I Hit It With My Axe: Episode Two: F*ck. A Medusa.

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TazTheTerrible:

DarkSaber:

Undercover:
snip

There is ONLY one improvement that can be made to this show. Cancelling it. Or killing it with fire. Either works.

Yes I can sympathise. This annoying viral show keeps dragging in my mouse pointer, forcing me to click it and watch the entire length of it before it will let me do anything else as well.

To be honest I never watched this one, I was just apalled it got another episode.

Rokar333:

TazTheTerrible:

DarkSaber:

Undercover:
snip

There is ONLY one improvement that can be made to this show. Cancelling it. Or killing it with fire. Either works.

Yes I can sympathise. This annoying viral show keeps dragging in my mouse pointer, forcing me to click it and watch the entire length of it before it will let me do anything else as well.

lol, exactly.

Nobody is forcing any of you to watch this. If you don't like it, don't watch it. Quit your bitching and leave the show to those who can enjoy it.

Nobody is forcing you to read the bitching either. Goes both ways.

Well it's definitely getting better and I loved the bit with the infamous "NPC voice" that every experienced player and DM knows all too well.

Still I'm absolutely stunned over how much controversy this is generating. The first episode garnered more comments than that days ZP episode and I've been hearing nothing but forum-firestorm all over my usual haunts regarding this show, most of it negative...

Still, I hope you guys keep at it! I'm looking forward to Episode 5 where it's supposed to "get good."

It's like whenever I did any sort of role-playing. Except I always used Paranoia so there was a ridiculous amount of plotting and weird traps.

CopperBoom:
The problem is the editing, it is so disjointed and the episodes are not cut with any narrative yet. If it was just all of them bonking it probably would not be an issue, but right now this just feels aimless. I say this because I think there is a show here.

Yeah, I felt this as well. Especially when you had the shot of one of them staring to take off their coat, and then it cut and her coat was half off.

Undercover:
I know I'm going to get flak for this

You're right; get over yourself.

You said most of us haven't ever edited video, so we don't have any basis for bitching about a crappy show? Alright, well I've edited videos before, so I know it takes a lot of work, and this barely had any work done on it. Cutting out stuff what was too boring to put in this already boring show is about all that was done. Somebody else made a point that other shows on the Escapist put effort into the work, doing things like animating, voice acting, rehearsing lines, etc. etc., whatever needs to be done, but even then some of them just aren't as entertaining as others.

This show does NONE of that stuff, and it's STILL bad. All they do is use a crappy camcorder to record people playing D&D, then keep what they feel were the most interesting bits (Which obviously aren't all that interesting for the majority of the viewers if you judge by the comments left.)

You want us to give some constructive criticism, and help them improve? Alright: Use a better camera. Show us more than just the commentary. When you show us commentary that doesn't advance the "plot" then at least try to make it interesting (funny, dramatic, whatever.) Don't bank on the players being porn stars to push the show along. No matter who you are, or what you do for a living, if you can't keep the masses on the internet entertained, then they'll shit all over you. Period.

This show might just replace the other failed shows!

DarkSaber:

TazTheTerrible:

DarkSaber:

Undercover:
snip

There is ONLY one improvement that can be made to this show. Cancelling it. Or killing it with fire. Either works.

Yes I can sympathise. This annoying viral show keeps dragging in my mouse pointer, forcing me to click it and watch the entire length of it before it will let me do anything else as well.

To be honest I never watched this one, I was just apalled it got another episode.

Then what grounds do you have to complain?

I mean at this point you don't even know what to be critical of, this is almost trolling. Except trolling involves intentionally trying to piss people off, and you just look like an idiot.

DarkSaber:

TazTheTerrible:

DarkSaber:

Undercover:
snip

There is ONLY one improvement that can be made to this show. Cancelling it. Or killing it with fire. Either works.

Yes I can sympathise. This annoying viral show keeps dragging in my mouse pointer, forcing me to click it and watch the entire length of it before it will let me do anything else as well.

To be honest I never watched this one, I was just apalled it got another episode.

Ah I see, my apologies I didn't realize that you didn't actually watch it. That does make all the difference.
On a completely unrelated note, does the escapist have an "informed opinion" award badge?

Megido:
(Which obviously aren't all that interesting for the majority of the viewers if you judge by the comments left.)

This is the criticism I don't get. Why does it have to be entertaining for a majority of members on the Escapist. It's a very niche show, yes, however that just means it isn't your thing. As long as there is anybody who enjoys it in its current form, there really is no reason for it to try to please the likes of you.

craddoke:
My point, I suppose, is that this series will probably never click with the core demographic of the escapist magazine and that's not really anybody's fault. If the site managers want to keep the series here for personal reasons, I totally appreciate that and will be a loyal viewer for as long as it lasts. Hopefully less and less people will feel the need, though, to announce publicly that they're not the target audience by denigrating either the game to which they owe their digital fun or Zac and his friends who probably get more than enough shit from people for their day jobs.

I want to leave aside any discussion of the dungeonmastering, video editing or film-making of the show - which I leave to people with more expertise than I -- and just respond to this point about whether this will "click with the core demographic". The Escapist is growing at 2-3% per month. Our 36-month growth rate is over 700%. That means the core demographic is constantly changing. The core demographic who visited the site from 2005 to 2007 is different than the visitor from 2007 to 2009. The visitor today is different than the visitor in 2009. Many of our 2007 hardcore audience complained that we were ruining the site when we added Zero Punctuation.

When we launch new types of content that is different from what we're already delivering, it's not because we don't understand our audience. We knew, for instance, that the same audience that liked ZP would also like Unskippable. But reaching the same audience has its limits. The Escapist already serves more page views per user than virtually all of our competitors. The Escapist's readers already spend more time on site than virtually all of our competitors. Our hardcore users already complain that we have too much content, i.e., they don't have anymore time to spend with us.

So with "Axe," we aren't necessarily trying to reach the people who are already coming here. We're trying to reach new people with something we think is cool. People that are coming for ZP... are already here and watching ZP. Sure, some of those folks will like the show, but we want to reach the people we aren't reaching but who might dig this show.

And it's not a zero sum game. When we grow, we get more resources to do more shows. We have more content now then ever because we keep growing our audience.

It's thus ironic that while some forum-goers here are trashing I Hit It With My Axe because it's not for them, the show has gone on to have the strongest premier we've had in over a year, and the first show we've ever launched that has more traffic off-site (embedded and virally circulating) than on site. We didn't do any marketing for this show on The Escapist. No teasers, no ads, no banners. Instead, this show is going viral on dozens of blogs all over the web. It's being enjoyed by folks who hadn't heard of us yet. That's a good thing, an awesome thing. Meanwhile, 0.6% of the people who saw the video are on the forums, i.e. not even 1 in 100 folks.

So, if you don't like D&D, or reality shows, then the show is probably not for you. No worries. Just like if you don't have a 360, our 360 reviews are probably irrelevant to you. That's why we have something like a dozen shows a week, so there's something for you somewhere.

TazTheTerrible:

DarkSaber:

TazTheTerrible:

DarkSaber:

Undercover:
snip

There is ONLY one improvement that can be made to this show. Cancelling it. Or killing it with fire. Either works.

Yes I can sympathise. This annoying viral show keeps dragging in my mouse pointer, forcing me to click it and watch the entire length of it before it will let me do anything else as well.

To be honest I never watched this one, I was just apalled it got another episode.

Ah I see, my apologies I didn't realize that you didn't actually watch it. That does make all the difference.
On a completely unrelated note, does the escapist have an "informed opinion" award badge?

I'm pretty uninformed on badges, not giving a shit about them and all.

I have to say I rather like it. I don't know why, really. It's a relaxing video about friends having fun. That might be it.

Hurr Durr Derp:

avouleance2nd:
Nerd out burst time
It's called a gorgon
Medusa was just one of them the creature is a gorgon.

Actually, you're wrong.

If this was Greek mythology then you'd be right, but this is D&D. In D&D a Medusa is a standard monster type that's based on the mythological creature, but it's a race of monsters and not one particular creature.

And that's why I don't like DnD's mythology. It screws up real world mythology. Like what Twilight did to vampires. I think Scion has it right. Most creatures are like their mythologic counter-parts and those that are not really have a sick twist while keeping with the feel of the monster. For exemple, Scylla is a oil platform with tentacules made of human flesh and metal twisted together with a human torso with power tool instead of arms at the end.

anyway, OT: I kinda like the show. After seeing http://dndwithpornstars.blogspot.com/2010/03/it-gets-good-at-episode-5-other-show.html on zak's blog, i can't wait for the 5th episode.

mechanixis:
I really want to like this, guys, but it's shaping up to be "stupid, unattractive, and fairly self-important women squabble for five minutes, the show."

OH MY GOD! ITS THE VIEW!

Rokar333:

Megido:
(Which obviously aren't all that interesting for the majority of the viewers if you judge by the comments left.)

This is the criticism I don't get. Why does it have to be entertaining for a majority of members on the Escapist. It's a very niche show, yes, however that just means it isn't your thing. As long as there is anybody who enjoys it in its current form, there really is no reason for it to try to please the likes of you.

It has to be entertaining for the majority of the members because that's the whole point. Ask the creators if they're ok with more than half of the people who've seen their show hating it. If they don't care, well then nobody is surprised, because the show just isn't good. Calling it a "niche show" is a nice way of saying it doesn't appeal to hardly anybody. I play D&D, and have nothing against the game, but watching them play it isn't fun. It could be fun if they said or did anything worth hearing or seeing, but they haven't. I could barely even follow what they were supposed to be doing the whole time. Something about an inn, a medusa, and a quest to a goblin village. That's all I got.

From a business standpoint, the Escapist wants the majority of people to watch the show to increase traffic, as well as attract more people to the site. If nobody watches it, then it's taking up their bandwidth simply to entertain the few people who like it. Bad business.

On top of that, it instigates melodrama on a massive scale due to people expressing their dislike of it in various ways, and people like you feeling the need to defend it.

Didn't like episode 1
And, just coudln't do episode two.
I will give it one more chance and if nothing comes of it...oh well.
I'm just wondering how it got on the escapist and what kind of stuff was rejected.
:shutters:

Megido:

From a business standpoint, the Escapist wants the majority of people to watch the show to increase traffic, as well as attract more people to the site. If nobody watches it, then it's taking up their bandwidth simply to entertain the few people who like it. Bad business.

Apparently you missed Archon's post right under the one you quoted. The show does not need to appeal to the majority of the users of this website. It seems this show is quite good for business at the Escapist, and I'm glad that it looks like the show is going to push ahead despite the whiners.

The Escapist wants people to watch it? Obviously people must be, look how busy these threads are. :D

Again, I've got to ask- is there really not a solid thirty (twenty? Fifteen?) seconds of this game that's worth watching without an edit? Because if not, one has to question whether the project itself is worth it. With the edits, there's little flow to conversation, and what one would presume would be the purpose of the edits (to highlight the more interesting portions of the game/conversations) they don't seem to be accomplishing for much of the viewership.

Megido:
It has to be entertaining for the majority of the members because that's the whole point.

I just responded to this notion. See above. The members who post on the forums are only a small minority of the current audience (less than 5%), and the current audience is only a small minority of the total audience for game-related content.

So whether the show is popular with members is different than whether this show is succeeding in reaching people who like D&D, for instance. That sort of feedback is valuable and we pay close attention to it.

Whereas people who just say "D&D sucks" or "why isn't this funny" are the equivalent of someone who watches "When Harry Met Sally" and says "why doesn't this have any action?" It only tells us that they aren't the target for the show.

D&D Sucks. It's boring to play and even more boring to watch people play.

I like it. It's just some people playing D&D and enjoying themselves. Sure, it's a bit daft, but I'm a fan of things being a bit daft.

Rokar333:

Megido:

From a business standpoint, the Escapist wants the majority of people to watch the show to increase traffic, as well as attract more people to the site. If nobody watches it, then it's taking up their bandwidth simply to entertain the few people who like it. Bad business.

Apparently you missed Archon's post right under the one you quoted. The show does not need to appeal to the majority of the users of this website. It seems this show is quite good for business at the Escapist, and I'm glad that it looks like the show is going to push ahead despite the whiners.

I just read it, and frankly I'm unpleasantly surprised. The show is not good. The worst part is that I'm in the demographic. I like D&D, and I like porn stars (when they're in porn,) but the show... just... isn't... good.

Here's why I think it's doing as well as it has been: It's got porn stars in it. That's all. There's no jokes, no interesting content (Two episodes in, and no dice rolling? Just them talking to each other about what they're going to do next? Really?) and this is from somebody who likes the elements that make up the show. The whole is not greater than the sum of it's parts.

Archon:

Megido:
It has to be entertaining for the majority of the members because that's the whole point.

I just responded to this notion. See above. The members who post on the forums are only a small minority of the current audience (less than 5%), and the current audience is only a small minority of the total audience for game-related content.

So whether the show is popular with members is different than whether this show is succeeding in reaching people who like D&D, for instance. That sort of feedback is valuable and we pay close attention to it.

Whereas people who just say "D&D sucks" or "why isn't this funny" are the equivalent of someone who watches "When Harry Met Sally" and says "why doesn't this have any action?" It only tells us that they aren't the target for the show.

I think the one thing this show could benefit more from is a larger time slot. It becomes really disjointed and quite a bit confusing when it is as short as it is. D&D doesn't work on a fast burn, so if the show itself was maybe 15-20 minutes long then I could see it appealing to me quite a bit more. Is that something you can change or is it genuinely stuck as it is now?

Archon:

Megido:
It has to be entertaining for the majority of the members because that's the whole point.

I just responded to this notion. See above. The members who post on the forums are only a small minority of the current audience (less than 5%), and the current audience is only a small minority of the total audience for game-related content.

So whether the show is popular with members is different than whether this show is succeeding in reaching people who like D&D, for instance. That sort of feedback is valuable and we pay close attention to it.

Whereas people who just say "D&D sucks" or "why isn't this funny" are the equivalent of someone who watches "When Harry Met Sally" and says "why doesn't this have any action?" It only tells us that they aren't the target for the show.

I find this argument funny, awhile back Jeff Polumbo(Spinwhiz) asked what members of The Escapist wanted from the website that it wasn't already delivering and I commented with something like "If the escapist had more Pen and Paper RPG content, it'd be pretty much ideal to me." Lo and behold around a year later we have the High Adventure Column and I Hit It With My Axe, so um... thanks for listening to the suggestions of your audience?

EDIT:

I agree with Daystar Clarion, 5 Minutes is a little to short to get a real bead on what are probably 3 hour gaming sessions. A 10 or 20 minute spot would be better, but I don't know if that's really an option... is it?

Archon:

Megido:
It has to be entertaining for the majority of the members because that's the whole point.

I just responded to this notion. See above. The members who post on the forums are only a small minority of the current audience (less than 5%), and the current audience is only a small minority of the total audience for game-related content.

So whether the show is popular with members is different than whether this show is succeeding in reaching people who like D&D, for instance. That sort of feedback is valuable and we pay close attention to it.

Whereas people who just say "D&D sucks" or "why isn't this funny" are the equivalent of someone who watches "When Harry Met Sally" and says "why doesn't this have any action?" It only tells us that they aren't the target for the show.

Then I admit I'm entirely confused as to why this show is getting as many views as it is. Maybe because it's the sort of thing that people love to hate? I couldn't say, since I don't have any way of measuring that personally. I guess all I can do is take your word for it.

As far as I can tell I should be part of the demographic. As I said to somebody else, I play D&D regularly, and I have nothing against porn stars, so why don't I think the show is any good? I haven't seen anything happen in it yet that's worth watching.

Maybe I'm overly critical, but I came into this expecting the show to be entertaining, and I just can't bring myself to like it. Everybody's different, but I just don't see how so many people could possibly like it.

Megido:
Two episodes in, and no dice rolling?

Yeah, because rolling dice is really at the core of role-playing? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amber_Diceless_Roleplaying_Game

Also, i think you missed the character creation part of the last episode.

Daystar Clarion:

Archon:

Megido:
It has to be entertaining for the majority of the members because that's the whole point.

I just responded to this notion. See above. The members who post on the forums are only a small minority of the current audience (less than 5%), and the current audience is only a small minority of the total audience for game-related content.

So whether the show is popular with members is different than whether this show is succeeding in reaching people who like D&D, for instance. That sort of feedback is valuable and we pay close attention to it.

Whereas people who just say "D&D sucks" or "why isn't this funny" are the equivalent of someone who watches "When Harry Met Sally" and says "why doesn't this have any action?" It only tells us that they aren't the target for the show.

I think the one thing this show could benefit more from is a larger time slot. It becomes really disjointed and quite a bit confusing when it is as short as it is. D&D doesn't work on a fast burn, so if the show itself was maybe 15-20 minutes long then I could see it appealing to me quite a bit more. Is that something you can change or is it genuinely stuck as it is now?

Maybe that's the key. Maybe if the show could be longer it would solve the problems by allowing the "plot" to flow better. Perhaps even leave room for clips that were interesting, but couldn't make the final cut due to time constraints.

lomylithruldor:

Megido:
Two episodes in, and no dice rolling?

Yeah, because rolling dice is really at the core of role-playing? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amber_Diceless_Roleplaying_Game

Also, i think you missed the character creation part of the last episode.

Good point; I forgot about the character creation. What I should have said was no in-game dice dice rolling like combat, or skill challenges, or something. Is dice rolling the key part of role playing? No, but it's a key part of D&D that opens up avenues in role playing. It's the random element of the game that makes it more fun.

Archon:
The Escapist is growing at 2-3% per month. Our 36-month growth rate is over 700%. That means the core demographic is constantly changing. The core demographic who visited the site from 2005 to 2007 is different than the visitor from 2007 to 2009. The visitor today is different than the visitor in 2009..

I suppose my own experience finding this site proves your point - and certainly an interest in increasing the escapists' table-top gaming demographic is not something with which I would take issue. Like I said, I will remain a loyal viewer as long as this series is available and sincerely hope that it carves out a niche (whether large or small) for itself. Perhaps gathering more content (both features and news articles) geared to this new demographic to supplement Zac's series might help achieve that goal? Hell, hosting/mirroring Zac's blog might help plenty if that's at all a possibility (sort of like extra punctuation).

There was more roleplaying this episode, so that's a good thing. This show still kinda sucks though. Why the Escapist is producing this is beyond me.

Turned into a wolf... Reminded me of the sweet days when unforgotten realms was on the escapist and every thing was sunshine.

Ohh yeah, still don't like this show...

lomylithruldor:

Megido:
Two episodes in, and no dice rolling?

Yeah, because rolling dice is really at the core of role-playing? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amber_Diceless_Roleplaying_Game

Also, i think you missed the character creation part of the last episode.

There have been a lot of very interesting discussions on how necessary Dice are to Roleplaying in both the Indie and Mainstream game'o'spheres, my favorite comment on Dice is that they provide a random element that can change the story in ways nobody expected, not the players, not the GM. They can also provide a fallback when you can't quite muster the necessary creativity to play without them.

Actually that's pretty much what everything in Roleplaying is, a support system for play and imagination that you might not otherwise be able to muster.

At least sketchy beard guy is still in the background!
He's my favorite.

addeB:
Turned into a wolf... Reminded me of the sweet days when unforgotten realms was on the escapist and every thing was sunshine.

Ohh yeah, still don't like this show...

All the intense Troll rage towards Game Dogs and I Hit It With My Axe makes me lament the old days when The Escapist used to be a fairly friendly place that was stunningly courteous for an internet forum. Now it seems we've become like every other site on the web, this thread being only marginally less full of assholes than your average YouTube comment section.

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