Take a gamer, a "creator", an actor, a procrastinator and throw it all together and you'd pretty much get me. I got into gaming by the Nintendo 64. Some of my favorites are L.A Noire, Super Mario Galaxy 2, Red Steel 2, Team Fortress 2, Gmod and plenty others.
Oh hai there. Didn't see you come in. Well since you've stumbled onto this blog, I might as well explain to you what the bloody hell I mean by my title that oddly sounds as if I'm making fun of "Animator vs Animation". Well this is something that a lot of us have experienced in our lives as critics who bitch about creations rather than actually try to create something. What exactly is it? Well the best way to explain something (or rather extend this blog to give a semblance of length) is by a personal example.
Flashback mode: Engaged
At the era where petty gossip managed to ooze itself into any freaking channel that it could like some sort of mutagen, there was a particular lady that was basically a camera magnet. Everyone never seemed to shut the fuck up about her. She became dormant, but lord knows that once she awakens from her slumber, everyone will be on her like flies on a pile of shit. That attention whore who I have the misfortune to reveal to you is Britney Spears. I despise her. To me, she was the biggest waste of humanity that came to be ever since the author of Twilight. Whenever I heard one of her songs, I just wanted to change the station...or rather tear it out of the car and throw it out the window. Now why am I bringing this up? Because once the whole Britney craze died out like her career, I actually realized that one of her songs was actually good. That being "Toxic".
The thing is that if you asked me at the time that Britney was slapped on to anything, you'd find that I wouldn't say the same thing. I'd probably tell you that all of her songs are abysmal. Now, it managed to at least change my perception just a little by allowing me to acknowledge one of her works which I really think was well. I may doubt that she really had that much of a part in it, but nonetheless, it's her name on it and her voice "singing" so I can't try to weasel my way out of liking something relating to her. Why did my opinion change though? That's because the creator and the creation are two seperate things.
DUN DUN DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUN
As obvious as that sounds, I wasn't quite so aware of it at the time. My disdain for her shielded me from one of the things that she actually managed to do right. It might not be saying much, but it at least showed that I was trying to look at it as though I never knew her. The interesting part is that I realized that many people fall to this sort of display when they look at a creation of a person that they hate. Some times I might agree with them when they say that the work is putrid, but other times I'd think that it was incredible. This seems to be very common with writers, singers or actors. I think I might know why that is. They sort of exemplify themselves with their personality in some way, shape or form. And if we find something in that personality that we don't enjoy, we'll end up looking at the work as a branch of their personality.
Maybe you're saying to yourself that this isn't something you can relate to. You'll think that you've always tried to give the benefit of the doubt of projects made by the people you detest. Fair enough. What you should also know is that it works the opposite way too. People can simply praise something because this guy was a part of it. These are incredibly common with animation whether it's from movies (Studio Ghibli/Pixar) or shows (almost every anime in existance as well as some cartoons). It also finds itself with directors, actors, game companies (Nintendo being prominent in this department) and plenty more.
I'm just going to hide in this bunker just in case I get someone angry.
Oddly enough, this is worse than looking at something from a person you don't like. When you praise a creator too much, you let others who view it consider the work overrated. When the creator doesn't deliver on the work, you feel underwhelmed. And do I really need to go over the fanboys? At least when you hate the creator, you're blinded by seeing the creation for what it is and people just think you're not understanding the work. This on the other hand just causes for more things to go wrong.
Now, is this sort of thing a bad thing? Well, yes and no. If a creator can manage to prove to others that they deserve to be recognized for good work, I guess a little bit of glorification can go at hand. The same thing goes for if the creator is a total jerk and doesn't show that much effort on their projects. But at the same time, these things are separate no matter what. To judge them simply because of the creator doesn't really show that you were actually paying attention to the creation. You should at least remove any prior knowledge of the person who made this work and analyze it as what it is. I know that when it comes to certain people and their creations it can be hard to separate the two when the work can really show a lot of what you may either like or hate of the person that creates the work. And sometimes, we don't even seem aware that we're looking at a creation with the knowledge of the creator.
That's really all I can say to tackle on the subject. I hope you liked it.
Well, hello there Destructoid. It's the first time that I've properly addressed you all. I apologize for the previous times that I haven't. My name is GameJudge. At least my username. Today, I looked around the Dtoid site and I had noticed that there was a subject they pitched for bloggers. That being handhelds. Oh, how the handhelds have gone through. Now, any Joe could converse about handhelds, but I decided to make this a little interesting. How? Well, I'm going to make this into a tango!
Yes, we're going through this whole debacle as if I were in an Argentinian cafe at night, watching a show of a bunch of dancers as the accordion and violin duel to increase the emotion and passion in the room. Let us begin with how things came to be. The lights go up and we find that the time is either 1977 or 1978. Our gamer (which would be our white-shirt fellow) finds himself with a Mattel LED Based Handheld (who's the lady in the red dress). He finds himself dancing with the first handheld gaming device ever made. It's a marvel...but he finds that she only has one game for him. The only way he can enjoy variety is if he goes with different versions of her. So you'll see him changing from gal to gal to play games like Armor Battle, Missile Attack, Sub Chase and Baseball. She finds out about his multiple handhelds and abandons him.
A year goes by, according to a title card I see on the stage. Our friend has grown a beard and he's wondering what gaming console awaits him. We then met up with the Milton Bradley Microvision (the lady in the white dress). The two move themselves to the violin's music as we notice that he can play various games with her, as their acrobatic tricks would imply. The problem is that her face (LCD screen) rots easily and with a simple static spark, she ruins the tricks they do. The red lady comes back, but this time she's Asian and carries with her a lot of watches, becoming the Game and Watch. The man returns to her and finds a little more enjoyment. But he still faces the problem of having to play different versions of her to gain variety and leaves her. As he walks along, he decides to shave his beard.
He gets himself a tux to signify that he's grown up a little and we find he's in the year 2000. The market has changed. We see that the red lady has brought 5 more identical versions of her, wearing different colored dresses, representing the Gameboy Color. The man tries to walk away from them, and ends up bumping into a lady with a black dress (The Atari Lynx).
The woman in the black dress tries to convince the gamer to choose her, and tries to do some of the acrobatic tricks. Even though she looks promising, the gamer has difficulty trying to carry her. She thinks that he's having trouble with her not because of her size, but her set of tricks. The two collapse as the Game Boy Color ladies surround them. They walk back and find that the lady now has a dark blue dress and is now Asian. The Game Boy Color ladies assume that they've converted the gamer, but it shows to be that this dame is actually the Sega Game Gear. It's proven as she does various dance movements and tricks that the Game Boy Colors try to imitate on other gamers but fail to do so. But like the Lynx, our gamer has trouble carrying her. He puts her down and grabs ahold of the woman with the red dress. He finds that she's improved greatly and does much more moves and tricks and enjoys dancing with her. The Lynx Lady and the Game Gear Gal try to break them up, but the other Game Boy Color Chicks shove them away. The Lynx gives up, but the Game Gear keeps persisting until she fades into obscurity.
We then find ourselves being throw into 2009. Our gamer is dancing with a thinner version of the red lady, who's wearing a hat with a mask on it, which I can only assume gives the illusion that she has two screens that symbolizes that she's the DS Lite. She proves herself to be quite versatile and manages to keep his interest. That's until this mademoiselle comes into the picture.
The lady in the purple dress shows herself to be the PSP. The gamer finds intrigue and tries to see what she has in store. She takes him for a ride and shows him tricks that the DS Lite could not do. The DS Lite Lady gets angered by this PSP taking her man and pulls him back. The PSP takes him back and the two fight for control over our gamer. As this happens, bills and coins fall to the floor. The girls swoon over the cash and he comes to a revelation that all they wanted from him was his cash. The two attack him and strip him of a huge amount of cash and leave him to die as they dance with other gamers. The main gamer finds a friendly hand that pulls him up. He then notices that it's the lady with the black dress. Only that there's a distinct difference. She has a white apple on her dress, showing that she's the Iphone or the Ipod Touch. The gamer doesn't see that much of a gaming console in her, but she tells him that he can fulfill his needs if he just gives her a little cash. He gives her a few bills and finds that she does a lot for him for such a little amount of cash. He tries to gain control, but he's been swayed by the kindness, passion and variety she has given him.
Once the PSP and the DS Lite come back for the man to apologize, they notice that he's been taken over by the Iphone/Ipod Touch's siren song. They try to break him away from her as the two tango, but they seem to have no hope doing so. The PSP and DS Lite decide to trip the two over. They fall to the floor and the gamer realizes that the Iphone/Ipod Touch isn't really a handheld. Rather it's a multi-purpose device (which would be shown by a phone, a music player, a mail letter and other things that fall to the floor along with her). But he finds himself still clinging to his dear lover and shuns the two away nonetheless. Other gamers scorn him for his decision and he starts to have second thoughts.
Cut to the future, where the female in the red dress has big glasses that pop out (to give the 3DS image) and the vixen with the purple dress has improved with her tricks. They notice the gamer and the Iphone/Ipod Touch are still dancing and they are angered. They tried everything they could and the gamer doesn't bat an eye to them. They finally decide to settle it by fighting with each other to get to dance with him. The fight goes on and on, and many things are lost amongst them. Eventually...the fight stops and the gamer ends up dancing with one of the ladies in the shadows. But the lights then go off and you never find out which one he went with.
So, I bet you're a little perplexed at what I'm saying here. Simply put, the handheld console has gone through a lot of changes. From how many games one of the consoles can play to the technology itself. But the market has changed as well. For the most part, we know that Nintendo was dominating this market a long time ago. Many companies tried to beat them, but failed. Some actually got a little attention, others were just left in the dust. Nowadays, they face the problem of going against Sony, a company they've already been fighting with the home console and Apple, a company who's focus isn't really games. And with this new era and what each party is bringing, it's hard to know who'll reign victorious. Will the PS Vita blow people away when it comes out? Will the 3DS manage to use all it has to deliver with some powerful titles? Or will we all confine to the cheapness of the Iphone/Ipod Touch? Who knows? For now, we can just simply enjoy this powerful dance before us.
NOTE: If you are going to skim through it, and chances are some of you will, don't scan over the last part and immediately jump to conclusions, ok?
It takes me a while to think of something to talk about. Mainly I find myself thinking at a desk at something I tackle. And even then, I sometimes feel as if I'm just regurgitating things. Mainly when it comes to talking about video games. I'd like to be one that can bring up new points, but when other beat me to the punch and all I'm left with is reiterating that "fanservice is only good in moderation and shouldn't be a selling point for a game even though lord know that it will be that no matter how many feminists bitch about it". And even then I'd counter it with "GameJudge, you fuckwit, you're a man. You probably fap to this anyways, no matter how much of a 'nice guy' you are and you may just end up using it at some point in your life, so shut your piehole." Which leaves me to something else.
When I do make a "critique" that revolves around something like that, I have that sort of omnimous feeling that I'm going to turn on it at some point in the future. Like I'll become the soul thing I hate. But in that case, I might as well be the ruler of Venezuela with the mentality of a pop singer who only got famous because she was basically jailbait and had that stupid one hit wonder where she "did it again". But nonetheless, this usually stops me from even talking about it within a blog because in 20 years when I do become such a thing, that one person that bothers to know about me will start making campaigns against me saying that "GameJudge is a fucking hypocrite". But that's highly unlikely. Nonetheless, why do I bring this up? Well, maybe it's because I have a complex relationship with "art".
I love making art. But in the direct objective sense of making pictures. I sort of hate art for when it takes on a different meaning. The main reason being is that people who think of themselves as "artsy" come off as pretentious. "Hold on," a tiny voice in my head would shout out, "You're 'artsy' too, so you might as well be part of the pretentious prick clan." To which I'd reply, "Prove it," and then smile smugly to give the illusion that I won the argument with an entity only I can hear. That voice in my head would then instruct my hand to smack myself in the face and then say "Well, why is it that when you talk with some of your friends, you give off this idea that you're deep by bullshitting about your philosophy on 'religion', 'creativity' or 'life', if you're not the 'artsy' type?". At this point, I'd roll my eyes and sigh to that voice besting me.
Then an idea would pop into my head and then I'd say "Ha, you stupid voice! Don't you know art is subjective in it's definition?". And this is where I run into my first problem with it. Art is subjective in definition. That's not to say I hate the idea of art being subjective. True art really lies within the eye of the beholder. If some idiot wants to convince themselves that a bunch of dots and lines surpasses the Mona Lisa, then be my fucking guest. I'm merely pointing out that when people toss the word about, it can be confusing in what sort of sense they mean it. Technically speaking, a painter is "artsy" because he paints. But at the same time a painter can't be "artsy" because all he does is portraits.
That's the first subjective definition of art. The "creatively artsy" definition. Meaning that something that is lacking in a sense of creativity isn't art. Now that's a problem in it of itself because creativity isn't something you can measure. Sure, you can tell when something is dull as shit and when something actually has some flare to it, but what about something in between? How can I tell if Dali was far more surreal than Lovecraft? It's not often that those sort of art folk go on about how much more creative they are than someone else, but it happens at times, and it gets annoying.
The creatively artsy also seem to have a problem in terms of mixing up creativity with originality. And like I've stated before, nothing is original. Maybe in the caveman times, sure...but people have already done things before I have. And last I checked, people who are original are either in an insane asylum because they live in their own fantasy...that might actually sell good if someone could find them or live in the caveman times, as I said before. The true inspiration out of nothing is pretty hard to make up by yourself, because there will always be a trace back to it. Does that mean I should look down on Dali because he used a watch in his painting or Lovecraft because the word necro from Necronomicon derives from Greek to mean death? Not really. That would be kind of silly. Besides, as I've said before again, creativity is still possible. There's a bazillion stories out there that are the same, yet people fucking love them because someone included a giant elephant-hydra fusion into their version.
"Wait just a minute," the voice in my head would pleasantly interrupt, "You know damn well that I know that art is subjective in definition. But you and I both know that there are only three ways you view the word art being used, and lord knows you're just stalling to talk about the one I'm calling 'future hypocrite' on." To which I'd grit my teeth and then look at you in frustration because something that's in my head and is probably being controlled by me and not some other worldly force is whooping my ass. That voice...or I guess I am right here. No, what that voice...I mean I am referring to is the "thought provoking artsy" definition. What's that? Well, stop me if you've heard this.
You ever read a book in class that you were forced to read? You know how the teacher would ramble on for hours and hours on how your book relates to something in this day in age while you were wondering why you have to endure a few more years of the same process, just with a different book? You know how in the end of it all, you have to write about that certain part of the book that somehow connects to something that's happened to you? Well, that term that you get the annoying introduction to is called symbolism. Symbolism is to mediums as chocolate is to being smothered on dollar bills. Mainly that the chocolate is nice, but I want my dollar bills.
Ok, vague comparison. Allow me to drill deeper. Symbolism is nice to see. When someone notices it, it gives a story a sense of depth. For example, I watched FLCL because a friend of mine was recommending it and I just couldn't stop thinking about that awesome Canti character. And to sum it up, it was a roller coaster of everything I liked in animes and everything I hated in animes. But after watching it, I tried to figure out what was so symbolic about it. Which comes to the first problem with symbolic things. What is symbolic and what isn't.
Many things that have to implement some message in them have the problem of either being too blunt or too vague. That becomes a problem either way because no one likes extremes. The too blunt comes off as being a dick or a joke. You ever watched something that had the character say "I learnt something today"? Well, that's the basic blunt way of symbolism. Now this isn't bad when you need to make a point that is vital to make (in either the sense that you really stand by it and hope that you can fight the good fight (which means that when you argue it, you don't come across as a dick) or because you need to teach kids that looking both ways before crossing the street would be a wise idea." But when it comes to politics, religion or anything like that, you might as well wear a hat on your head that says "I'm a fag that believe in X, and whatever you say about it can't change my opinion. FOLLOW ME YOU BRAINLESS SHEEP."
The vagueness of symbolism is actually clever in some senses but it brings more problems than when you're being direct. When you face the problem of being too vague, then this creates the "Blue drapes" argument. For those who don't know about it, someone said that when they were in English class, they would listen to the teacher over-analyze a story by saying "The blue drapes represent the sorrow that the character is facing, or some foreshadowing to a tragic death" when really the guy was thinking "The drapes are fucking blue". That argument is basically stating that what could be symbolic, might just not be. For one, foreshadowing can only be amounted to cleverness if pulled off right and if you look at something a second time. But that wouldn't really make that much enhancements to it. That, and it can also fall to the problem of being too blunt.
Then there's the actual symbolism vs the viewer's symbolism vs other viewer's symbolism. This is catastrophic if it's in a mess. I mean, with some symbolism-heavy medias, sometimes the message is right there in a subtle manner. In even less of them, the author actually holds true to the general consensus of the symbolism people let out when they look at the media.
Getting back to FLCL, for the most part, it bases itself on being a "coming of age" story, with many things posing itself. Like the beasts Naoto faces are hardships he faces, and Canti/Raharu being the will to overcome those hardships, the fake eyelashes Amarao wears to symbolize a fake sense of maturity, Raharu representing the things that we hate about females and like about them once we're at that level of maturing and whatnot. But you know what? The dude behind this anime hasn't spilled the beans that much on the message behind it. For all we know, he could have been making the anime for the hell of it. Which may not be a big deal to some but a big deal to others.
At least with FLCL, there's a general idea of what the possible symbolism could be, but in other shows, the message can be mixed. People can actually bicker about what the blue drapes might just mean. Hell, this sometimes pisses the creator off when he realizes that his nihilistic message actually gets translated to a message about how we should all help to achieve world peace. In fact, anything, general consensus on the symbolism or not, can be misinterpreted as something else. Something that I don't see as a symbol could be viewed as such by someone and vice versa. Symbolism ends up becoming subjective which ruins the point of it's objective.
That to me is why when symbolism comes up, I laugh at people who go on about the message behind it. Or in some cases steam like mad. "But you inconsiderable twat, you just went on about FLCL symbolism," that voice will remind me. True. But I think what annoys me more is when people argue it as if it's a fight between who gets to fuck the hot damsel in distress they just saved and when people really center themselves on it. I'm ok with people being deep about things. It gives them a sense of complexity, as if they look at the world in a unique way, adding and taking away things they see fit. I'm like that. And sure, if people are civil about symbolism in mediums, it could make for some wonderful fancy dinner talk. But it gets a little preachy when someone just has to push that sort of idea that things have to be just that when there is no sense of dumb fun.
Now I know what that voice is going to say. "You want to hit Daniel Floyd in the balls, don't you? You've practically made it clear on occasions that you have a complex relationship with him. Hell, if it weren't for him, you wouldn't be writing this blog. You'd be playing InFamous right about now." And even though I'd like to be Mr. Different by being a guy that has a quasi-hatred for a guy many idolize, that would just make me look shallow and stupid. Plus, he has a bigger following than I do, so I'd probably lose a subscriber or 20 if I dared to do so. And let's not forget that bitching about internet celebrity's opinions is pretty fuck basement dweller of someone to do.
More importantly, I don't really hate him. I just don't have that same sort of "respect" for the guy that others do. I'm pretty sure he's a really nice guy. He sounds like it. I like that he speaks very elegantly and makes for good points without being as pretentious as others do. Hell, he evens states at times that he can enjoy something for it just being dumb fun and not filled to the brim with a "message". But something about what he does irks me a little.
For the most part, he's pushing this idea that video games need to become more evolved. Tackle tougher subjects. That video games are in a farther medium than anything else. Yadda yadda, all that good stuff. That's great, but doesn't it feel a little...forced? Ok, ok, I know. I'm crossing the line between civilized blogging to an annoying over-analyzation of Extra Credits, but I just want to point this out. With other works, the sense of evolution within a medium wasn't made by someone saying that we should propel the medium to becoming deeper with our minds. It just happened. Daniel's sort of forcing the change in evolution. Not directly mind you, but indirectly. And it just doesn't feel that natural. Besides, the medium of video games is still young and I'm sure that it'll happen at some point, but to ask for it feels a little unnatural.
Don't get me wrong, he makes good points in his videos, but the overall goal just feels iffy. "Will you stop with this already?" the voice (and probably most of you) yells, "Why are you bringing this nice chap up that you shouldn't really be over-analyzing so much anyways?" Reason being that Daniel's mentality, as I perceive it (HA! I knew I missed something), is the same mentality of the artsy folk that are thought provoking. Except at times, it gets way more extreme. Mainly they don't have a sense of "fun" and nitpick things. That and they just make the idea of symbolism seem more pretentious that it already is by the people that force symbolism. That's why I end up having this sort of hatred for something that I know I might implement to something someday.
It seems to me that the definition of art gets tossed around as something that I feel should be objective, but then takes the form of subjectivity when people bring in up in certain contexts. And while some fall under the category of "That's just how they view it" or "That's why they prefer X over Y", other times it falls to people having really effing high standards or me ending up with a fight against myself. What people think is a work of art is up to them, creativity is something I've discussed all too much to tread over again (until realizing that some people may just not understand that difference) and thought-provoking, symbolic works aren't necessarily bad. If something like a book, a movie or a game that's based on a fictional realm can actually trigger a person to think about more philosophical ideas, it actually doesn't really detract that much if done right. It probably enhances it. But I fail to see how some artsy work actually enhances the quality of works that aren't of such a thing.
Nonetheless, each definition of art manages to get me to hate in some way. The creative definition annoys me because people feel the need to confuse it with something else. The thought provoking definition angers me because so many manage to muck it up while leaving me with a confused taste in my mouth. And the objective one frustrates me because I can't be bothered to make it due to an immense sense of procrastination. I hope you enjoyed this read. And Daniel Floyd, if you somehow stumbled upon this blog by god knows how...no offense and no hard feelings. You're a nice bloke, and I'm sure that you're just doing that you think is right for this medium. I hope no harm is done.
Good day to you, fellow reader. Have a seat if you aren't doing so already. Today I am going to talk to you about a little something about fanbases. You see, with everything in this world, there are people that have a tendency to follow it for some reason. Whether it informs them, entertains them or astonishes them, people become fanatics about a certain person or a certain subject. And sometimes, fans start to accumulate at rapid rates as time progresses. But whether there's 10 or 10,000 fans that appreciate everything that the "idol" does, there's always something that occurs with these groups that ends up with others becoming less tolerable or disgusted by others who have no part in the group. Why exactly is that? Well, that my friend is not a hard question to answer. Fans themselves destroy their fanbase.
If this occurs as a shock to you, obviously you haven't been immersed in a group of people that have a profound interest for a long time. Which makes me envy you honestly, because when you see a fanbase you're a part of start to self-destruct, you get a very sickening feeling in your gut. Now perhaps you're wondering to yourself how the fans manage to ruin things for everyone else that's involved in the fanbase. Well, there's various ways, but I'm just going to look at the more prominent ones.
The Flamboyant Fans:
There are fans that usually like something in particular and then drop it after a few minutes of talking about it. These sort of fans come across as regular folk and not many really pay too much attention to them. But then you have the flamboyant fans. These are the kind of people that will make no mystery that they like a certain thing. Every action they take is a constant reminder of how huge fans they are. More than half of their conversation consists on talking about the thing that they love most in a positive light.
The main problem about these fans is that they're like that person that talks way too much. You know they're good people and you know it'll seem a little disrespectful to interrupt them while their talking, but you can't just be sitting there listening to them prattle on about it for 2 hours. You need to scream at them so that they'll take the hint. The thing about that is that these fans just seem to move on to someone else and wait for you to become less aggravated so that they may attempt to repeat the process again.
One thing to note about flamboyant fans is that they aren't the worst of the bunch. Sure, they will annoy everyone for a while, but they still have a good spirit. When the average "idol" comes up to meet the fans, they might sense a bit of a disturbance at most when interacting with these fans.
The Nitpicking Fans:
Fans are known to analyze the works of their "idol" a lot. Some just do it to absorb the greatness of the "idol". Others....actually do that as well. But, just picture for a second that both groups are thrown into the future. One of the groups will continue to absorb the greatness of the "idol" (perhaps at a lesser extent. Or greater, who knows?), while the other spends it's time reliving the past works of the "idol" only to find that all he analyzes about the recent works of the "idol" do not live up to it's past. That's the nitpicking fans in a nutshell.
The nitpickers stop at nothing to look over the work of the "idol" as many times as possible just to point out to others the problems of the series. The oddity of these fans is that they consider themselves part of the fanbase, but they spend most of their time moaning about the work rather than appreciating it or praising it. In fact it's rare for one of these sort of fans to actually be pleased by the "idol".
Now there's nothing wrong for fans to revolt against their "idol" if they do something that isn't of their norm. But when these fans try to create arguments, then end up infuriating the "idol" rather than helping them out. It makes the "idol" feel as though they can't do anything to please their fans. Most of the time, the "idol" lashes out at the entire fanbase and locks them out of what could have been. And let's face it...to other people, the nitpicking fans just seem like bratty teen girls that spew out petty gossip. Who cares?
The Really Obsessive Fans:
I know what you're thinking right now. I already went over these sort of fans. Actually I didn't. Flamboyant fans are expressive about their obsession on the outside. The really obsessive fans are expressive about their obsession on the outside and the inside. Or in some cases, just the inside. They take their fandom over to some really really bizarre levels that usually comprise of them blurring the borders of sanity. They're the ones that insert OCs into fetish-fueled fan fictions. They're the ones that have their rooms covered with the work of their "idol". And they're the ones that can't think of anything else but their "idol".
Really obsessive fans are the ones that have very huge problems with their psyche. Because of that, they're subject to being easy targets to people that want to hurt the fanbase. Their reactions are violent and they can be attacked as many times as possible. Not only that, but when you really dig deep into the minds of these fans, you find things that just show how diluted their thoughts have become.
The sad thing about this is that the "idol" may look at them in fear. The fan could want to do unspeakable things to the "idol" and they may not know it. Most of the time "idols" avert any contact with these fans, but these fans are known to be very persistent which makes for various negative emotions to erupt amongst the fanbase.
The Jerkwad Fans:
I'm not sure how frequent these fans come about, but they seem to be rare from my observation. The jerkwad fan is basically one that that thinks that their "idol" is superior to everything. Anyone who dares to question their logic gets immediately crushed by their hand. They like to pick fights with people and don't care if others see their end result as a victory or a loss. The fan will always think that he was the winner.
These fans, albeit rare, are incredibly pesky. They demean other fanbases to make their point of how superior their "idol" is, making for those who are being attacked feel as the works of the "idol" that fan is a part of are atrocious. These fans take a long time to rid of and take an even longer time to fix the trouble they've created and the direction they led people outside of the fanbase.
Most of the time, the "idol" is not aware of the jerkwad fan. But when they are, it just makes them nod their head in shame and continue on with their work. Basically put, these sort of fans end up like a fart. Except they last for a longer time and call people names.
The Correlation and Conclusion
The best way to put is like so. You know how people can do tons and tons of really good things in their lifetime but everyone seems to remember them for that one bad incident? These fans serve as that bad incident. Most of the time, when a fanbase is looked upon, their view is obstructed by the ones that pester them. Whether the other people that look at the fanbase can get rid of the bad fans or not, they still see the fanbase as something idiotic and tend to hate on the group. Now that's not to say others that look at fanbases can't bring up good points about what's wrong with what the fanbase stands for, but they are still heavily affected by those sorts of fans.
The thing that becomes most upsetting is that the fans that are usually more civil and quiet end up becoming targets of slander due to what their brethren have done. And they know that these fans are the ones that get the most attention from everyone else, unless a fan were to do something really humbling to tribute the "idol". Nonetheless, the "idol" ends up encounter more attention from the lesser respectable fans. Depending on the "idol", they might just look over them, joke about them, lock every fan out of what could have been or simply quit doing what they do to end any form of interaction with their fans whatsoever.
I know some of you may consider this as someone pointing out the obvious of errors within a fanbase, but I just wanted to enter a little more deeply and figure out why fanbases end up becoming deformed as time goes on. Hell, from what I've figured out, this can actually fit into other groups of people...not just fanbases. Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this blog
Greetings, fellow g1s. I've been pondering this through a large amount of time. Usually, when I see a negative review, I hear the term "rip-off". A rip-off is either a product that is not worth all the money you spend for it, or a duplicate of a different product with a different name slapped onto it. My mind at first was against this sort of thing as it has become very monotonous to see the same thing being copied over and over again. Then my mind debated that I liked some things that did just that because the formula of said thing was enjoyable to through over and over again. But then that was counterattacked by the idea that some formulas get altered to become different, leaving my mind to wage a metaphorical war against itself with the various ideals that were flying from one side to the other.
Now, before I can talk even more about how things have been ripped off in various ways, I first have to talk about the complaint itself. When a viewer witnesses that a particular part of a game or movie has similar, if not identical elements of a different game or movie that they have experienced, their mind recognizes it and the person begins to think that this lacks any sense of originality whatsoever, which may turn them off. But here's the thing, people only refer to something being a ripoff, when various other factors of the product do not work fully to their advantage. Allow me to go deeper on this.
Wow, this was pretty witty of me.
If we want to strip everything down to the lowest form we wanted to, everything would be considered a ripoff. Think about it. Love, hatred, conflict, war, unity, conservation, sins, purity, morality, allignment and various other philosophical terms have been sewn into various stories. Including those that the creative design to us or the realistic that tell tales about thier older days. We've all experience the same emotions, we've all been X years old at some point or the other, we all have fingerprints. Simply put, nothing truly in this world is, or ever can be purely original. The thing that seperates us from one another is not how we're completely different than others, having our own little bubble that no one will be able to comprehend and decipher, but how we have been crafted in a different way with similar properties and take different parts of the world and morph them to our own vision. Movies and games work like this as well.
The thing with those things though is that some of us can't appreaciate it when it rips off something in a way that is inferior to the original portrayal after realizing it's a copy. For example, when Avatar came out, everyone, including me, hated it. The reason? It was basically Ferngully and/or Pocahontas with a more alienistic and fantasy-like feel coat of paint on it. Now, before I continue, I must address that even though I dislike that movie, it could have been worse. At least the look of the movie was nice, and I appreciate the effort they had when making the visuals, despite not being much of a graphics-goggler. It didn't deserve that much hate as it attempted to do a little more with it's story. Not that much, but enough to at least make it something that a person may consider renting. Now that I got that out of the way, allow me to continue.
Thank you for showing me this, /v/. Now quit acting like /b/.
The thing with repainting a story is that if you basically add nothing truly ground-breaking to your "rip-off", people will dislike it more. Flip's Twisted World gained a reputation for being a mediocre game mainly because it did not add anything to the rip-off of Super Mario Galaxy that was truly outstanding other than it was a different set of backgrounds and characters. It's not usually wise to just take a story and slap many minor changes (the design of the character, their occutation, the location) to it. Rather, you have to suckerpunch the story with a few major changes (the feelings of the character throughtout the story, the conflicts between characters, the atmosphere). But you know what's weird, with that said? TV parodies usually are "many minor changes to a story" played for laughs. And yet people seem to think it's alright. Then again, I suppose playing a story for laughs is considered alteration of the atmosphere, so I suppose it's ok. Speaking of which, alteration is an important term here.
In school, when you copy and paste a paragraph that greatky expresses your point-of-view on something and place it on an assignment, you're plagarizing. Yet if you were to take that same paragraph and word it differently, you're para-phrasing. Also known as, altering that paragraph. It's a way to display the point that you'd like to express that someone else has, but say it in a different way. Alteration is done in various games and movies, and it's what seems to make a rip-off, not much of a rip-off. Yet, if your alteration bombs and the fridge logic hits them that your creation was merely a previous creation with a different enough feel to it, they'll dislike it even more than they did when they saw that your creation was a dissapointing experience for them. That's the main two problems the repainting of a story that make it become notorious for being a rip-off. If you
make little changes that don't make that much of an impact on a creation, or if your creation is discovered as a ripoff of a different creation despite it having a good sense of alteration. Or it could be a poor sense of alteration combined with it's somewhat plagerized method.
Either I mindfreaked people, or I'm seeing things again.
Let me explain that a little better. We'll use the examples of Barb Wire and Avatar. Boy, I never thought I'd be putting those two films in the exact same sentence...but here I am, doing just that. Anyways, Avatar was a rip-off of Ferngully and/or Pocahontas, while Barb Wire was a rip-off of Casablanca. Both of them did not do that well with others. But the key difference is that Avatar became the grounds for a war that would never end, while Barb Wire was generally disapproved of from many viewers. Why? Well, James Cameron managed to blossom the enviroment that the movie was taking place. The characters might have still been the cardboard cut-out from either movie it was ripping off, but give the man credit for doing some creative changes. Barb Wire on the other hand changed the way that some events took place, but never changed the development of the characters or the surroundings. All it did as much as a drastic change is add a blond bimbo that can't act, even if her life depended on it, as the main protagonist to show off her massive rack.
Darth Vader, the most notorious character for altering the classic trope of "villain kills hero's father".
Now, the other method of "ripping off" that is less criticized is taking various different concepts to combine them into one creation. If you've noticed some of the best films on your list, you may notice that they're not original at the slightest. But do you complain? No. That's because they take so much from other things and mash it up into one single project. Who Framed Roger Rabbit, my favorite movie, borrowed from the Golden Age of Cartoons as well as various noir films. Star Wars, one of the greatest films in the world borrowed from westerns, samurai movies, science fiction, fantasy, action movies and more to create a breathtaking experience. Matt Greoging took various pop-culture references into hist two shows, the Simpsons and Futurama. Now, why don't people complain that it took all of these creations and created some warped fanfiction with their own OCs? It's because it took a bunch of different ideas, altered them a little bit and made it into one new creation.
The best way to explain this is with tropes. We've all seen tropes, right? They're everywhere. But do we complain about every single trope? No. It's because tropes that have been used a lot can be inverted, parodied, subverted, etc, to make a different expression of said trope. That way, the trope can be exploited in a new and more interesting way. Now, I'm starting to feel contradicting with saying that certain aspects are new when I stated that nothing in this world is original. In fact, the following points are basically the points that I'm trying to make here.
I wish I really had this gavel.
Nothing nowadays is original when it comes to components. If we wanted to complain about originality with every work that came our path, we'd be fighting non-stop. Yet, creativity thrives as it takes what we already have and makes something different out of it. Is it original? The components aren't. But the form and structure of the creation is. That, to me, is what complaining about originality really means. That something has the exact same components as something else. Can this still be considered a complaint? Not entirely. Even if it's too blatant, does not alter enough for the viewer to discredit it and consider it a creative spin and does not offer anything for the viewer to gain enjoyment from it, complaining about it is a tad silly. The complaint can only be truly justified is a person is taking a creation that isn't theirs and calling it their own without any alteration or with very little alteration (which means remixes) or giving someone credit.
I'll say this though, you can still say that a person did not fully manage to create something more with the component that they had (I mean, Sonic fan-characters are basically like that, and I can't say I'm a fan of them). And you can still dislike something that was altered. Various other things come into play, such as if the creator is admiring something that they use or if you enjoyed seeing the change of something. But this still leaves me with questions. How are you not sure it was merely coincidence? And shouldn't something be judged by it's own merits to be criticized fairly rather than it's connections? Don't we like certain things that turn out to be very generic?
There you have it. I tried to make my point as clear as I could, and I feel as though I've still left some mixed messages, but just know that trying to talk about creativity (alongside originality), is no easy subject. Ask any philosopher or pyschologist, and you'll see what I mean. Hope that you understood my point and liked my blog.
If there's one thing you need to have in the buisness in order to become successful is credability. You do good things and have a good attitude, you can usually end up in a good place. With a series, you need to know exactly what your audience wants. And by doing that, you need to leave a good impression on your audience. But even if you do leave a good impression on your audience, you have to make sure that people will be able to enjoy the next part of the series or the series as a whole. But if you don't, you'll be singing these blues. Today, I'm here to see what could cause a series to lose it's appeal from newcomers and/or veterans.
Changing Major Things In A Series:
A series is like a tower of Jenga blocks. You have to be very careful with it or else everything will end up in shambles. Usually, companies know what to do so that their product doesn't end up collapsing onto themselves. That's because they do small precise moves. But when it comes to something major in a series, changing how everything works out usually ends up in disaster. I mean, there's a lot of flame wars that have brewed up in the past. And there's possible three reasons as to why that is.
Now, what do I mean by attitude? Well...I'm talking about the whole feel of a series. You know, if it's for kids or for adults. If it's a comedy or a tradegy. If it's symbolic or just there for the sake of being there. When you grab your series and decide to work around certain guidelines, it makes it quite difficult for you to switch to a different sort of feel. What do I mean? Well, suppose we got something over the top goofy. It's beyond non-sensical. It basically has no point whatsoever and follows a simple formula. Now we take this series and give it a dose of extreme character development, complex plot elements and explanation.
Now, I know what you're thinking. "This actually would be a more suitable change for a series." But let's examine this further. Say that this series simplicity allows for people to enjoy it. That it's over the top madness allowed for wonderful moments. By switching it all over and causing the structure of a series to be altered, there is a chance that it will weaken the series as a whole. But what series could we name that has switched the attitude, causing for shark-jumping to occur. Well, there's a lot to name, but I seem to be concerned with the Sonic comic book series for some reason.
From extensive research and TV Troping, I've realized that the Sonic comic
book series has been deemed questionable. I mean, the original product of the Archie corporation is Archie, a comic book based on a guy that loves two girls...but would never end up in a threesome with them. Simply put, it's old-fashioned morals in a new world. Now this company is quite benign and the Sonic comic book series are usually forgotten of. Why? Well, around Issue 50, I believe, there had been a sudden spike of absurdity. How so? Well...they just found a way to turn "hedgehog vs mad scientist going after magic jewels" into "spiky mammal who works among a rebellious organization engaging in heated battle against a completely maniacal robot-creator along with other villainous character going after mind-boggling historical artifacts that can affect the world." Simply put, it overcomplicated everything.
The fact of the matter is, the game's didn't have that much backstory. They simply had the basics of a hero/villain dilema. I mean, even when the previous issues were releases, they still stayed somewhat true to the series's feel. They just added a few more members. But slowly, it became more clustered. By making it more clustered, the comics were just left as a subject of debate amongst the hardcore of the hardcore Sonic fans and were ignored by the other Sonic fans. It just wasn't how they invisioned the series.
The cast of series is vital for making your series enjoyable to the consumer. Without characters that you can cling to, your series will slowly lose it's appeal. But how does the cast of a series actually affect it in a negative way? Well, there's adding a character, killing a character off and altering a character. Adding a character isn't a bad idea. But you can guarantee chaos through flame wars (or large rating drops), this character that you are adding must be used in order to gain a new demographic or if this character is before or after the permanent death of a character. Killing a character overall is a very risky procedure. Especially if you decide to shoot in the dark and kill someone that actually made your series redeemable. Finally, if you alter a main character in a manner most unfitting...I can't really say that you're safe.
But if you would like me to develop even further on these two (since the third one is more related to my first point) ideas, then I shall. Adding a character usually means that the other characters must interact with this particular character. And sometimes, the way that they interact trigger a domino effect. That emotion translates into a plot point or a conflict. Perhaps it would be better if I gave you an example. Have you seen The Fairly Odd Parents at some point? Well, if you have, you might have either seen a rerun of an old episode or a rerun of a recent episode. The way you can tell if it's old or new is the addition of Poof. Poof was a character that was added to series for a reason that I don't of. Anyways, by adding Poof into the show, there was more focus in raising Poof. Basically, he would serve as a nuisance that would distract viewers from the main focus. If this still isn't getting to you, then just look at the Raving Rabbids series as a whole. Once you do, maybe you'll understand how the predicament arises. But if not, then I can't spoon feed you anymore. Moving on....
Killing off a character is nothing out of the ordinary. In cartoons, death can occur...and at times it's just random bystanders, one-time filler characters or just an reoccuring joke. But then there's the issue of permanently killing off a character that was a large part of the series. Now, would it be safe to say that no show could pull this move off right? Not really. But the thing is that if a new character is replacing the old one, it must find a way to connect to the series as a whole but at the same time avoiding being the same character with a different design. Therefore, by replacing the character, you face the problem of trying to complete a puzzle with a different shaped piece. But then you may ask yourself what would happen if a major character dies and they don't get replaced. Well...truth be told, that rarely occurs. And if it did, the series would need solid characters that could fill that hole in without having to replace it. And chances are that it won't happen.
This particular argument can't be applied to anything else except games. So techinally, I'm creating 2.5 arguments to back up my view as to why a series could lose it's creditability. But since this is Screwattack, I might as well be talking about this. Like the other two choices in this list, gameplay gets familiar in a series once you establish it. If your games are platformer, they follow the platformer mechanics. The only thing that changes with gameplay is the controls. And in order to make people come back to your series, you need to add things that they like, remove things they hate and test out new things to see if it works or not. But if there's one thing you usually don't want to do, is change it too much, or else you'll create a black sheep of the series. Case in point, Super Paper Mario.
Super Paper Mario is considered by many, the black sheep of the series. Not many fans of the series enjoyed this game. Why? Well, it decided to ditch the RPG element that the series was fond of and instead gave it a more platform like engine. Instead of having to do turn based battles, you did it in real time. And there was more puzzle involved in the game (though mostly all the puzzles's solutions were "DERP FLIP FROM 2D to 2.5/3D"). Since the vast majority of gamers were more familiar to the stragetizing, grinding and side-mission aspect of the games, it was reasonable to see why Super Paper Mario was left out. Now, the thing about this change (as well as the others) is that flame wars often erupt because of this. And they simply become a matter of "you can't be in the middle of this argument" because of the canon-wise vs single-wise debate.
The Canon-Wise and Single-Wise debate is one that causes fans to go overboard when discussing a black sheep game. Some fans will take the series as a whole and analyze it with relevance. And since usually black sheep games aren't canon, gameplay-wise, these fans go crazy. Others would rather discredit the series as a whole and simply look at the game by itself. By doing so, they take into account everything and see if the game itself holds up well. And if it does, they usually side with the other side. Put them both together to talk about the game and prepare to clean up a bloody mess afterwards.
Finding the needle in the haystack:
This problem is one that can be viewed in two ways. The first way is that if you want to truly enjoy the series, you have to be really invested in the series. Basically, if you're a casual fan of this series, you're not going to comprehend why this series is good. Or maybe you find the series to be good, but you don't see why it should be glorified at a level such as the one the fans do. The second way is that the series only gets good at a certain point (or it only was good at a certain point). So if you're at the era where is was good, you have to make the most out of it. And if you weren't in that era, then that means that you're going to have a little trouble enjoying the series as others do. These two share the same sentiment, since you really have to dig around in order to see what's so wonderful about the series.
The first way that we look at this argument is more prone to overusing the term "overrated" since the scenario that the fans create allows for others to see the weaknesses of this magnum opus. For you see, the fans start enjoying the series too much. They absorb the series and try to make it their life. By letting the series possess them, they're doomed to become the marketing puppet of the creator. Since they're being controlled by this series and are fooled to believe that this series is the best thing to happen to mankind, their extremist fanaticism causes them to alter opinions into fact. By blinding the consumer from what's proven and what's up to them to decide, they'll glorify the series as a tribute to the beauty they have been given. But when someone isn't hypnotized by the siren's song and comes by fans that are too gullible to know fact from opinion, they tend to disagree with the fans (whether it is because the series isn't that good or the series isn't good, period), which as we all know, means trouble.
The second way that we look at this argument is more prone to misunderstanding and bad timing. If there's something that we can sometimes say about a series, is that it has eras. For example, in cartoons, they're might be different animators. Like in the Looney Tunes, there was Tex Avery, Chuck Jones, Friz Freleng and some random person for cartoons made on the site. The problem here is if there's an era that's a fan-favorite, if you're at the wrong era, you might not understand what's so special about the series. You'll just shrug your shoulders and ignore the series. Hell, if you are in a different era, you might think that this era is much better than the fan-favorite, which in turn, makes you a public enemy of the fans of the series.
Perhaps the most common and the most barbaric reason of them all, prejudgemental paralysis means that you've been frozen by something that you've seen from a preview for a new addition for a series and immediately, without second thought, you're in total opposition of the new addition. Now, why could this be a turnoff to a series as a whole? Well, there's the issue of others thinking that the series isn't good at all. That it's basically a "Oh come on!" moment. Then there's the issue of making a total fool out of other fans of the series.
How can a person predict that this new addition for the series would cause the whole series to be ruined, simply by a screenshot? There is none. Unless you work in the project, in which case, you shouldn't be giving the people spoilers until the project is done. So, to assume that this next part of the series is going to be awful makes you into a complete imbecil. And if you convince others that, then you're making them into imbecils. And if you take your assumption further and try to stop the new project, you're pratically doing a kamikaze on your own fanbase. In other words, prejudment to the extreme will ruin the fanbase as a whole. And if you ruin the fanbase, you ruin the opportunity to get others involved in the fanbase. There really isn't anymore to add to this.
With a series, you need to make sure that your audience can continue enjoying what they've been clinging onto while making newcomers seem interested into taking a peek at your series. But sometimes you may not know what's best. And when that happens, you just have to hope that it wasn't a huge mess up that you'll have a difficult time cleaning up. But hey it's not always your fault. Sometimes, your fans will create too much fighting over something that's simply opinion-based. Just know that your series is delicate and you have to make sure that you do what's right so that your audience does right. That way, your appeal and creditability stay strong.