I started doing this show about a week ago, as a pilot-type thing to send to Bazza (creator of VGCW) as a second show (he had expressed interest in doing a second show previously). He didn't love it (compared it to another streamer who apparently constantly says Baz stole "his" idea), but I enjoyed doing it, and a few of my friends enjoyed it, so I basically spun it off into its own thing. I named it the above because I had made Big Boss/Naked Snake the GM character, and sort of ran with the idea.
It's goofy, it's dumb, but I enjoy producing it so far, so it'll probably keep being a thing. I stream it on Sundays and Thursdays, and usually do it the same time as Bazza's stream (6PM Central).
I archive all of the recordings on my YouTube channel, which I believe is linked from my twitch page.
I've realized a very common trend nowadays is a massive amount of trailers for games that do not include gameplay. Oftentimes video game producers will throw up a few cinematic trailers, talk very little about a game, and then release it with so much hype, people are often confused as to what the game even is. One example of this was Brink. It was from the developers of Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, which led a lot of people to believe early on that it would be a class-based multiplayer shooter. Which, by the way, it ended up being. It marketed itself as a class-based shooter with parkour elements, with emergent gameplay that was meant to be very new and unique. Which, for the most part, it had. The problem was, there was almost no gameplay footage until around a month before release, and many people had a LOT of misconceptions about the game. People believed it would be on a large scale, or that it was a Call of Duty knockoff, or that it would have a perk system that was specific to each class. Many of these things were partially true, but few were accurate, and even fewer were specifically addressed by the company in interviews. Part of this was a combination of journalists asking vague questions, and part of it was Bethesda and Splash Damage giving vague answers.
Many games strive by hiding their weaknesses under graphics and cinematics, and oftentimes "gameplay footage" from a game is a glorified term for an in-engine cutscene. We see so many titles that are hyped up beyond belief via promises given by developers and publishers, and a large amount of content funneled to the media resources are heavily filtered to look good to them in one way or another, focusing on a gameplay element that may not even be executed very well outside of the given example. Trailers have become mainstay in the game industry, which is surprising considering how many video game websites there are out there to be given a chance to take a good look at the games and tell the world what they're like. Unfortunately, though, much of this chance is wasted on polar reviews or opinions that do not go into detail on any qualifying factors of a game, and instead just say things akin to "well, I really liked the shooting aspects, and the singleplayer was good", without actually elaborating on why, or which facets of the gameplay elements interested them. There are billions of gamers worldwide, each with very particular tastes, and each group of which being a very particular market, yet most are categorized strictly by system and genre. Terms like "RPG", "Shooter", and "Puzzler" rarely have as much direct meaning as they used to, as many companies bend genre conventions to extreme degrees to define themselves as a unique product. There are still old-school developers who strive to refine the specific gameplay experiences we remember from classic games, and new indie developers that want to create unique experiences that draw upon nostalgia and enjoyment of those classics, but they are few and far between, as gaming slides into the realm of artistic design.
So, what does that mean for the common player of games? Well, you're not as informed as you should be. Many people go into a game with high expectations, after doing a huge amount of research via various sites, and sit down to a game on day one to find that the experience is nothing like what they expected, and it becomes a frustrating experience rather than an enjoyable one. There is a distinct problem when the marketing department of a game completely runs what goes out of the company's door as far as information. It is getting into borderline bad business when a company just plain avoids any direct information about a product other than taglines and bullet points. When a company is asked what a game is, should they answer? Or are they protected by some magical veil of un-truth, that suddenly makes them non-liable when they bend the truth to sell their game?
...And I am a games person. I have been slowly getting tired of games and the people who play them over the past while, to the point that I really can't entertain myself with things I used to play. Multiplayer games I have enjoyed have lowered in popularity or have completely changed in scope to the point that I really do not enjoy them anymore. Singleplayer games have just plain changed over the years, and with most game developers focusing on a multiplayer "hook", I really just don't enjoy most single player experiences anymore.
The answer? Force myself to expand my horizons. I have been working at GameStop for a few years now, as a normal clerk-turned-third-key-for-a-while, and while I don't hate my job, I know I can do better. I have started an impromptu amateur writing gig at a website called Player Affinity, which is a pretty good website, despite all of its current technical issues (which are typical considering they just moved to a new site structure). I am also taking steps toward a future career, getting some basic classes out of the way at my local community college with hopes to work towards a career either in game design or game journalism. Neither are intuitive to really playing games, I know, but when it comes down to it, I like talking game mechanics, culture, and industry almost more than talking about the games themselves.
I suppose my goals with this blog are threefold. I can have someone take notice of my writing, or even my ideas, and I could be hired somewhere to think about a good way to balance a rocket launcher so it's not an overpowered piece of shit, or to talk about why a game's rocket launcher is an overpowered piece of shit. I could be noticed by some people who go "Hey, that dude is all about what I like, and he speaks it in a manner that is not altogether bullshit.", and become popular on the internet. This wouldn't really do anything but make me feel better about myself, but hey, beggars can't be choosers. The other thing is that this could be a huge waste of time, but I would at least have something I could point at towards an employer and go "Hey, I made this! Deal with that.", and they could do nothing in response other than deal with it. However this goes, I intend to try to keep it upkept as much as possible, where I will try to post weekly about something, anything that may have happened or may be interesting that week. If nothing else, it's an opinion column, and I'll be cross-posting most of my Player Affinity reviews here, sans numerical score values. If you think I'm not an idiot, feel free to watch me, and see how everything goes. Cheers.