2013
10.27

ROSS’S GAME DUNGEON: TEST DRIVE 3

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Youtube link

Well in my quest to cut down the time on the episode, things completely backfired and this became the longest one so far. Also, it gradually started taking more of a stranger and angrier turn than I was expecting. Nietzsche said if you gaze into the abyss long enough, it will gaze back at you, so I guess on that note I’m starting to feel like I’m made out of vector graphics. It didn’t get so bad that I considered just burning the computer instead of releasing the video though, so here it is!

While it is kind of intoxicating being able to release videos this fast, I have been working on it practically nonstop since the last one, so I’m afraid this rate of videos won’t be normal in the future. I do have plans to get one more episode out for Halloween though, after that, I’ll be focusing pretty much exclusively on Freeman’s Mind for a while. Videos!

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2013
10.22

ROSS’S GAME DUNGEON: NYET 3

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Youtube link

Well I had intended for this episode to be shorter and less edited than the last one, but that didn’t happen as I had too many things to say about this game. Here’s the next installment of RGD either way. This is a very noteworthy and deceptive game as you’ll find out in the review. I’m really going to try and make the next one shorter.

In a decision I’m sure will upset some people, while it’s been time consuming, I am enjoying working on the game dungeon (I would have called this show The Game Dungeon if that wouldn’t have doomed the name to obscurity trying to search for it) and I’d like to continue pushing with it to Halloween. It’s my goal to get two more episodes out this month, with a special one being released on Halloween. This unfortunately means Freeman’s Mind will have to get put on hold, but only until November. I promise to resume work on it on November 1st. In the meantime, hey, more videos!

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2013
10.20

Unepic Contest Winner

Well it ended up taking me longer to process things than I intended, but I finally have the results for the contest to win a free copy of the game “Unepic.”

The winner goes to “dferch952″ for this picture below:

The angle for this was absolutely perfect and it sparks some thoughts what’s going through the player’s head. Either way, the person has problems and I can relate to that.

Below are the runner-ups:

This was easily my number two pick, it was a very hard decision deciding between this and the winner. I like the number of questions being raised here:

by Daniel Fendrich

An excellent backdrop for a heavy metal video:

by Jon Jon

This image was received by SETI and suppressed by the government until now:

by “jlm”

The author claims there are several subliminal images contained within this image, I think it’s just bilinear filtering:

by Killian Thieme

A good “what happens next?” shot:

by Adrián Scasserra

The eyes of the being on the right see all.

by “Neil Anblomee”

An excellent photo of this poor creature:

by “twisted.nipples”

The great bubble war changed history forever:

by “blue_dust”

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2013
10.15

ROSS’S GAME DUNGEON: TYRIAN

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Youtube link

Here is another one of the side projects I’ve been up to, a new series! “Ross’s Game Dungeon” is a sort of game review show where I talk about things I think are worth mentioning on various games. While this first episode is more on the tame side, in the future I plan to differentiate this from other reviews in that I’m not going to treat this like a normal review where I analyze every detail of the gameplay or give it a rating, etc. For example, if I’m reviewing a train game, I may decide that it reminds me of an incident where a janitor stole a train and talk about that for a while instead before getting back to the game. So think of this show as part game review, part lecture, part whatever I want to talk about that’s remotely relevant. While I probably will focus more on obscure PC games, I don’t plan to limit myself to any particular kind (though for the near future I’ll only be reviewing low-resolution games as I don’t trust my computer to record much else), although if I do cover a mainstream one, my plan will be to focus on things you DON’T hear in every other review out there. Ultimately, my main criteria for me choosing a game is I need to have strong opinions about it one way or another.

This came about primarily because after joining That Guy With The Glasses, I was told by another creator that the vast majority of their content are reviews. Since I’ve played a lot of unheard of games that I can comment on, I thought this show would be worth trying. I like the idea of this show as it lets me make something constructive out of this otherwise worthless knowledge. For everyone who is groaning because I’m hopping on the game review / commentary bandwagon, I promise to keep doing other videos too.

For this first episode, I’ve covered Tyrian, a frigging masterpiece of a game that puts many others to shame. I had so much to say about this game the episode ran a little long. I think this first episode may have come out a little bit drier than I wanted, but I definitely hope to improve in the future. I expect a certain portion of people to hate this simply because it’s not Freeman’s Mind, but I think it has potential. Expect better writing and worse editing in future episodes.

Also to everyone waiting on more Freeman’s Mind, that will continue too, my plan is once I’m up to speed is to have these in between FM episodes as I think I can potentially produce them faster. All in all, this is another experiment, but so was Freeman’s Mind.

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ADHD version: Ross made a game review show! Warning: It contains lots of talking.

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2013
10.04

Gorilla Gong!

I’ve mentioned before that besides the videos, I’ve been involved with many projects on the side, well I’m ready to announce the biggest one yet, Gorilla Gong!

WHAT IS GORILLA GONG?
Gorilla Gong is a website devoted to featuring actual machinima (videos created using game engines). It showcases some of the best (or at least good) machinima videos we can find, all of which are approved by dedicated reviewers (which I’m one of) to ensure a certain standard of quality. It is designed to help promote individual directors, especially small ones, and provide quality videos for viewers. The site is now officially in “open beta.” It’s not final yet, but it’s functional enough that we’re happy to announce it publicly and hope to see it grow.

CAN’T PEOPLE JUST GO TO MACHINIMA.COM OR THEIR YOUTUBE CHANNEL FOR MACHINIMA VIDEOS?
Well they can TRY. I’ve joked before that Machinima.com is to machinima videos what MTV is now to music videos. If you don’t know the reference, the joke is that despite having “machinima” being part of the company’s name, Machinima.com ironically doesn’t actually feature much machinima at all now, it’s a small minority of their content, much in the same way MTV doesn’t actually show many music videos anymore. Nowadays, in order for a machinima video to appear on Machinima.com’s channel, the director needs a contract with them (which from my experience, can be very controlling), and they need a certain level of popularity to even be considered for one. IT WASN’T ALWAYS LIKE THIS. It used to be that ANYONE who made a good machinima video could submit it to Machinima’s website, and it would get featured. No contract was required, and the person’s popularity didn’t matter. We are trying to bring that original concept back with Gorilla Gong.

AREN’T THERE OTHER MACHINIMA SITES OUT THERE THAT ALREADY DO THIS?
So far, we have not encountered any site that is doing quite what we’re trying to do. Ever since Machinima.com removed all videos from their website and deleted their forums in 2010, the machinima community has become extremely fragmented. Some sites are specialized on specific games, others haven’t been updated in a long time. There are many machinima makers still out there, but it’s harder than ever for them to find an audience. We want to try and unite machinima makers to not only help promote individual directors / groups, but also become a place that people always know that they can submit machinima videos and have them be seen.

I LIKE WATCHING MACHINIMA VIDEOS, WHY SHOULD I GO TO THIS SITE?
-We have new videos EVERY DAY (we’re currently aiming for about 3 a day)
-Reviewers have personally checked every video that goes up AND written a description on it that says what they like about it, making it easier to find content you like.
-All videos are tagged by category, making it easier to find videos you like be genre or game.
-We guarantee the MAJORITY of our featured content will be machinima videos.
-We make it easier to find good machinima videos you may never have heard of otherwise.

I MAKE MACHINIMA VIDEOS, WHY SHOULD I SUBMIT ONE TO YOUR SITE?
-We can get more views for your videos
-We are free
-We don’t try to restrict you in any way via a contract
-We prioritize videos with a low viewcount (~250k or less), giving you a chance to promote your lesser-seen videos.
-If your video is good and a reviewer likes it, we WILL feature it.
-We have many social media options, making it easier for viewers to link back to your video via Facebook, etc.
-We have director profile pages, making it easier to gain some presence within the machinima community.
-Besides featuring videos, we are trying to develop a machinima community to make it easier to find help you need (voice actors, animators, etc.)

DO YOU FEATURE ONLY MACHINIMA VIDEOS?
We will sometimes feature other kinds of videos: traditional 3D animation, other animation, amateur reviews, let’s plays, etc., however these are all held to a much higher standard than machinimas. Also at any given time, it’s our goal to have the MAJORITY of all featured videos be machinima.

JUST HOW GOOD DO THE VIDEOS HAVE TO BE TO GET FEATURED?
For machinima, a reviewer has to find something in the video he or she likes about it. This could be the direction, writing, voice acting, animation quality, etc. This means the videos can range from “something good about it” to “amazing.” At no point will a reviewer ever feature a video he or she considers bad. For non-machinima videos however, the standards are much higher and the quality of the content must be OUTSTANDING.

WHAT’S THE CATCH, DO YOU TAKE TAKE SOME OF DIRECTOR PROFITS OR CHARGE A FEE?
Hell no. We will NEVER take ANY money from directors. On the contrary, we will be featuring all videos via EMBEDDING. This means that any views of the videos will always count for the director’s channel. If a director gets paid for views, having their video on our channel will only make them MORE money. As for a catch, we will have ads on the edges of the site in order to keep it running. We guarantee though, that they will be non-intrusive and not in-your-face. The other “catch” is by and large, we will NOT promote videos that already have LOTS of views at the time of posting. We are trying to only promote videos that have ~250,000 views or less. The reason for this is to give smaller machinima makers an equal chance against big videos and fight the tendency to ONLY promote big content, which is how so many websites / channels already operate. Popular doesn’t always mean good. We want good.

DO THE VIDEOS HAVE TO BE FROM YOUTUBE?
No, we can accept videos from almost any streaming source that supports video embedding. This includes Youtube, Vimeo, Blip.tv, Metacafe, and some others.

I AM INTERESTED IN THIS SITE, HOW CAN I HELP?
-Spread the word! This will not become a large community site overnight, it needs time to grow and let people see that we’re going to stick around. The more word of mouth we get, the better.
-If you have a Facebook account, liking the site on facebook will help us out.
-Sign up at the site and suggest a video you think we should feature in the forums! Remember, it should have less than 250k views.
-If you think I personally will like the video, email me with a link. Warning: I personally am unlikely to feature videos with the Machinima.com watermark as I don’t think they should be promoted for abandoning the creators and fanbase that originally made them successful. We’re trying to promote the directors, not a company.
-If you have graphic design skills and are interested in making an infographic out of the information listed here we can distribute, go ahead and email me.
-Simply watch videos on the site, and leave feedback!

THE SITE DESIGN LOOKS AMATEURISH, ARE YOU GUYS FOR REAL?
Yes. Again, this is a beta stage, the layout and functionality of the site won’t be finalized for some time to come and we’ll absolutely listen to community feedback. There was much more focus on the functionality of the site when it was designed. Also, a wise man once said: “She may not look like much, but she’s got it where it counts.”

IS THE LOGO PERMANENT?
No. It’s a placeholder until we get something better. In the future we also hope to vary it depending on different themes.

ARE YOU LOOKING FOR MORE REVIEWERS?
Yes and no. While we do hope to have more reviewers in the future, we want to make sure anyone we add is trustworthy, has some background with machinima videos, and has certain taste standards (as much as we hate to admit it, there is a lot of BAD machinima out there). Approval process for anyone new will likely be slow.

ARE YOU, (ROSS SCOTT) IN CHARGE OF THIS SITE YOURSELF?
No. However I’m friends with the person who is, I’m one of the reviewers on the site, and have some influence on its development.

WHY IS THIS CALLED GORILLA GONG?
It’s just that awesome a name.

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On a personal note, I’m very hopeful for this site and want it to do well in the long term. It’s a long way from being finalized, but I think with new machinima videos every day plus community involvement, it has a lot of potential. I’ll emphasize again, the more machinima videos (under 250k views) that can be suggested, the better. In the future, we hope to have directors actively submitting videos to us for review, but for now, we still have to go out and find all the content ourselves. We’re trying to pick up the pieces of the machinima community that’s been scattered to the winds, so to speak.

Also, as always, more videos (from me) are coming! In the meantime, check out Gorilla Gong!

 

ADHD version: Want to see more actual machinima videos? Go to Gorilla Gong!

Also like it on facebook to help us out!

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