Six months since GB invoked The Ritual. How do you feel?

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csl316

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#1  Edited By csl316

So yeah, 6 months since Jeff G. left and there was doom and gloom, til less than 24 hours later when the site basically got a reboot with another Jeff G. and Dan and the combo of Tamoor and Lucy.

Personally, most of the Covid era wasn't working for me. But since this summer I feel like the site's been completely revitalized. I'm enjoying most of what I watch, and the stuff that isn't for me can be skipped and I'll catch up on Nextlander that evening or something. Grubb's been doing a stellar job, and Dan is Dan (not complaining, been following him and Jason since GI).

Original Jeff G. seems to be doing well, GB is doing well, and Nextlander is trucking along so games criticism is being critiqued all over the place.

I'm curious what happens with Fandom but nothing's really stood out as a bad thing so far. I understand that Sonic Frontiers link pissed folks off (I didn't care). So I'm sure there's valid criticisms people can bring up here, too.

But yeah, I dunno, GB is firing on all cylinders as we head into 2023. And that's kinda nice since this site's felt like a warm blanket for me when I'm looking at video games internet. And that feeling's there again.

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davesavedtheday

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All things evolve, change, and grow. It is inevitable. There were growing pains but personally I believe they've passed and we're into the new Giant Bomb era fully. That might not be what some people want and that's okay! They're allowed to have their own views. But for me? Giant Bomb is as alive and thriving as it ever was. It's just evolved.

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Fear_the_Booboo

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For me it’s the best GB has been since a while!

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Nodima

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The forums are the most valuable part of GB for me at this point. Haven’t listened to the pod in at least two or three months and have only really watched Sekiro-choa, Grubbsy 3D and a handful of Quick Looks.

Funny since I was definitely one of the loudest “pry my dark text on white background from my cold dead monitor!!” voices when dark mode was permanently activated. I even let my NY Times and Washington Post apps go dark mode at night now. The nerve of me.

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Anthenagin

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I feel like GB is in a pretty good place, and am happy with the content.

I wish Dan, Tamoor, and Lucy were on more things, but that feels like a small complaint

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Shindig

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Sometimes dead is better.

I kid but I'm definitely getting less out of the change up. Game of the Year next week is going to be interesting because I'm barely sure who the core crew is. The podcast rotates them through regularly so it might be a lot of "Well, I didn't play <blank>"

I'll ride or die with Sekirochoa but I'm also missing all the old game stuff Ranking of Fighters, UPF and other shows provided. Of the new stuff, hot takeouts has my interest but that's not something you can regularly churn out. Frequency of 'stuff' has certainly slowed.

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TheRealTurk

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I dunno. Is there a shoulder shrug emoji on these forums? I was pretty checked out on the site before and nothing that has been done since has really moved the needle and got me to come back. I haven't listed to the Bombcast Random Grab Bag of Rotating Hosts in months, barely touch the Quick Looks, and fled very far and very fast from whatever the hell the thing with forks was.

I don't know that any site suffered as much from the transition to remote work as Giantbomb. I get that things have changed, but this site in particular really lost that je ne sais quot when people were no longer in a single spot. Now when I want a review of a game, I don't watch the Quick Look, I go to see what Skill Up has to say. If I want a chill feeling of friends on a couch, I go to MinnMax rather than watching the BombCast.

It's a bit like Moneyball. You can't replace the old GiantBomb, but you can recreate it in the aggregate.

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tartyron

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It’s fine. I still like all the team. My attention is split a lot of different ways so I don’t sub here, Jeff G’s or nextlander, but I like popping into all of the above when I got a half hour to kill.

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csl316

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@therealturk: I go to Easy Allies for the couch vibe. But yeah, I certainly miss the office stuff. Since the staff is all over the country now, that really is a thing of the past. I'll occasionally see a clip of an old show and it's a different era.

I remember lamenting when they left the Whiskey basement and they felt so isolated. The at-home transition gave me a similar feeling. Which is why the Brooklyn meet up thing was so cool, and why I hope they can do an E3 thing next year. A few months back, Alex stopped by Vinny's basement for Def Jam and I freakin' loved it. Being together really adds a lot when it comes to chemistry.

But that hasn't been GB in nearly 3 years so I guess I've come to accept it.

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MindBullet

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I was pretty interested in the new crew. There was a lot of reason to be excited, and I was more than ready to give the site a chance to really make a push and rebound. There's been some signs of life, with the coverage of Keigh3, the big carny-ass stream on Twitch, Jess' Hot Takeouts... But I've mostly tuned out. I'd go on a whole screed about what went wrong for me, but I honestly stopped paying attention a while ago and we've been through that song and dance enough already.

I still visit the forums out of pure habit, but they feel out of place more than ever before with the increased focus on Discord. I imagine it's just a matter of time before this place is gone from my life completely.

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apewins

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It's okay, maybe I'm a little undecided. I'm confused why they announced all these new personnel only for about half the staff to almost never appear on anything. Bombcast is basically Jan, Grubb, Jess and Bakalar, with a frequent outside guest which I'm honestly getting a little tired of because the guest takes up so much room, understandably so because they're there to plug something that I likely don't care about.

The new shows haven't hit for me. Eternal Darkness is a good game (that I recall anyway) but not very entertaining to watch and Dan just made it unbearable from the beginning with his soundboard. The Sonic 06 and Bubsy 3D streams come off to me as mean-spirited "haha let's all laugh at how bad this game is". If you contrast that to the Garfield streams, those Garfield games weren't that bad for the era, and most importantly Gerstmann mostly played them straight instead of going for the cheap laughs whenever something weird happened.

I'm also just going to take this opportunity to say that I'm skipping the GOTY podcast this year around because it's obvious that nobody wants to have anything resembling of an argument so it's just going to be a weak compromise of a list once again. Why force it if nobody wants to do it? Because it's tradition? I'm still hoping that the crew can get a little bit more creative in the future.

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brian_

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To be honest, my interest in the content has been slipping over the past month or so. I think there's a lot of "chaos energy" in the current cast and it gets to be a bit much for me when a lot of the content is chaotic playthroughs of bad games, Dump Truck poop talk, competitive game shows, and Forks. I don't mind these things individually. Arcade Pit is one of my favorite pieces of content on the site. But I need some chill in my content too. I need the equivalent of Jeff playing Mr. Do, Abby playing Nancy Drew, or Vinny looking at old coins while Alex plays Guitar Hero.

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AV_Gamer

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#15  Edited By AV_Gamer

Like most have said, its okay. The new crew seems to be trying their best to be like how the OG staff was before things got shaken up. However, its simply not the same. That sense of independence from the mainstream gaming industry that the OGs had is not there with the new crew. Even though they do a decent imitation, you can tell they're corporate backed and owned. Some might respond, well eventually the OGs were this as well, you'd be correct and that's when things started to go downhill. I'm not naive, I know maintaining a large video game website like this without a huge backing is very difficult and the OGs had to do what they had to do at the time, but that doesn't change the results.

I recently fell off on a lot of stuff, mainly the weekly Bombcast, because I listen to The Jeff G show instead most of the time. I just always liked how he talks about video games, cynicism and all. Only when a major scandal happens I do listen to the podcast and a lot of other people, because I want to hear as many opinions as possible. Its also the reason I listen to Mess Mornings every now and again, mainly if I like the special guest. The best thing GB has going for itself right now is The Arcade Pit. Every episode has been entertaining to watch and is a highlight of the week. And I am pretty active in the forums, mainly because there isn't a lot of people posting, which has a more laid back and casual feel to me. Its easy to recognize who the main posters are and how they feel about the different topics. Ironically, when the OG staff were running things and the forums were a lot more busy, I barely posted on the forums at all.

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eccentrix

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Giant Bomb's still my homepage after a decade, so I see pretty much everything that gets posted, but it's been a long time since there was a video I've been interested in watching. I guess I'm waiting for Dan to come up with a new SMS/BMB equivalent. That or the next episode of Reel Layers.

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ALLTheDinos

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Probably in the minority, but it’s the best the site has been since early 2019. The perfunctory GOTY of 2019, and of course the confusion of those first few pandemic months, made it clear that the old days were gone forever. Neither Nextlander or Jeff’s solo project come close to being “old Giant Bomb”; they’re just those pandemic streams with happier participants.

I don’t really want the old days to come back. This isn’t 2009 anymore, and the Internet as a whole is a completely different (some would say worse) place. It’s enough for me that the current roster appears to be enjoying itself, and there’s been enough content compared to the prior two years that I can be choosier with my viewership. My main complaint is, as others have said, is that the roster feels imbalanced on actual content creation. I’d like to see more Lucy, Tam, Rorie, and Jason in 2023. This is not at all a slam on the others; it just feels more stale when only 3 different people seem to be on Quick Looks.

Overall, I’m glad the site is making better content than it has over the prior few years. However, it’s seemed rejuvenated and then slid back into a malaise before (summer 2020, June 2021 in particular). It’s pointless to worry about, so I’ll just be cautiously optimistic.

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dwerkmd

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Started strong. Around the time of the Fandom transition things seemed to start slipping for likely very good reasons. The "Programming Schedule" page hasn't been updated since November 14th. JeffJeff's Bizarre Adventure has been my favorite thing from Giant Bomb since they took on Arcade Pit but it misses more weeks than it makes at this point. I'd almost be happier if they took it off the schedule they post to Twitter and just surprised dropped it instead of me having expectations on my commute home.

All around, still loving the site.

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noboners

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I'm into most of the content output and I still really like all the personalities. I personally don't mind the rotation of cast for most shows. Keeps it fresh for me. And I'm a big fan of all the reoccurring shows (Arcade Pit, sekiro-choa and blight club are all must watches for me). I'm curious to see if The Very Online Show is returning because I did really enjoy that.

I have started watching more Kinda Funny content in the last 6 months to get the old couch feels. Their new studio is super impressive and it usually has the right levels of chaos and solid gameplay.

I basically treat Giant Bomb as my "on demand" service that usually gets saved for weekend viewing, while I watch/listen to kinda funny streams live throughout the day. But I'm not a Patreon supporter to KF and I am still premium on GB (and will probably keep rolling with premium).

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nophilip

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#20  Edited By nophilip

I've been having a good time overall. I like a lot of the shows currently going, although I'm kind of baffled at how inconsistent a lot (most?) shows seem to be releasing. Notable exceptions of course being the Bombcast, Morning Mess, Arcade Pit and the Voicemail Dump Truck. Totally get that scheduling is hard, but it seems like almost every show is pitched as a weekly thing and then many run less than 50% of weeks. Blight Club has been a fantastic time. Very sad to lose Albummer.

I guess my biggest gripe is the disappearance of criticism from GB. I know GB has never been a place for like academic criticism, but there used to be much more focus on discussing what works and what doesn't about a game, why it's doing what it does, and general insightful commentary. The notable exception is Jess - I definitely don't agree with her all the time, and that's exciting for me! She's consistently willing to dig into what specifically makes a game work or not work in a way that the rest of the crew doesn't seem interested in anymore - at least not on GB content. Hot Takeouts is great but inconsistent out of necessity.

Overall: Site's still good and I'm still watching more content than I'm skipping, but I would love more of a focus on criticism. Don't be afraid to be negative! I love that shit!

Edit to say: Absolutely love Grubb's addition on the news front. It's the best News has ever been on GB (not to denigrate past contributors at all).

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MisterSims

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Since I let my sub lapse, I come in every now and again, and go straight to Infinite, more as a comfort food thing. Nextlander has been my pick as far as gaming stream content, but every once in a while they too have content that just doesn't resonate with my sensibilities, which is fine - I feel like I've been watching more content than playing games recently, and that needs to stop anyway. Over the last week I went on youtube and watched all of the old "Best of Giant Bomb" videos available, starting from 1. I'm not a fan of Arcade Pit or most of the other shows, but I did enjoy The Very Online Show when those used to drop. Not here to poo poo on anyone's fun, so I'll just say that this and the occasional forum check-in has been good enough for me.

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chamurai

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#22 chamurai  Online

I'm down with what the current crew is dishing out. To be quite honest, I've never really watched quick looks or UPF that much even with the old crew so, for me, the main focus has been watching whatever else is on the site. So Arcade Pit, Game Mess Mornings, Albummer, Very Online Show, Blight Club etc. are all daily/weekly watches and as long as they keep the output I'm content. If they miss a week or so I'll be bummed but I trust the team is working hard so I'm sure there's probably a reason that justifies the break and I don't really hold it against them.

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CharAznableCustom

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The combination of it being December causing schedule disruptions and the emphasis on live content making them unable/unwilling to put episodes in the can for regular release makes the site feel extremely thin sometimes (as in the past few weeks). Thankfully they've stuck with the "Bombcast comes out no matter what, no matter the form" rule since I'll probably keep listening to that regardless of anything else but whenever I start to like something they're doing it always gets hit with some kind of delay.

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BisonHero

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#24  Edited By BisonHero

I feel like GB is in a pretty good place, and am happy with the content.

I wish Dan, Tamoor, and Lucy were on more things, but that feels like a small complaint

I also think GB is in a good place at the moment.

To your second point, I'm honestly still a little baffled that, as of Gerstmann exit/The Ritual, Tam and Lucy are presented as Giant Bomb staff at all.

It feels about the same as it did before The Ritual, where they moonlight a bit onto GB stuff, but 95% of their work is primarily Gamespot. I appreciate their rotations onto Voicemail Dumptruck, Game Mess Mornings and (rarely) Arcade Pit, and that they're co-hosts on a couple Bakalar joints (Jeff Jeff's Bizarre Adventure, The Very Online Show). But with them never really being on the Bombcast or UPF-equivalent or any video game stream or Quick Look, I find I often forget to think of them as GB staff. To me, all of their involvement has the vibe of "well that was a fun guest appearance, now back to GameSpot."

I mean, they can't be doing two jobs at once. I hope somewhere along the way they both got a raise for working double duty on both websites, but they're clearly much more GameSpot staff than GB staff. I would've much preferred GB bring on more dedicated staff than continue to borrow Tam and Lucy in this weird extended way, but maybe that's not in the budget, and I guess everyone involved is OK with the current arrangement.

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Ydross

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#25  Edited By Ydross

On one side the new crew is pretty cool for the most part and most of the shows are entertaining (though Arcade Pit is starting to be a bit repetitive)

But on the other hand it still feel weird to think that the old team is completely gone. The site was literally started so Jeff G and his Gamespot friends would have their own site away from all the corporation bullshit and now they are all gone from it and the site is owned by a corporation. Its a bit sad when you think about it. But at least the shows and crew are fun to watch so its not too bad.

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Gyratyne

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I'm okay with where things are at all. Really enjoy Arcade Pit and Jeff Jeff's. VMDT is usually a lot of fun. Didn't think I'd be into TVOS, but it worked for me and now I miss it. Blight Club is fine, but overbearing at times. Eternal Darkness is very hit-or-miss for me. UPF has turned in one-off Playdates, which can also vary depending on the game. All the in-person events have been incredible so far.

Jan and Grubb have been very consistent and form a solid foundation for the team. I've been a fan of Jan from his start and he has become the new face of GB for me. I like Jess a lot, but notice her appearances have lowered so she can work more on Hot Takeouts. Would also love to see more from Tam and Lucy, but understand the limitations. I'm fine with Dan's infrequency. A little goes a long way for me.

The biggest change has been my growing appreciation of Grubb. He handles the news with aplomb, but I'm not as interested in the industry side of things. I like being informed about important topics, but that's not the main reason I come to GB. His solo debut with Grubbsnax did not demonstrate his ability to gel and banter with pretty much anyone. He is highly reliable and down for anything. It's impressive that he shows up on the majority of the active programs.

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mellotronrules

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feeling great about the crew! every person on staff contributes something unique, and i love hearing from all of them.

in terms of programming- i'm not really attached to any of the weekly shows at the moment (bombcast being the exception), but this feels somewhat cyclical (especially in GOTY season). i'm hopeful in the new year we get some fresh ideas- particularly stuff that flexes their editorial muscles and/or personal passions.

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Rohsiph

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The site has drastically changed... which is fine by me, because the last two years have been hell for so many reasons I don't know where to start and I am trying damned hard to start a new, better chapter of my own life. Not sure if I'll stick around if Jan suddenly disappears, but everyone else is still pretty good and there's a good chance I'll stick around at least to give a new kid a chance again.

Love Arcade Pit. Enjoy the bad game streams. Happy to catch Bombcast/UPF-ish stuff live and joke around in chat when I can.

I think as long as I can jump on a livestream chat, or even just GBI, at least once a week and make someone laugh, I'm good.

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Ben_H

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I generally like everything still. UPF's still good and I think the slight change in format towards more group or team oriented things has been great. Blight Club seems like it will be a great addition based on what it's been so far. Game Mess Mornings is great. I do hope Demo Derby makes a return. I watched an episode of it on the GB Infinite twitch the other day and enjoyed it a lot.

More importantly, since the changes of the last year or two it seems like everyone involved is happier. GB's doing its thing and seems like it knows where it wants to go. Gerstmann seems very happy now out on his own (at least from what I see of his videos. I can't keep up with it all. It's so much video). Now that they've found their feet, Nextlander is fantastic and Vinny is back operating at peak Vinny. If you haven't heard Nextlander's new Watchcast movie/TV podcast they introduced several months ago, it's well worth a listen. Alex edits it and goes the extra mile with his editing so it flows perfectly and has lots of little snippets of movie/show audio mixed in. Their monthly "Never Been a Better Podcast", which is literally just Beastcast team (Vinny, Alex, Abby, Austin, Dan, Bakalar) talking about random things, is as good as you'd expect.

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jstaunton

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@anthenagin: Dan, Lucy and Tamoor being on more things or actually being officially part of GB (doesn't feel like Lucy and Tamoor are!) would be my only request.

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isomeri

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#31  Edited By isomeri

I've mostly stopped interacting with the site or its content outside of visiting these forums. I'm glad that the new crew seems to be pushing out content and doing their own thing, but like @shindig said earlier, I have a very thin grasp of who the core GB crew is supposed to be these days and what sort of things this site is about. There's a still a lot of great stuff on the site and I think that the likes of Jan, Jess and Grubb are doing great work.

But the unfortunate truth is that I have let my premium subscription lapse for the first time since it's conception, I've stopped listening to the podcasts for the first time since the first HotSpot and I don't remember the last video I watched here.

Giant Bomb was the best thing on the internet for a very long time and it's an absolute fluke that the magic lasted for as long as it did.

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Shindig

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Not just in personnel but I also don't have a firm grasp on their experience within the industry. My understand thus far is:

  • Jan does video production. Came from Television. I don't think he's had prior industry experience. Primarily interested in tiles, JRPGs, Pokemon and card collecting.
  • Jess cut her teeth on youtube with the Something Awful crew. Primarily into horror. Probably her first job in the industry proper.
  • Dan and Jason. Both came from GameInformer. Dan has a wealth of experience from years of reviewing games. Jason's primarily in for video production but his time at GI would've exposed him to plenty of games to talk about. Dan's tastes have broadened since he first joined. Jason likes air juggles and Jason games.
  • Jeff Grub's been largely focused on news during his time in the industry. Likes hockey.
  • Jeff Bakalar came from (maybe still works?) at CNET. I see him largely as a boss figure who likes pinball, hockey and keyboards. As such, I see his working experience centred around tech rather than gaming itself.

Feel free to clarify some of those but it's a stark contrast of industry knowhow when you consider the decades of experience the 2020 crew had. In the last twelve months, I've seen two written reviews on this site. Both by Dan. He looks like the only person with an inclination to get their thoughts down in black and white and it's telling he's now the most experienced man on staff.

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timoneous

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The thing I worry about is the viability of the site itself. It costs a lot of money to host all this video and I feel like the archive isn't safe. There has been such a shift to Youtube and Twitch where they are able to monetize more and there is virtually nothing here to incentivize a Premium membership purchase. So how can they support all of these people and the site itself when they have fewer and fewer people watching and subbing to them now than a lot of other much smaller operations?

I want to see GB succeed, but the fact that half the staff has other side gigs makes me feel like they're not bought in. Like, Dan still does his streams and get subs there plus Fire Escape, Grubb has his other podcasts/Youtube/Discord channels, Jess does a bunch of side stuff with other sites and her semi-husband and Tam and Lucy split time with GS. I'm not saying everyone needs to work 60-80 hour weeks on GB content, but jeez...I don't feel like I really even need to come to the site anymore if this is going to be the output.

And I don't need the hour+ long QuickLooks that we used to get, but having a steady stream of even little videos like "Hey, this is my streaming setup" or "Here's my collection of x" or just some more personal stuff. We're already basically invited into everyone's home by way of them streaming from home. Let's get to know these folks more. I watched the Jan/Ben video where they went to the Amazon Go store yesterday and it was great! No games needed. This has always been a personality-based product and it needs to continue to be that.

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mattchops

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I have been disappointed. The majority of the small amount of new content just doesn't resonate with me. It's the first time in years that I've started to skip the bombcast, too. It feels like they're chasing the young twitch audience, which is a turn-off.

Unless I've missed it, I'm still waiting on the shows & ideas they talk about in the ritual video.

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Undeadpool

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Apart from really showing how much of a sliding scale the phrase "old-school Giant Bomb" has with some users, things haven't really changed. The new folks took a bit to gel and start to "make sense" as a crew, but now we've got incredible videos the likes of which haven't been seen since the bad ol' days of Endurance Runs. Blight Club is a treasure, and while not all the new stuff feels like it's for me (I wish I could get into the Arcade stuff, but it's just too frantic/frenetic for me) but it all very much feels like Giant Bomb being Giant Bomb.

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notkcots

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I haven't been particularly impressed. As some other folks have noted, the tone has shifted away from "elder statesmen game critics cut through hype to evaluate games that are coming out" into something I'm just not as into. Nothing against the new crew, but they feel distinctly younger and just don't have the review experience I'm looking for if I'm going to listen to somebody talk about games for 2+ hours at a time. Austin and Ben were young, too, but they both had serious chops for dissecting games and could hold their own with Jeff, Brad, and Alex. The new crew seems to be less critical in their discussions of games, and the conversations they have about a game seem comparatively surface level. The OG crew's unique knowledge, industry experience, and sense of humor were unique to the site and drew me in. The new crew's discussions of games, while pleasant, just don't feel like anything that I couldn't find in many other places online. For what it's worth, the lack of transparency around the affiliate links raised my eyebrows, too, and makes me feel less confident in the site's editorial independence.

Overall, I think that GB is having kind of an identity crisis, where it's gone permanently remote and is basically being operated like a Twitch channel, but the site and all of the back content are... still just there. There are very few connections to Giant Bomb classic left. Basically no series carried over from the old crew, and very few people from the old days are still around, either. Rory and Jason aren't on much content and Dan is kind of his own thing, God bless him. There's no new premium content being produced, which is an understandable change given the way that monetization works now, but I'm still subscribed to premium for a few more weeks and it feels weird and bad to pay money solely for access to an archive of videos created by people who left or were fired from the company...

Honestly, I think things would be easier for the new crew if they had just dropped the Giant Bomb name when Gerstmann got fired and built a new brand away from the GB legacy and expectations. At this point, it kind of feels like Giant Bomb as a site only exists through inertia. The site's existence (as opposed to a Twitch channel) only seems to serve the purposes of maintaining the archive (which is, of course, a noble cause). All of the content being produced right now could be done with much, much lower overhead as a Patreon or Twitch channel. I wouldn't necessarily watch any more of it, but it would probably make more sense as a business and would alleviate the weirdness around Premium membership.

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JJBSterling

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I hardly watch anymore. I'm sort of watching Sekirochoa but it's the kind of content I put on when I'm falling asleep or walking around my house in the way that I miss a good chunk of what's actually happening. It's not like when I used to put on an hour or longer video of theirs and be glued to it front to back.

It's not like I'm keeping up with Gerstmann's stuff at all either, though.
Nextlander too, it's kind of background noise when the odd video sounds interesting enough to put on.

So really I think I just consume content a little differently these days but I'm also not discounting the fact that GB just isn't making stuff I'm all that interested in at the moment.

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jacksmedulla

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I pretty much exclusively come to this site for the forums at this point, and even here engagement has fallen off drastically over the past 3 years. Unless a hot topic like this pops up, we're usually looking at the same 4-5 posters keeping things alive. Other than that, I downloaded the old content I often revisit, let my premium sub lapse, and have only enjoyed Sekiro-choa as far as actual content goes since the new crew began. Honestly, theRitual.mp4 video still seems like a smack in the face, given how little Dan seems to actually bring to the site. When I saw that, I was hoping we'd be getting more burgle my bannas and steal my sunshine. Instead I hear more from him on the fire escape cast than on this actual site. Like, what the fuck? The best content we have had on here was when they brought the nextlander crew in for the Neon White tournament, which kind of speaks for itself.

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dooz

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I'm enjoying it all for what it is. Things change. Either stay with it or move on to something else.

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sombre

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I thought Dan was going to be in content

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Brand-Old

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#42  Edited By Brand-Old

Same. I used the Bombcast as my hub for all things Giantbomb each week. I stopped listening recently and found that my consumption of every other show has slowed as a result.

@notkcots said:

As some other folks have noted, the tone has shifted away from "elder statesmen game critics cut through hype to evaluate games that are coming out" into something I'm just not as into. Nothing against the new crew, but they feel distinctly younger and just don't have the review experience I'm looking for if I'm going to listen to somebody talk about games for 2+ hours at a time. Austin and Ben were young, too, but they both had serious chops for dissecting games and could hold their own with Jeff, Brad, and Alex. The new crew seems to be less critical in their discussions of games, and the conversations they have about a game seem comparatively surface level. The OG crew's unique knowledge, industry experience, and sense of humor were unique to the site and drew me in. The new crew's discussions of games, while pleasant, just don't feel like anything that I couldn't find in many other places online.

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csl316

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@gyratyne: Yeah, Grubb has been awesome. I was aware of him before and followed Grubsnax for awhile. He came on board and I figured he'd just be the dry news guy in the morning. But he's so much more, and seems to be down for the dumbest shit that gets thrown his way. He's excellent, thoughtful, and gels well with anyone he's working with.

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csl316

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@ben_h: Nextlander's done a ton of great stuff, but the Watchcast is my favorite thing now. I always loved Behind the Screened door with Alex and Rorie so it's nice to see that Alex can still run a damn fine movie podcast. His edits are perfect, since the second I try to imagine what they're talking about he'll add in a clip. It's been a nice change from full movie commentaries since I can listen to this whenever.

And I never cared about Star Trek TOS but here we are. I've only watched a few full episodes but have a much better appreciation for the show and cast now.

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Bogard

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Good!

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beggary

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I feel like it's a lot closer to the old site than the couple of years before it, but...and I hate to pick on one person...I'm not sure what Dan has been doing? He does such creative and wild stuff on his own stream and little of that energy seems to have made it here. Hell, I'd watch a show which was just him reading through an old magazine each week.

Grubb is an absolute machine.

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apewins

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@jacksmedulla said:

I pretty much exclusively come to this site for the forums at this point, and even here engagement has fallen off drastically over the past 3 years. Unless a hot topic like this pops up, we're usually looking at the same 4-5 posters keeping things alive.

I for one have started interacting with the forum more than I used to. I didn't realize how much I missed an old-school forum where threads and messages are treated equally as opposed to reddit where the hive-mind reigns supreme and you will never see dissenting opinions unless you go dig for them in controversial. That along with the same tired memes being posted and put on a pedestal on every thread. And here we do occasionally get some sublime user-generated content like 64 in 64. If nothing else I hope they at least keep the forums alive, I would pay some amount of money for the forum access alone.

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Bribbins

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I’m enjoying the site and really hope they keep trying new things. Forkin was fun and I’m going to miss albummer. Keep on truckin

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SecurityGuruGuy

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@csl316: Not to diminish him, but Grubb is Gerstman before he got jaded and hated everything. Both can be the lead, or just vibe off of their co-hosts in a really fun and engaging way. Gerstman now just does jartime full-time and while i am happy he can still get paid, it is just boring to me.

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csl316

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@securityguruguy: Gerstmann has been a huge part of my gaming life. But man, solo streams just don't do it for me, let alone 3+ hours. More power to him, though.