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Thread: Did I miss a big change at RPS?
08-01-2012, 12:45 AM #1
- Join Date
- Jan 2012
Did I miss a big change at RPS?
I've been reading RPS for nearly two years now. New articles came a bit slow, but most of them were worth it, even the ones about very unusual games. Actually, those were often the best. Articles were quite elaborate and even pure browser games turned into spectacles and long running series. It felt like a little group of gamers writing about their avocation. Recognisable, always trying to be ahead of each other.
But these days that is hardly the case anymore.
Two days ago I was completely baffled at how many articles were published that day. Fifteen!
Though acceptable in general they lack anything that made this site special. Most of what was written could be found on any other gaming news site. In some cases even in a way that is much more readable.
Articles like Steam Wants You To Look At Its Muscles just seem so unnecessary and written in a way that makes me think "Am I missing some kind of inside joke?".
The only article I've enjoyed this week was The Flare Path: Tomcas, Tigers & Treason. But I admit, I wouldn't even have read it if there wasn't the picture of a flight sim. The first paragraph, the one visible on the page itself is just...
To quote it:
Tomorrow morning at daybreak, the Flare Path is being executed for treason. His nosey neighbour, Mr Geoff Himmler, spotted him placing 2p coins on the railway line at the bottom of the garden, and informed the authorities. The next thing FP knew, he was sat in a dingy cell in the Tower of London with nothing but a laptop, a tin of alphabetti spaghetti, and a Dangerous Waters manual for company. After reading the alphabetti spaghetti and eating the Dangerous Waters manual, the condemned man has decided to spend his final hours sharing Achtung Panzer tips and disseminating news of upcoming train, bus, and jet sims.
I'm sorry. Maybe gaming is slow in general at the moment. Maybe I'm just fed up with this artsy fartsy style of writing.
But for me most of what is published these days seems like the product of a small army of minions, each one of them trying to outshine the other in terms of crazyness.
Were are the articles with a twist? Long series were RPS authors try to outsmart each other. Mostly failing, sometimes diplomacy at its best.
I can't be the only one who is a bit dissapointed by RPS over the last few months?
08-01-2012, 05:54 AM #2
My only complaint would be the increasing number of "announcement about an announcement" type of articles. RPS used to not pile on to the PR Hype machine and do content for the sake of content that this sort of thing strikes me as. Otherwise, the writing is still superior, even on fluff pieces. People, games, and sites all evolve I suppose, as long as RPS continues to be more mature and better composed, they'll be #1 in my book despite the changes.All times I have enjoyed greatly, have suffered greatly, both with those that loved me, and alone.
08-01-2012, 07:11 AM #3
- Join Date
- Jul 2011
You've got to accept that RPS isn't the site it was. It is now more of a well written news aggregation site than anything else and you can't blame them because it is probably the most profitable format and they have rent to pay.
Having said that the way you consume the site has to change since the basic Wordpress blog template is horribly ill-suited to the new format of the site (They should see what theregister.co.uk has done in terms of format. Unfortunately they won't be able to use 50% of the screen for ad coverage with that.).
The RSS reader is now your primary means of navigating the site. Instead of compulsively reading everything on the front page just read the two or three news articles that interest you from the feed. Stories disappear so quickly from the front page that commenting isn't as good as a story stays in the spotlight for a few hours.
It is sad that the old articles posted during the holidays were probably the best items posted on RPS this year other than the 1994 and April 1st posts."You go up to a man, and you say, "How are things going, Joe?" and he says, "Oh fine, fine — couldn't be better." And you look into his eyes, and you see things really couldn't be much worse. When you get right down to it, everybody's having a perfectly lousy time of it, and I mean everybody. And the hell of it is, nothing seems to help much." - Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
08-01-2012, 09:14 AM #4
I've criticized the development of RPS myself, but if you mean the likes of Gameboys in Hell by "long series were RPS authors try to outsmart each other". Well, I'm pretty sure there were only two pieces like that. One about Solium Infernum and the other about Neptunes Pride.
11-01-2012, 12:04 PM #5
- Join Date
- Jun 2011
They do news now, in addition to the features/reviews and everything else. That's all really. Takes a bit more effort to find the good stuff that's true (although by 'effort' just looking at the 'read our finest words' bit seems to work).
15-01-2012, 02:30 AM #6
Wow. The internet's a cold, harsh place.
15-01-2012, 10:26 AM #7
I agree with the OP and I also with Wuggas comment. Personally I don't have a problem with RPS being a news site with the occasional article and interview thrown into the mix. However I do wish they'd stop taking any old shit posted up at Reddit as a given and do some fact checking before posting it up on RPS. The whole 'Valve giving refunds on From Dust' and 'be afraid Origin is spyware' headlines were particularly egregious examples from last year of spreading disinformation and inciting rampant fear mongering amongst the sites readership that were devoid of much 'fact' at the end of the day. If you are going to be a news site, model yourself after the BBC not Fox. The gaming world is built on Chinese whispers enough already without RPS contributing to the BS spreading.
15-01-2012, 08:58 PM #8
16-01-2012, 10:59 AM #9
i don't read rps for the news, which i already know from every other site by the time it gets to rps, nor for the hardware articles, nor for the sensationalist kotaku/destructoid style of stuff. i come for lighthearted articles about various sorts of nonsense, for the game diaries, for the indie games and for the humour. and i feel that all of these things i like have been kinda under-represented for a while now, in favour of other stuff. other stuff that probably gets them more clicks. i get that, but that doesn't mean i have to like it.
perhaps they could do what eurogamer did and hire a news guy that could take care of most posts, so the rps core could focus on fewer and better articles?
16-01-2012, 01:57 PM #10
Sadly, yes. The volume of Churnalism with a thin veneer of opinion attached is quite disgusting as of late. The Hivemind probably can't win though... if they run with all of these press releases and announcements of announcements at the like, people complain about the Churnalism, the lack of well written pieces and so on. If RPS doesn't run a story on a press release or announcement, people pop up in the comments sections and in the forums demanding that RPS cover this or that, or decrying RPS for their obvious bias in not covering this or that... Then, RPS do cover this or that, but not in the way the people wanted (see that 4-chan ungame nonsense from last week for an example), so the people complain.
16-01-2012, 05:23 PM #11
Maybe you guys would be happier with RPS if you started visiting http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/cate...ured-articles/
16-01-2012, 05:54 PM #12
This thread comes up every six months or so. Do we really take a "new direction" towards tabloid bloggery every six months? I suspect not. The site isn't a lot different to how it was two years ago, it's just that there is more content, both news and articles.
Also, if you don't get Tim Stone, I pity you. He is my favourite writer on RPS.
16-01-2012, 06:02 PM #13
- Join Date
- May 2011
While people are of course entitled to think RPS has gone wrong in any direction they please, it's important to note that the site is currently posting FAR more feature content than it ever has at any point in its existence.
The articles you claim we lack - we have them more than we ever have. And the news you say is clogging the site? We've always had it. The thing is, when you remember the past, you remember the bits you liked about it. So when you think about RPS in 2010, you think about the features you loved the best, and forget the churn of daily news that came between. There are now more posts than there were before, because we've more writers, and we work harder, but everything has increased proportionally.
I promise that in two years you'll all be complaining that RPS is nothing like it was in its 2012 glory days, because by then you'll have forgotten we posted those screenshots, and only remembered the awesome features.
Also, and I think this is enormously crucial, the news posts are all bloody brilliant too. You may not care about the content (although someone else will - we don't write the site for one person) but you may possibly still enjoy the writing, jokes and usual RPS nonsense therein.
16-01-2012, 06:35 PM #14
- Join Date
- Jul 2011
Hi, is there any way to update the layout of the site to make it more suited to the amount of content that gets posted?"You go up to a man, and you say, "How are things going, Joe?" and he says, "Oh fine, fine — couldn't be better." And you look into his eyes, and you see things really couldn't be much worse. When you get right down to it, everybody's having a perfectly lousy time of it, and I mean everybody. And the hell of it is, nothing seems to help much." - Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
16-01-2012, 06:42 PM #15
As ever, we will slowly tweak the layout, rather than any major overhaul. There will be some changes in the coming months.
16-01-2012, 07:38 PM #16
I admit I've only been an active rps reader for approximately 18 months, but I can't really say the site has changed much in terms of quality, style, or quantity in that time. Meh.
16-01-2012, 07:58 PM #17
Favorable view of the past probably factors in, but I don't complain about that every six months. I have never complained about it before, and I read RPS regularly since around 2008. I tie it specifically to the time "RPS took off" around the time EG started doing the ads for RPS.
Where there "news" like Minecraft Is In Dire Straits 1-2 years ago?
I just wonder if the increasing coverage of as much as possible is even necessary. As I wrote in another thread, didn't RPS get big without it? Wouldn't more coverage of what made you what you are better instead of more news?
16-01-2012, 08:14 PM #18
I've found the more worrying change in RPS to be the shift towards being more negative and angry; this is also reflected in the comments which I'm considering no longer reading. I asked Jim about this a while ago on his formspring and he gave a very good and thorough answer but one which sadly didn't make me feel any better.
http://www.formspring.me/JimRossigno...06574189876975 for those interested.
Last edited by Auspex; 16-01-2012 at 08:15 PM. Reason: Grammar.
16-01-2012, 08:31 PM #19
So the inevitable "more popular means lower intellectual denominator" wave is breaking upon us? On behalf of all self-righteous, hot-headed, sub-par intellectuals with too much time on their hands, I say try harder! Make me want to be a better reader. mk Brah?All times I have enjoyed greatly, have suffered greatly, both with those that loved me, and alone.
16-01-2012, 08:46 PM #20
- Join Date
- May 2011
I just wish there were more game diaries and proper original content that wasn't just a press release with a bit of RPS spin on it, or John beating his chest about something or other (sorry John, some of your stuff is great, but you're the RPS writer I love to hate the most!).
In terms of more posts, we're getting about 1/3 more content now than we were in '08, so we're definitely seeing more. A simple site redesign could improve things a lot though, and stop articles falling off the front page too quickly.