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  1. #1

    Pip (and Emily Gera), we need to talk (or: Constructive Criticism on certain posts)

    So, some articles by Pip (and occasionally by Emily Gera) have been bothering me as of late, and I wanted to share why. Do keep in mind that I don't know, obviously, how many views they get, maybe they're the most read on the site. But in my opinion they do not work. I'll explain why, and I'll give my opinion on how to make them better.

    I'm talking about your articles on MOBAs (League of Legends and Dota, most of all)
    I'm not talking about news pieces on new MOBAs, and I'm not talking about Dote Night, which doesn't actually deal with MOBAs all that much, or at least it didn't use to, it used them as a starting point to talk about other stuff, like how to deal with toxic players.
    I'm talking about: this and this and this series, and this and this and this etc.

    These articles have a massive problem: who is the intended audience for these? Who are they written for?
    RPS is a generalist website insofar as videogames go, not a specialised one. People won't come visit RPS to keep up with LoL and Dota2 news, and even less so to keep up with their respective pro scenes. Take the article on Ekko's release: if you don't play the game, you don't care - and unlike, say, this article, the release of a new champion won't make you change your mind - and if you do play the game, the article is a) not specific/insightful enough b) irrelevant, insofar as you'll already know from the LoL client. The only ones who may be interested are in the (in my opinion) extremely small subset of people who have played League, haven't played lately, don't keep up with League news or Reddit and may want to jump back in to try the new champion (by paying real money?) once they see the article on RPS.

    MOBAs have a high barrier of entry, and there's an even higher barrier to watching the games and understanding anything at all of what is going on. Unlike most other games, you're either "in the know" or you're not (or you're learning, I suppose) For comparison, CS:GO is A LOT easier to understand, at least on a very basic level. You cannot write an article about a new champion like you'd write about a DLC for another game: it's just not the same.

    The problem is exacerbated when you're writing about the Pro scene. There, not only you need to know about the game, but you need to know about teams and players. Link's retirement letter is significant - aside from the drama - to understand the troubled history of his team, but if you're not following the pro scene there's no way you'd care or even understand (who is Link? Who are all these people? What am I even reading?), and if you are, that post is not only incomplete (see below) but I feel like RPS is just not the place one would come looking for such info.

    So, what should you change about them, in my opinion? Well, if you want to keep covering MOBAs this much on RPS (as opposed to just Dote Night, and maybe a post announcing World Championship or The International - and it's debatable whether it'd be a good idea, but hey, RPS is fueled by the writers' passion and I'm certainly not opposed to RPS covering esports on principle) I think you need to go all the way to one extreme or the other. Either - and I think this is the best way for RPS specifically - you make these posts accessible to newcomers, and maybe write them to make MOBAs and the pro scene accessible, approachable and appealing to those who are not in the know, luring them in (example: something like this, but more basic, presenting the teams, the players, their styles, the major storylines in the simplest way possible, so that someone who has never watched pro League can watch MSI and have a vague idea of what is going on - hell, I'd love to do that myself) or you go more in-depth and "compete" with specialist websites and analysts. Right now you're in this middle ground that doesn't benefit anyone: too complex for beginners and too simple for those "in the know"

    As an aside, I wanted to be specific on two articles, because I know about League and the pro scene. (I wish I didn't, and I'm ashamed of it, etc, but that's a story for another day. I know enough that I wrote a few articles for a specialist website, even.)
    The one on Link's retirement is awfully incomplete and partial. A reddit thread from the day before the article was posted collected A LOT MORE relevant information (at least Chauster's response is worth a mention)
    The ones on the MSI tournament:
    a) They read like they were written in a hurry, they lack structure and a clear organization of information
    b) A lot of imprecisions and very questionable opinions - not to mention, some crucial typos, like Aurelia instead of Irelia
    c) The "wrong" people have been interviewed, leading to the above: with such wealth of knowledge about the game there (MonteCristo, Zirene, Deficio, the coaches of the teams, even Chobra), you don't interview those who are "just" casters. In fact, the quality of the articles went up massively in day 3 and 4, because the ones being interviewed were analysts, and not casters. (Obviously, I don't know who you were or were not able to get a hold of, so maybe that's simply the only ones you could get)
    d) they exacerbate the general audience problem. Take this sentence from Day 2: "Deft hitting Meiko with a Fate’s Call after he flashed, pulling him back and then nipping in for the kill on Reignover." Now, I know what happened, but for someone who is not extremely familiar with: 1) The name of the players - especially Meiko is not known, even for those in the know, unless you watch Chinese LoL 2)The name and the effect of the abilities (Fate's Call? Ah, Kalista's ultimate, right); then this sentence is incomprehensible and meaningless. You wouldn't even guess that Deft and Meiko are in the same team. You wouldn't know how significant wasting a flash is.
    There would be more, but these are, I believe, the major points that were off.

    I hope this doesn't come across as angry or confrontational, even though I know I'm being somewhat harsh. I just think you can do so much better than this, and I hope this can help improve things, even if my suggestions may well be wrong/inappropriate.
    Last edited by MelodyMeows; 18-05-2015 at 12:15 AM.

  2. #2
    Network Hub Duckee's Avatar
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    I agree wholly with what you write. I find that the articles about MOBAS are way too frequent and I, personally, do not even bother reading the introduction to said articles.

    I understand the need for content, but I would rather have RPS write more interesting and original content then resorting to highlighting drama pieces. Talking about specific games in a meaningful or analytical way for instance would perhaps be of interest. That or perhaps create more original video content akin to Quinns' or Florence's videos?

    In addition, most of the general "news" items posted on RPS these days are old by the time they are posted and I, again personally, do not read them.

    I love RPS and have been reading them for years now, but I feel that overall quality has dropped significantly in recent months (6+ months?)

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    I do like the odd skim read, especially when a controversy happens much like EVE offers interesting narrative. But, yeah, I really don't care about the actual game.
    I'm failing to writing a blog, specifically about playing games the wrong way

  4. #4
    Gotta say, I agree with the gist of this. The player quitting with an 18 page letter post was especially... amaturish I think is the best way to describe it. It wasn't up to the standards of RPS in the least. :( It felt like it was hastily written by someone who was shocked at the turn of events and not properly researched.

    I have no problem with having a lot of MOBA posts, FWIW. I do believe they might be a bit too focused on DOTA 2 and LoL to the exclusion of other MOBAs, but otherwise, I'm fine with them. So, do not take this forum post as a rejection of all MOBA stories, but rather someone who would like to see them diversified and higher quality.

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus BillButNotBen's Avatar
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    RPS is clearly trying to cover these areas more, and that's why Pip was hired afaik.
    I don't play any of the games, so I'm not that interested in the news and professional scene. But they may be more interesting to those that do/are.

    That said, occasional pieces on EVE or other MMOs have been interesting, despite never playing those either, because they've been told in a way that was interesting to non-players. Some of the DOTE night ones I've read fall into those categories, but a lot of the MOBA articles seem to focus too much on minor details/mechanics/characters that aren't interesting to non players.
    Maybe MOBAs just don't lead tot he same possibilities for universally understandable narrative / political event pieces that EVE/MMOs do.

    I just read the one on the player quitting, but it lacked context about who he was, why he mattered, and why I should care.

    That said, I thought this thread was going to be about the overuse of the Three paragraphs of vaguely related random jokes plus one line of news/trailer style of post. (Which emily, and to be fair whoever is the designated RPS news bot of the month, seems to be very good at).

  6. #6
    Lesser Hivemind Node RobF's Avatar
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    I'm kinda fine with them how they are. As a person who doesn't really dig into them, I don't want a post that treats me like I need leading into {insert game of choice} or having things explained to me like I'm a bit of a videogame thicky in that regard but I also appreciate that if I do want more indepth coverage of a niche, a generalist site isn't the best place for that. To use the example of needing to know the team history etc... I kinda really don't?

    So the news posts are as much a news post as one about a trailer for any other videogame ever to me and half the value of that is that it gives people a place on RPS to discuss things. On RPS. With the other people on RPS. I don't really care if they're about a MOBA, the new Assassin's Creed or whatever. For the most part, a lot of the value I get from RPS newsposts is that the RPS community is worth reading (with only a few notable exceptions, natch)

    I also know that it's that sort of stuff that helps pay the bills to afford paying people to write the meatier stuff, I guess.

    I read Rab's column even though I have no desire to play boardgames, the same for Tim Stone's stuff on sims (although fair enough, I don't mind the odd one of those) and Dote Night falls into that same sort of column. For me, access into these worlds of gaming isn't about being led by the hand into them or having the columnist try to equip me to understand the minutiae of the things but about being able to sit there and read the thoughts of people who do care about them and care about them passionately. A news post isn't the place for that but the comments sections often yield gold, y'know?
    Last edited by RobF; 18-05-2015 at 06:23 AM.
    Videogames, eh?

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Eight Rooks's Avatar
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    Yes, there's a danger of making everything MOBAs for Dummies, but... I hardly ever play sims and don't play boardgames, period, but I can read one of Tim or Rab's posts and very quickly pick up on exactly what they're talking about. There's a difference between communicating passion and communicating it well. I think it's obvious Pip likes MOBAs a whole lot - I have absolutely no problem with that, and can see the desire to cover esports of all kinds both from an emotional and a practical viewpoint. But I don't spend much time reading many of her posts, because - really sorry to be so negative, RPS staff (and Pip, obviously), but to put it bluntly I don't find her an especially interesting writer.

    I'll read anyone covering a subject I know very little about if they can hold my interest. I can't stand most point-and-click adventure games; I'll still read John's reviews because he communicates his thoughts about the genre in an engaging and distinctive way (even when I wildly disagree with him - often because I wildly disagree with him). I don't much like playing the majority of esoteric art games from indie creatives; I'll still read Cara's work because she's a fantastic writer who challenges me to consider things about these projects (other people's perspectives, what they're actually trying to say) I might not have thought about otherwise.

    I find actually playing most hardcore sims about as dull as watching paint dry, or at best far too tough for me, and a good deal of the "Top hole, chums, jolly hockey sticks, it's all a bit of a laugh, innit" writing in British videogames journalism drives me up the wall; I still read pretty much every one of Tim Stone's columns because I think he's one of the few people I've read who's a good enough writer to make that a valid way of communicating his boundless enthusiasm rather than an embarrassing affectation. And on, and on.

    I've never really felt anything like that from anything RPS have published about MOBAs. Pretty much every post has struck me as the videogame equivalent of generic sports writing - coming from someone who obviously has much more knowledge of or background in the subject at hand, but little apparent interest in effectively communicating it to me, an outsider, and/or in really making me feel this is a unique point of view I can't get anywhere else.

    I don't begrudge RPS employing Pip and Emily, giving them a platform, anything; I'm just one person, some random internet guy, etc., and I'm sure if they carry on writing their articles exactly as they are plenty of people will continue to read them and be happy. Same as with all those generic sports writers - why do they need to appeal to me? They don't, basically. I'm not their target demographic, I'm just some guy. I'm well aware of that and I don't lose any sleep over it. But do I think the esports coverage here could be significantly improved? For the little it's worth, God, yes.
    Last edited by Eight Rooks; 18-05-2015 at 08:03 AM.
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  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by RobF View Post
    I'm kinda fine with them how they are. As a person who doesn't really dig into them, I don't want a post that treats me like I need leading into {insert game of choice} or having things explained to me like I'm a bit of a videogame thicky in that regard but I also appreciate that if I do want more indepth coverage of a niche, a generalist site isn't the best place for that. To use the example of needing to know the team history etc... I kinda really don't?
    I don't have much to say about your points about comments, because lately i haven't found them that interesting, aside from a few spare cases.
    But perhaps you took my point a bit too far, and Eight Rooks said it better: I don't want Pip to tell the story of how Korean dominance in e-sports started in 1873, or the history of every team, but I think she should try to communicate her passion more effectively to outsiders. It's not about explaining it as if your readers are stupid, but as if they are intelligent people without much knowledge about the subject. (Much like what "Week in Tech" usually does - simple to understand but not condescending and still full of techical details)

    To take the MSI example again: if she wants to write about it, I think she should do her best to give people the instruments to enjoy it even with minimal game knowledge and minimal knowledge about the pro scene and usually the most effective way of doing that is: storylines.

    So, for instance, tell me who the star players are, and what I should expect, so I can understand if a result was expected or if it was a massive upset. Tell me that the player Pawn has a history of being the kryptonite of the best player in the world, Faker. Tell me how it's the first international tournament since the exodus of Korean players towards China that happened before the season began, so, despite historical Korean dominance, who knows how the regions stack up now. Tell me how SKT is this very strategic, intelligent and patient team, whereas Fnatic plays fast, loose and chaotic, and you've already set up a clash of styles. And if you want to wrap up the tournament, tell me about how amazing it was that this Fnatic team got to MSI and and brought the Korean team SKT to a 5-game series, because 4 out of 5 of their players had never played competitively before this year.

    These are things that can hype someone up, or at least can be interesting/exciting to read without requiring any previous knowledge, everyone can relate to a good story, and maybe if she does a good enough job some people are going to check out that game when Febiven solo-killed Faker twice.
    On the other hand, I too find it funny that Deft used Fate's Call on Meiko after Meiko flashed, to deny him the kill on ReignOver, because EDG were so far ahead, but I bet you don't find it particularly funny. This is what I meant by mentioning the problem of the intended audience.

  9. #9
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus L_No's Avatar
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    I agree too. RPS usually does a very good job of introducing more difficult games to it's audience and manages to write interesting articles about games I usually wouldn't have considered or still do not consider playing (Football Manager and Eve respectively). The MOBA articles are the opposite of those: hard to get into and focused on a lot of scene drama that most readers probably don't care about.
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  10. #10
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus BillButNotBen's Avatar
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    Is that just because of the fact that MOBAs are kind of difficult to write engagingly about. (Kind of like sports) ?

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillButNotBen View Post
    Is that just because of the fact that MOBAs are kind of difficult to write engagingly about. (Kind of like sports) ?
    It's just that, they are hard to write about because they are rubbish :p

    Bloated, unintelligible, socially biased towards prepared teams to help promote social loyalty (see renting friends on an mmo). The skill ceiling is hard to define, but the knowledge ceiling is peeled away with each patch leaving higher and higher levels of obscurity.

    Exactly the same reasons it's brilliant and engenders such support, loyalty and passion.

    Gamers live in minutiae, especially PC gamers, the issue is it's a game for the younger and more dynamic minds. I'm not including myself in this, band box either, yes DoTA leans on the rote twitch skills of an RTS but it actually depends more on the players ability to multichannel, consider all the criteria, communicate a plan and help it survive contact with the opponent.

    DotA is a sign that the drive to make games accessible to everyone was actually excluding the people who sought the greater meta game. DotA turns parsing a wiki into a key skill, rewards loyalty and investment.

    It's an owners (but not a shareholders) wet dream. It's vital RPS try and write about it, and try and understand it.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillButNotBen View Post
    Is that just because of the fact that MOBAs are kind of difficult to write engagingly about. (Kind of like sports) ?
    Sports aren't, really.

    I regularly read Grantland, even though I don't watch most of the sports that it writes about. The articles are good and varied. Basketball, beyond actually playing the game, is interesting from so many standpoints. Contracts and team construction, statistical analysis and even improvements in such analysis, stories of the various players' lives, comparisons of players and of coaches, what it would take to turn a team into a winner, etc. American Football is interesting because Roger Goodell is an eternal low speed trainwreck. Like Basketball, you get the various non-Goodell aspects as well. A few years back, Grantland used to run an article covering the worst quarterbacking that week in football (the Bad Quarterback League) and the worst coaching decisions (Thank You For Not Coaching), which had enough humor and information that it could be entertaining to people who didn't care about football, while at the same time being informative (and perhaps a bit cathartic to people who were fans of bad teams.) Hockey gets less coverage, but mixes current season stories with articles about hockey's past, which has some weird moments to write about.

    Excepting baseball, you can write sports articles that are interesting to non-sports fans. (Baseball isn't interesting for various reasons.)

  13. #13
    Lesser Hivemind Node RobF's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MelodyMeows View Post
    stuff snipped so I don't fill up an entire page with a quoted post or whatever, soz
    Right, yeah. I know what you're getting at. What I'm saying is that I don't want an in to them. Does that make sense? I'm happy enough reading this stuff, happier reading this stuff, without someone trying to funnel me into them or trying to excite/interest me into going and checking a thing out. That's what I get from the posts and why I enjoy them as a person who wot does not play these things. I like being the outsider here. After that, it's enjoying reading folks own reactions to things in the comments, what does/doesn't irritate them, how they feel about a thing mentioned in passing or the tangents that comments sections happen to go off on.

    Totally understand what Eight Rooks is saying too, there's writers who've worked for RPS in the past who've either left me entirely cold or mildly aggravated in some cases. It's a thing that happens. But Pip isn't one of those for me. I think this is genuinely the strongest line up of writers RPS has had in some time (although I miss Gnome and Lewie but things change etc...) and find them all really readable and enjoyable.
    Videogames, eh?

  14. #14
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    Thanks for the feedback all. This is interesting.

    First up: that news story on Ekko? It's the most popular news story (in terms of pageviews) that we've written in the past 30 days by some margin. Our second most popular news story? About the Dota 2 Compendium. That doesn't undo your comments, but it maybe offers some context. Who are these for? All those people that are reading them.

    RPS is a generalist games site, but the number of people who are interested in reading about Games (plural, as a medium, a concept, a general hobby) is tiny compared to the number of people who are interested in reading about Game (one game that they play all the time to the exclusion of all else). Most generalist games sites would have more traffic if they were Skyrim fan sites - even now, four years after its release.

    The nature of the internet also means that you're writing for multiple different audiences simultaneously: the dedicated readers that visit the home page every day; those that skim and those that read every post; those that land on a particular page via Google; those that follow via Facebook or Twitter and click every now and again, and so on. Within that, there are people who know some about a lot of games and people who know a lot about some games. Even if you only want to write for one of those groups, the others will stumble across it sometimes (and then sometimes get cross about what they see).

    Beyond that, as is acknowledged here, there's also interesting stories to be found by going deep on games. Often the deeper down the rabbit hole you tumble, the more interesting stories - for players and non-players alike - you find.

    At RPS, we cater to the homepage readers more than most, but we also recognise the value in catering to the hardcore, for finding those interesting stories and for, yes, catering to a large audience so they read the site. This is why we have a specialist boardgame column, sim column, etc.

    (This may be all stuff that is plainly obvious - apologies if so).

    Which brings us to MOBAs inparticular. We want to cover them because we like them, there are interesting stories in them, and they traffic. That means writing stories about them for different kinds of audiences.

    On that front, I think they're a slightly different proposition from other games. They're 'hardcore' as sims are hardcore, but people broadly understand what planes, trains and automobiles are. You'd need three paragraphs just to explain the one sentence that Melody quoted in the first post.

    I think they're different again when you're talking about the competitive side of things. Writing about sports is different from writing about games.

    This means that there's a stronger delineation between writing that appeals to those different audiences I mentioned above. Taking the words necessary to explain what's happening in a competitive event maybe means excluding the audience that's looking for deeper, more specific analysis, and vice versa. There's areas of overlap and we try to hit them but, as Melody says: two extremes.

    But I guess this is where we disagree. The suggestion is that we should go for one extreme or the other. I think what we're doing a lot of the time currently is doing one extreme or the other on an article-by-article basis. Some Dote Nights are accessible to all; some events coverage is tailored to the people who know the games intimately. It shares a website but finds different audiences.

    We're still learning with this stuff. We recently put Esports as a link in the header of the site. We think we need to do better at making a big deal of the events that we attend, which probably includes both more posts that make it accessible to all and more of a presence on the site that lets the specific audience know that this is something we're catering to. But whatever the case, I think there's probably always going to be a certain amount of stuff that's not written for the general reader.

    A few other notes:

    - At live events, you talk to who is available, but in general casters and analysts are /way/ better at articulating a game than players and even coaches.
    - Pip is the best /reporter/ at the site. She's able to write about anything and make it appealing to a broad audience, and has previously done so with art, fashion, tech and science, and videogames of all stripes including MOBAs. If any of these articles seem inaccessible to people who don't know about the games, it's because I've asked her to write them that way.

    Hope that all explains some of our thinking with all this! My take away from this is: we'll do more MOBA coverage that's accessible to beginners, as well as also continuing to do the just-for-the-specialists stuff.

  15. #15
    Thank you for taking the time to type all this out, Graham. It's very much appreciated.

  16. #16
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Tikey's Avatar
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    Interesting look at behind the curtains. Thanks Graham for sharing it with us.

  17. #17
    Moderator Cei's Avatar
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    As perspective, DOTA is one of our most popular Mumble channels. RPS can ignore DOTA entirely, become obsessive and unreadable to anybody outside the hardcore, or find a medium between the two. Personally I find the articles are striving for the latter and generally succeeding. I understand nothing about the pro DOTA scene, but I get that other people do, and that's cool with me.
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  18. #18
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus BillButNotBen's Avatar
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    Interesting. (and surprising, if not unexpected, when it comes to the page views.)

    I think, for me, the only issue* is that the esports articles don't seem to gel well with the other articles on the site - in terms of audience, or focus, or required knowledge. That may be simply because I have the required knowledge for Games, but not for MOBAS/Esports. It may also be because I'm in the target audience for Games, but not for Esports. (The comments on a recent esports article seemed to imply that many esports fans are sports fans, and many that don't like sports have no interest in esports. And I'm in the latter group).

    Graham covers it pretty well, and I guess the only real solution is to treat it on an article by article, topic by topic basis.
    I had not noticed that Esports had it's own header button. It's odd to find a whole category on the site that I find mostly impenetrable and uninteresting, but I guess it had to happen eventually.

    I think, at a fundamental level, writing about MOBAs/Esports is different from writing about the other things RPS writes about. It's essentially sports reporting - reporting on results and games and rule changes etc.. And most** sports reporting needs the readers to have some idea of who the teams and players are, what the rules are, and what the result means. Clearly not every football game article can fill in the whole context and describe the rules for beginners.
    Most RPS writing is more like art criticism. Discussing the inspiration or visual style or telling stories of narrative experiences and hats. Even articles on things like Sims or EVE (which is also impenetrable and full of tecnical details, I guess) or MMOs tend to focus on big events, or personal stories. I'm not sure MOBAS really lend themselves to that.

    *it's not really an issue. I'm just commenting because there is a thread.
    **Baines claims it's possible, and he may well be right. I've never really experienced it though.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by BillButNotBen View Post
    I think, for me, the only issue* is that the esports articles don't seem to gel well with the other articles on the site - in terms of audience, or focus, or required knowledge. That may be simply because I have the required knowledge for Games, but not for MOBAS/Esports. It may also be because I'm in the target audience for Games, but not for Esports. (The comments on a recent esports article seemed to imply that many esports fans are sports fans, and many that don't like sports have no interest in esports. And I'm in the latter group).
    There are also sports fans (like me) who aren't interested in esports. I still dip into Pip's articles just to see what's going on in an area of gaming that I'm not familiar with. Her writing on other games is also entertaining (see Terrence the Unicorn), as is the Pipwick Papers.

    In other words, more Pip is fine by me!

  20. #20
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    I think my problem is that even if I'm interested in learning what I don't understand, and having actually played DOTA2 irregularly, I still have no way to chew on the content of the articles.

    There is definitely room to invite me into them rather than just flat out writing them as opaque insider jargon. Thing is I have in the past learned a considerable amount about sports I knew nothing about thanks to blogs and sites that dedicated some time to explaining the inner workings of the sport at a tactical level, beyond the scope of whats even part of the standard broadcast. I remember reading an excellent article that breaks down that Wildcat formation that was all the craze in the NFL a number of seasons ago and it allowed me to understand, appreciate, and ultimately discuss a topic that you never learn anything about even by watching Monday Night Football.

    So basically RPS reads like a wire service for MOBA fans. Fine. And that generates more traffic than The Flare Path's lovely prose. Dandy. I'd like it if there were some way for me to actually negotiate them a bit, just a smidge. I dunno how thats feasible, but remember when you watch any sport they have the suits in the booth with their electric pens drawing examples of how plays work. You can't watch any sports broadcast without having someone explain some finer point about standard play (which is in contrast to understanding the esoteric Wildcat which you'd only catch once or twice a game usually if that). I get none of that here. So you can't always explain every string of confusing babble that only makes sense to veterans of the game, but sometimes it would be nice. Hell, when a major player resigns it would be nice to have a bit of context, backstory, the way you get in most news articles about anything.

    Thats really whats missing I feel. Context, even to a standard thats common in insider publications in other genres, ie. the non gaming press. Even if its context that only makes sense nominally to those in the know already its still context and through context you can start building a knowledge base. If I feel that these articles do little to expand my knowledge beyond the very specifics of whats happening in that very story then I'm not very inclined to read it. I'd just as soon go ask my friend who's big into DOTA to translate for me.

    So I encourage you Graham to consider this: Be more than just a wire service for MOBA news.

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