Basic Physics

Hey guys.
First off I would like to say I am new to using/rendering physic simulations in blender. I have some experience in the BGE, so i know my way around blender.
I have seen tutorials explaining how to make a cube shatter (such as this one )

But how do I make that happen when its standing still? For example, I hope to do some tests with it and track it into real footage. So it would look like a building is toppling down.
So I don’t need it to explode, rather, for it to collapse on itself.
Or even to do something like this

Thanks for the help, and I’m sorry if this question is asked alot.
Thanks for your patience,

if you read the “fracture addon” postings here (and shure on its web-site)
he uses a logic-brick setup to disable dynamics and at collision the dynamics are enabled.
If i understand this in the right sense, this freezes the rigid-body object.
There is a sample blend-file at his site for blender-2.57 with this setup
in the game-logic-bricks. (and he has some routines to setup these things for a whole bunch of objects, so once has not to set these for every object by hand)