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Podcast Ideas

So hey, you may remember me talking about making a podcast awhile ago. Something about me talking about games alongside my friends. If you’re wondering what happened to that whole idea, well, things got complicated.

Basically, we couldn’t find any free audio recording software that really worked for us. We’re a group of four, and so we needed to have four microphones plugged into one laptop. According to the tech geek of the group, who will henceforth be known as Rayzn (I’ll let you take a guess at his real name and heritage), Audacity was giving us trouble because of that. I said we could all connect to a Skype or Ventrilo room and talk from each of our own homes, but another one of us, RandomGuy (he likes his anonymity), wasn’t a fan of the idea. We tried to find other audio recording programs, but there was always a problem.

We started to get other ideas for what we could do. I think it was Galzzly (you may know him from the Let’s Play) who brought up the idea of recording video as well as audio, in that we would all talk while playing a multiplayer game together, but by then my friends were losing interest and stopped caring.

See, the thing about my circle of friends is that they talk about doing big, ambitious, exciting things, but they rarely ever actually do any of that stuff. For example, remember that post of mine forever ago where I briefly mentioned that my friends are designing a game? Yeah, that shit’s not happening. I’m fairly certain that they’re all open to the idea of doing a podcast, but I don’t know if any of them have any drive to work out the details. So it’s gradually become clear to me that if I want anything to actually happen, I’m going to have to figure all that out myself.

If any of you three are reading this (you know who you are), you’re welcome.

The four most prominent multiplayer games available to us are Minecraft, Team Fortress 2, Starcraft 2 and Left 4 Dead 2 (the last one being a bit iffy since RandomGuy doesn’t have it). I liked the idea of recording us playing Portal 2 once the user-made content starts getting churned out, but you can only play that with two players at most.

The way I see it, we have several options for how we can record these episodes, which go as such:

  1. Everyone gets on a Ventrilo or Skype channel and plays the selected game together. One of us records it on his computer, does a bit of post-editing, and then uploads the video. If it’s me, then I can post the videos right here on Ninja Game Den. If it’s someone else, then either I can give that person authorship status here or he can make another blog specifically for the podcast.
  2. We all get on Vent/Skype/whatever and play the game, and each of us records a video of it. Then we all give our videos to one person, who will splice them up and put the clips together so that you, the viewer, can see anything interesting going on, despite whose perspective it is. Considering we’re going to be using free video editing software like Windows Movie Maker (what I’m currently using for my LP, by the way) this is a lot tougher than it sounds. We can’t just put the four videos on a line and switch between which one shows at will. We would have to cut each video up into bite-sized chunks and then arrange all the little pieces on the slideshow in whatever way we see fit. This would require a ton of work per week, so much work that I figure it’s not even worth listing as a viable option unless we find a better free video editing program that would make the process much easier.
  3. We all get on vent/skype/blahblahblah and play the game, but the video is recorded by a fifth person playing as an “observer” who would watch what everyone is doing in order to get the best footage. This would work for some games but not others. It’d work like a charm in Starcraft 2, but in Team Fortress 2? Not so much. Not to mention the fact that it’d probably be hard to find someone with a strong enough boredom threshold to work for free as our cameraman.

So yeah, that’s all the options I see at the moment. #1 looks like the most elegant solution, though if anybody else has any ideas I’m open to them.

How’s it sound? Thoughts? Suggestions?

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3 responses

  1. I’m no expert so I really couldn’t suggest anything other than those three options you already mentioned. Option 2 looks absurdly complicated so its probably not worth the effort.

    Option 3 doesn’t sound so bad. I’m not sure why you think someone would be bored as a cameraman. I’m assuming you’re making a podcast cause you think it will be interesting for people, and the cameraman shouldn’t be any more bored watching it than the viewers.

    I have to agree that option one is the most elegant solution. Good luck, and hope you get some podcasts.

    June 10, 2011 at 9:49 PM

  2. Rayzn

    Or we could go with option 4:

    we start a private minecraft server specifically for the podcast, build a large outdoor amphitheater out of gold blocks and obsidian, then invite our viewers to a live studio show complete with an old-school laugh track and creepers as stage hands.

    June 11, 2011 at 7:28 PM

    • JPH

      I ain’t gettin’ near none o’ them stage hands.

      June 11, 2011 at 7:31 PM

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