GWJer Video Makers Thread

Actually, here's a marginally related question. Are you keeping archives of your video projects and assets? If so, how are you doing it? The IT guy in me wants to keep archives of everything I do but even recording 480p, that will take an incredible amount of disk space (my first Retro Flashback episode is 20 minutes and almost 2.5GB in total) and I'm not 100% sure of the value in doing so. I've asked a couple of YouTube personalities what they do but no one's answered yet. I have the means to transport my projects as they're completed to work on a USB drive and use my work's upload speed to send them to a site called BitCasa that offers unlimited storage for $70/year. Unfortunately, the IT guy in me also says that you should never trust all your data's safety to one place, particularly one that's a startup that could be who knows where in a year. But hard drives are way too expensive for me to keep a hard archive in that way as well. I'm not sure if most people who produce a lot of YouTube content archive everything, only archive final renders or just don't bother. The more I think about it, the more I think anything but the final renders is pointless but I don't know if I'm missing something either.

If you're able to get me a link that I can download that Half-Life stuff from that's fine, or if you'd want it lower than 720p to save time/space also fine.

Thus far, I'm just keeping all the video content around. My hard drive went from almost a terrabyte of data to now about 500-some gigs, but I'll eventually get some external hard drives. I've notoriously been terrible at backing data up, truth told, so I'm lucky as Hell I've never had a hard drive fail on me.

Yeah, I've been fixing computers for wayyyyy too long to ever trust mechanical hard drives fully.

I'll work on getting you that Half-Life footage soon. If my back doesn't improve overnight, I'll be calling in sick tomorrow so if I can manage to stay upright, that will be something I can do during the day.

Oof. Hope your back feels better.

Or not? My self-interest would do better if you call in sick. Hrm...

In other news, while I do have a couple of other bits of footage I realized I need to capture and need that Half-Life footage, I'm just about ready to start cutting the video together. I finished editing the audio. It seems to be consistent that whatever the raw audio of me reading the script clocks in at, divide it by half and that's roughly what the final audio cut will be. That's how it has been for all three videos so far.

My next video will be over 35 minutes long. How much longer I'm not sure, but it has me nervous. In addition to simply requiring more time, this video will also risk losing people's interest faster than my other videos already run the risk of doing. I can only hope there is as much a taste for long-form analysis as I hope.

Alright dude, got your footage in 720p. Even when using Lagarith Lossless Codec which is very good on space and using LAME to encode the audio, it's about 24GB for 37 minutes of footage. Yeah, I think I'm gonna' need another hard drive when I start recording frequently. The only trick is that I have to upload this from the office (it will literally take days if not a week or more to do it from home) and with my back as it is, I might not get there for a couple of days if that's OK. I should be able to put this on my work's FTP server at which point I can give you the credentials to go download it.

Awesome man. Thanks so much. This is gonna be a long video so I should be able to make enough progress before I need that footage. The final cut is going to be more than 35 minutes, I'm hoping no longer than 45. I'm afraid it'll be boring running that long.

It will be an educational experience, at least.

Alright, so here's a question. Does anyone know if there's a forum out there where people doing YouTube like videos discuss the process or even a regular video producers forum where amateur YouTube hacks like me would be welcome? As I've started doing Retro Flashback videos, I've been running into more and more issues, mostly audio related. A lot of this is due to the fact that my capture software is horribly documented and does a craptastic job of handling commentary audio but I've tried multiple methods to solve this problem and they all have headaches that make them not viable. I know many YouTube people who have solved these issues but asking them questions is pointless as they all get so bombarded with comments, they understandably never have time to answer. I'm not pleased with the inconsistency in my audio and really want to solve this issue. Any good places to seek answers for this?

What software are you using? Someone here might be able to help out in that regard.

There's also the possibility of starting the audio and video recording with two separate pieces of software, and using an audio cue to sync up with video when you go back and render it all together.

I'm using Dxtory to capture. It's an incredibly powerful program and allows capture independent of the source frame rate which I love. However, it's written by a Japanese guy so there isn't a lot of English documentation and the UI is horrendous. The problem I'm having with it is two fold:

1. Even when I have my headset recording volume in the program cranked, it's quiet. I have to boost the mic volume in Movie Studio Platinum. It's not my sound card or the headset though because it sounds much better when recorded in anything else.
2. Dxtory insists on tying it's recorded audio to my PC's master volume level. So if I turn down my PC volume while recording, the level drops with it. This is actually not a huge deal as my headset has an independent volume dial on it. Now I just record with my PC master volume cranked.

I was going to try to record the audio in a separate application as I got Sound Forge Audio Studio for free with Movie Studio Platinum. However, for reasons I really don't understand, the program has a hotkey to trigger recording but it will only work if the window is in focus! This is facepalmingly dumb but yeah, there's no way for me to start both audio and video recording simultaneously as a result. I'm aware of the whole idea of using an audio queue to sync things up but I'm sad to say that I'm so green at this, I don't know how one goes about doing that. I know I can just say something like "mark" or snap my fingers to create the queue but to what end does one use that to sync things up easily? Like, what's the process for that?

I definitely would prefer to do stuff this way as Dxtory is just doing a horrible job of recording my mic at a decent volume and quality. I really don't understand why but from searching his forums, it seems to be a common complaint most people have.

Here's another audio question that's not related to this particular issue. So Stylez and I are considering recording a comedic co-op Let's Play kind of thing with the new Army of Two game. We could do this online but I think what we're going to do is get together and play the same in split screen co-op and record in the same room. The trick with this is that in order to get decent audio quality on our commentary, I'd like to use two headsets. I have a USB headset and a regular 2.5mm headset and my laptop has both of these inputs. However, my Elgato Game Capture HD software only supports taking commentary input from one recording device. Does anyone know if an easy way to combine the two headsets into one audio feed that doesn't involve using an external mixer? I actually have a license for Virtual Audio Cable and I think that could do it but it's one of the most unintuitive programs ever written and I'd like to see if anyone knows whether it would work before I go to war with its UI.

EDIT: Managed to answer my question on the co-op thing. Virtual Audio Cable will indeed do the trick!

Well, I finally finished and uploaded my third video. I could technically share it, but I'm waiting to see the outcome of my dispute is.

I knew this was a possibility since I'm using footage from the Aliens films to help provide a comparison of why the film narratives are so effective and yet the game's narrative, and gameplay, fall so flat. The clip in question seems to be, based on the timestamp (as opposed to the thumbnail), when I present the scene from Alien 3 where Ripley discovers she has an Alien in her chest.

What was surprising was an additional claim for the song, which was by one of many video game cover bands I'm familiar with. That one I'm actually more worried about since I can't say "Hey, I used this song under fair use". I can only argue that I didn't use the song in its entirety and I gave credit. But the film footage clearly falls under Fair Use, as I'm using it to demonstrate, critique and analyze.

Still, I can't help but feel worked up. I'm afraid that the response will be more than a "cease and desist", and wonder if I should just remove the damn thing now. I'm angry that robots are crawling across YouTube picking out content to protect corporations instead of actual creators (how is this protecting Dan O'Bannon or Ronald Shussett, original creators of the franchise? Or even David Fincher, the director of Alien 3?)

More than that, I'm really hoping to get a response soon. I pushed my dispute out at around 1am last night, and I'm waiting on a response. It's killing me.

Is this an actual dispute as in a copyright holder filed a strike against you or is this just YouTube's automated content discovery thing? If it's the latter, don't panic yet. Usually the worst that will happen in that situation is YouTube will say you can't monetise the video (if you're trying to do that) or they will require that you "acknowledge" the third party content, which theoretically makes it easier for them to complain. I had this happen with my Duck Tales Retro Flashback. I acknowledged Capcom's content and nothing happened (though I'm not allowed to monetise it.) It's possible they could take the video down but you don't get a copyright strike on your account unless an actual complaint is filed. Trust me, I get why you're panicking but don't worry too much just yet.

Unfortunately yeah, YouTube is gutless when it comes to fair use, even having just won the Viacom lawsuit that arguably is the reason for their paranoia. I've checked in several places full of people who know and everything I do on my channel is clearly fair use but YouTube doesn't care. If my videos get flagged for monetisation review (which is literally random) and they don't approve them, I just can't monetise them because if you try to dispute the review, there is no option to say "This clearly falls under fair use." It's either "I own rights to all this content" or "I don't." It's beyond stupid but this is the system US copyright forced them under.

This is one thing where trying to attain partnership with a network can be beneficial, even if you're not interested in making money off it. Being part of a network allows you to skip the content review process and even though all the networks do for the most part is use the same fair use defense, YouTube actually listens to them.

Considering how quickly the claim was made, I imagine it was a bot. The video finished uploading and processing at around 12:30am last night. I received an e-mail informing me the video may contain material owned by Fox around 12:25pm, which means it was caught immediately. For someone with fewer than 100 views per video thus far, I'd say it's impossible for a human to have made a claim.

Your video may include a song owned by a third party. For example, this might be a song playing in the background or someone performing a song.

So I disputed that with "Fair Use" as my reasoning.

I don't plan on sharing the video until this has been resolved.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that the song I was using by the band Random Encounter was also flagged, but that claim has already been released. Which I am guessing means "the owner is okay with that use". Still waiting on Fox.

DOUBLE EDIT: May as well share it, even though I'm still waiting on the Fox claim.

Oddly enough, just like Aliens: Colonial Marines itself is a giant pillar of mistakes, so is this one. It's no wonder that I started to have trouble working on it. In fact, it isn't until "Storyhugger" that I start to enjoy it, and then it gets ruined by endless tangents.

So here's some of the things I've learned from this experience.

1) Next time I have a video that'll be, say, 30-40 minutes, split it up into multiple parts.

2) Don't be in such a rush to get a script complete, or even as trimmed as possible. I feel like I tried to squeeze too many topics in here to the point that it doesn't feel coherent.

3) Make sure the script is written in such a manner that video can always be running in the background. I had to chop some stuff out because putting video to it wouldn't have really worked.

4) Don't cut away to video unless the audio will help drive the point home. The first few times I cut to pure movie footage I didn't need to, the footage ran too long, and by time it was done it ran the risk of people forgetting what I was discussing.

5) I should not spend more time discussing a game's story than the gameplay. Not in a case like this.

6) Make sure the manner that I speak remains consistent. Sometimes I'm embarrassed to hear myself speak.

7) Stay on target. My tirade against James Cameron's Aliens was unnecessary, at least in the manner presented here.

8) I am not the Angry Video Game Nerd or Dennis Leary. I should not improv outrage, it sucks.

On the whole, there's little I really enjoy of this video. I'm going to take some time and really think about how I want to approach Resident Evil 6 before I start writing the script for that. I was already planning on that being multiple parts, but considering how this turned out, it might be better to just leave it as one video, or at least fewer parts.

Parallax Abstraction wrote:

Even when I have my headset recording volume in the program cranked, it's quiet. I have to boost the mic volume in Movie Studio Platinum. It's not my sound card or the headset though because it sounds much better when recorded in anything else.

I end up doing the same when working with audio. I made a pre-set chain out of the stock Equalizer, followed by a VST Compression effect.

Bombsfall's music video has been restored to Youtube (yay!).

When the photos turned into orange prayer flags it brought tears to my eyes. In reality there are no orange prayer flags but I think it's especially meaningful given the song, what's going on in the main character's head in the video, and what I know about Manjusri - Bodhisattva of Wisdom. He's usually represented by the color orange or red-orange, and in some Buddhist philosophies it is believed that he is able to to rescue us from confusion and suffering. Maybe it's just my wacky take on it stemming from way back when I studied these things. I found it to be powerful just the same.

LouZiffer wrote:

Bombsfall's music video has been restored to Youtube (yay!).

As usual, it was excellent! I went looking for the associated album and it seems they've fallen upon difficult times.

Hi guys
It's with a very heavy heart that I have to announce the following:
1) The Toh Kay album "The Hand That Thieves" has been canceled for the foreseeable future. More details will come to light in the coming days.
2) Due to Victory Records refusal to send us copies of our own new album, there will be another delay in our ability to deliver preorders on time. We hoped to find a compromise with them, up until the bitter end; unfortunately, it just wasn't possible.
We ask you to once more be patient: we're working around the clock to find a solution to our gigantic nightmare of a problem. We will be able to fulfill all orders soon, and we maintain that the only way to buy the album without all of the money going to Victory Records (which ironically funds their legal efforts against us) is via the RISC Store.
Thank you for your support during our dark and trying times. We stood up against the largest, meanest, most despised bully in the schoolyard and now we have to face the consequences. Hopefully you'll stand with us and we can get through this in one piece.
There will be much more information available in the next few days. Thanks.

That was a really impressive video.

So I was expecting it to be a while before I made another RamblePak, but I was greatly inspired not long after seeing Iron Man 3. So I wrote something up last week, recorded the audio, grabbed all the footage I could this Saturday and then started putting it together. It turns out you can do a 9-10 hour video in a single weekend with ease. Or rather, I can. I'm pretty happy with it. I imagine the argument will come off weak to some, and maybe it does, but I feel like I say what I want to say.

I'm wondering how I should really try and promote myself, though. I'm urging friends to share my stuff themselves, but even that won't get me very far. How do I really get my name out there? Should I post about myself on Reddit? Is that a good idea? I am not much a fan of advertising my own stuff, especially since I'm not a fan of using services like Reddit.

How does one truly get more well known?

Oh, yes, video.

For anyone who is interested, Stylez and I finished out co-op of Army of Two: The Devil's Cartel and we've now started a new one for Double Dragon Neon! There's also a Reddit link here that we would appreciate some upvotes on as we're trying to promote this one. I've also continued doing Retro Flashback twice a week and I'm now starting a new series talking about Capcom Arcade Cabinet. The more views, the better!

So forgive me for posting in two threads but I just wanted to make sure this gets viewed by as many people as possible. I've put up a post on my blog detailing the channel's progress and what the next step is. If you don't have time to read my usual bloggy text wall, the TL;DR is that my next goal is growing the channel to where I can get partnered with a network that will give me copyright claim protection and help me grow it further. To do that, I need to get my subscriber and view counts up, even though both are doing well. If you like my stuff, please watch, comment, thumbs up, subscribe and most importantly, tell others! I'm loving doing this stuff and it really feels like I've got something that's starting to catch on and find an audience. If I can get partnership with the Fullscreen Network which is my goal, it will solidify my ability to keep doing this stuff for a while. Thanks all!

Sorry for the crosspost from the finish games thread, I just thought it worked here too.

Stylez and I finished Double Dragon Neon last night which we played through for the second series of our co-op comedy Let's Play show All Together Now. I did not care for this game at all when I first played it single player but it's a whole other barrel of awesome in multiplayer. I think it's still free on PS+ as well! Next up, we're taking on the recently released remake of Double Dragon II for Xbox Live Arcade. Yes, that one. It's going to be a laugh riot. For the viewers.

I know this thread is mostly for gaming videos, but this is probably the only place where this is applicable.

A while back I submitted one of my vlogs to Geek & Sundry's open submission. I just got an e-mail this morning saying I was going to the next round. This is all about community feedback. So for the next week (June 20 - June 27), all of the submissions that were approved to move on are on their site, and up for voting. If you guys could check out my video and the submissions of others, that would be super awesome.

This link will be live Thursday, June 20th (@10 AM): Geek & Sundry Submission

They will be narrowing the field down to 30 people, and thankfully it won't just be based on if you're in the Top 30 on the leaderboard. All sorts of other factors will be taken into account, including community feedback! So vote for me, don't vote for me, either way, I hope you enjoy all of the videos and help G&S pick their next 10 Geeky vloggers!

For anyone who is interested, Stylez and I just started series 3 of All Together Now. In an effort to try and beef up our comedy commentary skills (while also putting ourselves through our own little Milgrim Experiment), we're playing Double Dragon II: Wander of the Dragons on XBLA. No, it's not the Double Dragon II you're thinking of. Go Google that full title, I'll wait.

So yeah, we're really hoping watching us play through and comment over this abomination will drive some traffic to the channel so come watch, tell your friends and most importantly, please give us thumbs up and comment if you can! I recently got rejected for partnership by a network and was told the main reasons were because there aren't enough thumbs up and commenters. No, I don't understand why networks place value on YouTube comments either but there you go.

Stylez and I started a new series of All Together Now this past weekend and we went in a very different direction. We started the new viral sensation Cube World but did so completely cold and with no idea what it was other than it was some blend of Minecraft and Zelda. We really enjoyed this video and this this will be a fun series.

Well, I finally managed to get part one of my Resident Evil 6 analysis uploaded.

Two major lessons learned.

1) Be careful how much you discuss a certain topic. If you have to scroll through minutes and minutes and minutes which turn to hours of video content to find just 2-3 usable seconds, then you've either planned poorly or spent too much time talking about something. In this case, it was primarily spending too much time on "tripping". However, there were other times where I discussed gameplay that was too specific such as lining up a shot before a guy ducks. If you don't have notes saying "This level, this arena, roughly this timeframe" or something specific, then don't go specific. If you are going to go specific, don't be afraid to jump back in and rerecord extra footage (which, sadly, was problematic for me when I started this video).

2) Listen to the MP3 before starting work on the video. It's possible to miss stuff that was supposed to be cut, and it could be a chance to say "No, that doesn't sound right", rerecord it, and drop the new recording in. Several moments I thought I had something that could sound good and fixed, but it turned out to sound like sh*t.

3) I know I said "two lessons learned", but hearing myself recite a script is a great way to learn about the overused phrases and terms in your writing. I'm going to make a RamblePak drinking game one day of all the times I say "unfortunately" and "the problem is".

4) Make sure anything in your script can be properly visually represented. "Quickman on Redbull Reflexes" and the notation of using the palm for Mario Party games seemed nice in my head, but they're random or obscure enough to pull the viewer out of the video, and thus whatever I'm trying to say is lost.

Hopefully the remaining parts that focus on actual campaigns will be better since I have more thorough notes for those.

Technical post!

So for the Roxio GameCapture HD Pro. I find it to be really good on the whole with a lot of good settings. It's a bit of a pain getting the PS3 to work with it, but once you have it up you're golden. The only exception I found is that, for some reason, if I put my computer to sleep, the PS3 doesn't want to cooperate upon waking up. The signal just won't go through. That or the device doesn't work, I dunno. So if you put your computer to sleep at some point and want to get to recording, well, you best be restarting.

Similarly, the Wii has issues if you're going from Component to HDMI. On their official forums someone's software kept crashing whenever they tried to record via component. I didn't have that problem. However, I didn't get sound. That's fine as what I needed didn't really need the sound (I mute all footage in my videos to try and keep the audio more clear and clean), but this means that you're not getting sound at all. My computer monitor is also my gaming monitor, and when you switch inputs it is all going through the Roxio device, and it seems converting Wii audio to HDMI audio doesn't work so well.

So it's better to use the Roxio GameCapture HD Pro for Xbox 360, PS3 and Wii-U capture, as it seems the Wii-U works pretty well. I haven't tested that out myself as I don't have a Wii-U, and even if I did you could still run into the same issues when playing a Wii game on the Wii-U.

Just a heads up for anyone still shopping for devices.

I'm not going to go through the list of lessons learned this time, because I ignored one of them and am paying the price for it. I did pretty much one draft of the script for my analysis of Leon's Campaign of Resident Evil 6, and now I'm regretting it. Granted I wasn't looking forward to his campaign anyway. I was trying to be careful when writing about the gameplay, and I think that is likely a stronger segment for it, but I got carried away with the story. As a result I had to cut whole segments out after recording the audio (thank God, otherwise it would have been 20 minutes), and in the end just...I didn't even provide a sufficient summary. I just jumped between points I wanted to complain about, one of which I had to stick a correction in there for.

Not to mention some of my less than stellar choice of dialog for my confusion of Leon's infatuation with Ada Wong.

I expect my analysis of Chris Redfield's campaign to be better. Partly because I liked the campaign, partly because I have story items I want to discuss, and partly because I plan on double-checking the cut-scenes at the very least so I don't complain mindlessly.

In any event, here's part two of a five part series. Thank God I chose to do this in chunks instead of one super long video. I was originally planning on doing a several part Halo retrospective some point down the line, but at this rate...I really might have to reconsider that.

Oh! One piece of advice: double check the settings of what games you play. Roxio is pretty dark and lowers the volume, which has been a problem. All these Resident Evil audio clips are much quieter than I'd like, but I can't boost their volume in any of my software. The only other option would be to really dim my own audio, which would require...well, either way the user will have to fiddle with their volume, and that sucks.

Dominic Knight wrote:

A while back I submitted one of my vlogs to Geek & Sundry's open submission. I just got an e-mail this morning saying I was going to the next round. This is all about community feedback. So for the next week (June 20 - June 27), all of the submissions that were approved to move on are on their site, and up for voting. If you guys could check out my video and the submissions of others, that would be super awesome.

This link will be live Thursday, June 20th (@10 AM): Geek & Sundry Submission

GAH! I think I missed the opportunity by a lot, because it's not showing yours anymore. I didn't mean to wait so long! I'm sorry!

In on-going news, I finally got my video for Chris Redfield's campaign put together. While it's a shame I took longer, I think it paid off. Being much more certain of what I was writing about paid off and for the most part what I wrote matched the gameplay footage quite accurately. So while there are a couple of issues with it, I'm mostly happy with the finished product.

If it interests anyone, after a bit of an absence from Retro Flashback due to life constraints, I'm bringing the show back with a bang! I'm doing a video a day for an entire week, showcasing various horror and horror-themed titles from years past. There's going to be a wide variety ranging from the creepy to the downright nutty (including a game very few have heard of) and from a bunch of different platforms too. The first episode went up yesterday and I've shown it below. There will be a new episode each day up till and including Saturday. Retro Flashback isn't going to become two episodes a week again like it used to be but I hope to put them out more frequently now. Enjoy!

Excellent, PA.

Thanks. Today's is gonna' be a kooky one. Also, I'm really excited about some of the late-week stuff. Let's just say the current 75% off horror sale GOG is having has been very helpful. I'm also hoping to do a live stream Halloween night, doing longer play sessions of some of the games I'm showcasing this week.

Hey, everybody. I've been stuck at home for a while so I decided to join the YouTube video brigade. I'm making Let's Play gaming vids for fun. These are all games I personally enjoy and would recommend to anyone so it's a *mostly* positive channel (but I may rage just a little bit... I'm looking at you, Sonic the Hedgehog).

I have two series going on right now: One for modern games and the other for classic games. I recently gained the ability to record console games with a new, shiny capture device. Hoping to get a third series for co-op/multiplayer very soon. Or maybe something completely different? Who knows!

Check it out if you'd like.