About | Video Content
In this section I will explain in-depth a variety of major subjects surrounding my video content available on this site, starting with Let's Play's. LP's are my primary content, but many of the subjects related to them and their production apply to most other video projects here. If another section doesn't cover your questions regarding the sorting and presentation of my video projects, this one will. I will also discuss the other video content categories in this section when necessary.
LP stands for "Let's Play" or "Long Play", a term coined by Something Awful. In most contexts I simply refer to the related content merely as LP's. An LP is a video or series of videos showing an entire playthrough, start to finish, of a game. Video media is designed to be viewed locally. All of my video projects are available exclusively via FTP and may be directly downloaded from this site alone. Each game has its own section which provides information such as the original first segment Encode Date, which gives an idea of when the project was produced, file sizes and viewing time.
You will require a proper, up to date media player to view these files. We use MPC with madVR exclusively, and HKS has provided installation files and instructions to get you started quickly.
LP's almost always contain no cut footage or sequences (except for specific things like removing large amounts of idle/AFK time, or in extremely noteworthy cases). An LP differs from a speedrun or "playthrough", which focus exclusively on gameplay and are either doctored or run after practice. My LP's in particular do take the time to smell the flowers, so to speak. For the sake of internal organization you may notice that skirmish games like Civilization 5 are located under a Longplay directory. However, no true definition between the terms really exists, and they are interchangeable.
LP's are all casted as they are played and not during post-production except in extremely specific circumstances (In Alice: Madness Returns, my mic was damaged and did not record audio for some parts). The exceptions to the "no cut" rule include if a game contains blatantly sexual content (e.g. the minigames in God of War) that I am uncertain our host would enjoy discovering me uploading. Hot Coffee and all. I may also cut extremely excessive grind. If a title has been doctored it will be denoted as such or may be moved to another section, such as the Compilation or Extra section.
Most of the time I have not played the game before recording an LP. I am usually learning the game as I am recording, unless otherwise stated. These are known as Blind Plays. There are no re-runs or re-takes unless something horrible happened to the actual recording (which is stated during play or such). All of my fails are part of the production.
If a run has been edited for any significant reason, a (multitool) icon will be present near its name in the LP list, and notes will note why and to what extent those edits were conducted.
LP's are usually accompanied by a review. I often times review games in two phases - during/immediately after recording, and then after or during verification. My reviews are as objective as possible with no outside influence other than information gathering influencing how they are delivered. My reviews are streams of consciousness, I do not adhere to any kind of rating system as I feel that media value cannot be expressed in numbers. Instead, I may grant games awards depending on how bad they are. For example, games with QTE's acquire the Crank award. The awards themselves follow no rating system, they merely denote that the title is either objectively very bad overall or has objectively negative elements in it that exceed the bounds of the crop.
I attempt to organize productions chronologically, starting from the earliest to the most recent. Encode dates according to the first segments are provided to give an idea of when the recorded files were processed, which gives a somewhat rough estimation of when the projects were created.
We do not provide technical assistance for setting up your player. The MPC guide is enough for any and all users. I verify all video files start to finish with MPC to be sure they are working. While it is unusual for me to miss problems, it does happen. If a very new release has a clear and reproducible issue, let me know ASAP and I'll investigate. I offer zero support for any alternative software and cannot guarantee they will function well or at all with my files. I especially do not support Chrome or VLC, and certain issues are well known that crop up only in these players. Don't use them.
- Make sure you actually downloaded the entire file. Use DownThemAll or Jdownloader to manage downloads. 99% of reported problems are because the host is floppy or people are using American internet providers.
- Videos encoded as Hi10P, aka 10bit, will be tagged as such. Older software may not support 10bit flat out, so if you have trouble with those files, it's time to upgrade.
- Never, ever, ever use a codec pack to try to fix your video player or any other such issue. This is like trying to bandaid a paper cut with a rusty cactus.
- Chrome can supposedly stream the videos, but may encounter (unavoidable) problems with mkvmerge output videos (like the final alice segment). Note that Chrome is significantly less efficient than MPC, and our server is pretty slow, so streaming may not work as expected for any of the 1920x1200 videos, especially if your computer sucks. Chrome allegedly doesn't support ac3, which is used in some videos, like the UT3 compilation. I don't support hipster software, so I won't be updating those particular videos just to support Chrome. Watch things the normal way.
- It has been well documented that our server, or some unrelated nodes, heavily throttle certain overseas connections. This only reinforces the need to be using something like DownThemAll to manage your transfers appropriately. However, we have also documented that the server will heavily throttle multiconnections if it can. If this is happening to you, you'll just have to be patient. Keep in mind I am Canadian and I often wait days to weeks for uploads to complete and have an extremely limited bandwidth cap to constantly keep track of. We're all in this capitalist hellhole together.
It has been asked if people can re-upload my files to youtube. Don't. Youtube is a low quality experience that forces end users to download larger, badly recompressed files, and disconnects users from content producers e.g. me. I have no desire to support streaming in any shape or form, nor do I ever intend to put my content on third party servers.
Before being released for viewing, a video project must be processed in one of two ways which turns large source files into Canadian-acceptable sizes suitable for distribution. This process is called Encoding. Encoding is a complicated and computationally expensive process that takes a great deal of time to learn, and there is no one glove fits all solution for videos. Throughout my projects I aim ever higher for quality and size returns.
Almost all videos are encoded in x264, and may be 8bit or 10bit (with tags denoting 10bit), and may use ogg or ac3 for audio, but commonly use AAC with the mp4 audio container. I traditionally use the mkv container for the video itself. If there are exceptions they are noted in the specific releases.
Almost all PC-based and 3d console releases are delivered in 30fps except for very early ones. Generally, I try to record most vintage (sprite-based) console games as 60fps since the size increase is minimal, and I sometimes encounter oddities (like the sprite issues in Yoshi's Island).
A handful of videos, mostly League of Legends casts, have DUAL AUDIO. This means they have two audio channels (like Nippon and Engrish for Anime releases).
Segments - In early recordings, a segment was comprised of a large number of 4gb 1-2 minute fraps files encoded into an averaged length and then split for youtube's 15 minute limit. After I abandoned youtube the segments themselves were considered "parts" and released as such. However, since they were still comprised of a multitude of small files, segregrating logically in terms of the recording itself was nearly impossible (segments could cut suddenly during fights).
Segments after a certain point in third generation LP's are attempted to be divided by logical recording separations (referred to as sittings). These are periods in which I physically stopped the recording, general during idle time or between gameplay. Hopefully this, unlike earlier recordings, results in less abrupt switches - but particularly long recordings may get divided into multiple segments, or multiple sittings may get lumped into one segment, and often times I have to pause during fights or such anyways. The primary distinction between a Segment and a Part is that Segments make no attempt to divide game content logically, only my actual recording activity.
When I encode a video I look to produce an average of time and filesize from segment 2 and onwards. Traditionally I try to make segment 1 shorter and smaller file. What combination of size and length I choose to go with depends on the source content and game, as well as what kind of settings I opt to use for the game. I use a variety of different quality settings tailored to specific kinds of releases. As I am Canadian and my host is American, and thus bandwidth is an extremely rare and valuable commodity, I must be ever conscious about file sizes, and I continually try to push the boundaries between size and quality. For a shorter production I may opt for a less size conscious encode but, particularly with super lengthy games like civ5, I try to keep size under a gig an hour or so as a loose guideline.
Keep in mind that videos with more motion, higher contrast, framerate and of course larger resolution equate to more information or make the codec work significantly harder to keep information stable. Therefore many elements, including ones that may seem insignificant like color depth and brightness, greatly impact the size of videos. For example Hunted will produce larger segments than Starcraft 2 because Hunted's textures are significantly higher resolution and produce more visual noise, there is more motion in the image and therefore less information can be shared between frames, and the contrast is typically harsher, further hurting the ability to share information between frames and individual pixels. Encoding is one of the most computationally complex and demanding processes in consumer media and there isn't really a one glove fits all solution, especially for one who isn't technically versed like me. Each project is a learning experience.
Generations are mostly time or event divided. Generation 1 LP's were my very first recordings and were distributed largely via youtube. Generation 2 LP's were more advanced and involved consoles as well, and were the first FTP distributions. Generation 3 began when my old mic died and I underwent several changes to my audio and video processing, so they sound different (should be better) and such. Generations are there for easy chronological sorting, although I will also provide encode dates to give a real-world idea of how old projects are.
Youtube vs FTP
If you have to ask why a video producer prefers not to use an extremely shady, low-quality and unreliable service like youtube, you're probably not in the audience best suited for my productions.
If you wish to share my content with friends or family please link them the actual site, blog or forum threads. I do not endorse social media and have no desire to accrue public traffic.
Some people have asked what some of the words/abbreviations I use in the casts mean. Here's a quick cheat sheet for the lazy.
- Collision Meshes
The physical representation of an object in the game world. Includes hitboxes, depending on the subject. These tend to be 3d models based on the source objects, so the insane amount of inaccurate collision we see everywhere is generally a direct result of incompetence.
"i" Frames are the invulnerable frames typically associated with certain animations such as dodging/rolling, though many animations of various types may have them. The more frames of invulnerability a frame has, the greater the window to "absorb" attacks is, and the less frames it has, the greater the difficulty in avoiding certain types of damage becomes. Note that some games don't use this system.
In the most rare case, which I will surely specify, I may also refer to an encoding feature within x264 called "I-Frames". These are similar to Keyframes.
Inverse Kinematics. Remember when Blizzard spent half the sc2 announce talking about how IK is so great? Yeah. It's pretty basic technology that, in layman's terms, is generally used to keep feet and stuff on the surface of angular and multi-level terrain. Problem is, almost no developer rigs their IK or collision meshes properly and shit freaks out. IK has other applications, but this is the most commonly noted.
Level of detail. 3d games generally dynamically downgrade texture resolution (mipmapping) and mesh triangle count based on distance. In a good game you never notice it. In most games, it's really obvious and badly done, especially console games. Most engines automate LODing, such as Unreal, but have configurable thresholds. Default settings tend to be aggressive, and most developers don't understand their tools enough to change defaults.
When I talk about Z-Axis, I am making specific references to the way games or game content handle vertical objects or mechanics. For example, Starcraft 2 is 3d but doesn't have a real Z-Axis in its engine, thus you can't have units walking over and under bridges (other than through physics objects). Another example is units hitting you through the floor/ceiling in World of Warcraft, because their attack range is only looking for horizontal adjacency. Extremely few engines support mechanical Z-Axis, and fewer yet feature Z-Axis elements in their games. This is a great way to determine incompetence or laziness or both. Generally speaking, most 3d games aren't actually 3d and should never have been built as 3d to begin with.
Something developers almost never configure properly.
Methods used by games to remove objects or occlude them from view, usually for performance reasons. This can be abused/broken in many ways, depending how badly the engine is programmed (see: Conan).
Reference material -
Aggressive UDK distance culling - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R2IZRz0LF04
Unreal 3 Culling options - http://udn.epicgames.com/Three/VisibilityCulling.html
When Goku faces off with an antagonist of exceptional power level. Both individuals are layered on top of each other in a steamy bloodbath, causing things to flicker in and out in a wild display of Chi. When a Developer is especially lazy and sticks objects inside of each other in such a way that their surfaces occupy the exact same space, the engine may not know how to cope with the legendary battles to ensue. In particularly shitty engines (Sins of a Solar Empire) you may also see Shadow Z-fighting or things that resemble it, which can result from things like the shadow maps being so low res that huge pixels flicker all over the place and give them same appearance, or the engine can't handle certain things, like fake fog, overlapping the shadows, and they fight for sorting dominance. Go get em, Brolly!
Z-fighting can also occur from sorting issues in general, and not just objects intersecting. In many games, they do not attempt to sort more aggressively at a higher distance. One example provided was Just Cause 2, in which entire bodies of water flicker in and out of existence if you are in the air. "Sorting" is how a game handles the "layer" on which objects are rendered, and is likely to be the issue when simple intersections aren't responsible (such as shadows).
Many textures, such as those used in particles, cheap chain link fences, and all sorts of overlays and glows, utilize Blending to achieve transparency, brightness, and general "cutoff" through Alpha channels or settings such as Addative. Many developers, such as those we struggle to call developers who cobbled together Darksiders 1 and 2 in a weekend drinkoff, don't actually know how to set up blending properties correctly, resulting in weird looking blood, water, fire, so on so forth. We also see a lot of super lazy alpha maps that don't properly mask the texture, allowing outlines to appear everywhere. Also, the lazily copy pasted google image ferns in games like Lords of Game Testing, where they have this white outline, is due to anti-aliasing no one ever removed before putting it in a game. Glorious!
Better yet is when you have games like Warframe who can't handle layers of objects with any kind of blending over each other, like that weird as hell waterfall shown in one of the XXE's. It's not like we have a DirectX specifically built to solve issues like this, or anything! It's actually really, really hard to create blending or sorting issues, so these developers are generally so lazy that they never playtested their game a single time, didn't change default values, and plainly didn't care what the end product looked like.
- [To] Blizzard / [To] Westernize
To Blizzard a game is to perform a series of actions in the most incompetent manner possible by human hands. Interchangeable with "To Westernize" a game, as Blizzard represents the West and the West generally turns everything it touches into shit. Ultimately, the decisions made behind westernisms are either as a result of greed or laziness, both of which create incompetence, which then creates Blizzard. Reducto Ad Buttzardum.
The prime contributing factor to capitalism and the greatest source of suffering in the human world.
An artifact coveted by interns that can only be granted by the socialist party upon acquiring enough achievements. The opus magnum of an intern's accomplishments and a gateway to becoming a human later on in one's existence.
A term to describe a game that is objectively terrible. Reserved only for the worst of titles.
A fat person that often falls asleep unpredictably. An unreliable individual. "dat hks" is a way to ascertain incredible instability in a person. Also possesses cat-like qualities and may, in fact, actually be a cat.
- Hipsters, Honesty, and Effort
Hipsters are the dregs of society and culturally neuter everything they involve themselves in. While the Game Industry has many faults, Hipsters are ultimately at the heart of its creative bankruptcy and decline into irrecoverable mediocrity. Terms like "AAA" and "Indie" are byproducts of hipsterism and feed the American's need to destroy intellectual exploration of related mediums. Because Hipsters need to be told what to like, appeasing Hipsters is a cheaper and therefore more rewarding business model than actually putting effort or honesty into a product and seeking gratification from sentient entities. As a direct result, it is easy for us to review any nature of productive medium by gauging its Honesty and what kind of Effort went into it. As one can expect, most products, not just games, have had little actual effort placed into them and are blatantly dishonest products. This is a critical part of Capitalism, of course, but it's always interesting to see why. One can read more about the Hipster and the dangers it brings with it to creative mediums by reading articles such as this and this. This subject and marketing go hand in hand, and this article addresses the latter better than I could.
A Quick Time Event, or QTE for short, is a modern adaptation of "Simon Says". Games that utilize QTE's are attempting to superficially cater to an audience with kindergarten level mental development, also known as Hipsters. When a game uses a QTE, we can easily gauge that it is not only a dishonest product, it is also a product of an extremely lazy and incompetent developer. A QTE is about as big of a red flag as you can get outside of something like copying a Blizzard color scheme. Some games attempt to hide what is essentially a QTE, like games that rip off of DDR, but it's quite difficult to pull wool over a Canadian's eyes, as we are quite large and forever hungry.
- Auto Exposure
A means to irritate the player by rapidly changing brightness of an environment in a vain effort to "replicate eye adaptation". Like similar hipster post processing filters, it is only an annoyance.
- Chromatic Aberration
Gas Chamber-worthy post processing that makes images appear out of focus by introducing camera defects into the picture. Leads to severe eye strain. The photography industry spent countless quid and years getting rid these defects, but shovelware developers think migraines are hip again.
Remember when anti-aliasing was a thing we had in games? Nvidia doesn't, and this widely-used and extremely poor quality blur filter is now the most dominant excuse to avoid researching AA solutions in modern gaming. An excellent example of why this industry is trash.
A bald midget with an appetite for long, hard work in the rear. Capable of feats such as pogosticking down the office corridors, skewing multiple interns at a time, and using his waste disposal chute as a dimensional door. Even the mere mention of a Goff or its handiwork is often enough to send a Peter catatonic. Makes its dwelling in the humid depths of a never-ending closet labyrinth.
- Motion Estimation
Motion Estimation is an encoding feature. The encoder looks ahead X frames to find differing information and manages its compression in a way to try to combat the macroblocking behavior that plagues flash-based videos and deprecated codecs. Motion estimation is an extremely CPU-intensive process with many different settings that impact encode speeds dramatically, but can help the end result of a video's quality, even when the general bitrate settings are very modest. Commonly, I try to use ME to fight quality loss in high-motion productions like DMC, Dragon's Dogma, and many emulated titles. Traditionally, the more motion and the less information that can be shared between frames equates to not only slower encode times but a larger file, but have little to no impact on playback performance for all but the most ancient computers.
- Color Grading
Most commonly known as hue or contrast filters, Color Grading as it is traditionally applied in modern cinema is an effort to create a homogenization of color palette by applying a shade of color to an entire scene. Extremely common in Bluray releases, firms apply green or blue tints to movies in an effort to make them appear more edgy. These filters are often absent from actual cinemas. Games have begun to rely on color grading to hide inconsistencies in commercial art assets, and such behavior is seen in titles such as Dark Souls and Skyrim. Often times color filters greatly degrade visual quality, reduce contrast and color depth, and otherwise fail to actually make anything edgier, just uglier. Plainly speaking a game nor an animation should ever actually need to use a color grading filter if it was properly designed from the ground up.
Marketing jargon used by Americans to denote that their focus tested software is of a lower than average quality.
The term "Compressor" or "Compression" when used in regards to Audio may not be a reference to the actual compression. It may be in reference to a volume/frequency filter called a Compressor, which modulates volume levels according to highly varied settings, usually in an effort to flatten out volumes, e.g. make whispers/ambient sounds more loud and yells more quiet. Older films are very easy to identify in this regard, as bouts of silence between actor dialogue may yield a mysterious rise in ambient white noise until they speak again - this is the compressor at work. As the Loudness War wages on, Compressors are often used alongside frequency shifts to crunch and inflate the perceived volume of sound samples as much as possible, resulting in unnatural, shrill, and "bouncy" samples. This can observed with nearly every vocal sample Blizzard has used in their games since Starcraft 2 and Mists of Pandaria, especially in with the Pandaren and Kerrigan herself. While compressors have been used for positive gains in media for decades, their more modern application is almost always malicious, resulting in the destruction of quality in old music and vocals when "remastered" and re-released so they sound louder and grab more attention. The Loudness War heavily circulates around the abilities Compressors enable one to very easily take advantage of. Televised advertisements, for example, maximize their volume levels through heavy compression so they are louder than feature programs and require you to take action to adjust your unit's volume.
I utilize Compression in almost all of my videos because of the varied volumes my speech tends to produce, especially my outbursts. My initial filters, those used in Darksiders 1 and early SC2 recordings, were extremely heavy. Because fraps merges the mic and game audio into a single stream, any changes I make to effect my voice will also effect the game. This means I must dance a very careful ballet between trying to soften the volume changes of my voice but also change the game audio as little as possible. It is a continually evolving process of experimenting and learning.
The number 3 is popular in both Eastern and Western game culture, but especially the West, because 3 represents an academic approach to interaction in the form of "start, trial, climax". The "3" design mandates that interaction can never diverge from a three-stage movement, rendering all elements that use this philosophy extremely predictable and monotonous because the user knows they can never expect creative exploration of any presentations associated with it. 3 is used in a countless quantity of representations to trivialize the thinking process required in designs. Examples include the three-point pose used in movie postures, the three-point plot masterplan that all Western films adhere to, three-stage progression and fetch quests that dominate Western games. As a result, 3 is synonymous with laziness and creative bankruptcy, because it is a design used out of convenience and excuse rather than genuine value, as demonstrated time and time again by the media that employs it. 3 is a psychological component of marketing akin to the Loudness War and Distract-Before-Substance game theory.
3-point psychological academia is lethal to critical thinking game design because it absolves the designer of responsibility to develop their own storyboard for plot, progression, and player feedback designs. Resulting content relying on delivering everything in stages of 3 amounts to grind by extent of having no tangible, original shape.
Terminology that typically refers to a sequence of actions, such as a series of abilites conducted in a certain order, or a series of locations a player or NPC visits. Rotations can also refer to certain interactions and reactions. Examples include the combo attacks that bosses perform within Dark Souls 3, or the patterned attacks of units within a shmup. While the modern use for the term is usually related to MMORPG class abilities, the concept can be used to describe to a wide swath of interactions.
- Action Economy
A term used when reflecting on the value of a unit's turn, be it in a turn-based game with a global cooldown such as World of Warcraft or an actual TBS such as Heroes of Might and Magic or Dungeons & Dragons. Action Economy is usually used in the context of wagering the value of decision making and the potency of actions that may be conducted on those turns, such as crowd control, or may refer to the value of unit counts in terms of turns (e.g. 1 unit versus 4 units, 1 turn versus 4 turns).
Intravenous lard infusion for when eating just makes you hungrier.
The term "ceremony" has been used as marketing jargon by firms such as Riot and Blizzard to describe screen shaking and flashing indicators, especially concerning the announcement of mundane events such as achievements for inserting consecutively larger objects into one's anus. Ceremonies play into what an associate described as "adrenaline addiction", the same psychological hook designed to net youth into gambling. Terminology like this is commonly utilized to skirt regulations on rigged gambling architecture. Yes, there are "people" out there who buy RNG loot boxes literally just to open them. The idiot button makes its glorious debute in titles such as Overweight and League of Legends.
- Screenspace ("Temporal")
In the context of a game, screenspace effects are typically post-processing filters. The most common screenspace effects are FXAA (screenspace anti-aliasing), SSAO (screenspace ambient occlusion), and SSR (screenspace reflections). In nearly all applications, screenspace effects are inferior to proper implementations of the same features but are used out of convenience because they are bundled with nvidia middleware or easily-acquired third party libraries. Screenspace effects tend to be associated with a multitude of visual bugs and oddities that come as a result of being a post-process filter, such as intense blurring (FXAA), bizarre outlines and unrealistic two-dimensional shadowing (SSAO) and total fuck (SSR). While screenspace has many positive applications, those most commonly used outside of a game environment, it is most well-known for its highly destructive impact on real-time graphics through disgusting post-process filters.
Not to be confused with the act of icing a brother, the term Ghosting refers to any number of issues which will result in "ghostly" clones of an image appearing after them, much like a dramatic Anime climax but without the waifus and traps. Common causes for ghosting including Temporal (Screenspace) effects, which are usually several frames behind, certain color ranges on LCD monitors, Sony Vegas' moronic "Resample" setting, and tony. Ghosting is extraordinarily destructive to an image, and is one of the leading reasons why Screenspace is terrible. Incidentally, ghosting is more and more prominent on new console games, as despite the increasing power of hardware the industry's rush to lower graphical fidelity only continues to gain momentum. Ghosting is also often prominently featured in video media due to obscure and poorly documented features of unprofessional software.
- "Bypassing Content"
Some time ago, a shovelware developer known as Blizzard Entertainment released software titled "World of Warcraft". World of Warcraft featured monsters idling throughout the world between quest points. Players would ignore the monsters and focus on their objectives. Blizzard added in mechanisms that punished players for ignoring the useless monsters, including a "Daze" effect that dismounted and greatly slowed them down (Vanilla) and scripted effects that would yank them back to the monster and daze them if they were too far to be hit normally (Burning Crusade). The reasoning why they added these punishments were because they believed people ignoring pointless battles were "bypassing content". Since then, the concept of players ignoring intentional grind in games has been universally regarded as "bypassing content" to commemorate the sheer audacity of the American developer's commentary.
- Cargo Cult
Typically used in the context of a developer attempting to replicate or call back to something they clearly don't actually understand. The terminology has roots in real-world applications.
Games with a Multitool icon next to their names feature some extent of editing, such as casted over audio in broken parts of Alice: Madness Returns or the more extensive timelapsing of grind in Divinity: Original Sin. This is so you can quickly know in advance if a run for a game well-known to be lengthy or otherwise grindy has been edited. The extents of the edits are detailed in the notes.
Games may be granted Awards depending on their level of Westernisms observed during casts and subsequent analysis. The current Awards are as follows.
Rancid titles are objectively bad games exhibiting a complete disregard for quality control and harboring no respect for their work or the industry. In an era flooded with mediocre media, to be considered a unique enough pile of rubbish to be Rancid is a true feat indeed, but not so difficult to accomplish in the West. Rancid is more of a tag and not necessarily an award, so it is also paired with the title. Some titles can receive Awards for doing hang-worthy things, but may not necessarily be Rancid as a whole, though they often go hand in hand.
The Crank award is handed to games featuring Quick Time Events, a byproduct of Americans dumbing down games to focus market to an audience with kindergarten-level mental development. Developers who implement such trash are ostracized whenever possible.
This badge is awarded to only the absolute worst of titles in terms of sheer destructiveness to the recording environment. This title exhibits horrible performance, instability, graphics corruption, or unsavory activity beyond just its design. A game may be objectively more bad as a production than a game handed this title, but a game is only handed this title in cases where only blatant maliciousness can be the reasoning behind the things it does - for example, LotR: War in the North managed to repeatedly crash and heavily corrupt visuals on three entirely different computer systems in a single run, to the point of forcing one of the players to give up.
This badge is awarded to games that stand out as maliciously designed to destroy franchises, mock gaming culture, or are otherwise destructive beyond the scope of their presentation.
Games awarded the Eggplant have demonstrated censorship or pandering. This is a special breed of cancer that has plagued the Western industry since its earliest days, setting it apart from previous awards as being particularly sinister and damaging to a product.
Attempting to capture the pure essence of the Metzen requires a developer to sacrifice all dignity and self-respect, relegating dialogue, naming conventions, world building and plot of written content to a dart board containing nothing but buzzwords and catchphrases pulled from a marketer's handbook and saturday morning cartoons. While doing so won't net you a remotely intelligible or coherent story, it will net you this snazzy award!
Only the absolute worst of the worst can accrue the Willy award. This is a true accomplishment. Congratulations.
For titles that are objectively good, I don't feel there is a need to assign any kind of award. Aspiring for greatness is not something that should demand reward. It is something all people who claim to be trying to create art should be doing. The unfortunate truth is that the vast majority of media I encounter is, at the best, circling an average I consider below substandard of what I expected out of media 15 years ago, and almost no game in the history of the industry has been created that approaches "art". Not all content is created equal. What I care about more is the pursuit of creating an end product that achieves the potential of its platform, design, and the era of its technology, and how it learned from its ancestors to make the most out of every element involved. The kind of effort its developers placed into it, and how their passion for their work shines through the finished product. This is why Elitism matters, and why one should embrace his desire for polished, passionate products developed by creators who cared about their work.
The simple fact is, when objectively reviewing a title, it matters little if I like the title or not. While it is true that frustration often comes with bad titles, titles I may not enjoy very much may simply not be for me and aggregate a favorable review regardless, and titles I did enjoy often feature a lot of oversights or problems I also address in like-manner. Blatant dishonesty and lack of effort are the most heavy hitting offenders in game development, and virtually all modern developers will never attempt to escape the prison of either evil, while many older developers successfully skirted by the industry's tougher restrictions on nothing but a healthy dose of dick.
In ages of old, I would make VHS compilations of silly things that happened on console games, especially Goldeneye for the N64 and Timesplitters. In the future, when digital video was realistic for me to do, I began creating the XXE (Xtreme Xtreme Edition) series. While mundane, these lengthy video productions were refined with age and experience and became my most significant public media since my total conversions for Starcraft.
The Compilations section on this site is home not only to newer XXE generations, but also several game-specific compilations and productions, such as the Unreal Tournament 3 run with Dr.Schwa, HKS, and Wibod. These projects, unlike the vast majority of LP's, feature extensive editing and/or timelapsing often accompanied by post-production casting, subtitles, and third party music. The game-specific compilations, such as Shanktarium for World of Warcraft, will interest only a few viewers, but offer extensive viewing hours and exceptional entertainment. Non-XXE compilations of significant scale are simply referred to as Psychological Adventures.
XXE and its ilk follow a design behind the madness, which circulates an ever-growing understanding of content presentation and pacing. They are built to be as concise as possible, and may require multiple sittings to take in the full breadth of their content.
I began major public video releases with Starcraft 2's beta and spent over a year casting both replays and first-person gameplay. I have long since abandoned Starcraft 2, but I still release FPVOD's and commentary for League of Legends and Blizzard DotA. These kind of casts are not a focus of mine, and circulate mostly on the availability of community members to form games. These videos may feature extensive game design talk and there is countless hours of analysis amongst them for those who are interested. I do consider replay cast requests for either title.
I also receive commentary requests from specific internal viewers for videos that are of exceptional publication value. These productions are referred to as Castovers. They are casted over in third person of that player's encoded production and are then released as-is. While the casts may not be indepth, they cover titles and playstyles I will not or can not feature normally for any number of reasons. These range from playthroughs of American Classics, like Bubsy 3D, to runs with special restrictions or conditions (Gorb runs), to simple playthroughs of games not traditionally available in high quality viewing format. Many of these videos are exceptionally short.