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Oct 2, 12 at 5:59pmRabidChinaGirl

Lots of Neo-nites have been asking us about video reviews for a while now, and now we've actually got our first video review. Check it out, even if you've already read our Borderlands 2 review.

Written and voiced by bluexy
Editing and production by VeGiTAX2

Thread Recap (last 10 posts from newest to oldest)

Oct 4, 12 at 9:33am

DC Sniper I'm okay sounding like a nerd, that won't be changing. I AM a nerd. That said, I do think I was too wordy, overly verbose for a video review. I'll try to tone that down and refocus on more visual ways of describing things. If by "get rid of the script" you mean I work more on a performance than a reading, I can do that 100%. If you just didn't like what I had to say, I can't help you out there.

I will absolutely work on my intonation and energy, though. I think it starts with lowering my recording volume so I can talk louder without it spiking. I'm typically an emotional speaker, but recording (along with having a script in front of you) is a different world. Practice makes perfect.

The "introduction" I agree was terrible. I recorded that assuming it wouldn't be broken up, so I really didn't hammer it in... it was just supposed to flow into the rest of my review. I'll do proper intros going forward or Gabe and I will talk about it and figure out something better.

Thanks for the tips.

Oct 4, 12 at 2:09am

quote bluexy
Sawweet, I don't sound like trash.
You sound like a nerd. Throw out the script please. There were a few pieces of what you said that were incredibly awkward to hear. I also didn't like how you introduce the topic/video, and then stop talking, play some average-quality music and show some boring footage. It's an annoying break because we have the entire video to see the gameplay.

quote N64
It sounded like you were out of breath half the time. And if you added a little bit of emotion to your voice it would make the review much more believable. Its much better to have a reviewer who sounds like they care about the topic. I normally don't listen to reviews on games as they tend to be rather generic. Its much better to get info from a community that you know cares about the game. So if you add more of a personal tone but keep the content professional the video reviews could be much more successful.

I must say the review it self, on the other hand, was good and was similar to my thoughts on the game.


Aside from all that, I didn't like the quote you used from the game and said how it has some of the best writing "this generation has to offer."

Oct 3, 12 at 6:09pm
Shadow of Death

VeGiTAX2 - I'll try it out then, even if it does cost a bit more. Would be great to have less overhead required, even if FRAPS has improved a fair bit in the last year or so (they had a major update that reduced CPU overhead).

Oct 3, 12 at 2:09pm

Awesome video, VeGiTAX2. Loved the intro and I look forward to seeing more content coming from the other fellow editors as well. Good review too Bluexy.

Oct 3, 12 at 2:07pm

I've had friends use DXtory with pretty much 0-1fps loss when recording, plus when FRAPS falls behind on tech updates DXtory is usually current or not impacted. Given the impressions and video results I do have a lot of faith that we'll see better results overall with it. Given the program was Japanese originally and westerners started buying it anyway he made that page to help fit both markets so I honestly wouldn't grade him on that.

Generally the clips aren't long sessions when I record, it's easier to have a storyboard idea ahead of time and capture from there once you get your feet wet. Instead I have a series of 2-5min clips that get segmented down from there. On top of that I only run for short sessions to evaluate the quality and usefulness of the captures, then I take a very short break and compress them into h.264 with ATI xcode. Saves a ton of space because I only had about 30GB free for shooting this whole thing lol.

Overall it's not a crazy process but I could see needing to tweak around with storage options when it comes to console recording, right now we need to focus on what games we will use for video reviews and securing those copies. In this case it was luck that GetGames was able to help us out in making the review happen. Unfortunately I don't think it would be fair to keep leaning on them unless I changed it and added a brought to you by GetGames logo or something in there.

Oct 2, 12 at 10:21pm
Shadow of Death

VeGiTAX2 - In BL1 and 2, after certain point money is generally a non-issue. This is mainly becuase ~90% of the time, none of the items sold in the vendors you come across are upgrades. Occasionally you do find a gem, or at least something that's a decent upgrade. But only occasionally. I mostly lose my money to NewU and Slot Machines (though now I'm using that exploit where you can just crash the game if you don't get anything good).

So, is DXtory better than FRAPS you think? Not really digging the fact that the English language site is a bit Engrish (doesn't necessary mean the program is no good of course, just that it doesn't look very professional).

Erm, I know Write speeds have gotten better for SSDs, but isn't a high capacity dedicated 7200RPM+ drive or a couple of RAID0 drives a better option? I think high capacity at least is pretty important since video data can be eating up storage space stupid fast, especially in continuous recording sessions, and you say you're recording at 3900x1920?. I've managed 100GB FRAPS files before with just 1080p recordings (my most recent one was the first 30 minutes of playing Borderlands). These days I record at 60FPS because 30FPS recordings just make the game run slower than it would be if I recorded @ 60FPS. I just process alternate frames when I encode via Virtualdub.

Oct 2, 12 at 10:08pm

quote Shadow of Death
I make a habit of saving up my money in RPGs, using mediocre equipment for extended periods of time so I can afford getting a huge upgrade
^ This, I'm pretty cheap in games about spending points / money or etc unless it's to blow up more stuff >> BL2 is no exception, I do get the idea of presenting perfection so to speak though. It's a bit awkward just throwing a character I haven't used that much in even co-op to the world at large, future videos will be watched for that or I'll make a spare save if anything just for production vs personal.

We're in different states for all of this production, I believe bluexy made the effort in one session to make sure it sounded consistent vs different times of the day or states of mind. I edited the video together based on his responses and general highlight points to match up based on pre-recorded segments I indexed.

We're using *bleep* and we're investing in *bleep* but don't let anyone else know about those otherwise our secrets are bloown D:

I was using FRAPS to record with but we'll be using DXtory in the future.

I'm currently going through a pretty long list of recorders, odd enough a lot of them have the same base hardware so it's more down to the software and quality over all else. Might look into a dedicated SSD for recording though as they've come down a lot in the past months. 120gb for about 50-60 if you shop carefully. If the only purpose is recording I think it would probably pay itself off over time.

Oct 2, 12 at 9:55pm
Shadow of Death

VeGiTAX2 - Well, with the points you can always respec if you don't like what you've chosen. Using the points gives an immediate benefit, and you were in a boss battle I believe, so yeah...Not saying that you don't know what you're doing, but it looks as if you've not come to grips with the game. It takes longer to level in BL2 compared to BL1 so one has extra time to consider where to put points. Just saying that a random person coming across the video, especially one that's not familiar with Neoseeker might wonder why you haven't gotten around to putting points in, especially during a situation where every bit helps (IE: boss battles). Mind, I totally understand waiting and seeing in games. I make a habit of saving up my money in RPGs, using mediocre equipment for extended periods of time so I can afford getting a huge upgrade (IE: skipping several tiers of equipment at a time) when normally it wouldn't be possible without a lot more grinding (though I grind too). It's just in BL2's case, the respecing feature makes waiting (at least for skill distribution) a somewhat obsolete notion, so I was wondering.

As to the audio shift, well chalk it up to it being different sessions or something, or was the voiceover done with all the completed video footage in one go?.

What recording software did you use for this video, and what's the new one you're using?

For console recording I'd look into the Blackmagic Intensity models, at least if you have a RAID0 setup. Of course, being better informed than myself, you've probably already considered these, or already use one model or another XD

Oct 2, 12 at 9:12pm

Hi Shadow of Death - Thanks for the feedback on the footage, the points thing is because I was using that as a primary character and often I do debate where I'm putting my points. In the future I'll avoid any instances like that, going so far to say I don't know what I'm doing is a bit of a stretch IMO, there are people who don't just leap all the time.

The aspect ratio changes are a limit of the Borderlands 2 movie files. To help reduce jaggies the game was recorded at 3900x1920 and scaled down to 1080. Given Portrait vs Landscape I favored Portrait mode as it wouldn't be nearly as extreme of an AR shift.

Rory is our only VA for the video, not sure about the audio shift being that bad to sound like two people, toward the end there's a moment where his pitch is slightly higher entering one of the final sections but I assure you it's one person the whole time.

Nagare In the future we'll have some improved software and features to help accomplish the task, unfortunately my MP recordings were pretty poor and showed a significant frame rate shift that made them unusable. I do regret having to omit those but it was a quality control call over all else. Fortunately we've found a new recording software that shouldn't deliver such hard recording penalties and will enable us to put out even better detail in the future.

Vicarious thanks for the feedback on the intro, I wanted us to have something that was solid and didn't feel rushed or overly 2D. I might experiment with it slightly in the future but nothing too overkill.

Appreciate the feedback, it's a learning experience, fortunately on tech side we've come across a lot of solutions for future cases like recording quality. At this point we'll probably focus strictly on PC stuff but if we can pick up some momentum with companies we might be able to swing another copy for video recording and we also need an HD unit to record on haha.

One step at a time though.

Oct 2, 12 at 7:45pm

Nice overall, good work to both of you guys! Great to see something thing like coming out from Neoseeker, but I feel like it would be nicer if there were some related captions or highlights in the video to go along with what was actually being played out on the screen. Like when you mentioned the multiplayer experience, it would have been great if there was actually some multiplayer gameplay of some sort.

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