Title: Team Tournament Week 6: Preview!
Posted: July 31, 2009 (11:41 PM)
Jerec seemed to take great joy in announcing how much I messed up on predicting a loss for Sashanan last week.
I have one thing to say about last week. I was right in all the right places and wrong in all the right places, as well.
May that trend continue.
Match One: Team Emp (3-2) vs Team Felix (2-3)
EmP and Zig
Again I have to hit EmP over the head with the edit-stick. There’s a period missing in the first paragraph, as well as other small errors throughout the review. Aside from this, EmP’s review of Quake III is exactly the kind of review I like but also the kind of review that I’m not sure will perform well in the TT. It’s more of a history, really, than a review, describing a playing experience rather than a game. As such, it feels a little awkward when the weapons and maps are thrown in, especially as they come at the end, like an after thought. This feels like a great article watered down to fit the review format and, historically, that hasn’t done well here.
Zigfried starts off with another thing that has historically done poorly, and that is coloured text. It’s not even a pretty colour, though that comes from someone who’s colour-blind. Resident Evil 5 doesn’t stand out as his best review. There are some things that immediately jump out at me as big no-nos (mentioning the brainwashed buddy may seem harmless, but believe me, most RE fans would eviscerate Zig for that spoiler) and there is a general sense that Zig is giving an overview of the game’s plot rather than telling us how it handles. I like his segment on racism as it very quickly difuses the arguments for such nonsense. Indeed, I like most of his points, but this seems to be a review that waffles around as Zig’s opinion of the game keeps changing from luke warm to pure love, and that makes it feel inconsistent.
EmP may not have written a review in the truest sense of the word, but I think the judges will resonate with its through line, a story of kids returning to their childhood to find it intact. It’s hard to beat that, no matter the review’s faults.
Dark Eternal and Felix
Dark Eternal’s review starts off with a bang. It’s a great introduction, loved the line about just wanting to bash shit with a giant ape. Then he gets a little further in and resorts to listing problems with the game and everything starts to feel a little stale. More confounding is his ending, in which he states that the game isn’t all that bad, nevermind the fact that he’s just spent an entire review bashing it. Thankfully, the whole thing is complimented by a large amount of wit and humour that keeps things flowing.
Felix’s Panzer Dragoon lacks Dark Eternal’s oomph. I remember reading this when it first came out, one of the first reviews I caught here, actually. At the time I thought it was a highly engaging review which captured the imagination and showed a lot of enthusiasm. I still think it is, but reading it alongside DE’s quicker wit and spunkier presentation also lends it a slow feeling that may not serve Felix well in this match up.
I’m really torn on this one. I think technically Felix’s review is the better of the two, but DE’s is a more fun read. It really will depend on the judge’s moods, but as I’m obligated to make a guess, I’m gonna go with DE.
Dragoon of Infinity and Randxian
I have long loved Dragoon’s review of Stalin versus the Martians. I love the fact that he comes at it with a desire for kookiness in one hand and a scepter of reality in the other. Watching him beat this game to a pulp with said scepter is very satisfying, because too many bad games have gotten off clean based on their “kooky” factor. I applaud Dragoon for finally pulling this one out.
And it was a good thing he did, because Randxian delivers a solid review with a lot of enthusiasm and a very clear stance on One Piece: Baseball (though I have to dock him points for the Bull Durham reference). He also does something I love to see in reviews, which is he points out who is going to like this (in this case, fans of simple sports game). By the end of the review you feel like you've played this game. It’s not going to beat Stalin versus the Martians, but randxian should be happy to know he’s improving very quickly.
Team predition: though I predict a sweep for team EmP, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a close win, either, based on the closeness of some of these reviews. Still, either way, I think EmP will pull out ahead on this one, and Dragoon will be the star of the match.
Team Janus (1-4) vs Team Dagoss (1-4)
Janus and Dagoss
In the midst of a flurry of humorous reviews and bashes, we get a very serious, compelling, look at what sounds like a beautiful game. Janus gives his review just the right feel to compliment A Fading Melody. The pictures are great, giving a sense of the game without telling us about it (which is the writing's job). The one problem is that there’s a lot he wants to say about the game, and by the time you get to his complaints about the gameplay you’re ready for something a bit more spunky. Instead you get “neither-here-nor-there” comments on how the gameplay "is rigid, but not really bad..." "it’s rough around the edges, but engaging..." these kind of comments don’t add anything to the review. Better to see would've been a single paragraph saying the good things about the platforming (the unconventional approach, especially, should get in there) and then a conclusion. Because it sounds like Janus didn’t mind the roughness of the gameplay, but was afraid others might and so gave it a lower score.
Dagoss’ response to Janus isn’t interesting enough to tackle Fading Melody. A large part of this is the game choice. From the start, Ultima sounds like a boring game. Words like “common place” and a lengthy intro on the history of RPGs do little to break the tedium of a review which captures, a little too well, the staleness of the game it covers. It doesn’t have a chance against Janus’ deeper, more emotional, fare.
Disco and Wolfqueen
Disco’s review of Knight's of the Old Republic II is short for a game you could probably go on for quite some time about, and I compliment that. The trick, with this kind of review, is to pick your complaints and compliments wisely, and Disco does that. He doesn’t make the best case for some of his points being included, even writing off a fairly large last one as a “personal dislike.” Still, a very good review. Actually, the only problem I see with it is that it doesn't have anything particularly memorable about it. It makes an informative read for someone trying to figure out whether to buy the game, but the TT often requires something with a bit more flair to grab the win.
I’ve already stated that I like Wolfqueen’s review quite a bit. It met with a somewhat lukewarm response from the site, but I think it captures the insanity of Psychonauts quite well, and its new intro should hopefully appease some of the naysayers. The thing is, it really shows an enthusiasm for the game and continually drives home that enthusiasm with great examples of in-game scenarios. It does wander a bit at times, which might cost it the win.
Now, will WQ beat Disco? That’s the real question, and it’s a very tough one to answer. I’m gonna bank on the fact that Wolf Queen's review is more memorable and predict a win for her.
Radical Dreamer and Turducken
I hate Tom Clancy works with a passion. Not because of their gameplay, but because of their crushing patriotism. I own Splinter Cell, but I’ve only ever played it once because I couldn’t stand the whole “Middle East is evil for no reason” argument the story makes. Today, I don’t remember much of the gameplay. Radical Dreamer’s review makes me wish I did, because he makes it sound pretty fun. That said, Radical reviews are starting to all blend together for me a bit, which is both good and bad. Good, because they’re never weak reviews, and it shows consistency that he can maintain his style. Bad, because they don’t do anything to really grab a reader’s attention and make him remember the review as differentiated from another wrtier.
What is it with the wishy-washy this go around? Nearly everyone (myself included) has submitted a review that at some point says “it doesn’t ruin, however...” or some equivalent line that makes them seem apologetic for the reviews they’ve written. Still, Turducken has nothing to apologize for despite not showing up this round. This is an entertaining, hard hitting, quick, read... much like the Ninja's it describes. However, it does lack Radical’s thouroughness and technical prowress, and in this case I’m gonna lean to the left side of the brain and give the win to Radical.
Team Prediction: Another very close match up. Captain Janus is the star of this one, as he easily sweeps the victory from Dagoss. Radical and Disco are harder to call, though I’ve put my money behind Radical which gives Janus’ team their much-needed win.
Team Will (2-3) vs Team OD (4-1)
Zipp and Overdrive
I went for a looser, more casual, review on this Anniversary despite some fears that Overdrive might sweep me with a work of technical genius. Despite it’s looseness, I actually spent a lot of time crafting it to include more technicalities than it seems. I actually cover quite a lot of information about the game and succinctly deliver what I think makes it not work. I end with its one saving grace (“it’s Tomb Raider"). It’s all very calculated (if I do say so myself). However, it may be too calculated, coming off either too loosely (damn my clever disguises) or too contrived (I did go back and take out some of the more ludicrous fare for just this reason... thank you to True for pointing out some of them).
Overdrive comes at me with Parasite Eve, a review that flows nicely and has some really funny lines (especially if you’ve played the game... the date... ha ha ha). Overdrive doesn’t start off on the best of feet, though. His radio-talk intro is just the kind of thing I tried in my Syberia review, and the judges didn’t like it.
Still, Syberia won that match.
If Overdrive wins, it’s going to be because his review does technically right things, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say my review has a better intro/outro and will ultimately leave a slightly better flavour in a judge’s mouth. It could be the difference between apples and oranges, though.
Sashanan and Jason
Sashanan’s review of Hover Bovver has one of the most memorable intros of any review on the site. From there, it’s off like a firecracker, imbuing this silly, stupid, game with a prodigious amount of fun, making you feel like you’re a little drunk and playing a bad video game... and enjoying it! The line “Jim won’t mind if I borrow his mower,” is one of the classic lines of video game history and now of Honest Gamers... at least to my mind.
Jason’s review, by comparison, doesn’t quite cut it. It’s not that Jason’s look at King of Fighters is bad. As I’ve said before of Jason, he’s nothing if not consistent and this review is as proficient as any he’s written for the site. It examines its game thouroughly and with obvious investment by the author. It doesn’t let off the same bang as Sashanan’s, however. After all, there’s no irrate neighbors or angry pooches getting run over by lawn mowers. A weak choice of video game to go up against something as unique and goofy as Hover Bovver.
Will and Belisarios
Will finally writes a new review and it’s cause for us all to get pissed at him... if this is the kind of thing he’s capable of producing these days, then damn he’s been holding out on us this tournament. Will pens an excellent look at Star Trek: Anniversary that is simultaneously campy and informative, parodying the show while celebrating it at the same time (much like the most recent Trek film). This is a quick piece, meant to be enjoyed as a bite-sized snack. As such, it’s fairly light and doesn’t go much into gameplay mechanics. The judges might feel it’s a little too bite-sized, like those oddly named “fun size” candy bars you get at Halloween.
Belisarios answers right back with a killer review of Kendo Rage complete with pictures that do the review a lot of good. This one has as much pizzaz as it does emotion. It’s not a perfect review, though. It deviates in some strange places to talk about sequels, it leaves some things unexplained (like what makes the game feel hardcore... see the SNES paragraph), and there’s some basic spelling and grammatical issues. Without those, I would say it would be an unassailable win for Beli, but as is, his review may have a few too many unforgiveable blemishes.
This is an incredibly difficult prediction to attempt. I’m gonna side with my teammate, quoting as the reason the fact that, though short, it’s much better organized than Beli’s, due to the latter’s numerous issues within the review. It's also spunky and fun, and should bag Will a much awaited win.
Team Prediction: Sashanan turns out to be the star of this match, with a killer review about neighborly relations gone awry. Whether or not the rest of his team can ride on the same victorious boat is a little bit trickier to call, but I think there is a slight advantage in Zipp and Will’s favour that could mark a 3-0 sweep for Team Anniversary.
Team Suskie (4-1) vs Team Boo (3-2)
Suskie and Woodhouse
I think Suskie’s getting a little tired. This review of Invisible War is much less impressive than the other reviews he’s submitted for the tournament. At this point it seems silly to call anyone’s TT reviews less than good. No one in this tournament is submitting crap, and Suskie’s effort is far from it. But it’s long, and it doesn’t keep the interest of the reader in the same way his Shadow of the Collossus or Homeworld reviews did. It’s a very technical review. It gets the job done, but it does so with a monotone voice and without the hint of a smile... except for some excellent paragraphs in the middle involving the original Deus Ex and a brief snipe at Alex D's name.
Woodhouse delivers a much more spunky effort, beginning with a bang: “For a few short days, Officer Bob knew paradise.” Woodhouse picked a quirky game about a lone patrol man versus the world and wrote a fun review to go along with it. Suskie’s review is definitely deeper, but at this point in the tournament, I think the judges aren’t looking to leave shore so much for deeper waters. I think they're looking for the more colourful tide pools. We'll find out.
Aschultz and Espiga
Aschultz’s review of someone's pants is a little weak, The intro is very poorly worded and by the time you make your way through it, you’re a bit turned off. Then we’re given the usual list of things that are good and bad about the game with little flair and very basic transitions. Compared to some of Aschultz’s previous entries, this feels dated, and makes me wonder if it was one of his converted Gamefaqs reviews. By the end, it does seem to hit a stride a bit more, so maybe he just needed to go back and give it a good redraft.
Espiga follows with... well... I should note at this point that I hated Phantasy Star II. Fighting giant bugs for hours in non-descript dungeons was not my idea for fun. Espiga focuses on what most reviewers of this game do: the story and characters. Still, Espiga's trying to sum up an entire story in 800 or so words, and it comes off as awkward. I also dislike that he ends with a link, when he could easily have left it out.
I voted for Espiga last time on a much stronger review and was wrong, so this time I'm gonna go with Aschultz.
True and Blue
As Espiga showed us, reviewing an RPG is difficult. That said, I wish True had started a bit stronger in his review for Lunar. “I have many games from my past” hardly warrants an entire paragraph to itself. Ironically, for such short paragraphs, this review just won’t stop going. It drags on and on about the gameplay, story, and the characters until you begin to wonder if you ever need to play the game. Indeed, writing a review for an RPG IS hard, if only because there’s so much to cover. True falls into the trap of trying to cover it all, though his saving grace is his emotion. It's obvious he loves this game (so did my ex and everyone else I've ever met who played it), and that's always endearing.
On to Blueberry and... Jesus Christ, what the hell were you doing giving away the massive plot twist of Metal Gear Solid 2 without any warning in the first couple of paragraphs? The entire point of the game is to find that out at the end. If the judges have any sense of ethics, they will withhold the win from you for such an assinine slip in review-etiquette. That said, I agree with you 100% on the game’s suckitude and you grab all the right reasons for it being so crappy. But to begin with such praise for its story, fill the middle with such ire, and then end on a “meh” note is very off putting and not near what I’ve come to expect from the rides you’ve given me in previous reviews (last week’s in particular).
Still, though I think Blue’s should lose on principle, I was able to make it through his review on the first go while I had to keep stopping and restarting True’s because my attention wandered. Blue takes the win.
Team prediction: Ironically, one of the most awaited team matches of the season turns out to be the weakest of the week. Woodhouse stands out as the matche’s star, but it’s a light in a pit of unexpected darkness. Both of these teams came out very strong this year, maybe they are just getting tired? This win could go to either team, really, but I’m guessing it ends up in Boo’s lap.
Some Random Statistics!
Easiest match to call: Dragoon of Infinity vs Randxian
Toughest match to call: Zipp vs Overdrive and Will vs Belisarios
Best team match up: Team Will vs Team OD
MVP of the week: another tie, between Dragoon of Infinity and Sashanan
Favourite review: Sashanan’s Hover Bovver (what the hell does that title mean?)
Least favourite: Dagoss’ Ultima review, though Blueberry’s breach of conduct fills me with the most ire
If my predictions are at all stable, then this will turn out to be a real upset week in the tournament. Teams Overdrive and Suskie both have a very good chance of losing, while teams Will and Janus both look like they’ll come out with a win.
What this boils down to is a closing gap between Team Will and a shot at the finals and a more secure position for Team EmP. If this trend continues, Team OD could find themselves trading spots with Team Will for the finals.
That said, this really is Team Will's last shot. If they do manage to lose this week, then they can pretty much kiss the finals goodbye.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (12:09 AM)
Beli's Kendo Rage review is probably my favorite of those of his I've read. I'm quite honored to be pitted against it.
That said, go Team Anniversary!
Posted: August 01, 2009 (12:36 AM)
Nice preview again!
Actually, my review is a new one, not converted from GameFAQs. Too bad you didn't like it--I wanted to make the intro something different, although I can see why you felt it was awkward.
I think everyone who's been trying to submit new reviews(which is a lot of us) is a bit tired, though actually I was a bit ahead of things this week. We'll see how it goes. It was a review I wanted to do, and I am keeping the KB count down without really obsessing over it, so that is good as far as it goes...but quality is a different matter from quantity. It's tough to balance trying new stuff with winning--the 2 go hand in hand a lot, but too much and you flame out.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (12:49 AM)
You should also know, Aschultz, that you're one of my favourite personalities here and you have the makings of an excellent and engaging writer. I look forward to working with you on improving your reviews.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (01:15 AM)
Instead of responding to the whole preview (nice work on putting it together), I'm treating this as a mini-critique of a review that I haven't received much feedback on. I hope you don't mind.
You mention that my review waffles from lukewarm to pure love... it's not really either one. My opinion falls between those two categories. The thing is, the words I wrote that seem lukewarm for RE5 would be construed as praise for DMC, and that's the point stressed in the final paragraph. I enjoyed the game ("pure love" is too strong) but it's not what I expect RE fans to enjoy. I just won't deny my own enjoyment ;)
If you have suggestions on how to better broach the "I really enjoyed this, but I can see how others wouldn't enjoy it" line of thought, then I'd certainly be open to that advice. I tried to make sure that regardless of my own opinion, readers would be able to reach their own conclusion, but any advice that would make it stronger while maintaining completeness would be awesome.
The brainwashed buddy bit was a later add-on, not present in the original version of the review. Seeing as I kept it non-specific -- I could be referring to Sheva for all anyone knows -- do you personally see it as an issue? I don't really care what hardcore fans think, because they'll of course associate it with the specific person (which is a definite spoiler), but if you think its a spoiler to even mention that someone has been brainwashed, then I'll reconsider that part.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (01:20 AM)
You know, I figured admitting that I was burnt out this week and that I had to dig out one of my old(er) reviews to give myself a chance to catch my breath would spare me from this sort of shit, but apparently not. I guess having a record as good as mine comes with a price: Now people have expectations, and if I'm not constantly living up to said expectations it's a huge fucking letdown. Yeah, Zipp, I'm getting tired, which is why I fucking said so. It ain't easy pumping out new reviews at this rate, let alone reviews good enough to consistently topple my (talented) opponents.
You fucking people need to stop idolizing me. Seriously. I've been getting labels like "heavyweight," "titan," and "legendary" this whole time, while behind the scenes I'm struggling to keep up, getting very lucky, and quietly warning my teammates that this is too good to be true, that I'm bound to run out of gas eventually. I kind of hope I DO lose this round, if only so you idiots will finally figure out that I'm not a god after all. Christ.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (01:22 AM)
Who is this Blueberry person you keep mentioning?
Posted: August 01, 2009 (01:22 AM)
Castlevania has an inverted castle, too.
and even aside from the whole statute of limitations thing, I disagree. those MGS2 plot twists were for "how", not "OH MAN THAT REALLY JUST DIDN'T HAPPEN". it's not something that hinges on being a shock like the PAL key thing in MGS1 or, uh, anything at all to do with Ocelot. didn't think I should explain that away in the review, but maybe I'll edit it a bit after.
don't take this as bitchy, mind you, I just don't agree. and the thought did enter my head when I was thinking about how to approach the game; there's no way to say what I wanted to say about the game without talking about the endgame in some specifics, and at a certain point if you really want to analyze a game like MGS2 you kind of have to take off the kiddie-gloves. it's not like MGS4 just came out and I'm going "HEY BIG BOSS WAS ALIVE THE WHOLE TIME" to piss people off.
Suskie, I hope you lose too.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (01:26 AM)
I actually really liked the intro to aschultz's review. I thought it was lighter and easier to follow than some of the opening paragraphs in his other reviews.
I covered the gameplay in the way I did for similar reasons to Zig. Although I liked the gameplay, it was important to stress its flaws so that people wouldn't be misled into thinking that A Fading Melody is a polished, flawless platformer.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (01:29 AM)
I CALL BIAS!!!!!!!! BIAS!!!!!!!!
I love how you mentioned my lines about the date. That part cracked me up. It's like Square was saying, "How do we make Aya seem like a tough, no-nonsense heroine? I know! We'll open with her and a date going to the opera, so that when shit starts flying, he runs away like a little pussy, while she confronts the insanity!"
And to go with what Schultz said, yeah, trying to come up with contest-worthy stuff on a weekly basis gets tiring. I'd initially planned to use my new Vagrant Story review this week, but had some misgivings that it was more of the "usual OD" review that got me off to that awesome 0-3 start. I had my super-duper-secret-ePal take a look at it and my super-duper-secret-ePal more than agreed with those misgivings, so I decided that since I really like PE and never have used it for any contest.....this week is the week!
Posted: August 01, 2009 (01:31 AM)
your super duper whatever is going to kick your ass next week.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (03:01 AM)
Suskie. Chill out. I'm just calling these things as I see them. If you really don't think of yourself as a reviewing god, then don't get offended when I say you seem like you're getting tired. It happens, and I wasn't attacking your personal character, just the quality of this review as compared to your others this tournament. Yes, writing good reviews does come with a price in a tournament like this, in that you've raised the bar to a certain level, and you have to try and keep it there now that people know what you're capable of. Why don't you take it as a compliment instead of getting all whiny? And if you REALLY want us to stop idolizing you, maybe you should change your signature.
Zig, I would love to go into an in-depth discussion of your review... but I must get sleep. You (and everyone) should know that when I do these previews, I'm changing my own views often times to match what I think the judges will be looking for. I actually really enjoyed your review, but I think that up against EmP's it probably won't win this round for reasons involving EmP's through line and... well, you've read my preview.
I will say, on the matter of the spoiler, that it's a tough call. Most of the people I know have been with the series from the beginning, and they're all over the whole "she's dead" bit, so a line like that would set off instant alarm bells in their head. I suppose there's gotta be a crowd coming from Re4 who doesn't even know who these characters are, but that seems to be a minority, considering this game is definitely designed for the constant RE fan.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (11:48 AM)
Come to think of it, I'm the odd man out by not picking a review of a game that is some kind of Anniversary or another. If I'd done that, maybe we'd have triggered the hidden Delta Attack and automatically won the round without need for judging.
Hey, it could happen.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (01:33 PM)
Yeah, as it is, we have more of an X-strike going while you cast heal.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (04:24 PM)
Zipp - I believe you also commented on me using Slumdog Millionaire in my Gremlins 2 review, which I now freely admit was a bad idea.
However, I'm wondering if you think using movie references period is a bad idea. I honestly thought Bull Durham would be appropriate given the nature of the game I reviewed.
Can you give me your thoughts on using movie references and why you feel my quote didn't work? Thanks.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (05:23 PM)
Thanks, janus, and thanks, zipp--for this comment and for your crticism. I've been in a lot of places where I've gotten a worthless compliment when I wanted to do better, and in others where someone has said "what the heck are you doing" without the slightest suggestion of what to do better.
As for details about the review, I may hold off until later. I always seem to have that post-review regret where I think stuff could be changed, and I guess we'll find out soon enough if that is just tinkering or if the judges saw something, too.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (08:40 PM)
Randxian, it's kind've a hard-and-fast rule of mine that I picked up from talking to a group of British reviewers. They didn't explain themselves, but they showed me examples that proved their point.
Unfortunately, I never got a chance to ask them the reasoning behind it, so I've had to come up with my own theories. Now, I actually DON'T believe that movie quotes or references are always bad (see my Dead Space review).
But I do think they have to immediately be tied into the game, so as not to distract the reader. For instance, your quote would be better if it read:
"Those lines were spoken by the manager of the Durham Bulls in the movie Bull Durham, although they would also be at home on the front page of One Piece: Baseball's instruction manual."
Then you can go into your whole baseball discussion. For me, the way you put it here ended up leaving me wondering why you were talking about Bull Durham so much, because you had yet to introduce me to your real subject.
Posted: August 01, 2009 (11:27 PM)
So that's what this is about, Zipp? My fucking signature? Well, no way in HELL I'm changing it now.
Zipp, I don't believe you were intentionally attacking me or anything; you just have no idea how tactless you were being. If all this kissing ass and dressing me up into something I'm not only inspires people like you to rub it in the one week I'm not delivering up to expectations, then sorry, I'm not going to interpret that as a compliment. Rather than letting your flamboyant personality take charge here, you need to take a step back and imagine what it's like being in my position.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (12:24 AM)
Ah, Suskie. You've blown your top so high this week I'm not sure whether to take you seriously or laugh awkwardly as if at a badly timed joke.
No, this isn't about your signature. I'm just saying, you seem to be buying into the whole "I'm great" image just as much as anyone, so what's your point?
I think you're just a little stressed out, man. No-one's attacking your reviewing ability, I just didn't like your submission this week is all. I could've said something like "man, this review is boring." BUt instead I took it with a grain of salt and said "this review isn't as good as what Suskie's been submitting."
God dammit, now I'm getting a little pissed. I mean, who are you to come in here and say "you can't understand what it's like being in my position?" I mean, you don't have cancer or anything, man. You're in a fucking reviewing contest for Honest Gamers. I'm in it, too, and yeah it's stressful having people review your creative work. I'm writing previews every week (because I like to provide more feedback on people's reviews from another angle) and getting lambasted for it by you. That's also stressful, but you know what? I keep it all in perspective and I have a good time.
You're getting offended at a level which isn't your due. Maybe YOU should take a step back, because it's coming off as extreme arrogance, and that's not who you are from what I've seen elsewhere on the site.
Let's all just take a deep breath here and remember that this is supposed to be fun and helpful. If I offended you, then I'm sorry. What else do you want out of me? I mean, I'm a fan of yours, man. Why are we fighting?
Posted: August 02, 2009 (12:54 AM)
Zipp, it seems we're at a stalemate here, as neither of us is willing to admit to being in the wrong. I think you have no idea how condescending your tone is, you think I'm getting too stressed out and need to relax. I can only further explain my side of this.
Zipp, there is nothing wrong with being unimpressed with my review. What I'm saying is that it sucks to go this far to keep my standards high week after week only to have it bite me in the ass the one time I'm flat-out unable to live up to expectations. I know that review isn't as good as everything else I've submitted so far, and I expect the judges' verdicts to be underwhelming as such. But I didn't get this far only to have people rub it in my face when I slip up. Believe me, it sucks enough without that.
And you know, we can argue all day about who's taking this too seriously, but the fact of the matter is that we all are. The ones who aren't taking it seriously are the people like Espiga and Vorty who put their names in and then forget they're even competing. TT is fun, and as such it's easy to get sucked in. I wish I could avoid being this stressed out, but I can't.
And you know something, the results were just posted, and what do you know, I lost. What a fucking relief. I'd further elaborate but now that all of this pressure is behind me, I'm tempted to just say that I don't care anymore. Sorry this had to become such a big thing but I stand by what I said.
As for my sig, notice that I'm not highlighting everyone I've beaten. Only the ones who acted like dicks beforehand.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (01:12 AM)
And that's fine. As acting like dicks was supposedly part of the fun of teasing someone before you fight them in a match, and I take your subsequent signature marking as such.
I'm not against admitting I'm wrong, I'm just not sure where you're saying I went wrong. If you're saying it was wrong of me to call this match as I saw it, then why am I writing previews?
I'm not looking to fight with you, I just want you to know that I didn't do anything to be an ass, I'm just doing my job.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (01:25 AM)
Guys, guys, guys.....if anyone should be struggling under the pressure of being great, it should be me.
The captain of the team solely holding first place. The reviewer who has gone from 0-3 to 3-3 and getting better every week.
This is my world....you're just existing in it as long as you amuse me.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (01:28 AM)
Thankfully this is an issue I'll never face. I take pride - in reviewing, in gaming, in life - in being utterly average at everything I set out to do.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (01:29 AM)
Yes, congratulations is in order to you, OD. It was a good match. If ever you use your radio announcer voice again, I'll kill you.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (02:58 AM)
Regarding spoilers in reviews, as it seemed to come up twice this round. I found it interesting that I was the only one to call Espiga on spoilers in his review, the other two judges seemed very impressed with his work. And none of us judges bothered much about the spoilers in Boo's review, though you said he should lose on principle... which is exactly how I feel about Espiga this round.
So why didn't the spoilers in Boo's review bother me? Well, I think it's more to do with the fact that it's a 6/10 review, and he's pointing out the game's story as part of his argument, and I doubt anyone would be convinced to play the game based on his review. Espiga on the other hand gives the game a 10/10 for its story and reveals a character death, and based on the information he gives, it's pretty easy to work out who dies, unless it's one huge bait and switch. But seriously, I don't want to know if a playable character in an RPG dies. So that's why Espiga's bothered me so much but I barely even noticed when Boo did much the same thing.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (07:59 AM)
I suspect someone said something on AIM or via HG private message that ticked Suskie off. I certainly haven't seen anything public, but then again, I haven't read every single post in every single thread.
Suskie, relax man. I'm sorry, but I have to take Zipp's side in this. For one thing, this is his blog. It's not like he trashed you on the public HG forum. Second, as he stated, this is a preview. Shouldn't previews contain honest opinions and feedback? What is he supposed to say, something like "Well, both reviewers did a great job. I would vote for both of them." What would be the point of that?
Besides, I've talked to you on AIM and know you're a pretty cool person, and were even nice to me after I made that dumbass remark on your blog. I'm really shocked to see you this upset, which makes me suspect it's probably just one or two people who made stupid comments via private channels. Please don't take this out on the whole community. I doubt most people were "disappointed" in your performance this week. Most of us are smart enough to realize everyone is bound to have an off week.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (10:35 AM)
Regardless of the outcomes, I'm just glad people are reading these previews. It makes it worth the effort of writing them.
Speaking of which, I'll be continuing to write these for the finals, though my team has not made its way there. I know there was some question as to whether I'd stop or not.
The answer is no, I'll keep on writing em.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (11:22 AM)
Good. I really like your analysis of the reviews. Reading your previews alone gives me at least a general idea of how I'm doing as a reviewer.
In some ways, I think you are doing a better job than Drella. He was being a bit conservative the last couple of weeks and didn't seem to want to come out and say who he thought would win.
Since you seemed to enjoy my One Piece: Going Baseball review, I don't feel bad that it got beat.
I've adopted a new attitude: as long as people enjoy my reviews, it doesn't matter if I win or lose.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (04:18 PM)
Apparently over-explaining my side didn't work, so let me be simple and clear. Zipp, there's nothing wrong with what you said. It's the manner in which you said it that annoyed me.
I think the reason I'm more ticked than I'd usually be is because you strike me as a person who doesn't realize how condescending his tone often is. I don't think you mean anything by it, but that's the thing: Nobody here ever calls you out on your attitude since we all think you're trying to be a nice guy. Just doesn't always come off that way is all.
And I'm leaving it at that. I stand by what I said but I'm sorry this had to erupt the way it did.
Posted: August 02, 2009 (04:24 PM)
I don't recall ever thinking of Zipp as condescending. Then again, I guess that's the nature of the beast of internet communication, some lines could potentially be interpreted a number of ways.
As a matter of fact, I'm glad he mentioned he had a problem with movie references in my Gremlins 2 and One Piece: Going Baseball reviews. Had nobody mentioned it, I would've been none the wiser.
However, there is one thing that still confuses me. Zipp, you seem to have enjoyed by review, but you have the matchup between DOI and myself as the easiest to call. After you call my review solid and open with something like "It's a good thing DOI used the review he did", having us as the easiest match seems a bit astonishing.
Posted: August 03, 2009 (01:08 AM)
Suskie, I'm totally open to the possibility that what you're saying is true. Relationships are just like reviews, they need to be critiqued to improve. If you have any suggestions on how I can be less condescending, I'd be happy to hear them and see if I can use them in future relations with you and others online.
Randxian: It's just that Dragoon of Infinity's review was Stalin vs The Martians. There was no way it was gonna lose, because I know all the judges love it. And it's a damn good review. I really liked your review, but I didn't think it was going to win, and in the TT the two are often disconnected. I do think had he used anything else, he would've lost.
I'm glad that you found my comments helpful, though. I really think you've come a long way as a writer even since the beginning of the TT. I look forward to seeing more from you in the future.