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Cyowolf1122's Let's Play channel


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#1 23 September 2011 - 12:03 PM

Cyowolf1122 Offline
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Hiya guys, apologies for kinda disappearing on ya, I wanted to distance myself a tad from trying to play every single mod on this forum while I was in college. That, and I felt a little silly while having little to contribute to the forums.

Well, I've been a bit busy, mostly fiddling with various recorders and trying my hand at editing videos. Mind you, I've been wanting to do this since last year, but several things plotted against me, and I have only now been able to do what I wanted: give commentary over a video game of my choice: AKA a Let's Play.

Here is that channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/Cryomundus

I've already got a finished LP of a relatively short game so it's not like I have a blank channel that won't get updated. More is to come fairly soon, with a game that actually has not yet been LP'ed (as far as I know). Better yet, I've actually played this game a number of times, but I'm going to throw a wrench into the works and try my hand at the hardest difficulty I can. And don't worry, your not gonna have to watch pointless sections/deaths, I'm competent enough to edit those out so that it all flows a bit better.

I hope you enjoy what I have up and that you subscribe for more.

OH, and do feel free to critique me, I think I've managed to avoid most of a starting Let's Players mistakes, but I'm still just starting out. And don't worry too much about me taking offense to what you've said, I seriously want to make these videos more entertaining.

One last thing, if (and I do mean if) I get a sizable fan-base, I plan on doing LP's of some of the various mods on the site. And not blind, I've watched more than enough blind runs to know they're generally a bad idea. (unless it's requested, in which case I will do a blind run)

#2 24 September 2011 - 02:31 AM

Noxid Offline
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"Life begins and ends with Nu."
Join Date: 28 Aug 2009
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Pretty cool. As a person who enjoys a good LP now and again (read: always) I can try and give you some feedback to improve by, broken down categorically.

Audio:
The balance of game audio to voice audio works well. One doesn't overpower the other, and the sound quality itself is also pretty good. I haven't got much to say here other than what you're doing works.

Video:
Again, overall it's pretty great. The framerate is consistent and there aren't any artifacts of compression. The first few videos included the window frame, which wasn't great, but you fixed that near the end. One thing I do notice is that you leave your mouse cursor (however small) on the screen, so just remember to flick that off to the side once you start recording.

Commentary:
Arguably the most important part of good Let's Plays, and (I think) probably the most difficult part. You were a bit shaky at first, but as the videos went on it's apparent that you become more comfortable with it.
I like Let's Plays that are informative, so something you could do is maybe do a bit of research on the game before hand and make some short points, post them by your screen and then talk about one if you find yourself running out of things to say? Yknow, like "Fun Fact" stuff. Just an idea.
Another suggestion I would make would be to experiment with post-commentary; playing the game beforehand, then watch the video and record your commentary then. You don't even have to make it obvious that you're doing this, just talk as though you were playing the game right then. Only having to focus on one task at a time makes it easier to do better at both, but it does take longer. Post would be how I'd do it if I ever made a Let's Play.
I can't really tell you how to do better commentary because I don't know :confused:
You seem to have a good handle on the basics (don't ham it up, give information about the game, don't leave dead air). One thing I noticed is you sometimes mention problems you're currently having (i.e. saying "I can't think of anything to say right now"<video 4>) and I think that is a something you should avoid making a habit of, basically because it often leads to "Excuse-spiels", which is something nobody wants to hear.
Still, you're just starting out! I bet with a bit of practice you'll be able to give some great commentary.

Gameplay:
Nothing wrong here. You tried to show off as much of the game as possible without needless faffing about. Some people just record themselves playing the game, but a good LP'er presents the game.

Post-Production:
The amount of post-production and editing that's "acceptable" in a Let's Play is hard to guage. On the one hand, you have LP'ers who will play through the game segments over to get a "deathless" run, excepting to show off the deaths in the game if they or the game over screen are worth looking at. Some, on the other hand, will include their deaths and do a straight run of the game, only editing for exceptional circumstances. The former approach is nice because it keeps the flow of the game going, and cuts out the tedium of repeated sections. If edited properly, the viewer shouldn't even be aware of the cuts. The latter approach has the benefit of adding a bit of tension, if you will, as one never knows whether the player might actually die at the next moment. As well, it adds a more human touch I guess, by "admitting", if you will, that you make mistakes playing and such.
Overall I suppose the unedited approach is more for those "Blind Run" style LP's that only really work with strong dual or even group commentary to back it up. Blind runs should never be attempted alone.
Oh I seem to have gone off on a tangent. As this relates to you, I love that you edited this to make it less tedious to watch, and if you can make those seams disappear then I will love it even more.

Aaaand that's all I have to say. To sum it up, I think you're off to a good start and know what you're doing, and I look forward to seeing you develop your Let's Play style.
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#3 24 September 2011 - 03:02 AM

Carrotlord Offline
Not anymore
"Run, rabbit run. Dig that hole, forget the sun."
Join Date: 28 Jan 2010
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One last thing, if (and I do mean if) I get a sizable fan-base, I plan on doing LP's of some of the various mods on the site. And not blind, I've watched more than enough blind runs to know they're generally a bad idea. (unless it's requested, in which case I will do a blind run)


Cool. I dunno - sometimes blind runs can be pretty funny. Especially for games like IWBTG. It's great to see the LP'er go "holy shit!" when they didn't know what was coming, though I suppose being prepared before you play makes for a better experience in many cases.

You don't even have to make it obvious that you're doing this, just talk as though you were playing the game right then. Only having to focus on one task at a time makes it easier to do better at both, but it does take longer. Post would be how I'd do it if I ever made a Let's Play.


I'm skeptical about this. If the player isn't really engaged at the moment it seems harder to provide good and not simply descriptive commentary.

The video and audio are fine. I see no real issues. The small cursor and window edges don't bother me that much.

There's some degree of self-deprecation, which isn't always a good thing. There's not much you can do when you screw up at the game itself though, so I'm not sure how to give advice for this.

I agree with Noxid that you should add in more 'fun facts' about the game itself. If you've got nothing to say related to the game at hand, then just babble about the game's history and quirks until some interesting feature pops up on the game screen.

You should also give a roadmap (at least a partial one) to the audience before embarking on some quest. For example, you didn't explain the purpose of collecting stars before you collected the first one. This may seem obvious or unnecessary, but the viewers will feel more at ease if they have some sense of what goal is coming up before you attempt it.

I will admit that you get amazingly better as the new videos progress, and that you start talking way more. This is a very good thing. If nothing more than practice can be done, then practice is the way to go.

#4 24 September 2011 - 03:17 AM

Noxid Offline
3cool
"Life begins and ends with Nu."
Join Date: 28 Aug 2009
Location: LocationShredding a wicked grind
Posts: 4,684
 

With regards to blind runs, it's almost a stylistic choice in a way but it's a common pitfall for new LP'ers to see people do "good" blind runs of a game and then turn around and say "Hey, I want to try something like that!" and then record four videos of themselves trying to get past the same thirty seconds of gameplay, doggedly refusing to delete a second of footage. As well, with a blind run, the player shouldn't really know much about the game beforehand so they may miss things, and they wouldn't have as much anecdotal material to say about the game apart from what's going on right this second.

Competence is really what makes it, so if you are good enough at video games to not get stuck for hours on end, or at least have the mercy to edit when necessary, then a blind run can be good. I think cyo could probably pull it off if that's what he wanted to do.
That said, I personally prefer the informative approach for solo LP's most of the time.

I'm skeptical about this. If the player isn't really engaged at the moment it seems harder to provide good and not simply descriptive commentary.


Well, my personal favourite Let's Play duo, Chip & Ironicus, employ post-commentary to good effect. I'm just basing that conclusion on what I've seen and what I liked.
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#5 24 September 2011 - 05:48 AM

Cyowolf1122 Offline
Zzzzzzzzzzzzzttttt!!!!!
"Keep on rollin'!"
Join Date: 19 May 2009
Location: LocationOn Earth
Posts: 441
Age: 24
 

Pretty cool. As a person who enjoys a good LP now and again (read: always) I can try and give you some feedback to improve by, broken down categorically.

Audio:
The balance of game audio to voice audio works well. One doesn't overpower the other, and the sound quality itself is also pretty good. I haven't got much to say here other than what you're doing works.


Thanks! However, I'm currently only proficient with Camtasia, and getting fraps to stop eating my HD is proving to be a pain. That, and I have utterly no idea how to edit a fraps vid. :S

Which is proving to be a pain as Camtasia doesn't seem to like the game I want to LP next, so it might be delayed a tad as I try and figure out Fraps.

Video:
Again, overall it's pretty great. The framerate is consistent and there aren't any artifacts of compression. The first few videos included the window frame, which wasn't great, but you fixed that near the end. One thing I do notice is that you leave your mouse cursor (however small) on the screen, so just remember to flick that off to the side once you start recording.


I realized that far too late to be able to fix it, so I left it in. It was a noobish mistake, I'll admit. That, and I had to re-record a good portion of it due to me forgetting to turn on my mike. :muscledoc:

Commentary:
Arguably the most important part of good Let's Plays, and (I think) probably the most difficult part. You were a bit shaky at first, but as the videos went on it's apparent that you become more comfortable with it.
I like Let's Plays that are informative, so something you could do is maybe do a bit of research on the game before hand and make some short points, post them by your screen and then talk about one if you find yourself running out of things to say? Yknow, like "Fun Fact" stuff. Just an idea.
Another suggestion I would make would be to experiment with post-commentary; playing the game beforehand, then watch the video and record your commentary then. You don't even have to make it obvious that you're doing this, just talk as though you were playing the game right then. Only having to focus on one task at a time makes it easier to do better at both, but it does take longer. Post would be how I'd do it if I ever made a Let's Play.
I can't really tell you how to do better commentary because I don't know :toroko2:
You seem to have a good handle on the basics (don't ham it up, give information about the game, don't leave dead air). One thing I noticed is you sometimes mention problems you're currently having (i.e. saying "I can't think of anything to say right now"<video 4>) and I think that is a something you should avoid making a habit of, basically because it often leads to "Excuse-spiels", which is something nobody wants to hear.
Still, you're just starting out! I bet with a bit of practice you'll be able to give some great commentary.


That would actually be quite wise, and at the very least it would work well should I actually hit a dead-spot in commentary. And yeah, very much new to the whole commentary while playing deal. I'm fairly certain it will get better as I go on, as I actually did vids 1-5 blind, and I had to actually re-record vids 6-8 due to a mishap. I'm actually more pleased with the later commentary. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to give good commentary if I knew what I was coming, but I proved myself wrong. That LP was rather fun to do tho, faking surprise at several times and knowing what I was supposed to do.

I can see why have a plan works when LPing a game. :hoppy:

Gameplay:
Nothing wrong here. You tried to show off as much of the game as possible without needless faffing about. Some people just record themselves playing the game, but a good LP'er presents the game.


Well then, I'm fairly certain that you'll like the next one, provided I can get it recorded properly. :sue:

Post-Production:
The amount of post-production and editing that's "acceptable" in a Let's Play is hard to guage. On the one hand, you have LP'ers who will play through the game segments over to get a "deathless" run, excepting to show off the deaths in the game if they or the game over screen are worth looking at. Some, on the other hand, will include their deaths and do a straight run of the game, only editing for exceptional circumstances. The former approach is nice because it keeps the flow of the game going, and cuts out the tedium of repeated sections. If edited properly, the viewer shouldn't even be aware of the cuts. The latter approach has the benefit of adding a bit of tension, if you will, as one never knows whether the player might actually die at the next moment. As well, it adds a more human touch I guess, by "admitting", if you will, that you make mistakes playing and such.
Overall I suppose the unedited approach is more for those "Blind Run" style LP's that only really work with strong dual or even group commentary to back it up. Blind runs should never be attempted alone.
Oh I seem to have gone off on a tangent. As this relates to you, I love that you edited this to make it less tedious to watch, and if you can make those seams disappear then I will love it even more.

Aaaand that's all I have to say. To sum it up, I think you're off to a good start and know what you're doing, and I look forward to seeing you develop your Let's Play style.


I'mma Newwwwwwwwb. :chin: The editing will improve over time, I'll eventually figure out how to do a proper transition. I've never really cared for unedited vids with lots of deaths, its really just wasted space.

Cool. I dunno - sometimes blind runs can be pretty funny. Especially for games like IWBTG. It's great to see the LP'er go "holy shit!" when they didn't know what was coming, though I suppose being prepared before you play makes for a better experience in many cases.


Even if I do LP IWBTG, it'll still have me going "ARRRRRRRRRRRGH", despite having grown up in the very era that inspired it. I DO know I can beat the first boss at the very least.

This'll likely come at a later date. Or when I get bored, whichever happens first. :confused:


I'm skeptical about this. If the player isn't really engaged at the moment it seems harder to provide good and not simply descriptive commentary.

The video and audio are fine. I see no real issues. The small cursor and window edges don't bother me that much.

There's some degree of self-deprecation, which isn't always a good thing. There's not much you can do when you screw up at the game itself though, so I'm not sure how to give advice for this.


So long as it isn't over done, making fun of yourself can be quite entertaining, especially during that bowser fight I had a strong tendency to eat my own words.

And besides, it's a hell of a lot better than raging at the game because your losing. :mahin:

I agree with Noxid that you should add in more 'fun facts' about the game itself. If you've got nothing to say related to the game at hand, then just babble about the game's history and quirks until some interesting feature pops up on the game screen.

You should also give a roadmap (at least a partial one) to the audience before embarking on some quest. For example, you didn't explain the purpose of collecting stars before you collected the first one. This may seem obvious or unnecessary, but the viewers will feel more at ease if they have some sense of what goal is coming up before you attempt it.


Duly noted, I shall make that a point to do so if it applies to a current LP.

I will admit that you get amazingly better as the new videos progress, and that you start talking way more. This is a very good thing. If nothing more than practice can be done, then practice is the way to go.


:orangebell:

With regards to blind runs, it's almost a stylistic choice in a way but it's a common pitfall for new LP'ers to see people do "good" blind runs of a game and then turn around and say "Hey, I want to try something like that!" and then record four videos of themselves trying to get past the same thirty seconds of gameplay, doggedly refusing to delete a second of footage. As well, with a blind run, the player shouldn't really know much about the game beforehand so they may miss things, and they wouldn't have as much anecdotal material to say about the game apart from what's going on right this second.

Competence is really what makes it, so if you are good enough at video games to not get stuck for hours on end, or at least have the mercy to edit when necessary, then a blind run can be good. I think cyo could probably pull it off if that's what he wanted to do.
That said, I personally prefer the informative approach for solo LP's most of the time.



Well, my personal favourite Let's Play duo, Chip & Ironicus, employ post-commentary to good effect. I'm just basing that conclusion on what I've seen and what I liked.


Info, I can provide.

Also, if there's any LPer that's served as inspiration, I would have to say:lol, like I can choose one.

Here, have 4 major inspirations:
http://www.youtube.c...ser/ProtonJonSA <-- genuinely funny and tends to explain pretty much everything that occurs in a video.
http://www.youtube.c...intendoCapriSun <-- For a 35 year old guy, he's pretty damn good at video games and gives pretty good commentary as well, explaining as he goes.
http://www.youtube.com/user/agentjr <-- If a youtuber could be a guilty pleasure, he'd be it. He's gotten better since I've started watching.
http://www.youtube.com/user/ACESpark <--- Knows what he's doing as well as taking each failure in stride, as well as editing out unnecessary bits. Also happens to explain everything.

wallo'text.avi :toroko2:

These emotes are surprisingly fun to mess with. :3

#6 27 September 2011 - 11:29 PM

Cyowolf1122 Offline
Zzzzzzzzzzzzzttttt!!!!!
"Keep on rollin'!"
Join Date: 19 May 2009
Location: LocationOn Earth
Posts: 441
Age: 24
 

Relevant bump with relevant content.

Got a test video of the training level of Buck Bumble. Forgive the video mishaps, I was trying to see how it would work.

If you wanna see it and let me know what you think, here ya go: Buck Bumble Ep 0

Also, it seems to be lagging, but only on youtube. It looked fine in Camtasia., Not sure why.

Anyways, I hope this is alright Noxid.

#7 28 September 2011 - 02:51 AM

Noxid Offline
3cool
"Life begins and ends with Nu."
Join Date: 28 Aug 2009
Location: LocationShredding a wicked grind
Posts: 4,684
 

Certainly fine.

Looks like an interesting game, but I gotta say one thing:
dat title screen music :greydroll:
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#8 02 October 2011 - 07:52 PM

Cyowolf1122 Offline
Zzzzzzzzzzzzzttttt!!!!!
"Keep on rollin'!"
Join Date: 19 May 2009
Location: LocationOn Earth
Posts: 441
Age: 24
 

Hello again, I'm back with more goodies!

I've begun my second LP, this time of a game I played when I was little.

Here's the vid: Buck Bumble Ep 1

On a side note, I've been told that my mic is boosted, is there anyway for me to fix this? I want to make this as "listenable" as I possibly can. I'm not afraid of editing audio, I'm doing so anyway, so any kind of advice is appreciated.

#9 17 October 2011 - 09:57 PM

Cyowolf1122 Offline
Zzzzzzzzzzzzzttttt!!!!!
"Keep on rollin'!"
Join Date: 19 May 2009
Location: LocationOn Earth
Posts: 441
Age: 24
 

Adding some more to this thread so I can show you guys the improved video. The second part is the one that contains the improvements, but since it's an unplanned two-parter, I uploaded both:

Buck Bumble eps 5 part 1

Buck Bumble eps 5 part 2

#10 17 October 2011 - 10:20 PM

Noxid Offline
3cool
"Life begins and ends with Nu."
Join Date: 28 Aug 2009
Location: LocationShredding a wicked grind
Posts: 4,684
 

The second video is so much smoother, I'm glad you got that figured out.
I'm not a fan of the text bubble overlay things, for me it sort of "Breaks the immersion", so to speak.
And no need to apologize for technical difficulties so much!

When was this game released anyway? Not sure whether it's an early title or a budget title (or both :b)
Seems like a pretty cool game so far though
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pending



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