Blog Archives

A Look at Steam Discoverability with Indie Devs, Writers and PR

With the recent Steam Store overhaul to improve discoverability of games and customization of the store, Popular YouTuber and common sense advocate John Bain, better known by his nom de plume, TotalBiscuit, held a panel discussion to look at the effects of the changes to Steam and the advertising of video games.

As part of his three-hour roundtable, he is joined by indie developers Howard Tsao (Guns of Icarus), Mike Bithell (Thomas Was Alone) and Andrew Spearin (Insurgency), writer Mike Rose (Gamasutra) and PR rep Tom Ohle (Evolve PR) for the discussion.

TotalBiscuit Examines Gaming Media Role in Hyping Games

I’ve taken to calling the games media a public relations and marketing adjunct of the major game publishers. In exchange for access from the publishers, those publishers get preferential coverage. Sometimes, it’s an implicit agreement. A PR agent for one publisher told me that they would be more inclined to play ball with me if I gave them regular preview coverage. That led to the intentionally disingenuously named “hype train” and trailer roundup blog posts.

However, many writers and publications don’t really tip off which preview coverage has legitimate journalistic or informational merits and which is just disingenuous hype piece. While I don’t have to do that, some really big publications act as hype machines for publishers and developers and show no remorse in doing free publicity work.

The ever insightful TotalBiscuit examines how publications are pulling the wool over your eyes and why you shouldn’t believe the hype.

Guise of the Wolf Dev Censors TotalBiscuit’s Criticism, Tries to Shut Him Down

wtf-is-guise-of-the-wolf-copyright-claimBack in October, popular YouTube personality John Bain, AKA TotalBiscuit, was embroiled in a brief brouhaha with the developers of a poorly received indie game called Day One: Garry’s Incident. The devs of that game, Wild Games Studio, filed a copyright claim against TB’s video to get it pulled down and it hit the fan. News spread quickly about what happened in a classic case of the Streisand Effect and the game and studio were shown in a bad light as a result.

It seems as though people forget things quickly because TotalBiscuit is in a similar kerfuffle with the developers of another game. Guise of the Wolf is another poorly received indie game, this time by FUN Creators. They also used a DMCA claim to remove TB’s video and had the story blow up to Streisandian proportions.

The funny thing is that FUN Creators didn’t stop at the DMCA claim and strike on the YouTube channel. When TB fought back, things got really weird.

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Day One: Garry’s Incident Devs Censoring TotalBiscuit’s Criticism

wtf-is-day-one-garrys-incident-copyright-claimAs has been well established, I’m not a big fan of censorship. I’m not a fan of the press trying to censor developers and I’m even less of a fan of developers trying to censor the press.

The developers of indie game Day One: Garry’s Incident have done the latter and opened themselves up to the Streisand Effect. Developer Wild Games Studio filed a copyright claim under the DMCA on a critical impressions video by popular YouTube personality TotalBiscuit and it’s all hit the fan.

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TotalBiscuit on the Problem with Always-Online Consoles

No one likes the idea of a console or even a single game being always-online. We’ve seen it fail upon launch enough times to know it’s a bad idea. Prominent video game commentator TotalBiscuit had a great example of why always-online just won’t work for everyone.


Here’s a link to the quote in TB’s own voice.

Source: Memebase

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