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Forums > Submission Feedback > aschultz's Laser Blast review

This thread is in response to a review for Laser Blast on the Atari 2600. You are encouraged to view the review in a new window before reading this thread.

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Author: zippdementia
Posted: May 29, 2009 (11:31 AM)
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You really are one of my favourite writers on this site, Aschultz. Your command of writing ensures your reviews are always descriptive and interesting and well paced up to great conclusions. The two things I think you need to work on are (a) flow and (b) flair.

Flow comes into play because you tend to use a lot of the same length of sentences reading with the same intonation. This gets olds after a while. You need to break your phrasing up, skip a beat here and there, insert a pause once in a while, mix things up.

Flair comes in because it feels like you have a lot of funny things to say about the games you review, but the humour never really hits. It's always floating somewhere off to the side, and there's a ton of places where you could just RIP on these old games. But you never do, and I think that's too bad, because you'd be really good at it.

Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."

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Author: aschultz
Posted: May 29, 2009 (11:59 AM)
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Zippdementia--thanks very much for the criticism! I appreciate it, positive and negative. I am still finding a lot to correct in my Deathlord fanfic, btw.

I can be disorganized in real life and that carries over to my writing if I am not careful. I need some work with this, and while I think I improved the flow over my original GameFAQs review, I still have the bad habit of submitting something too quickly instead of waiting for two hours. Sometimes I still get into corners where I just want to put all my ideas out on the page, and I forget they have to be, uh, linked up.

As for flair, that's another thing where I may let my personality and conversational style impact things. I tend to prefer the puns that make people groan five seconds later. But I do look at some other people's efforts, like overdrive's Castlequest review I'd just read, and say "I'd like some of that, please." It hit some of the big points I'd taken for granted in my original review and could have addressed if I were paying attention.

Maybe I'm a bit too leery of the worn out ways of bashing a game which seemed classic when people were first reviewing. But of course, part of writing is giving new meaning to words and strophes. I'll look into my bag of old reviews and see if there are any games that deserve it, games I didn't quite bash as well as I should have.

My principal said, 'Emo, Emo, Emo.'
I said 'I'm the one in the middle, you lousy drunk!'
-- Emo Phillips

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Author: bloomer
Posted: May 29, 2009 (08:22 PM)
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This review is a good length for the understated or droll approach to humour. For instance I got a huge laugh at the paragraph opening 'The trick is doing this for 3700 rounds.' I found the whole thing very funny, the rest of the time in a way where I'm smiling and suppressing making actual noise. I think there are perhaps a couple of sentences in there that are mildly confusing.

I remember you brought up the 'let rip' issue before Zipp. I've noticed I don't like to do it anymore either, it can feel too forced. I got to this feeling from writing and reading the hundreds of reviews on gamefaqs when we were all a bunch younger, newer at this and striving for effect and to entertain each other. I have a lot of reviews like that on HG which I moved over from gamefaqs, and I'm kind of embarrassed to read some of them now. Some can still be very funny, and some are warranted, but I think on a percentage basis, too many aren't warranted. Deep down I would say I actually feel guilty for treating some games like that, even if that sounds a bit overkill. Still, it's all been a part of the unending process of working on my writing.

Broadly, I think humour has to come out of some natural meeting place of what's in the material and what's in you. You can squeeze the game harder sometimes, but I don't think you can squeeze yourself much harder without it veering towards arch, or just not funny.

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