Working is terrible. It feeds on your time and energy, and in return provides money which you have little time to spend. I have been much more tired this year than I ever anticipated, and my writing and video making have suffered as a result. I’ve even been too tired to procrastinate! But armed with a cup of coffee and my trusty Studio XPS 16, I’m going to change things. Yes, you’ve guessed it…I’m going to write.
Ordinary Decent Gamer started off as a game review/preview blog, Inside Gamescom, and has gradually diversified into anything I feel like covering at the time. Games, food, science, current affairs, film. You name it, I’ve probably done a half-assed job of writing about it. The ODG YouTube series has focused more on a mix of retro and contemporary (and often soon to be retro) games, inspired by the work of YouTubers like JonTron and Nostalgia Critic. The sheer amount of work involved in producing videos regularly has been a significant barrier. My typical workflow for a video starts with the obvious: playing the game. I may go into the project with specific ideas if I’m particularly familiar with the game in question, but if not, then I play through the levels and take notes while recording gameplay footage. I’ll make a note of any visually interesting scenes, good gameplay, funny bits, and anything else that stands out. I’ll either write the notes in pen, or run a recorder on my phone/computer to get a better idea of what I was thinking at the time. This is particularly useful if I’m playing with someone else as we can bounce ideas off each other.
Some basic research into the subject matter always helps. Release dates, interesting points about the development of the game, and any other useful facts can help add more depth. On viewing the recorded footage again alongside the notes I put together a script, and try and come up with ideas for visual gags linking in with the story I’m trying to tell. I divide the script into two sections, one for voice over, and one for live action, and try to shoot the live action shots in one sitting if possible. It’s not always easy to do this because of time or location constraints, for example in the first Horse Games video I shot the teaser at a different time to the introductory shot, and the main video is in a completely different location. Continuity can be difficult to manage at times, as my hair and facial hair can vary wildly!
I’ll have more about my video making process in my next blog post!
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