Q&A: How & Why We Make The Point

Danny & Andy answer viewer questions about editorial voice, video production, handling publisher feedback and making ridiculously long intros. Thanks to everyone for watching The Point in 2015!

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The Point
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baldy128

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To echo a few people, really dig the show. The work you guys do is one of the few reasons I come to the site with any kind of consistency. Also, was instantly engaged by the intro and, even if I I hated it, I can't imagine caring enough to flame you guys for it. Perhaps a meta-commentary on presentation/framing devices in games or journalism thereof? Could be a sneaky way to use your intro as intro into a discussion of your intro. Imagine the comments!

On a more relevant note, I do think the gamergate thing is an excellent idea, not least of which b/c we need to stop appending "gate" to any and all scandals. But who says it has to be an episode? Why not two or three-parter? Better still, it seems like Netflix is just throwing contracts at documentarians these days--you do realize that's pretty much what you guys are doing, yeah?. Someone's got to tell the story to the scads of people that'd never hear it otherwise. Can't think of many better qualified.

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placksheep

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Edited By placksheep

I know it's probably difficult to arrange, but the back and forth with Tony Hawk was brilliant stuff. I'd love to see you guys be able to talk with more high-profile game developers and figures from the industry. I really loved the interviews with Sean for No Man's Sky also.

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rsmith124

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why say F.U.C.K. so many times... at one point you say it 6 times in 12 words... dude be professional and stay on other side of camera!

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GH05T-666

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@rsmith124: watch the news if you want no swearing professionals.

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anakvunky

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Escape from mount stupid and The point are example of great show, I just wish that in 2016 those 2 show can appear again.

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scarred_fox

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I always enjoy watching you guys do your work. keep up the great work and i'll cya next year. oh and have a great holiday!

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Vo1taire

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The Point really is a genuine and informative show about games, which is a shame to say that there aren't any others that come to mind besides Escape from Mount Stupid, so I just want to say thanks for all that you guys do.

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decebal

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Thank you for making this show. This and Last Week Tonight are my favorite things to watch.

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jmartin1016

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I would like to commend the two of you, and the work you have done at Gamespot. I've been coming to this site for 15 years - some years better than others - The Point is currently my favorite show related to gaming. I especially loved the episodes looking at the implementation of psychology in gaming. Very well researched and the presentation was excellent. While I do not always share the opinions you express I do appreciate the way you frame them. It's also a breath of fresh air to get content that isn't always recorded live, and heavily edited to keep the subject at the center of focus for the duration. Thank you Danny and Andy! I hope you guys have a great holiday, and come back in the new year with even better content.

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Epoch828

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Great episode. I enjoyed the insight on your drive and perspective. Look forward to more in 2016!

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samahir01

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Smiling like idiots on couch doesnot make it a good video.i miss the old team of gamespot.now its just bumch of spoiled brtas

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UseThisUserName

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@samahir01: No, you're right, smiling like idiots on a couch doesn't make a good video. What made this a great video was the content they covered and how real they could be with their audience. How relatable they are and how they spoke right to us. If you like old Gamespot, watch old Gamepot content. Please explain how Danny is a "spoiled brta".

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10mack10

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@samahir01: Yea, they sound spoiled, not you...

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donedoof

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Edited By donedoof

i love the long intro.

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ZachBobBob

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Anybody else remember Escape from Mount Stupid before it kinda sorta turned into The Point? I used to love watching that...but I love The Point too obviously. Practically the only reason I come to this site anymore

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HecHocceH

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The Point is THE gaming show. An example of how gaming journalism can and should be done – respecting viewers' intellect.

My favourite episode is still the Nazi one. It started so lighthearted and silly – and suddenly ended with a fishslap to the viewer, leaving him dazed and shocked by the deep trouble of the gaming culture as a whole. Brilliant.

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pryst

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The Lobby and The Point being the only GS content I actively look out for on a weekly basis; I'd love to see a 60 minutes, Vice or 20/20 long form show (30-60 minute special). It could be a once a month or one every 2 months or something, maybe give Danny and Andy more resources/ people. I dunno, might be too heavy on the existing work load and as Andy said, might not be as widely appreciated as it would need to be to provide a decent return. The long form intro would suit a long form show too, but yeh that's my 2 cents.
Keep up the awesome work. Look forward to seeing future seasons.

Haven't logged into GS in years, but figured a comment here would be more readable than on Youtube. Especially now with the random scatter of Star Wars spoilers.

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Baelath

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It'd be great if you guys did a 60 minute documentary on Gamergate. I'd 100% endorse that. It's that kind of investigative-ish game journalism that makes the Point great, and so unique enough, it's the pivotal reason to visit Gamespot.

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jecomans

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I think it would be interesting to hear an in depth look at what really makes a game an RPG.

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Niedermayer

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The Point is a great show. Glad that the concept has remained consistent when it got to the U.S. After reading some of the comments, criticisms and 'criticisms' from other commenters here, I hope the 2 of u don't chase the clicks just for numbers sake nor try and please everybody.

Also, don't be too hard on yourselves regarding the intro. It was a nice experiment to learn from. To me the music was the problem as it didn't have a nice rhythm to open the show. The Lobby does it brilliantly even though it's a much longer intro. Yes i've heard that lobby theme in other videos as well.

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JohnyMyko

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Another nice episode, it's always cool to know about how stuff is made and It's interesting to know what they think about it. I really like to know about the production parts.

The Point is a great show and I think one of the reasons for it being so great isn't just talent, it's the passion @dannyodwyer and @andybauman put on their work. Another thing I like about this show is how it feels like a natural progression from Danny's previous shows and videos.

The Tony Hawk episode was one of my favorites as well and I really like the new intro, but it was big for sure, it was one of the first things I noticed about it.

Btw, when Danny tweeted about this, I thought it was going to be something like a meta episode showing the behind the scenes of The Point by recording the behind the scenes of the episode itself, they could easily pull that off, kinda like that episode when they had no theme to talk about and made a video about it. I still think something like that could work.

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contentxcontext

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I've had the idea for a video show in my head for some time, and would love to try it once I have the chance. but I worry that some elements of it would look too like the point (escape from) that I'd just be a pretender. I hope that my work, when it comes about, is seen to have its own voice. i am glad you guys make shows like this. yet I still have frustrations with some aspects of games coverage and conversation that i want to take on one day.

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contentxcontext

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also I need to get over how I feel i look on camera. (or how I dont look good on camera)

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amdreallyfast

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Have you considered that your Video Games vs Depression video could have been a predecessor to The Point? Cancer, death of parents, genetic problems, relationships broken, anxiety spirals, and other hazards were taken at face value, no sugar coating, and how games helped them cope. Definitely keep that video in your archives.

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amdreallyfast

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I don't remember the exact episode, but there was one in which Danny talked about how waiting to play a game until you have read the reviews robs you of an exploratory experience. That hit a nerve for me, and since then, I've been avoiding reviews for new games (or movies either) that look interesting and just waiting to play them myself. I've had more fun that way. Thanks for that, Danny!

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amdreallyfast

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@amdreallyfast: On a side note, as I was looking back through the list of episodes, I saw one from Feb. 2014: "Goat Simulator Needs to Happen". And it did.

Also, Gaming Through Your Stress was a good one.

From this year, Violence, Censorship and The Role of The Games Press.

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DeviantCode

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Edited By DeviantCode

Danny, can you and Mary save Gamespot from the movies and comics invasion?

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PS2fweak

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@DeviantCode: You guys may be louder, because most of us don't feel the need to give positive feedback every time Gamespot does something on movies, but I'm betting a lot of people are okay with it. You can tell GS tries to focus on movies they think gamers will be interested in, and they would be idiots if they didn't cover Star Wars.

GS has ways of figuring out what we're interested in. They even have a simple upvote button. If they learn we don't like the coverage of other topics outside gaming, they will move on.

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DeviantCode

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@PS2fweak: So you're saying I shouldn't express my opinion in a comments section?

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Mogan

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Edited By Mogan  Moderator

@DeviantCode: Nobody said you couldn't, but what you did was ask a question. And Gamespot has pretty much answered it already. They mentioned several times over the last year that they were trying out some non gaming entertainment news, to see how it did, and just recently straight up said it's here to stay and established a new section of the site for it.

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DeviantCode

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@Mogan: Not so bright, eh?

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lurkinglion

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I loved this episode. Just hearing you two talk about games and what goes into the point and how your mind flows while choosing topics and all that is so cool. The Point is a show that means a lot to me personally, I love Danny's take on pretty much everything and the way he breaks down the shell of a topic and delivers this relatable presentation that can really make you think about games in a whole new light. I love how Andy uses the camera, the shots are so much my style and I have a lot of respect for that (Being that I am in school for video production) and just the overall edit of the final package is so great. I've told so many friends about this show, finding an episode like "Breaking up with Assassins Creed" and sending it to my friend to watch because both of us were having this problem with the series but we couldn't figure out exactly what it was. Whether the point takes on a new name, or becomes more of a monthly documentary style or whatever the future may hold I just really really hope that Danny and Andy will continue to make this experience for us. It truly is the best video game content that is available. Keep it up guys!

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dfernand

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An excellent series, as inportant as the podcast A Life Well Wasted.

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DevilmanDante

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Thanks for taking the time to answer some questions, Danny and Andy! The Point is a really inspiring show; Danny really summed it up perfectly in his description of what it meant to him. It's always a pleasure to watch and I love getting even a tiny glimpse behind the scenes.

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jeffryclause

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So is Danny O'Dwyer the CEO of Gamespot yet?

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sebbysebbseb

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I have an idea for an episode. Why digital gaming is still as expensive as a disc. There being no shipping costs and whatnot. I can guess the reason myself but I imagine it could be an interesting episode nonetheless. Or maybe the transition from retail to digital and what it could mean for the future and if it's good in the grand scheme of things.

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loafofgame

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@sebbysebbseb: Seconded.

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Verenti

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See, I trust both of you, Danny and Andy. I've been following your work both for some time now.

I want to see the work that you're proud of. The Point is one of the only things I still watch here because a lot of the other shows feel so... contrived. "This is a big topic this week, so we made a list that is tangentially related."

I know what it is to write anything because you have to write something, but that's just garbage. However, when you have people talking about things they actually care about rather than content one step above clickbait, it shows. The presentation can make an uninteresting topic interesting, like when Mike Channel of Oxbox fame talks about cars.

I want to see you two develop this show further and bolder in the direction you want it to go in. As per specific topics? I know what I would write on, but I think that the personal touch is what makes this show what it is. I think if I told you the things I want to say or talk about, it wouldn't really line up with your own and I don't think you could do it justice because your work is so genuine. From what I can tell, my and your sensibilities are quite divergent, so that clashes. But that's okay, because having different perspectives is how every conversation worth having happens. So, I'll just be the guy who tells you what I honestly think without being rude or hostile about it; if that's okay with you.

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LunaticJetman

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Great job guys!

Thank you for bringing out a much needed show where reflections and thoughts regarding gaming are in focus in this sea of flashy news factoids and rage wars.

*applause*

Cannot wait for more episodes, keep going strong in 2016!

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mastertien123

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Favorite game you never play is my most favorite episode. I would never be the guy i am today without Pop Warrior Within. Great show guys. Happy holiday and i hope that next year the show'll keep on growing.

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Schwah

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Edited By Schwah

Andy, you’re awesome, appreciated, and so clearly an integral part of the show. Accept it, bro. And if anyone out there hasn’t been appreciating your contributions on The Point I’m pretty sure the static cam in today’s episode is going to win you a lot of fans. lol

Also, I gotta say I’m of the opinion that gamers everywhere owe you guys a bit of thanks for raising the bar when it comes to the general discourse on gaming. It’s frustrating enough to see my favorite hobby boiled down to tropes, clichés, 8-bit sound effects and puddle deep motivations when listening to non-gamers discuss gaming culture, but it’s oh so much worse when I hear professed gamers pandering to the masses by stooping to that same level.

And in stark contrast to the shit show that usually accompanies gaming news on mainstream media... I’m a major NPR junkie and confess that I almost ran into the car in front of me when I heard “We’ll be joined by Danny O’Dwyer in San Francisco” during On Point for a discussion about the top games of 2015. My first thought was, “What a shitty way for NPR to frame a discussion on gaming”, but my second thought was, “Thank god it’s Danny!” And Danny you didn’t disappoint. I have no doubt that by bringing your usual insightful, thoughtful and (above all else) honest perspective to the show that you helped remove a brick or two from the wall that keeps so many from giving the medium a try. Oh, and you didn’t make gamers seem like one-dimensional douchbags so thanks for that too.

You should both PM me your PayPals… drinks are on me this weekend! (for realz fuckers!)

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Ludakriss

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This episode felt warm, approachable, easy-to-watch. You guys talk in a manner which leaves me wishig we could hang out. Talk about your perspectives on life, society, the planet, its people.

In terms of production of this show. You guys seem to 'kill it' all the time. The music, design, commentary. It's all there. My favorite by far, is Destiny as a slot machine episode. No doubt. Biggest 2 reasons: music and referenced behavioural science. My man, when you mentioned B. F. Skinner, my heart 'sank'. I could not believe I'm hearing words like 'behavioural science' and 'B. F. Skinner' in a gaming show. Sublime. Personally, I felt as though I'm watching the next big step towards something fun, but also sophisticated. 'Grown up', you know?

Best intro, The Lobby. Jeezus. That music to this day renders me restless in my seat. The beat is simply too heavy to resist the head nod.

Altogether. I feel like you guys are doing great. You said you're learning. You addressed that you both have specific focus, goals you wish to achieve. All I can say is, please document the growth process. We might all learn something together. Damn, feelin' so much love right now...

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CleeverGreen

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Edited By CleeverGreen

You guys work well together. You love what you do and it shows. Translating that affection well isn't always easy, but you pull it off.

My personal fav was the Destiny episode. I also liked the one where you were both talking about driving games and why you play what you play. In a sea of PR and shilling, it's nice to see an actual and honest journalistic approach to subjects.

I produced a YouTube based television review show called Channel Crossing where we review television from around the world. I've just started the show a new months ago. We currently have one host but plan to expand. We also are in the process of expanding to include video-game game-play and game reviews. Hopefully early 2016

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIkxcFvuy5o

This is our last episode. If you're curious, we'd love it if you check it out.

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SaturatedButter

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What happened to onGamers anyway? I looked up the info about it being banned from Reddit twice, but there seems to be no news about what has happened to the site since then. All I can find is the site seems to no longer exist (the url just redirects to Gamespot) but I can't find any news or even message boards discussing the site officially shutting down.

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Melchiorus

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Edited By Melchiorus

@saturatedbutter: onGamers mismanaged their talent to the point that they only had one person left that people cared to watch. They fired Slasher, one of the biggest names in e-sports journalism of the time and possibly still, because of the whole reddit thing. They fired Thorin because of something he said on twitter or some BS. Basically they made decisions based on PR that backfired in them getting way less traffic to their site, on top of the Reddit ban which had already lost them traffic to their site. Now Travis Gafford is the only one left working with Gamespot. RIP the potential for onGamers to be a leading voice in e-sports journalism.

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hystavito

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I have pretty much no interest in skateboarding or those games but that episode hit with me because I think as we get older we all have something like that from our past that's been taken away or changed drastically to the point that we miss the way it was. Places and people and "community" that has been lost.

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KBABZ

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My favourite episodes are Rocket League and Tony Hawk. In Rocket League you can just feel Danny's passion and enthusiasm for the sport of football, and how Rocket League has fulfilled it in a way that no other game has. Similarly the Tony Hawk one also has a lot of passionate energy put into it that you can just feel in the editing choices and the selected music, and so on.

Also Soccer for Gamers is freaking hilarious.

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sa18

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The Point is one of the best shows about games if not the best. I love that you guys speak the truth and teach us lots of stuff, like history in gaming. the intro changed and i dint even noticed loooooooool! i know its a filler episode but its great to see you guys adress the audience.

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SaturatedButter

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Edited By SaturatedButter

"We're so fortunate to be in this position where we work for a big site. You need to make the cool thing. Because if you don't then what's... the point? right? move over and let someone else have a go."

Congrats Danny. You made the "What's the point?" joke everyone has made since the first episode of this show.

The Tony Hawk episode was a really great one. I even showed it to my mom. I've never been a skateboarder but the way you guys express what that series and skate culture means to you was really touching.

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jblp

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... the worst episode because you're on camera...

That's cold Danny.

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