Hot How-To Wiki Vids: What do you want to see?

Hey guys! Thinking about producing a set of "how to properly edit the wiki" videos to show people how the tools work and how to navigate the murky waters of some of our deeper pages. I already want to do one for Credits and one for Releases. Are there any other sections you'd really like some further explanation about?

I'll probably try to get this going after E3 (though if time permits, I may sneak in one before the show).


Crysis 3 Xbox 360 Weird Audio Glitch

So here's something I don't think I've encountered before. When I get a good look at a wide open area in the 360 version of Crysis 3, the audio completely dies. But when I pan back over to the wall or down to the ground, it kicks back in. Weeeeeeeird.

Has anyone else encountered this? This might be the weirdest glitch I've encountered since the "headshot causes game to freeze for 5-8 seconds" bug in Kane & Lynch 2. The difference there is that I found that one before release and didn't have anyone else to compare notes with like I do now, so... anyone?


What Happens in Vegas...

Hey, so we've been getting a handful of questions from people who have heard about the internal kerfuffle between our parent company and CNET over CNET's Best of CES awards.

I'm actually not really sure what to say about it. People are looking for me to comment on this stuff, but CNET's Lindsey Turrentine has already laid out the timeline of events over on CNET itself. It sounds like a bad situation--the kind that can only really come up when you're a part of a huge corporation that has interests all over the place. On one hand, I can understand why the folks up top wouldn't want anything popping up that would interfere with its court case. On the other, independence and integrity are the main things you expect from an editorial team. What happens when these two ideals clash? Well, that's where we are now.

Many of the questions I'm getting ask us what would happen if our parent company ended up in a lawsuit with a video game publisher. The good news is that this is a pretty unlikely scenario. The bad news is... well, see above, I guess.

For the very reasons you might expect, I won't have anything more to say on this topic for the time being. We're going to keep doing what we do because that's all we know how to do. All we can do in response to this situation is to keep reporting for duty each day in our continuing efforts to deliver an editorial product that is entertaining, informative, and trustworthy.


New Platform: PSNV

Now that the first North American Vita games have appeared in Sony's online store (even though they're only available if you search directly for them) and we've had a chance to see how they'll surface, I've made a new platform page to cover digital releases on the PlayStation Vita. It's "PlayStation Network (Vita)" or "PSNV."

This platform tag is to be used for games that appear in the PlayStation Store, whether they're available at retail or not. So, going forward, games like Uncharted: Golden Abyss will be tagged with both VITA and PSNV. Super Stardust Delta, as a digital-only release, only gets the PSNV designator. We split these platforms in order to help people who may only be interested in seeing what's available for download (in case they hate leaving the house) or, in the opposite case, people who think that entering their credit card into the Internet is a sketchy idea and prefer to buy physical things. Maybe not the worst idea in this specific case, I suppose. I will admit, it's not the most elegant data solution in the world, but it's not without its purpose.

Either way, it doesn't currently show up in the Sony colors in various lists. I'll see if I can get those dudes to correct that in the morning.

(And while I'm on the topic of platforms, IPOD is for click-wheel iPod games, not for iPod Touch games. Those just go under iPhone. Universal iOS apps get tagged as both iPad and iPhone. Cool?)


2.5D Might Be The Dumbest Term Going

Thinking about deleting the "2.5D" concept page. Honestly, I'm a bit surprised it exists at all. Considering nearly all games are polygonal these days, it's enough to say that the game takes place on a 2D plane. A term for "this has polygonal graphics but has flat gameplay" is almost totally unnecessary. Graphical style and gameplay style are two things that, in this case, don't really need to be combined into one term.

Stupid term. It's up there with the incorrect use of "AAA."


Clarity and the search for more of it.

Hey guys. We're trying to fit in some time to lay down more effective wiki data editing guidelines and page styling techniques and since the "which games do you want to see on TNT?" discussion went so well (except for you lunatics who want Mount & Blade, of course), I figured I'd check in and ask you guys about what you'd like to see addressed.

The page styling stuff is less about telling you how to become a better writer and more about page formatting, like common section headings that could exist on just about any Game page, how far a plot summary should go, and which types of information (move lists) might not belong on a Character page.

The data stuff is more about how to relate things to other things properly and how to treat things like release dates and platform associations. Here's an example of that:

- An appearance in a compilation does not mean that a game was "released" on that platform.

EXAMPLE: Just because Mappy was released in a Namco Museum collection for the PlayStation does not mean that the game page for Mappy should be attached to the PlayStation platform. The Namco Museum page covers that relationship. Only platforms with a dedicated release of Mappy should appear on the Game page. A wiki section detailing its appearances in compilations is appropriate here, as well.

EXCEPTION: Though Game Room (360) may look like a similar situation, its nature as a free shell for purchased games excepts it from the above rule. The games in this compilation are purchased separately. If Game Room didn't have achievements of its own, which forces a game page to achievements relationship on our back-end, it would probably exist in our system as a subsection of the Xbox Live Marketplace platform, which, to be clear, is the platform that Game Room releases should be tagged with.

Topics like "how to properly edit release dates on Giant Bomb" and "why you shouldn't mess too much with the Accessory pages right now" will also be covered here. So, along those lines, what do you want to know? Which questions need to be answered?

TNT Games You'd Like To See

OK, it's suggestion time. We're kind of sick of playing first-person shooters on TNT. They require too much concentration, which rarely works in the "let's sit on the couch and talk shit while we play games" format. And they're stupid repetitive. Two hours of corridor crawling and headshots isn't always compelling to watch.
So which multiplayer games would you like to see us play? We're considering a lot of different options, including turning to super-old (well, as "super-old" as a modern online game can get) releases and dragging them back into the spotlight. I think I wouldn't mind doing two hours of Virtua Fighter 5, but that's just me.


Things I always have to go through when setting up a new PC

Or, if not a new PC, a fresh OS install. 

  • Take old PC, get it up on network with all drives shared and ready for remote desktop
  • Migrate giant inbox containing 13 years of e-mail. 
  • Install iTunes, move library across to new PC, taking care not to reset ratings yet again 
  • Install Steam, download a bunch of games I'll rarely play 
  • Remember where the "show file extentions, I'm not an idiot" toggle is. 
  • Oh, I guess I'll need to migrate all my iPad apps over, too. Fun. 
  • Start gargantuan task of setting up FL Studio and hell of VSTs. *****THIS IS THE WORST ONE AND IT WILL TAKE MONTHS TO DO PROPERLY
  • Copy over all this video I've been collecting. 
  • Reinstall WinRAR 
  • Consider buying WinRAR 
  • Probably don't buy WinRAR, deal with nag screens
  • Vow to myself that I'll keep my desktop in check this time 
  • Immediately dump my old desktop onto new desktop in folder marked "old desktop" 
  • Go inside "old desktop" to find folder from previous PC marked "old desktop" 
  • Go deeper 
  • Find folder marked "old machine desktop"
  • Find music I wrote in 2005, try to figure out where to put it 
  • Leave it in its current place 
  • Consider using old PC as a media server for the rest of the house 
  • Give up on that pipedream and serve it all from the new PC 
  • Forget like five key things that prevent me from doing what I actually need to do on a PC 
  • Erase only copies of files that I'm pretty sure that I have backed up somewhere else

So Screened and Comic Vine are going character crazy...

While weird concept pages will always be my first love, character pages are definitely up there. It's cool to see where a character's been, especially some of these guys that get around, either on their own like Mario or as a result of making a bunch of weird cameos like Isaac Clarke
Anyway, our partners in site-crime are especially focused on characters right now, and since media is all, like, one big crossover, I expect you guys already know a bunch about a lot of these guys from their appearances in video games. So if you know a bunch about, like, Star Trek dudes and Star Wars dudes or superhero dudes, check out these pages in need of some knowledgable attention.