An Open Letter to The Escapist Community

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tippy2k2:

Saelune:
*looks at Taco News*

You sure about that?

Yes; you not liking something doesn't make it low quality.

Neither does anyone else liking it make it high quality. Nor does the lack of content make what is posted automatically good.

Putting intentional lies under the "News" section is not a good thing.

Not too surprising. Outside of the forum (which as a general medium holds little monetary value). The mass exodus of good quality content generators 4+ years ago was the major landslide of the site. And don't get me started on the first introduction of the "Pub Club"

Well bless you guys for sticking with this to the bitter end, whenever that might be.

Maybe I might pick up throwing out a game or movie review every now and then again, just for the hell of it.

Saelune:
Neither does anyone else liking it make it high quality. Nor does the lack of content make what is posted automatically good.

Putting intentional lies under the "News" section is not a good thing.

So is that why you have a giant bone to pick with Taco and constantly take cheap shots at his work? Because we put it under News?

After it was brought up that the Tags were missing on the Mobile site, we are discussing moving it to the Articles section but either way, Taco has no control over that so you're taking cheap shots at the wrong user.

tippy2k2:

Saelune:
Neither does anyone else liking it make it high quality. Nor does the lack of content make what is posted automatically good.

Putting intentional lies under the "News" section is not a good thing.

So is that why you have a giant bone to pick with Taco and constantly take cheap shots at his work? Because we put it under News?

After it was brought up that the Tags were missing on the Mobile site, we are discussing moving it to the Articles section but either way, Taco has no control over that so you're taking cheap shots at the wrong user.

It is not specific to Taco. You or anyone could be posting it and I would be against it. Other than the fake news stuff, I have no personal beef with Taco as a person.

But putting it under News certainly doesnt help any.

Is it a cheap shot when people dont like what Yahtzee posts too?

In regards to new content, what sort of stuff are you looking for? A friend and I have been looking to write short, Alfred Hitchcock style stories for a while now as well as some editorials.

The Enquirer:
In regards to new content, what sort of stuff are you looking for? A friend and I have been looking to write short, Alfred Hitchcock style stories for a while now as well as some editorials.

We are still discussing specifics but a good few rules of thumbs:

1. Keep in mind the audience here. Generally what we would want is vidja games or geek culture related (movies, comics, etc). We'll at least consider anything I'm guessing but that's kind of the setup here. Something like an "Alfred Hitchcock" style story though could certainly be on the table, just be prepared for us dummies to judge your work :)

2. Keep in mind the CoC. Not that I would expect people to but if it goes against the CoC, you can go ahead and assume it would not be allowed.

3. Reach out to someone before you do all the work (have an idea of what you want to do obviously and maybe have a sample or two of what it would/could look like). I'd hate to have someone do a bunch of work making an article only for us to decide it isn't something we feel should go on the site. I mean...beggars can't be choosers I suppose but we still do have some standards. New Classic is a good one to poke or myself would be a good person to poke.

We'll try to get people a more detailed setup for this but for right now, we're kind of just winging it. We have had a nice test run with Taco News but we're still all getting the hang of this setup so be gentle :)

Sad to hear things are going rough. I'd be lying if I wasn't a little excited about voluntary articles though. I might pitch something soon!

A lot of things led to this. A lot of things that happened before Defy media bought it. I know its easier for everyone to blame on solitary event for this but we all know there's more to what's happening now then "muh anger at corporations."

I'm kinda surprised they haven't given the site to Yahtzee to do with what he wants since hes like the sites claim to fame. It would be annoying to lose the site, its been one of my home pages for years. Gamers gate really fucked this place over.

Thank you for the transparency. It sucks to officially hear it, but it was inevitable just judging by the general decline over the years.

That said, Moderation Team, thank you for all you've done/all you've been doing and for the work you'll put in going forward. Best of luck. :)

Sad to hear, this place was such a reliable place for gaming news. Thanks for the update, and while I was never really involved with the community, I still want to thank the moderation staff for keeping the place nice.

tippy2k2:
snip

I mean if it needs to be more "comic-like" we'd absolutely be willing to work with an artist to do so. That said a pretty consistent problem for us over the last year in getting our own work published is the lack of an artist so anyone who knows anyone is welcome to point them my way.

The Enquirer:

tippy2k2:
snip

I mean if it needs to be more "comic-like" we'd absolutely be willing to work with an artist to do so. That said a pretty consistent problem for us over the last year in getting our own work published is the lack of an artist so anyone who knows anyone is welcome to point them my way.

We can take a look at it as is (unless you WANT an artist, in which case, plenty of people around here who have artistic ability who might be game).

I can't guarantee we'll accept it but we will at least consider it :)

Mr Companion:
It's badass that you guys are holding in there. It's also amazing that Yahtzee is so important he is still getting paid even when others are not. That's a celebrity status right there. I wonder where he'll go and what he'll do after this?

He's made it clear his endgame is to make games and write books. ZP is the cash influx. I'm sure a bunch of other sites would be ready to pay for the act, even if it has to be under a different name due to to copyright reasons.

tippy2k2:

The Enquirer:

tippy2k2:
snip

I mean if it needs to be more "comic-like" we'd absolutely be willing to work with an artist to do so. That said a pretty consistent problem for us over the last year in getting our own work published is the lack of an artist so anyone who knows anyone is welcome to point them my way.

We can take a look at it as is (unless you WANT an artist, in which case, plenty of people around here who have artistic ability who might be game).

I can't guarantee we'll accept it but we will at least consider it :)

To what end? As soon as defy decide they're done, won't this site be torpedoed?

ResonanceSD:
To what end? As soon as defy decide they're done, won't this site be torpedoed?

For funsy and probably.

AS you guys are probably aware, NeoGAF literally imploded today. There is a vacuum for a decent gaming forum that is life GAF, but without the witch hunts and abusive moderation.

tippy2k2:

3. Reach out to someone before you do all the work (have an idea of what you want to do obviously and maybe have a sample or two of what it would/could look like). I'd hate to have someone do a bunch of work making an article only for us to decide it isn't something we feel should go on the site. I mean...beggars can't be choosers I suppose but we still do have some standards. New Classic is a good one to poke or myself would be a good person to poke.

Even if you guys don't want it, though, they could still post it on the forums anyway, so it's not like it'd really go to waste.

Ambient_Malice:
AS you guys are probably aware, NeoGAF literally imploded today. There is a vacuum for a decent gaming forum that is life GAF, but without the witch hunts and abusive moderation.

What happened to NeoGAF?

well Its been fun guys.

Drathnoxis:

tippy2k2:

3. Reach out to someone before you do all the work (have an idea of what you want to do obviously and maybe have a sample or two of what it would/could look like). I'd hate to have someone do a bunch of work making an article only for us to decide it isn't something we feel should go on the site. I mean...beggars can't be choosers I suppose but we still do have some standards. New Classic is a good one to poke or myself would be a good person to poke.

Even if you guys don't want it, though, they could still post it on the forums anyway, so it's not like it'd really go to waste.

...good point. I didn't even consider that but I suppose yeah, if we decide against something, it's not like a user can't just post it (unless it breaks the CoC and that's why it was rejected I suppose...).

JamesStone:
Yatzhee is the cash influx that keeps the site running. Don't bite the hand which feeds you.

So... I will admit that I'm kind of angry that Yahtzee gets to keep his checks while the rest of The Escapist gets fired. That's pretty unfair. But it's not really his fault at all. But he really doesn't care about the Escapist. All in all, I guess I wish he'd just say something about this crap instead of just shoving us in the back corner acting like we don't exist.

image

Drathnoxis:
What happened to NeoGAF?

Looks like the head of NeoGAF, Malka, got caught in some sexual harassment. Mods tried to cover it up. It was found out. Mods resigning en masse. Site shut down due to lack of mods.

Drathnoxis:

Ambient_Malice:
AS you guys are probably aware, NeoGAF literally imploded today. There is a vacuum for a decent gaming forum that is life GAF, but without the witch hunts and abusive moderation.

What happened to NeoGAF?

Owner got hit with a couple of sexual harassment accusations. The guy appearantly had some weirdness in the past too, so everyone took the accusations at face value. Mods walked out.

tippy2k2:

Saelune:
Neither does anyone else liking it make it high quality. Nor does the lack of content make what is posted automatically good.

Putting intentional lies under the "News" section is not a good thing.

So is that why you have a giant bone to pick with Taco and constantly take cheap shots at his work? Because we put it under News?

After it was brought up that the Tags were missing on the Mobile site, we are discussing moving it to the Articles section but either way, Taco has no control over that so you're taking cheap shots at the wrong user.

I don't see why low-rent The Onion articles are being posted on a video game/digital entertainment site to begin with. It seems like the last thing the Escapist needed to promote to stay afloat.

Mutant1988:
I don't see why low-rent The Onion articles are being posted on a video game/digital entertainment site to begin with. It seems like the last thing the Escapist needed to promote to stay afloat.

Well lucky you, looks like you have your opportunity to submit your own articles as a counter. I expect it to replace Taco News before the new year.

No? Going to just bitch endlessly about it like Saelune? Nobody gets paid anymore, the stakes are very low. Walk away if its not your speed, the only thing keeping this place afloat is Yahtzee and he hasn't said dick on it.

Moo!

Took long enough to say something.

In some ways this is very disappointing but in others I think there's a possibility for good things to come out of this. Still, I'm not sure how possible it is to make any of those positive outcomes easier to obtain without "the keys" being accessible, so to speak.

Whatever happens, and even considering I don't really come here anymore, I'm gonna remember this place somewhat fondly, whatever misgivings I've had with it before.

Haven't posted here in years. Sad to see that gamer gate and extremely poor decisions by the people in charge have killed this website.

People have been saying and singing doom for a long time, and it's sad to see the state of things, but the Escapist has been on a slow downwards trend since it's prime in 2011,. I guess this is just the natural order of all things though, all good things come to an end.
I and many others will stick it to the end comes, before leaving for who knows where (though, probably /v/ in all honesty). From a lurker to the former staff, mods, community, and others like me, thanks for the awesome time here.

If I'm not mistaken, I'm amongst the oldest of the subscribers to this site (much to my surprise, some years ago I was contacted about it as one of the 10 longest subs (or something like that, maybe it was 20, the details are now fuzzy), asked to give my $0.02 on my experience with the site for an article, though I declined to participate at the time due to lack of time and honestly I didn't really think me being here for "x" number of years gave me any particularly useful wisdom to pass on). But, perhaps now looking back, I can relate what my experience has been. So, for what it's worth, I'll put in those couple of pennies now.

For a long time, this was my Go To site for game news, and I came here pretty much daily to see what was going on. Along the way, something changed. I don't know when exactly, but it was several years ago. Maybe around the time Jim left, though I don't consider that a cause (and maybe not even a symptom, Jim left for his own reasons). But at some point in time, probably gradually, this site stopped holding my attention. It wasn't giving me the news in a way that I wanted, if that makes any sense. I think this site became more about entertainment than news, and that's when my level of interest dropped.

Which is too bad, really. I don't know that there is any other site that gives us hard game industry news like this one used to do. Now if I want game industry news, I have to hunt for it, usually on YT, and that's always hit-or-miss.

I don't dislike the "entertainment" aspects of this site. I like Yahtzee as much as the next guy. But I came here to keep abreast of what was going on in the industry, and that, I think, is what this site lost. I don't honestly know if that what precipitated the downturn. For me it was, but then again, I may very well be atypical.

Well, good luck moderators in keeping it afloat. While I don't visit nearly as much as I used to, I will pop in now and then to see what's going on. I wish you all the best.

Drathnoxis:
I don't know, making someone without a single post a mod just seems wrong to me. They aren't a member of this community.

Not a Mod. A spambot killer. Not attending to Mod duties--just helping to keep the site clean from 'bots. That's why he's not listed as a "Mod" on the Letter.

Big, big difference. :)

This place has been dying ever since Russ and Susan left.
I guess this is my cue to archive all my stuff that matters, so that it's not obliterated along with the rest of the site.

At this point a community site would be much better than what ever this garbage has become. Literally the only reason I keep coming back to this site is out of sheer reflex. Good luck to you guys, hope it goes well.

Mutant1988:
I don't see why low-rent The Onion articles are being posted on a video game/digital entertainment site to begin with. It seems like the last thing the Escapist needed to promote to stay afloat.

And I don't see why it has to be complained about, and can't just be ignored. The site has gone to shit, there's nothing left here. There's no better alternatives as is. It might not be your cup of tea, but I am genuinely curious if you'd rather we don't have it at all.

The .50 Caliber Cow:
Well lucky you, looks like you have your opportunity to submit your own articles as a counter. I expect it to replace Taco News before the new year.

No? Going to just bitch endlessly about it like Saelune? Nobody gets paid anymore, the stakes are very low. Walk away if its not your speed, the only thing keeping this place afloat is Yahtzee and he hasn't said dick on it.

That's the thing I don't get. Maybe we should be praising for people's contributions, not be trying to tell those people to fuck off. It might not be what we want or expect, but in this state of the site being essentially on life support, It's better to at least have something

I know one thing that could garner some views, and which everyone could help out with.
Tippy has already started on it, albeit on a smaller scale.
Collating (new game/game release) data!

Could be divided into speculative and firm, then gaming platform, AAA - AA - Indie, overarching style, genre, etc (heavy use of spoiler tags or post ID links or some such to organize it).
I myself enjoy some niche style games, (4X, CRPG, spaceship sims, diablo-style, village-sims.. ) and is always on the lookout for new ones.
I think we have a rather broad range of tastes gathered here.
Instead of coming upon such games haphazardly or hunting around for ages and in numerous places, we could have it centered here.
Or do someone know of another site that does the same thing?

Might be too much to handle though. An idle and wishful thought maybe.

Another thing I would like too see is a game review style which explains the gameplay in much more detail.
Take the new Mordor game. It mentions Arkham style combat...what does that even mean?
I haven't played those and the videos I've viewed doesn't show if it is one button to do an entire series of pre-programmed moves or...whatever?
Camera view is another bug bear of mine. Especially the hated skewed over-the-shoulder one. Most people stick with the default one I think, but is there an alternative offered within the game?
Like the often forced first person view in racing or spaceship sims.
How the control-scheme handles is yet another missed avenue. Optimized for console, which feels wonky on kb/m, or optimized for PC with no game-pad support or..you know the drill by know I think.
Such things matter to me, and I can't believe I'm the only one.
There could also be mention of shady practices. DRM (steam), framerate engine, micro-transactions, etc.

So it appears this announcement has garnered the attention of Escapist's old guard editors and content contributors. There's been some back and forth on Twitter about Susan Arendt, Russ, and some other folks potentially buying the site back (or crowdfunding a buy-out). Not sure how serious they are about it, but as far as I am concerned this is the best shot the site has at bouncing back. If anyone else feels the same way, please tweet at these guys and let them know you support them and their idea. Encouragement from the community can show them there are people here that still care, and miss the old site we all loved.

Relevant twitter handles:

https://twitter.com/SusanArendt
https://twitter.com/the_moviebob
https://twitter.com/Graham_LRR
https://twitter.com/miracleofsound
https://twitter.com/GreyTheTick
https://twitter.com/russpitts

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