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dannyodwyer Blog

Olympic Special! - Community Service

Community Service

What is this?
We have some drinks and play games after work, chat with the community and special guests. With the Olympics starting in London this week we've decided to go with a Olympic theme. Internation beers!

Where?
http://www.twitch.tv/gamespot
and then on demand on the site a day later.

When?
AN HOUR EARLIER THAN USUAL...
5PM - London
12PM - Eastern
11AM - Central
10AM - Mountain
9AM - Pacific

How do I get involved?
Log into the Twitch chatroom and follow us on twitter and ask questions @dannyodwyer and @ReadySebbyGo.

What Game you playing?
The Official Olympic Game! So stuff like Mortal Kombat Vs DC Universe, Comic Zone and such. If you have any ideas for good multiplayer games, let us know.

Who's this week's guest?
Why it's Martin Gaston from VideoGamer.com. Say hey: @squidmania

Hope to see you there folks.
Who's tuning in?

Note, we've had to change the name for fear of being sued so here's the new promo graphic......

Community Service

Escape From Mount Stupid - Season 3 Yo

We're about a month away from the first episode of the next season of EFMS, and I've been working on a running order. Thought it was worth sharing since four of the topics were basically user requests. This isn't final but lemme know what you think. Also we're probably gonna do a bunch after this, like AssCreed for the release of AssCreed3. Just focusing on the first six episodes for nows.

EFMS

Heroes Assemble! - Community Service

Community Service

What is this?
We have some drinks and play games after work, chat with the community and special guests. With Comic Con on this week we've decided to go with a comic book theme.

Where?
http://www.twitch.tv/gamespot

When?
6PM - London
1PM - Eastern
12AM - Central
11AM - Mountain
10AM - Pacific

How do I get involved?
Log into the Twitch chatroom and follow us on twitter and ask questions @dannyodwyer and @johnneh.

What Game you playing?
Comic book games! So stuff like Mortal Kombat Vs DC Universe, Comic Zone and such. If you have any ideas for good multiplayer games, let us know.

Who's this week's guest?
Why it's Andy Farrant of Inside Xbox fame. Say hey: @farrantula

Hope to see you there folks.
Who's tuning in?

AMERICAPOCALYPSE - Community Service

Crossing the Deleware

What is this?
We have some drinks and play games after work, chat with the community and special guests. This week it's all America themed.

Where?
http://www.twitch.tv/gamespot

When?
6PM - London
1PM - Eastern
12AM - Central
11AM - Mountain
10AM - Pacific

How do I get involved?
Log into the Twitch chatroom and follow us on twitter and ask questions @dannyodwyer and @johnneh.

What Game you playing?
Dead or Alive 5 (preview), Trials HD (with community)

Who's this week's guest?
Why it's Dan Maher previously from Inside Xbox and now heading up Explosive Alan. Say hey:@MrPointyHead

Hope to see you there folks. Who's tuning in?

New LIVE Show! Community Service Starts Today

A few weeks ago we trialled a new live show called Community Service where myself Johnny and Seb got drunk and played Trials HD for about 2 hours. Today we're launching the show properly and you can tune in with the following details:

What is this?
We have some drinks and play games after work, chat with the community and special guests.

Where?
http://www.twitch.tv/gamespot

When?
6PM - London
1PM - Eastern
12AM - Central
11AM - Mountain
10AM - Pacific

How do I get involved?
Log into the Twitch chatroom and follow us on twitter and ask questions @dannyodwyer and @ReadySebbyGo.

What Game you playing?
Beat The Beat - the Rythm Heaven game that's finally come out in Europe. It's hilarious, trust us!

What, no multiplayer game?
Yea we're going to try and make this a game night too, but not every week. Next week we'll do something online you can join in on. But we're still taking questions from the community throughout the show!

Who's this week's guest?
Why it's Luke from our sister website CNET. He's a gent. Say hi to him: @lukewestaway

If you have any questions about the show , stick in the comments below.

Community Service

Writing Secret Code

We've nearly come to the end of the initial six-week run of my Secret Code, the show I decided to do after we wrapped the second season of Escape From Mount Stupid and I feel like talking about the reason I dumped a popular show to focus on games not many people know or care about.

I've always had a massive love and respect for the independent games development scene. For one I used to be a programmer. Mostly web-interface stuff but I tried my hand at games development on Actionscript and C# in various college projects. Secondly, I love the idea of small start-up companies. Before coming to GameSpot I ran a gaming website with a group of people across the world, and before that I was always working on small projects with friends. I love the camaraderie that comes from collaboration, and the fruits of passionate group projects are usually pretty damn tasty.

I did some counting last week and realised that Escape From Mount Stupid has been watched 1.6 million times. That's a lot of people. I try not to get focused on numbers too much, but the fact is they're an important part of gauging interest in videos you make. Sometimes other factors come into play. Specifically with my shows it's usually down to how much time they get on the homepage (exposure), the quality of games in the title (AAA get more clicks) and the length of the video (traditionally long videos don't get played).

[video=6369900]

So when EFMS did quite well, and I knew I wanted to do something else I decided to cash-in any and all goodwill I had with the community and my peers and do a show that broke the second rule.

So how do you get people to watch an indie show? Nobody had ever cracked the formula so I decided to ask as many people as possible. When I had the opportunity to visit PAX East earlier this year I spent a lot of time talking to indie developers of all shapes and sizes. Capy's Nathan Vella told me short-form, entertaining videos were the best way to show off a game without boring people. Interviews and features are fun, he explained, but most gamers don't care about the industry or the developers. I used a lot of this advice in the first few episodes of the series.

Another issue on my mind was how to get to expand the gaming palette of visitors to GameSpot who are only interested in AAA games. I had a great chat with everyones favourite ex GameSpot editor turned developer Greg Kasavin who interestingly told me he didn't care about trying to sell his games to that audience. He told me there are enough people who love the games that Supergiant want to make already. I was glad for his insight but I wasn't sure how to take it. Did that mean an indie show would do okay because fans of indie games would watch it? Or did it mean that trying to appeal to a wider audience was futile? I'd find out soon enough, it was three weeks to episode one.

In the end I decided on a formula that would attempt to appeal to both crowds. To create a show that championed indie games, but put a weird game front-and-center as a piece of bait on the GameSpot homepage. The first episode showed off The Splatters and Lone Survivor, but the image on the homepage carousel and the first item on the intro focused on the controversial simulation game JFK Reloaded.

[video=6376551]

The indie features were short-form, punchy and focused on entertainment and delivering core information about the game. In terms of style they were basically trailers. Over the course of the season I tried different lengths and combinations of episodes. Three games - five games - two games and a quick-fire round - one game and an indie everytime we kill fifteen people.

I still wasn't sure if people were watching because of the indie games or the weird games, so on episode five I decided to take a punt and focus on one single game. To my surprise and delight our Monaco episode is looking to be the second most popular episode we made. I still don't have any decisive answers, but the massive drop-off in views I had nightmares about didn't happen. So at the very least I know that the indie games aren't the weak link.

We haven't nailed the formula, but I feel a lot more clear about the desires of the audience. We've one more episode left in this six week run, before I go back to EFMS, but I'm looking to continue Secret Code in a less structured style.

It's not all about the numbers, but we've done 113,000 views on YouTube in five episodes, and that makes my job of justifying the show a lot, lot easier!

Special Thanks to all the indie developers who helped me out so much during the course of this show's initial run. We've got some amazing games like Thomas Was Alone, Natural selection 2 and Retro City Rampage coming on future episodes.

I'm at e3

Yea....bloody hell. *pinches self*

@dannyodwyer on Twitter if you fancy seeing pictures of dumbness as they happen.

Updates coming soon, im the meantime here's a photo of jetlagged/drunk Seb trying to close an ironing board.

Seb

Live from MCM all Weekend

LIVE right now, probably....go go go.....

http://www.twitch.tv/gamespot

Here's whats coming up today and tomorrow: ALL TIMES BST (London Time)

Saturday
9.30 a.m. Getting into the Game's Industry
10.30 a.m. Aliens: Colonial Marines Q&A
11 a.m. Star Wars: The Old Republic Demo and Q&A
12 p.m. Transformers Universe Demo and Q&A
1 p.m. Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes Demo and Q&A
2 p.m. Dead or Alive 5 Tournament finale
3 p.m. Sleeping Dogs Demo and Q&A
3.30 p.m. Atlus
4 p.m. Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor Demo and Q&A
5 p.m Tales of Graces f Presentation
5.30 p.m. Ni no Kuni Presentation

Sunday
10.30 a.m. Dragonball Z for Kinect Presentation
11 a.m. RuneScape Voice Acting Session
11.30 a.m. Beat the Beat Interactive Session
1.30 p.m. Dragon's Dogma Demo and Q&A
2 p.m. Dig Dug Tournament with Namco Webcomics
3.30 p.m. Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Presentation
4 p.m. Tales of Graces f Presentation

And here's me and Johnny reinacting the final scene from Se7en

WHATS IN THE BOX?

Community Service - Trials Evolution

Tomorrow evening Johnny, Seb and myself will be doing a dry run of a new livestreamed community game night we're calling Community Service. It's a live show / video podcast / taking questions / looking at comments and the forum / game night type thing. It alsoinvolves getting mate in and drinking. It's going to be a wonderful mess.

We're not going to promoting tomorrow's show much but we'd like to throw an invite out to the community for this test run. It's going to be livestreamed on Twitch around 6PM GMT (that's around 11am PST). And seen as it's the Trial run we're going to be playing Trials Evolution tomorrow.

So if you fancy playing Trials Evo on a GameSpot stream, or just tuning in to watch and/or hassle us with questions - leave your GamerTag here or send me a direct message.

Every post needs an image so here is a screenshot from my time with Diablo last night....

Magic Pants

New Show & Mount Stupid

Good evening gentlemen and fair ladies of GameSpot,

A few little updates. First off myself and Johnny are currently planning Season 3 of Escape From Mount Stupid - but we won't be shooting anything until we get back from e3 so I imagine the first episode will be live close to the end of June. That's the plan anyway. We may actually do an episode about e3 too. Not sure. We're 100% doing Metal Gear Solid though so you can stop asking.

In the meantime I've just finished a pilot for a new show called Secret Code which will hopefully be going live sometime next week. It's basically an excuse for me to promote indie and play weird non-commercial games. For instance the first episode features a highlight reel of myself and Johnny playing JFK reloaded. It's sort of anti-traffic in that we're not promoting "banner games" but I'm hoping the quality and humour make people enjoy it and share it with their mates.

The shot below is from the pilot.

Caption competition Go!

Danny in torn clothes and a sandwich