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7:32 AM on 07.03.2015

Jim Sterling vs. Digital Homicide Interview: Link + Some After Thoughts

Slaughtering Grounds

So today, Jim Sterling has posted a podcast of an interview he participated in between himself and Digital Homicide, the developer most famously known for the game The Slaughtering Grounds. If you've been following the saga then skip ahead, if not, I'll try to summarise it here.

Slaughtering Grounds Gameplay Screenshot

Digital Homicide released The Slaughtering Grounds on Steam Greenlight. I'd give a description (the picture above probably tells you more than enough), but check out the store page and most importantly, this Jim Sterling Squirty Play video where all this all began. The video is a very harsh critique of the game and for good reason. What happened next started an entire saga of PR disaster. Digital Homicide (hereby now referred to as DH) posted a Review the Reviewer video (which has since been taken down) where they personally attacked Jim for his video and subsequently tried to have Jim's video removed from YouTube.

The bitterness between the two parties has continued for some time, Jim has refered to the incident several times in his Jimquistion series and has continued to review or provide first play impressions for future DH games, and DH has written comments on its steam forums attacking the practices of Jim and others who do similar work.


So we now come to today's interview which if you can stomach the absurdity and poor audio quality does go on for over and hour and a half. DH approached Jim about conducting the interview in an attempt to make the conversation about the whole ongoing saga more open. The conversation in full can be found on Jim's Patreon post here or listen below:

The conversation is, well, I found it mostly amusing if a little cringeworthy at times. It's very clear that neither party has any intention of backing down from their respective positions and its mostly full of unanswered questions, attempts at logic that make little to no sense and a few insults thrown in as well, plus a bunch of stuff Jim tries to say when he can get a word in edgeways. There are several different topics that are brought up, such as YouTube distribution, the definition of what Jim's job actually is (DH compares him to a leech), whether or not the gun sounds are any good etc. There are a few points about these topics I want to focus on in this post, that I was surprised Jim didn't bring up himself.


Backpedaling 1. Backpedaling

In the original video, Jim makes several points about certain assests in the game that were used poorly or were blatant rip offs. The most famous being the blood splatter image that was taken directly from a google image search.

Blood Splatter

In the interview, DH commented on how things like this had been changed or removed from the game and that the game is now only 99 cents (at time of writing the game is on sale for £0.15 on the UK store). The issue here is these changes are all completely irrelevant to the arguement as the video he is complaining about was released before any of these changes were made. He also mentioned that the game can be refunded on Steam for consumers who are dissatisfied with the product. Another mute point in his argument as again, Steam refunds is a practice that had not been implemented at the time of Slaughtering Grounds release. He claimed people don’t need to see Jim’s bad reviews, but at that time, watching that Slaughtering Grounds video was well worth the time and saved you from spending $10 on the game. At the time of the game and the videos release. Jim's suggestion in response that he was trying to get across was that the game should have been made available to play for free, likening it to practices such as putting the game on Newgrounds. DH can backpedal all they like with claims that things have changed and improvements have been made but the point was that the game, in the state that Jim played it in and created that video around, was not worth $10 and should probably have never been made available for sale in the first place.


2. Both Parties Create Their Work In The Same Way

Throughout the interview, DH agreed that the way he had created the game was to purchase Unity store assets and then put them together using his code, with his coding being the time and effort that warranted to game having a price tag. His only defense for this practise was to try to liken it to how Jim creates his videos, using gameplay footage from a developers game, adding other images or assets that Jim has either purchased, been given permission to us, or is using in compliance with fair usage. It was his claim that Jim cannot complain at his work in this way, when Jim does exactly the same with his work and earns around $10'000 a month from Patreon by putting other people's assests together and simply adding his critique. Besides the fact that the two create completely different mediums of work and so a comparison like this is unfair to begin with, what neither party discussed was the way that Patreon operates. Jim tried touching on it at one point when he talked about starting out as an amateur creating videos without pay which over the years he has refined into a career, but this thought process got lost from DH talking over him and changing the point constantly. The point here is that Jim’s Patreon is completely optional and you “the consumer” are not required to pay any money whatsoever to access his material. He does claim advertising revenue from YouTube videos but this is at no monetary cost to the viewer. Those who do (disclaimer: I am a supporter of Jim's Patreon), do so out of choice, because they like Jim’s work and wish to support him. On the flip side, what DH did by buying Unity assets whilst was not incorrect or wrong, but charging $10 for that product and then trying to compare it to what Jim does is unfair without the proper context.


3. Apologies

For my final point, I find the ending of the interview unfair and really think Jim should’ve said something about the apologies. DH claimed that they had both apologised to each other and that they can accept these apologies and move forward. DH did apologise for the Review the Reviewer video that was posted, saying it was an over the top reaction. He didn’t apologise for anything else. Jim on the other hand, did not apologise for anything, and quite rightly so, he has nothing to apologise for in my opinion. Jim shouldn’t have accepted DH’s claim that he had apologised, because he hadn’t and shouldn’t have to and this creates a false impression that Jim has accepted some sort of guilt, that he agrees that he has done something wrong. Jim's methods and personality can be pretty extreme at times and not everyone would agree that the way he delivered the original video was appropriate. DH clearly thinks that, I most certainly do not but that's why I enjoy Jim's work. That being said, Jim still didn't do anything wrong. Though a topic of negativity, DH creating Slaughtering Grounds with cobbled together assests and no artistic cohesion wasn't wrong, it was poor, but not wrong and DH made no attempt to apologise for that so to suggest that Jim had apologised for the way he presented his material was simply delusional. Whilst I very much doubt it would come up, this could be used as fodder by DH in the future against Jim, if they use to claim his admission of guilt. It's unlikely, but then again, if you did just listen to that interview, you wouldn't see it as a big surprise. I certainly wouldn’t be surprised if they used the fact that Jim’s dildo is not an accurate representation of the average male penis against him.

Pony Shrug

So those are my thoughts on the subject. For everybody's sanity, let's hope that this sees the end of this whole ordeal. Although as Jim stated in the podcast, awards season at the end of the year is when will next likely hear him talk about Digital Homicide once again. Question is, will DH do something in the mean time or have we got a backlash from this interview to look forward to? Let's hope whatever form the next installment comes in, its slightly more brief. In the meantime, I will continue to support Jim's Patreon account, watch his videos and not purchase any content from Digital Homicide. Then again, I actually bought the PC version of Arkham Knight, I've already been a sucker once this year. Once a year is enough.

Thanks for reading!

Oh and thank God for Jim.


4:25 PM on 11.27.2013

League of Legends 3.14 Hotfix Not Working as it should (video attached)

[font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]For all you League of Legends fans out there, a quick PSA about the latest hotfix for patch 3.14. It hasn't worked![/font]

[font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]In the above video I show you how Relic Shield and The Bloodthirster are not working correctly in the latest 3.14 hotfix. Whilst the description of Relic Shield has changed to show only melee basic attacks will execute and that charges recharge every 60 seconds, the mechanics have not changed and ranged attacks are still executing and charges recharge every 30 secs.[/font]

[font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]In the second half of the video you'll see that The Bloodthirster in the store is at the correct price of 3200 gold, however when I purchase it once I have obtained the right amount of gold, I am only being charged 3000 gold, despite having to wait for 3200 before buying.[/font]

[font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]Apologies for the poor quality of the video, not quite sure why its happened, but I did intend to throw this out quickly whilst it's relevant. Enjoy![/font]   read

8:05 AM on 06.25.2013

Top 5/Worst 5 League of Legends Ultimates, My Own Response [Warning, video post]

Ok, first of all, this video is long. It's 40 minutes of me doing some washing up whilst talking about another one of my videos. If you don't want that, then leave now, cause this post has nothing more for you. On the other hand, anyone who remembers me, may remember I made a video about my top 5 and worst 5 ultimates in League of Legends. This video looks to respond to that video for a couple of reasons.

Reason 1: That video is now really old. It's from season 2 of LOL for a start and hence a lot has changed about the game. In addition my knowledge, style and skill has dramatically changed since then and I'm much wiser to the information I previously discussed.

Reason 2: People are still watching it in the masses! In the past month, the view count has nearly tripled since its upload last August. People are commentating on it every other day and in the space of about two weeks, six people have added my on League of Legends as a result of watching that video. That may not seem impressive but before those two weeks, no-one had added me! 10 months of no-one followed by 2 weeks of lots!

So, I aim in this video to respond to some of the most brought up topics in the comments to that video (which can be viewed here if necessary). Still got your interest? Then I'd suggest finding something to do whilst listening to this video, as it is long, and the visuals aren't that compelling (unless you're a fan of moist sponges and a view of my crotch?) Maybe play some LoL, or maybe, you could get a start on that pile of dishes you've been putting off... eh... eh?

Good to be back again Destructoid!   read

7:59 AM on 02.16.2013

Thoughts Whilst Doing The Washing Up - [WARNING: Video Post]

Next episode of Thoughts Whilst Doing the Washing Up. In this week's episode I talk a little bit about the things that are going on with me right now, including what the Lancaster University Gaming Society is up to today, and their recent purchases and how I've been hosting and will be hosting again on the University's radio. In addition, I discuss briefly the PlayStation 4 announcement, my experience of finally seeing Wreck-It-Ralph at the cinema (fantastic film!) and my testing of the new League of Legends champions Quinn and Valor.

There's also some washing up, including a glass thats stuck to the surface its on, a fair few mugs, cups and plates, and a very stubborn aftermath of chicken that won't remove itself from the baking tray! Here comes the iron wool!

Enjoy.   read

3:56 AM on 01.25.2013

Thoughts Whilst Doing The Washing Up - [WARNING: Video Post]

Told I was back didn't I. So here's another attempt at a hopeful regular video series entitled "Thoughts Whilst Washing Up". Whilst I need to make and upload new video content, I also need to get the washing up done, so why not combine the two into a glorious mix of gaming suds (damn, I shudda called it that). Unlike my other vids, this one is completely unscripted, so its a little rough around the edges, but hopefully that'll improve with practice. Also, this one's a little long, I allow myself one full load of washing up, so intent to get quicker on my cleaning in future!

In today's chore, I discuss the downfall of THQ, the Chelsea ball boy controversy, League of Legends' newest champion as well as Riot's decision to ban three more pro-players, my love for Taric and his Armor of the Fifth Age Skin, my opinions on the direction Nintendo is taking and why I want no part in it and my feelings about the Metal Gear Rising Revengance demo amongst a couple of little things.

For those more interested in stains than games (eh, eh?!) I go through several plates, a fair bit of cutlery, a couple of bowls and a very mucky mug caked with hard on hot chocolate! Glorious!   read

6:27 AM on 01.21.2013

NickRPGreen is back baby, where did the last 5 months go? [Warning: Video Blog]

Hi Destructoid! Don't know if anyone will remember me, but a while back (five months since my last post), I started promoting my YouTube blogs through Destructoid. I had a couple of Sonic ones, a couple of League of Legends ones as well as a silly one about Sackboy going on holiday to Menorca. Well, if anyone does remember, you may (or may not) be happy to know that I'm back! This video is basically a recap of why I've been away for nearly half a year, so if you're looking for hot gaming talk, you might wanna skip this one, but if you're interested in community talk then you might enjoy.

As I had a few complaints about videos in the past on here, I've taken to writing the warning in the title that this is a video post, though I am very pleased to see that Destructoid finally got round to sorting out YouTube embedding! Thanks Destructoid!   read

8:23 AM on 08.07.2012

My Top 5 and Worst 5 League of Legends Champion Ultimates

Yes, you read that correctly. I have done a top/worst five list of something that isn't new, particularly newsworthy, has already been discussed in numerous forms, thousands of times over on the internet already. But I've done it anyway. Why? Because after four months of League of Legends (and unfortunately the community that goes with it), I've discovered that I pretty much know most things to know about each LoL champion, and as the League is pretty much a daily occurrence for me, it would seem odd if I didn't talk, discuss and promote thought and arguments over something I find very important. And I do have good reasons and explanations for all of my choices, maybe it's something you never thought of, or maybe it makes you think of something I hadn't thought of. So whether or not you agree, disagree, don't see the point in, or have to shout so loud that even the summoners over on the Crystal Scar can hear you rant about a possibly pointless video, at least I've provoked something, and I'd be very interested to hear people's responses to this. Great way of learning, great way of getting some friendly (hopefully) interaction with the LoL community, cause that's pretty rare whilst on the field on battle. Enjoy!   read

7:17 PM on 07.31.2012

Sackboy's LittleBigAdventure to Menorca

Hi Destructoid

Little bit of a gamble with this one, not sure what the reaction's gonna be, could be good, could be terrible, but basically, I took a holiday to Menorca with my girlfriend and my Sackboy plushie, and when we got home, Sackboy sabotaged my video editing software and put this video on my YouTube channel, hoping people would like it. It's got all the photos from him from the holiday and he talks about how he liked the hotel and free drinks, how bored he got at the beach, all the zoo animals he liked (and didn't like) and how much he (but not someone else) enjoyed the flying!

I promised him I'd actually let him make another one if people like it, so please let me know, or he'll just keep badgering me constantly about it. Seriously, he's asking me right now whether I've written this post.

Video link:

Enjoy it, and I'm guessing I'll probably see you on Failtoid! We shall wait and see!

Nick R P Green   read

2:04 AM on 06.13.2012

Time For a Rant About League of Legends

There's one thing about League of Legends that really annoys the hell out of me, and after a quick discussion about the game itself, you can be more sure than Darius will be op that'll I'll shout about it in some form or the other! Rawr!!

Apologies for the video quality in this one, I recorded LoL in half-sized 1080p to save on hard drive space, and then had to stretch it to hit 720p, which resulted in this. In future, I think I'll just record in 1080p full, and let my hard drive suffer.

Until video embedding is fixed, you'll have to link through to the YouTube video with the above link. Sorry for the inconvenience.   read

5:26 PM on 05.29.2012

Steam Sale Spotlight: Limbo

This week's Steam Midweek Madness is the fantastically simple puzzle-platformer 'Limbo', a dark game about a boy's journey to find his sister in a twisted world of forests, cities and horrible creatures. A quick playthrough of the first five minutes plays whilst I give the low down on what's it's all about, and whether or not it's worth your hard earned cash.

Until video embedding is fixed, you'll have to link through to the YouTube video with the above link. Sorry for the inconvenience.   read

10:21 PM on 05.01.2012

Steam Sale Spotlight: Bastion

In the second of a playlist that will now be known as "Steam Sale Spotlight", I play Bastion, a gorgeous looking indie action rpg with some fantastic storytelling, and talk about what the game is, how well it plays and whether or not a voice will give me an orgasm. Have fun!   read

11:01 AM on 04.27.2012

Sonic 4 Episode 2: It won't fail... if Sonic team are willing to learn!

Hello fellow Destructoid users!

Today's discussion is about Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode 2, in reaction to the events that occurred over the weekend. In the video, I talk about my feelings about episode 2 following episode 1 and Generations, what my early impressions are based on the trailers, my opinions on Tails, Episode Metal and the new Special Stages, as well as an analysis of gameplay footage and the deciding factor into whether Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode 2 will flourish... or flop!

I know it's been a little while, but things at home have gotten, funner. My house mates have returned and so lots of video games have been played, so finding time between that and my dissertation to churn out another video has been tough, but this is one I couldn't pass up. So, my apologies for the delay.   read

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