This afternoon I decided to make an attempt to do a tumblr entry. I figured I’ve had a lot of stuff on my mind as of late, and instead of trying to put it into a commentary, perhaps I could put my thoughts to words on digital paper instead. The downside of course is that only a dozen or so people will actually read those words. But we’ll see, perhaps writing it out will benefit me personally opposed to some sort of preconceived notion that I’m going to influence the masses. LOL
I guess the topic of today’s piece is going to be a mix between gaming and youtube as well as the balancing act that one most do when attempting to exist in both worlds at once. On the gaming side of things, I’ve been having more fun as of late. On the youtube side of things, I’ve had a bit more peaks and valleys when it comes to enjoyment that it gives me. Posting videos, making videos, interacting with the cool subscribers, that part of it is cake. It’s the politic side that Is really starting to wear on my nerves. The politic piece to the puzzle is the dirty little secret that you never quite predict or understand when you’re sitting there as a viewer and decide, “Hey, I think I’m going to give this a try.” The sad reality is that it only gets worse the larger your channel becomes.
No matter what you try to do on youtube, no matter how forthcoming you are about yourself, your personality, your play style, there will always be a public perception of you that the viewers inevitably begin to craft for you. How you present yourself & how you truly are, can in many cases be different from how some of the subscribers see you, through no fault of your own. That part has been a tad bit annoying as of late, but yet again, there’s really nothing you can do about it.
The key fact that I myself constantly find myself forgetting is that the average youtube viewer is between the ages of twelve and seventeen. When dealing with children you can’t expect rational conversations, thought processes or even accurate comprehension of what they actually hear in your video. I’ll give an example from a video I put out several weeks ago. “I’m worried Dice might put Kill streaks into Battlefield 3 to try & draw some of CoD’s crow.” How did some people react? With comments of, “Swords, why do you want kill streaks in BF3? That’s gay!” Things like that make you want to throw an old lady off of roof tops, I swear.
Another thing that I find myself forgetting all too often is the very simple fact that nobody can please everyone, not some of the times, not all of the times, you just can’t do it. I get caught up in viewing my subscribers as equals, and I say that not in some sort of totem pole type thing. But people who think like I do, have similar opinions to myself, of the same maturity level. But at the end of the day, that simply is not the case, and all it does is make me get more annoyed trying to figure out what will appease a fourteen year old. When the reality is they spend thirty seconds watching part of my video, leave a dumb comment, and then go ask their mothers if they can have an ice cream bar before dinner.
All this does is to start to view my subscribers as idiots who don’t pay attention to what the content of the video actually is, have no sort of logical thought process in how they come to their conclusions or establish their opinions, just spewing shit compulsively because they have no control. The downside is that good subscribers who are not idiots, have pubic hairs, and are wonderfully awesome to communicate with, play with and just interact with in general get over looked because it’s so easy to spend that bit of time being annoyed by the stupidity of a child. Now I’m not saying all young subscribers are like this. But it does seem like the majority of the idiots I encounter typically have YT accounts that list them as falling into the child category.
If you look around you can see that the youtube community for Battlefield content itself is getting larger. Not just in those who post Battlefield content, but those who view the videos, comment on them & support those directors who do put out content. The change has been pretty drastic, and frankly I’m not a fan of it. It used to be widely said and easily believable that the average battlefield fan was far more mature than the average Call of Duty fan. I used to believe that. Those of us who grew up playing Battlefield games, are usually far older than the teenagers who got hooked on Call of Duty 4 and MW2. I don’t think that’s the case anymore. The mentality of the fan bases seem to be merging, and I really don’t like it one bit, but at the end of the day, yet again there’s not much I can really do about it.
The change in the community has never been more evident to me then from watching some of the vicious comments that were made on DCRU Ampact’s return video. Ampact is a man who has never had a negative word to say to anyone in the Youtube community. He’s never claimed he was some sort of elite beast of a player. He’s never pretended to be anything that he’s not. He’s a Battlefield lover who enjoys sharing his experiences in Bad Company 2 with Youtube. His content is highly entertaining with a lot of thought put into them. Yet because his light hearted video, had music to it, fucktards had to try and slam him because it wasn’t the same flavor of the month ‘montage’ stuff that the other half of the Battlefield community puts out? Are you kidding me? Is there some sort of new rule when it comes to posting Battlefield footage on Youtube, that if you post a montage, it has to be countless trick shots, spawn camping, abandoning choppers and throwing c4? Seriously? If that’s what you think, then I have no hesitation in telling you to fuck right off. God that irritated me seeing the snot nosed little kids running their mouths over a harmless, awesomely entertaining video like Ampacts.
Its like the annoying montage, trick shot crowd from Call of Duty has realized CoD is boring after 4 years of the same game and has somehow moved over to Bad Company 2. There seems to be a line drawn in the sand. You’re either for montage stuff, spinning in circles, abandoning vehicles, throwing C4, spinning around in a circle, then turning some more and firing a rocket launcher(While pretending its still a 360 if you have to spin, stop, then readjust.) hurting their team type of video’s. Or you’re for those who are interested in taking the game a bit more seriously, play to win, try to teach people about the game, provide commentary based videos.
At the end of the day, both sides take themselves too seriously. The world won’t end if you actually lose a game even if you’re trying to win. And so to, the world will still survive if there’s not twelve choppers abandoned, purposefully ruined and destroyed for the sake of someone only playing the game for an elusive montage clip instead of helping the other players on his team try to win. The battlefield community itself would be better off if there wasn’t a line drawn in the sand, but how you find common ground and reconcile those polar opposites, I do not know.
DCRU Colin & I were actually playing a bit earlier today. We decided what the hell, we’d pick a near empty server, tweet it out and then we can play with some of our subscribers & fans for about an hour or two. This was great for me, but then in came Masdeath. Uh oh, I said the name of a Quantic person in public, I’m sure I’ll be receiving another email whining & complaining about the big bad meany that is me to my Respawn bosses. But anyway, Mas came in, and those of you who may follow either of us for any period of time, know that he & I don’t quite see eye to eye when it comes to gaming, now when I say that, I say it with the complete acknowledgement that people like Masdeath, Enigma or some of the other “Quantic montage guys” are infinitely better than me when it comes to Battlefield, especially on PC. I’ve never once attempted to portray myself as anything more than an average skill level casual gamer. But it’s not the skill level that has us at opposite corners, it’s the polar opposite when it comes to our personality & play style.
When I first began to dabble with Bad Company 2 on PC, Mas & I hooked up. I recognized him as a frequent person on twitter who would reply to my tweets quite a bit. He offered to play with me on PC and what not so I figured sure, why not. Certainly can’t hurt how I was doing. But quickly enough, I just realized that he & I are so completely different when it comes to the attitudes we take into the game, the way we feel about how we’re playing, the entire atmosphere of the gaming experience. It’s a remarkable polar opposite like oil & water when you combine that thing with his general attitude & personality. I quickly realized that simply wasn’t for me, it would not end well to continue down that path.
But fast forward back to today, now that you know a bit of the back story, so when Mas came into the server we were on, I cringed. Simple instinctual, “Oh I’m going to get annoyed quickly.” Not due to being killed by a better player or any of that stuff, that happens every time I boot up a PC FPS. I just knew what it meant to have him in the server and the type of people who’d end up following suit. It wasn’t something I was looking forward to. But fuck it I figured. Why let someone that I don’t care for being present, ruin the fun that Colin & I had set out to have this morning? Sure enough, Colin & I had a pretty good time. I had some weird lag things going on, but knock on wood; it was a very fun series of squad death match games. It actually started to turn into a bit of a commentator show down. We had Redd Dragons, Vanished, Mas, Colin, Myself, Deakinization, TyeWebb and possibly a couple more I am forgetting.
After I came out of that game, Colin went on to continue playing with them for quite awhile, even joining a skype call with them all. I excused myself from getting in on that, mostly because I already do enough shit that causes people to complain about me, or bad mouth the DCRU, or even sometimes go tell Colin how mean I am as though he’s my daddy. A little bit later when Colin was finished with the play session, we chatted in DCRU chat. He said he had a good time. At first, my normal steadfast stubbornness was thinking, “What? Really!? You had a good time with that?” But he explained why he did and then I got to thinking. I had a good time as well. Why do I, and even a broader sense, we as gamers, allow so many different things to ruin our fun? It’s almost like sometimes, gamers in general just look for excuses to explain why they’re not having fun or why they are mad or upset or pissy at a game. I didn’t let a personal problem between me & Mas get in the way of me having fun the way I wanted to have fun. I kinda dig that.
So in the couple of hours that followed, I did some thinking on my own. Came to a couple of realizations that I’m going to attempt to put into action when it comes to my own gaming sessions from now on. In another hobby of mine, there’s a saying that they use. “X is only as good as you make it.” I fully believe that applies to gaming as well. Any game, no matter what it is, will only be as fun for you as you allow it to be or make it be. I started to tap into this attitude last night when I stayed up a bit later than normal. I ended up having the most enjoyable PC BC2 session I’ve ever had. Why let so many other little variables be able to affect whether or not I’m having fun? Fuck that. I’ll be the one who decides if & how I’m having fun from now on.
You want to run the carl G, the Saiga, the Usas? Hey, knock yourself out. I’ll make a game out of it. I’ll find something else to do in the game. Hell I might even pull one of them out in turn if I am feeling a bit chipper. Last night I lost most of the games I played, but I had the most fun. Sure I tried to win, but at the end of the game, I think I lost 3 of the 5. So what? If that’s what needs to happen to have FUN gaming with FRIENDS? Then so be it. I’ll happily watch my “precious Win Loss!” go down the shitter if I’m able to maintain the fun level & relaxed atmosphere that I was experiencing last night. How many times have you seen 6 guys run around with the T88 12x zoom or normal scope on conquest oasis, just for the hell of it? How many times have you seen 6 medics run the Thompson with no Magnum on Rush, just for the hell of it? Or how about M14/M1 only? It was fucking fun. We tried to win, didn’t win them all, but god damn it we had fun.
If people, myself included, can try to latch on to that notion, that theory, I think both gaming & the youtube community itself will be a lot better off. To the four of you that might still be reading this, I thank you. To those of you who might have had their feelings hurt in this tumblr post, I’m sure I’ll be CC’d in the email when you “tell on me” again. I love you anyway.