolution. Half-Size or Full-Size. Half-Size is stupid, unless you have a ridiculously huge monitor. Don't use it. The other setting, Full Size, is what most of you will use. What this does is take footage at the resolution you are playing WoW at (as opposed to half the resolution). There is a stipulation, though. If you're using a single core processor, Fraps records at a maximum resolution of 1152x864 or 1280x800 for widescreen. This means that if you are playing at a resolution above these values (such as 1280x1024), then Fraps will switch to Half-Size and anything you record will look like a tiny asshole.
If you're running a dual-core processor, then you don't need to worry about resolution restrictions.
However, even if you ARE running a dual core processor, making a pvp video at a resolution higher than 1024x768 is unnecessary. Yes, it looks pretty, but the tradeoff is that your movie is a lot, lot bigger in file size.
Anyway, I'm going to assume that you do everything that I tell you to. :]
From here on out, you plan on frapsing at a resolution of 1024x768 or lower.
To go about frapsing at 1024x768 resolution, set your in game resolution to this and you're good to go. Of course, if your monitor has a default resolution that is higher than this, you'll probably want to play in windowed mode (not maximized).
Some tips for getting smoother footage
- The smaller the resolution you're recording at, the better your frame rates. If recording at 1024x768 is too much for you, record at something smaller. It won't look as good, but that's alright. We'll be streaming it anyway. :]
- If you can play in fullscreen mode, do it. You may be in a situation where you're frapsing at a resolution that is smaller than your monitor is set at (for example, I Frat 1024x768 and my monitor runs at 1280x1024), then when you play fullscreen, everything will seem stretched and ugly. You'll still fraps normally, but playing in fullscreen does help your framerates
- Turn down your WoW settings. However, keep in mind that if you're on the very cusp of reaching your desired frame rate, there are certain settings that should be turned down before others.
- Turn down your texture filtering first.
- Turn down environmental detail and ground clutter density/radius next.
- Weather intensity isn't always a factor to worry about, but if you're in AB and it's raining and your frames are mysteriously shot, turn this off.
- Turning off Full Screen Glow gave me about 4 more FPS. Up to you.
- Things like Specular Lighting, Death Effect, and Character Shadows can be turned off if you're desperate.
- If you can, keep your terrain distance turned up. I know a lot of people are forced to turn it down, as it really hurts your frame rate, but if you can keep it up even just a little bit, it makes watching the clips so much more enjoyable. Trust me, bitch. This should be the last to go.
Turn off your scrolling combat text. You know, all that crap that's in the middle of the screen and shooting out like a rainbow? The huge text flying all over the place? Turn that shit off.
I'm serious. Turn it off. >:|