STEAM GROUP
Learn to Counter lrn2counter
STEAM GROUP
Learn to Counter lrn2counter
3
IN-GAME
6
ONLINE
Founded
May 22, 2013
Language
English
Okay gentlemen, here's how the revival is going to work.
Now that I've gotten my finances in order, and I can begin committing the resources to this website and others, it's time to let you know what I have planned here.

- I am going to be opening up a couple of other minor websites predominantly focused on the funny stuff, with the occasional cross-posting when it's relevant for the purposes of LTC. And while this will probably make some of you gag in horror, I'm seriously considering using Tumblr for the endeavor, because I think the content is absolutely perfect for a platform where nobody actually creates their own content and just copy-pastes everyone else's. I have a couple of different ideas in mind -- I regularly post excerpts of my content from Fark -- but I'm willing to do more than one Tumblr site in order to make this happen, and then I'll find a way to cross-link all the content.

- I'm going to lighten the fuck up, I'm going to let the forums lighten the fuck up, and that was something I absolutely lost as I got more involved in the actual games writing. As I think is awfully clear at this point, seeing who and what gets popular, that serious writing is an absolute fucking dead-end because you get drowned out by the people who tell the occasional joke or the serious content creator who makes videos. (The medium is now more important than the message.) Which is not to say that I won't be doing written content, but you can expect a change in the tone of my writing and (if I'm successful at rounding everyone back up) the forums.

- And to follow on the above point, what I've pretty much figured out is that if you do not have a presence on one of the larger sites -- Facebook, Tumblr, YouTube, whatever -- you basically do not and cannot exist in the modern internet. And that means creating content that will appeal to the wider internet. And that means I need to lighten the fuck up and start telling a couple of jokes here and there again. I won't lie when I say I got consumed by the serious stuff and put that to the back end so that I could use it as a path to improvement, but it becomes exhausting to everybody if you're just hammering away with the driest writing possible. It's a good vector for improvement but not a whole lot else.

- I am looking to reopen Learn to Counter and begin publishing new content at some point towards the end of January and February. I have been looking through some of the content that has been published in the Games forum and I have about 15-20 possible reviews that I could edit for frontpage content in addition to the dozen reviews I've already written and posted in the Draft forum. Which does not include the longer-form pieces (and five-star reviews) I still have to go ahead and finish. But yes, either way, there's content, and it will be worth reading. I will also be looking to update the frontpage layout and, generally speaking, add more pretty pictars so that people don't get bored reading through long walls of text.

- I still have not decided if I want to go ahead and migrate the LTC forums to a new forum software package. I won't say that SMF is on life support as a package, but it's clear that it gets very little support from third parties, that VBulletin is what all the cool kids use, and if I decide to make any changes to the forums, it's a hell of a lot easier to do it through the package that gets actual support. But VBulletin is expensive and there's no absolutely crucial content or features I currently need, so I'm simply going to throw my intentions on this front out there, and see if anyone comes up with any ideas.

- And with the collective of all these ideas in play, I'm going to look to doing a donation cycle -- Patreon, most likely -- and while I have no mind-blowingly crazy ambitions about getting out of work or anything, I absolutely would take a reduced schedule if I could make it work. (I can only play the SLAVE GAME™ for so long.) But I've also done my research and know that Patreon donations and written content are an absolute dead-end, and I have some awesome ideas for video content that would absolutely require the time and effort of a limited work schedule.

Basically, at this point, I'm actually the most concerned about the pitch and the organization of all the content I want to do, and how I lay everything together so it's clear that all my websites are one contiguous network of content, but at the same time, I can make a unified donation pitch across all of the content.

So anyway, you know how this shit works. I'll throw it out there, you reply, I'll reply back. Let's do it.
Last edited by Michael J. Lowell; Oct 31, 2015 @ 7:53am
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Showing 1-15 of 43 comments
Michael J. Lowell Oct 31, 2015 @ 6:30pm 
Bump, because I have no idea how to get this on the frontpage of the board without doing exactly that.
Q-veta Oct 31, 2015 @ 10:47pm 
"I have some awesome ideas for video content that would absolutely require the time and effort of a limited work schedule."
Can't wait for your AVGN ripoff :^)
Truhan Nov 1, 2015 @ 7:00am 
Originally posted by Q-veta:
"I have some awesome ideas for video content that would absolutely require the time and effort of a limited work schedule."
Can't wait for your AVGN ripoff :^)
Don't be silly, he's clearly going to plagiarize the superior Irate Gamer. How many spoopy houses has AVGN ghost hunted in?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sbo3i_EuNgs
Licentious Howler Nov 1, 2015 @ 10:28am 
Wow. This was unexpected!

I fondly recall many of your fun pieces like the Xbox One consuming the galaxy, some good jokes peppered in your "Why I'm Tired of Your Modern FPS", and the ASSFAGGOTS mention in your Dota piece.

I've always thought you're pretty good at what you do there, and I think it's absolutely a good idea to let that shine through--I think most people's comedic side tends to be a more base expression of themselves anyway.

I hope, however, as you manage the video ideas you have in mind, it doesn't end up taking you MONTHS like it does for me to get anything done!

I never used Tumblr, but I hear from my "irl" friends that there are some safe havens there, and it hasn't "transformed" them (uh, well actually maybe one of them) or repulsed them away from discontinuing to use it at this point. They've managed to coexist, you probably can too.

I don't know shit about setting up websites to be contiguous though. I guess there are some tools that could integrate into a Facebook page every now and then or something...? Good luck!
Michael J. Lowell Nov 1, 2015 @ 11:13am 
Originally posted by Q-veta:
"I have some awesome ideas for video content that would absolutely require the time and effort of a limited work schedule."
Can't wait for your AVGN ripoff :^)

As far as I know, within the field of videogaming, my idea is largely original, though it should be pretty obvious who (or what) I PLAGIARIZED when I end up doing it.

The Irate Gamer and AVGN are too obvious. I need to PLAGIARIZE subtler.

Originally posted by Licentious Howler:
Wow. This was unexpected!

I fondly recall many of your fun pieces like the Xbox One consuming the galaxy, some good jokes peppered in your "Why I'm Tired of Your Modern FPS", and the ASSFAGGOTS mention in your Dota piece.

I've always thought you're pretty good at what you do there, and I think it's absolutely a good idea to let that shine through--I think most people's comedic side tends to be a more base expression of themselves anyway.

Pretty much, and most of the people here haven't been around long enough to remember the early, early days of The Ghetto ('04-'07) where I pretty much reamed into everyone and everything. And yeah, a lot of it was a lousy attempt, but I should stop trying to be someone that I'm not, even IF videogaming is the most serious business we have.

Originally posted by Licentious Howler:
I hope, however, as you manage the video ideas you have in mind, it doesn't end up taking you MONTHS like it does for me to get anything done!

The problem is that some of the videos I want to do would absolutely require resources and manpower beyond what I currently have, and as far as any general videogaming videos go, I don't have the slightest clue of how to acquire the footage I'll need to do them.

So, for instance, I won't lie when I say I would LOVE to turn the dota book into a video, but given the dozens upon dozens upon dozens of games which I reference in the book, where would I even begin to get the footage of those games, other than playing them myself? And since I don't play videogames, that's a dead-end. I'd definitely need assistance on that front.

But the initial video idea is something that I could do on my own, without any other assistance, which is why I intend to focus on that first.

Originally posted by Licentious Howler:
I never used Tumblr, but I hear from my "irl" friends that there are some safe havens there, and it hasn't "transformed" them (uh, well actually maybe one of them) or repulsed them away from discontinuing to use it at this point. They've managed to coexist, you probably can too.

I think it's the perfect platform for the paragraph-long satirical shit I write, it's the kind of stuff that doesn't require a huge investment on the part of the reader and can be linked quickly and easily.

Originally posted by Licentious Howler:
I don't know shit about setting up websites to be contiguous though. I guess there are some tools that could integrate into a Facebook page every now and then or something...? Good luck!

It's more that I just want people to be clear that Learn to Counter (and my other endeavors) are a network of sites, and that they'll be labeled as such. It's just about organizing the content and organizing it the right way.
Licentious Howler Nov 1, 2015 @ 12:05pm 
Originally posted by Michael J. Lowell:
The problem is that some of the videos I want to do would absolutely require resources and manpower beyond what I currently have, and as far as any general videogaming videos go, I don't have the slightest clue of how to acquire the footage I'll need to do them.

I'm betting you already know this pretty well, but for the purposes of your project, it simply won't jive...

Still, better to mention it then possibly leave you in the dark:

There are a lot of people on Youtube who just upload generic footage of games for free use--no commentary and sometimes a full longplay (but of course things can get in the way--sometimes they won't be very good at the game and whatnot, or the footage will be too low quality, or if you want to show a specific function or feature this won't always work). If a game was even marginally popular or notable though, chances are there is some pretty decent generic footage that you can download.

At the very most, all they'll ask for is credit, if even that. Other than that, it's free use.

Personally, I try to do this as little as possible to ensure the best quality (in fact, so far no uploaded video of mine used borrrowed footage--just videos I ended up scrapping), and credit them whenever possible, but I'll admit, in the case of a constantly-changing, somewhat unpredictable multiplayer game like Dota, grabbing good footage could get difficult fast.

For all the other games that are only mentioned for a few things here and there though, you're usually covered.

Now the only problem I'm running into these days is that the only really amazing no-nonsense tool I could find can only downlaod 30 fps versions of videos because it hasn't been updated in a while, and as far as I know, Youtube doesn't let you do it through any normal function of their site.

I barely played any of the games mentioned in your Dota book, but I'm kind of a capture freak myself--I'm super decked out with analogue and digital equipment and capture card for pretty much the best quality of any console or handheld I can grab, emulators with filters, programs like MSI Afterburner and whatnot, and I can probably help you if you ever ask, for whatever it's worth.

Btw, if you have a decent Nvidia card, Shadowplay is amazing if you've never dabbled with it. If only it had more options for higher capture quality, then it would literally be perfect.


It's more that I just want people to be clear that Learn to Counter (and my other endeavors) are a network of sites, and that they'll be labeled as such. It's just about organizing the content and organizing it the right way.

Oh, that sounds a lot more manageable.
Last edited by Licentious Howler; Nov 1, 2015 @ 12:06pm
Okay, yeah, I'm okay with that. I know I've said in the past that people who upload the footage as-is have absolutely no claim or stake in the footage, and that even Let's Players are really teetering the line over fair use. There's no assets there that I think a YouTuber would actually object to, but I want to make sure the footage is largely authentic, i.e. "no upscaled emulation for older titles", etc.

I am perfectly willing to give credit where it is due, though, since I'm going to have to source, cite, and date a lot of the footage that I want to use in the first place. The general problem is, I won't be able to do all of this on my own without the sort of time investment that I simply cannot make with my current life situation.

I'll also look into Shadowplay and see what that offers me. Any suggestions on any front (as related to content) are perfectly wonderful.

Originally posted by Licentious Howler:
Oh, that sounds a lot more manageable.

Yeah, nothing particularly difficult here. It's just about making sure the content is organized correctly, since some types of content will have overlap with other sites.
Originally posted by Michael J. Lowell:
Okay, yeah, I'm okay with that. I know I've said in the past that people who upload the footage as-is have absolutely no claim or stake in the footage, and that even Let's Players are really teetering the line over fair use. There's no assets there that I think a YouTuber would actually object to, but I want to make sure the footage is largely authentic, i.e. "no upscaled emulation for older titles", etc.

I am perfectly willing to give credit where it is due, though, since I'm going to have to source, cite, and date a lot of the footage that I want to use in the first place. The general problem is, I won't be able to do all of this on my own without the sort of time investment that I simply cannot make with my current life situation.

Incidentally, I looked into a new tool for downloading videos today.

http://www.jdownloader.org/

Its user interface is bonkers, but I tested on one video real quick and it looks pretty legit. It can apparently download the original source resolution up to 4K 60fps--Youtube's max.

I'll tell you how I like it over time with all these features, I guess...!

I'll also look into Shadowplay and see what that offers me. Any suggestions on any front (as related to content) are perfectly wonderful.

There are two reasons that Shadowplay is pretty cool:

1. it never has to "hook" programs in order to capture them. With every piece of capture software I've ever used, they usually fall short of successfully "hooking" some programs--usually older pre-DirectX 8 or ancient opengl stuff is the most likely culprit.

Well, Shadowplay has the advantage of being hardware based--it'll hook your desktop and literally ANYTHING you throw at it. Zero frustration.

2. You can set it to "silently" record stuff in a temporary space on your hard drive as you play games for the last 20 minutes I think was the max. If some really cool/useful footage happens across your screen, but you happened to not be recording it, then you can simply press a key combination of your choice to "surface" the last 20 minutes of recording and store it permanently on the drive.

You can also disable the feature at any time in favour of traditional recording.

The ONLY disadvantages I can see are that you:

1. Need an Nvidia card.

2. Don't have a lot of options for quality, and are forced to use a lightweight, fairly lossy x264 compression codec that is great for general recording and Youtube because its lightweight, but really bad for other purposes, like recording a Windows desktop with text on it (gets blurred), or recording a demonstration of colours (they get a bit washed out), for example.

Anyway, we'll all hopefully work this out!
Last edited by Licentious Howler; Nov 1, 2015 @ 6:29pm
I think you may have craeted a false dichotomy with this serious writing business since it's possible to effectively communicate something serious in a non-serious manner. Most popular video game writing that tries to be serious is vapid anway, because a serious tone is not a garauntee of seriousness, that when you compare it to humourous pieces the humourous pieces generally say more. It's like all that shitty writing has created the perfect environment for lightening up.

The Irate Gamer and AVGN are too obvious. I need to PLAGIARIZE subtler.

Geoff the Hero. Can't wait for your original series gaming in the Trump years.
Q-veta Nov 3, 2015 @ 6:16am 
Will you ban the shitposters this time?
Licentious Howler Nov 3, 2015 @ 10:04am 
Originally posted by Q-veta:
Will you ban the shitposters this time?

He said something on IRC that more or less equated to "I'm not going to put up with those goat-touchers anymore."

So the less goat fetish you have, the better, I guess.
Last edited by Licentious Howler; Nov 3, 2015 @ 10:05am
Q-veta Nov 3, 2015 @ 10:48am 
Maybe he's just insulting muslims. Which I'm totally on board with.
Originally posted by Q-veta:
Will you ban the shitposters this time?

Pretty funny coming from a master shitposter.
DarkerThanKuroi Nov 3, 2015 @ 9:00pm 
Looking forward to the return of the forums and new articles. LTC has provided me with more interesting stuff about game design to read than anywhere else.
Originally posted by (ク。 ̄ ³  ̄。)ク:
Originally posted by Q-veta:
Will you ban the shitposters this time?

Pretty funny coming from a master shitposter.

While it is true that Q-Veta was the master shitposter, it's also true that he was the master poster.

I guess in other words, he was the master.


Originally posted by DarkerThanKuroi:
Looking forward to the return of the forums and new articles. LTC has provided me with more interesting stuff about game design to read than anywhere else.

I'm pretty sure a lot of us long(er) time members are glad to hear this from an (apparent???) lurker. Thanks for sharing.
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