LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

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The Rocketeer

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby The Rocketeer » Sat Jul 23, 2016 6:50 am

Understand that the reason most LP's fail is that the overwhelmingly common model of posting each part as it is completed while soliciting and responding to feedback during the writing process is a model overwhelmingly hostile to completing the project, many times more so for the inexperienced writers who typically fall into this trap. The very fact that you came to solicit advice instead of pursuing a finished product beforehand is, itself, a grave indicator. Your greatest hope for producing anything at all is to table your doubts, resist the urge to breath another word about it to anyone, and force something. Completing something, anything, is the least likely achievement, and is the part most commonly glossed over with grossly premature questions of format and presentation. Since you're already here, I'd advise you to stick to an essay or a series of essays on your core ideas rather than the comprehensive, multimedia project that a Let's Play implies; push aside doubts about structure and presentation, focus 100% on completing something. The first time you should worry about editing and presentation is when it's done, and the next time we should hear about it is when you're premiering the first part of a finished product.

If you don't have the discipline to do that, then it was never meant to be, and at least you didn't make yet another thread for a stillborn LP.
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Daemian Lucifer

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Daemian Lucifer » Sat Jul 23, 2016 11:51 am

Ninety-Three wrote:I've begun that Shadowrun: Hong Kong LP I mentioned, and I'm realizing that I'm not certain how plot summary ought to be handled. If a boring detail is established now but will be relevant later, should I mention it now, or wait until it becomes relevant to say "Earlier, it was established that [detail]"?


You can also use the "This was established,but lets talk about it later when it becomes relevant."
gloatingswine

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby gloatingswine » Sat Jul 23, 2016 8:18 pm

Ninety-Three wrote:I've begun that Shadowrun: Hong Kong LP I mentioned, and I'm realizing that I'm not certain how plot summary ought to be handled. If a boring detail is established now but will be relevant later, should I mention it now, or wait until it becomes relevant to say "Earlier, it was established that [detail]"?


There are two ways you can be writing a LP*. You can either be writing as the voice of experience, you the player are an experienced hand at the game and you will be guiding us the audience who are not through the narrative, discussing it as you go, or you can be writing as a "blind" player who doesn't know the game and is discovering it as they play through it.


If you're writing as the voice of experience and a plot point is going to be important later, talk about how it's going to be important later, spend more or less time doing so depending on how important it's actually going to be. If you're writing as if you're just discovering things and you would have no way of knowing that whatever it is was important later, then leave it until it is.

Also, intros are hard. I'm tempted to have my intro amount to "Intros are hard, let's jump right in and start walking through the plot", but that's admitting defeat. Any advice on how to introduce an LP?


Talk about the game, possibly your level of experience with it, and what made you want to LP it.

Also: Have a buffer of content if you want to update regularly. Try and get a couple of updates in the can and keep yourself ahead of the posting schedule so that if you hit a block or real life happens you can still get something up. (Says he, blatantly just starting a series without doing that, do as I say not as I do).


* You can also write in or out of character, I did an LP of UFO Enemy Unknown over at The Escapist in the hazy past before it turned to shit and it was all in character. Was fun but hell of work because I did daily updates.
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mwchase
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Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby mwchase » Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:14 am

Thoughts from trying to do a thing: Wow, this video file is huge. Better archive it as soon as possible. AND It is a really good thing this is a screenshot LP and not a video LP, because watching me play is infuriating even me.
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mwchase
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Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby mwchase » Mon Jan 16, 2017 2:51 am

One final question, hopefully, as I work on a buffer: how wide is too wide, for images? My screenshots are the width of my monitor, which works out to... obnoxiously huge. Not sure how far down to take it. 1280? 640?
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Daemian Lucifer

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Daemian Lucifer » Mon Jan 16, 2017 6:49 am

mwchase wrote:One final question, hopefully, as I work on a buffer: how wide is too wide, for images? My screenshots are the width of my monitor, which works out to... obnoxiously huge. Not sure how far down to take it. 1280? 640?


The perfect balance would be to scale them down to fit the post size,so no larger than 1200x600(smaller even,so that the breaks in text arent too big),and then having the larger versions as links when you click the picture(if they are really noteworthy,or you dont want to waste the large images).
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grahams_xwing
Location: Mansfield, UK

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby grahams_xwing » Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:25 am

Would anybody be interested in reading a LP of a Football Manger save? Currently one season in to a very unconventional save which has already thrown up some pretty cool 'When Saturday Comes' moments already and the ridiculous conditions that I've set upon myself and the amusing ways the game has broken may make a good read even for people not versed in the sport.
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The Rocketeer

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby The Rocketeer » Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:33 am

I sez throw it at the wall and see if it sticks.
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Daemian Lucifer

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Daemian Lucifer » Thu Mar 30, 2017 3:49 pm

grahams_xwing wrote:Would anybody be interested in reading a LP of a Football Manger save?


Since you are british,and therefore refer to actual football,then sure,Id give that a read.
Ninety-Three

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Ninety-Three » Mon May 22, 2017 2:36 pm

I've never used image-editing software, someone please recommend (free) software to me that I can use for editing LP screenshots. Mostly I expect to be downsizing fullscreen-sized shots and cropping out irrelevant bits for size. I took one look at doing it in Paint and said to myself "There has to be a better way".
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Humanoid

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Humanoid » Mon May 22, 2017 3:39 pm

I use IrfanView for general image manipulation and have done for probably 20 years (probably first used it from a PC magazine demo CD, come to think of it). No idea if it's been surpassed since then, but all I really need is resizing, cropping, rotating and occasionally adding captions.
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dudecon
Location: Camarillo, CA. Paul Spooner IRL & blog comments
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Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby dudecon » Tue May 23, 2017 12:36 am

I use The Gimp for simple 2d image manip (for which it is overpowered), and Blender for more complex stuff (which is also way more than you need).
If you are in a game with a limited colour palette, I highly recommend converting the images to Indexed in The Gimp and then saving them as .png files. They will be an order of magnitude smaller than jpgs, and are lossless.
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SpammyV
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Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby SpammyV » Tue May 23, 2017 12:44 am

I use IrfanView for screenshotting and resizing if necessary in GIMP. That is probably using a chainsaw to cut bread but I'm haven't looked for any simpler options to handle image resizing.
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The Rocketeer

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby The Rocketeer » Tue May 23, 2017 1:10 am

Speaking from ignorance, if all you need to do is crop and resize, I don't see why Paint would be any slower unless IrfanView or GIMP has a mass-resize tool. I use GIMP very occasionally, but I've only ever scratched the surface of what it can do.
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Humanoid

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Humanoid » Tue May 23, 2017 2:06 am

The other main criterion besides workflow is probably the output file in terms of quality/size settings. Irfanview is fairly customisable in this regard, whereas I suspect Paint goes with a one-size-fits-all approach.
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4th Dimension

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby 4th Dimension » Wed May 24, 2017 2:13 pm

Last time I used Paint like a decade ago it's default JPEG setting produced horribly blurry messes.

dudecon wrote:I use The Gimp for simple 2d image manip (for which it is overpowered), and Blender for more complex stuff (which is also way more than you need).
If you are in a game with a limited colour palette, I highly recommend converting the images to Indexed in The Gimp and then saving them as .png files. They will be an order of magnitude smaller than jpgs, and are lossless.

Would not agree AT ALL. Unless the color pallet is REALLY limited, in most cases JPEG eats PNG lossless compression for breakfast since at most it can shave off like 40% of the file size where the gains with the JPEG are significantly greater.

I mean I just tested it on a 720p image and the moment that PNG-8 broke even with JPEG (quality 35 (0-100 range), lowed number means more compression=>smaller file) was when I reduced the image's colors to just 8 colors, which I don't think even the OLD OLD games use. At 256 colors the file was 217 KB (PNG) to 73kB (JPEG). To get the JPEG image to be around 200kB, I had to up the quality all the way until the very high (quality 81), which is almost never used. And the image wasn't really of some scene with lot of colors and details since it's from a PSP game and a lot of the surface of the image is dominated by flat sky that should be perfect for PNG style compression:

Original (PNG32 828kB) click for the full sized one:
Image

JPEG q35 - 73kB click for the full sized one:
Image

PNG-8 eight colors - 79.7kB click for the full sized one:
Image

Of course there are places where PNGs are useful, when you really want to save the original image with no changes. Also nobody can really recommend which format to use until you play around with the settings on formats during export and see which one offers best blend of small file size and acceptable quality.

One thing that you should be looking in your image processors is possibly the ability of it to run in batch on files. So you can point it at a folder and set it up to convert all the images there into the format you want with quality that you want. This way you don't have to open each and every screenshot.

Also as someone pointed out before, one quick and dirty way to reduce file size is simply to reduce the resolution. Full resolution screenshots are rarely needed or can fit a page. So reducing them to the width/size they will appear on the actual page can often reduce the file size quite a bit. But nowhere near as much as lossy compression. Then again you can use both :)
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Supahewok

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Supahewok » Wed May 24, 2017 2:44 pm

I dont have much to contribute other than that Paint can save as PNGs and the couple buttons you need to crop and resize are either on the default toolbar or are accessible in the right-click menu. I've never tried to see if you could run batches on a folder.
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Daemian Lucifer

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Daemian Lucifer » Wed May 24, 2017 2:59 pm

4th Dimension wrote:Of course there are places where PNGs are useful, when you really want to save the original image with no changes.


There really arent that many situations where that is necessary.Only if you plan to significantly edit the image,enlarge it,or print a high quality poster of it.
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dudecon
Location: Camarillo, CA. Paul Spooner IRL & blog comments
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Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby dudecon » Wed May 24, 2017 3:41 pm

4th Dimension wrote:...One thing that you should be looking in your image processors is possibly the ability of it to run in batch on files. So you can point it at a folder and set it up to convert all the images there into the format you want with quality that you want. This way you don't have to open each and every screenshot...
I use Blender for batch processing, which works great once it's all set up, but there has GOT to be an easier way.
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Humanoid

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby Humanoid » Wed May 24, 2017 3:57 pm

I've never actually had occasion to use it, but IrfanView's batch processing options seems both pretty comprehensive but intuitive.

Image
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4th Dimension

Re: LP Index Threadstravaganza and Guideline Roundtable

Postby 4th Dimension » Wed May 24, 2017 4:29 pm

Daemian Lucifer wrote:
4th Dimension wrote:Of course there are places where PNGs are useful, when you really want to save the original image with no changes.


There really arent that many situations where that is necessary.Only if you plan to significantly edit the image,enlarge it,or print a high quality poster of it.

Well yeah, those are basically the cases I'm talking about. When you absolutely positively don't want compression artifacts because you are saving the original, from which you will derive other versions. But even in those cases PNG is an overkill for large images, since it basically offers at most like 40% compression compared to the UNCOMPRESSED file (width x height x 3 Bytes).

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