I did a run, commentated and hosted. This was my first time at any live speedrunning event.
I'm pretty shy, so I didn't socialise as much as I perhaps would have wanted to, but I felt a lot more comfortable as the event went on, so if I were to attend again I would be more social (and try out Mafia!). I don't think this is a failing in the event at all, just to be clear. Everyone I met was very friendly!
I liked the event space. Hall A was nice and cool, which is great while you're running since you don't get sweaty hands. There were plenty of chairs, and Hall A was bustling without being cramped. Hall B was a fair bit emptier, so I'm not sure that space was utilised to its full potential. We probably needed the space, though. I filled up my water bottle a lot, and appreciated the water fountains. I used the kitchen (where the second stream was located) a fair bit, and there was no washing-up liquid or dishcloth as far as I could see. Plenty of paper plates, though!
Mass housing was really good for me! I was able to sleep fine in there. It was cold on the second night, but other than that it didn't feel too cold. I did lose my glasses in the mass housing toilets, but I don't know whether to blame the cleaning staff or an attendee for that. The info kiosk didn't handle that issue very well - only one person seemed to know who cleaned the mass housing toilets, and it took me four visits before I was told to contact ESA staff. The showers in Fortnox Arena were fine. I'm glad no-one took my towel!
Eating options were fine. I hardly felt the Burger King delivery was necessary seeing as how Max Burger was so close. The food kiosk was exorbitant, though. I used it for the first few days before realising that pretty much anywhere else offered better value for money.
My run went well. I used Jinny's 3DS because it was already plugged in and they had the capture software for it installed, which was absolutely fine. I wasn't used to sitting in that kind of chair, so I couldn't mash buttons the way I usually do (resting the 3DS on my leg) but it is what it is. Audio balance was perfect. I felt the hosts were a bit inattentive; there was a 3-minute cutscene where I mentioned that it'd be a great time for donations, and I was greeted by silence. There was also a point during a battle where I was asked whether it was a good time for donations, I told them to hold on, then after the battle I said "You can read that donation now" and was ignored for over 30 seconds. I wasn't really sure whether or not to say anything, and it made me feel a little silly.
For Epicdudeguy's Pokémon Sapphire run, the delay happened because tech didn't want to use component or something (I don't have much knowledge about this), and the setup they tried didn't work. So another GameCube was sourced and they set up Game Boy Interface, which mapped Select to the wrong button on the GameCube controller. In the end we did get the first GameCube working (not sure if tech tried their setup again or fell back on Epicdudeguy's component setup). I was worried for a second that tech would refuse to switch back from GBI for video quality reasons, but I'm really glad they switched back because I'm sure the quality of the run would have suffered otherwise.
Hosting was fun! I felt like there was plenty for me to say as host, and it felt pretty natural talking about games, the charity, or other stuff. Were there supposed to be prizes for donating, though? If there were, I didn't hear anything about them, and it was only afterwards where I wondered if I was supposed to have mentioned prizes. The PayPal donation issue sucked, but I'm sure people know about that by now. I also did not appreciate other people (who weren't hosting at the time) using the hosting station as a place to shoot the breeze. It was distracting, and there are plenty of spaces in the venue where you can go to have a chat. This was distracting as an audience member, too.
I gather that for the most part, the stream went smoothly. However, when it did go down, communication could have been better. I was watching SSBMstuff running Ape Escape, and the stream went down. Tech clearly knew the stream was down, as the timer was paused. However, Saboom kept playing for a good 30 seconds. Why wasn't he told that the stream went down? Neither the hosts nor tech stepped in for a remarkably long time. When the stream went down for GTAIV, I said that the stream was down as soon as I noticed, and tech thought it was still up, so I'm not sure what happened there.
Overall, I had loads of fun! It would depend on how financially stable I feel, but I would like to attend again in the future!
EDIT: Forgot to mention technical details about hosting. The Stream Deck was really easy to use, and I'm glad we had it! Donation incentives should have been in game order to make things easier. Overall I found the setup pretty intuitive.
I've looked into it, seems like I was wrong about the title. Sorry about that!
It did have a 4 hours long run going on at the same time, and that was really annoying when you just wanted to watch some fast runs instead of waiting 8 hours or 4 hours.
I've re edited this post to remove double spaces i spent like 3 hours writing this its poorly written so if you are struggling reading just give up it doesn't get better.
ESA2017 was a HUGE step up from last year. The Viewing area was massivly better, A huge suggestion and I prey this is put back in place is the couches in viewing area as oppose to those school chairs. At NASA they had it right some chairs couches, bean bags and these amazing inflatable banana sleeping bag bed type things 20 canadian for those well worth the investment for next year. I really enjoyed going this year over the last and met a ton of new people again this year. I will for sure be going again next year.
"Experiance as a runner."
The location was alright. checking in was easy the dude could hardly understand me but it was painless. Venue was done right his year great layout next year more good PC's would be really nice but i know those arnt cheep and the ones that we had slowly dimished to 3 at the end of the event, im so glad we had good PC's this year that could run GTA IV extreamly well. Would of been nice to have commuinty races with the GTA boys but there was not nearly enough PC's to run the Later end GTA's. The cleanliness of the event was Clean some what the garbage overflowing in stream 2 was a issue to some but at that point just empty it yourself if its doing you that much harm if you do a shit enough job dumping the trash that will be the last time they ever let the trash overflow.
"Experience of side events"
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I was attending for my first time at ESA, and also volunteered for setup, hosting and scheduling. I also helped Fatzke organize the small Quick'n'Crash arcade tournament that we held on the Tuesday.
It was my first time attending a speedrunning marathon but I've watched a lot of them over the past few years. This is my own feedback, not someone else's and I take full responsibility for it.
Setting up the venue was a tiresome but fun task and overall well organized by KrazzyRasmus. A lot of sweat was shed on the floor, but it was, I think, definitely worth it. I like the fact that we let people move stuff around, even though I still wonder where one of the gaming PCs left, since only one was brought to the stage, but other than that, having a very relaxed approach to floor organization allowed for the spontaneous organization of diverse tournaments, races and other events. I think we had enough screens and I personally loved the couches (the hosting couch was the greatest thing ever, i hope you guys put it back where it belonged though!).The presence of the Burger King was good, but bad for my diet. I do hope there will be more food on next year. Trash was a problem, but it's already been told many times, so I won't come back on it.
Ok this part might be a little harsh and remember I love all of you organizers for what you do and I don't mean any harm, I just want you guys to be aware of the problems that a lot of people might already have told you about. But here comes my part: I didn't have a direct problem with the tracker. It is unfortunate a lot of donations didn't show, but this kind of things happen. I still think showing the doubled amount of dollars on stream, even though hosts were telling people, was a bit dishonest, but I can undestand it to make the hype go further.
Finally, a short point on safety and security. We had people at the entrance managing the people that wanted to buy for their entrance but no one checking the wristbands. This might seem like a marginal point, but as ESA keeps growing, the security risks will grow at the same rate. People do random shit for no reasons and you can't just count on the honesty of everyone. You might want to think ahead for next year, maybe have a crew checking the wristbands at the entrance or even a security team. I don't know if it can even get in your budget, but if everything was perfect this would be the must.
Conclusively, this event was a pure load of awesomeness. I had a lot of fun watching, helping around, organizing the arcade tournament, hanging out with friends and just straight up playing. I'm obviously not saying anything in this post to harm people, simply to point out my opinion as a volounteer and first time attendee. Please keep on being awesome for the next events, and ESA shall soon dominate Europe! Mwahahhaha ¤evil laugh¤ ¤fade to black¤
This was my second ESA, and the first in which I was a runner in the event. I had a really great time this year, overall a marked improvement over last year.
Criticism and ideas for next time:
I specifically requested a Chess 3 station in the venue, for 2 chess 3 boards. This station was not provided. I shall be contacting edenal for a full refund of my airfare for the past 3 events for this blatant disrespect of Chess 3.
Table layouts were better than last year, not as cramped. The board game dude only took cash, of which I had none, that was a downer.
Distinct lack of cruxit.
AlkoAlko, KottiKotti and 2 others
I'm the guy who plays fast Tetris (TGM) and randomly appeared in other people's runs, often for commentary. Thank you for being awesome!
It turns out I wrote this on my way home which was def awesome because I normally take months. So here we go :
ESA is one of the rare things where I don't regret spending most of my days off.
This year didn't disappoint as I feel it was an even stronger show than the previous year. A lot of the ideas there are crazy good and the atmosphere, man. That ambience is bliss.
I am listing here the + and - I encountered as a runner and commentator. Feel free to discuss!
2) Speaking of stream 2, I was rather surprised but it's actually quite great! I think Liva and the staff there did an amazing job with it, so it was really a strong point. Also, the 70 star relay run I was rather lukewarm about but it was a great idea, too. Hopefully this keeps going!
3) The game schedule was rather original in how some choices were made. It was definitely for the best in my opinion! Glad a slightly unusual format like Trackmania 2 Stadium all flags got prime time on Sunday. Cool that there were so many different blocks with so much crazy stuff on it.
4) The arcade stuff was godlike. I wish I had hung out more with people there (shoutouts to Koston btw) and Quick & Crash was just mental.
5) Hosting was there at almost all times and the donation reading part was even less intrusive than last year with the flashing box out. Hosts were reading chat as well, which was a good interaction.
6) Memes were big.
7) Mafia was good.
B] Hosting during stream 2 had as policy "If you want to host while the chair is empty, do it." It was nice, but it seemed very different from the stream 1 policy. I can tell it deterred people from going to the seat and made it look like we were breaking a rule. Maybe have something written on it next time? Like "vacant seat"? Tell me what you think.
C] I do understand the room that Save the Children wanted to take this year. I am rather sensitive to these topics and I appreciate that there was a possibility to understand our impact, especially during the conclusion speech. However, some points seemed rather weird to me :
First of all, I am not sure what to think of the abundance of ads during the actual stream itself. Some of them made it look like we understand little about the charity itself ("What has aid ever done for anyone" was slightly odd to me, but this I feel is not the place to discuss that.) But I understand that the organization wanted to showcase their mind and most public stance about it to the viewers so this is not a problem per se.
What bothered me is that until the very end, I have never seen any attempt at explaining what Save the Children actually does to the audience at home. Do they dispense education? How do they do that? Do they support blue helmets? Where do they intervene? How much money does giving a young child food rations cost per year? Some of these questions might be exaggerated but you can get that Save the Children is easy to misunderstand.
Conclusion of this : I felt my donation was essentially contributing to the ads themselves, which do some work towards raising awareness at the cost of some heart-drilling, gut-wrenching moments, but nothing else (Okay the Hispanic kid was absolutely amazing.) I feel knowing exactly what is done is great motivation compared to just "Saving the Kids."
I ended up in the hosting seat of Cave Story (stream 2, seat was empty so I told myself why not, but I had 0 experience) and tried reading some of the paragraphs from the StC website while there was no donation. I didn't feel I had done a good job, but after that I realized that I was not hearing any of these bits of info from other hosts.
Just speaking my mind about it. Let me know what you think.
D] Tech problems do happen, in my case I do cast quite a lot of curses involuntarily because of my TGM setup. Apparently stream 2 staff was unaware of the weirdness of my run so I had to contact different staff people about it. For reasons impossible to foresee, TGM 2 refused to cooperate (went perfect last year), so Planks and Edenal proposed that I run it early the day after and play TGM 3 right now. Having TGM 2 the day after seemed like a good idea to me at the time. It eventually went okay, but it did cause a few hiccups in my show : Presentation was in the incorrect order so I had to explain things very differently on the fly. Also I was slightly tired for day 2 more than I would have thought. I'm sorry, I tend to keep things for me until it turns out weird. Still, many, many thanks for moving the schedule for my sake.
E] Donation tracker had problems so some donations were lost. You might be very well aware of this but I did not find sufficient info as to what caused this. If there is, it would be greatly appreciated 🙂
F] Some of the donation incentives I felt were too demanding. I was very afraid this led people to give up donating for said incentives. The other problem that arose from that is some people tried to snipe some of those incentives with a great deal of money, which probably didn't look very sound as a charity event (especially with the tracker problems lurking around.) Another problem is that some other people actually made the call to fulfill their incentive when the goal had not been met, contrary to other players who resigned on it.
The thing that made it all look weird was that people donated quite a lot on some of their incentives, but when the donation goals shifted again, they had a different feeling on what they donated.
Regarding my case : I was very interested in making the glitch showcase of Castlevania 2 : Simon's Quest happen (I was the commentator of this run along with Burb, the runner.) It was about two minutes of something I felt was very funny. I saw the goal and I was very puzzled : For something I had found this quick and entertaining to go to 700$ (went down from 1000$) was very high to me. I talked it out with Burb and he told me that he had shown the video to the incentive staff, so I assumed they knew what they were doing.
The run was going very well and I was caught up in the moment. I eventually tried sniping the donation incentive during the actual run with a 500$ donation to make sure it is met. The VOD of it is pretty self explanatory. I actually was commentating a bit less because I was focusing on paying with PayPal. The donation did not go through the tracker, so the incentive was lost to RNG, dude. Seven was hosting at the time. I think he made a very good call to refer to the tracker to say that the donation incentive was not met. In the end it was just a sad moment which resulted from the different abovementioned problems.
I think ESA is getting bigger for the best, and I'm really excited to go there next year. Most of the problems I described probably emerged as a result of that growth. I understand it is difficult as a staff to overcome all the difficulties along the path and I hope you'll have the proper expertise to deal with all of these soon.
|AlkoAlko likes this.|
I was volunteering as a host but not running this year (unless you count the star in the SM64 relay, which was a brilliant experience and I really hope that next year there is a massive relay race or possibly a 120-star relay!)
I had an absolute blast this year, of particular highlights were the big screens for easy stream viewing, the general layout of the venue, the arcade machine, easy food, and the bikes (I had my own in the end since one of the bikes went missing, but this was a great idea)
Trash has already been mentioned. I didn't notice it until after the event finished but it was a bit of a shame, since there were a lot of bins about.
Regarding hosting and especially ¤that¤ ad, I sat down for my first hosting session on Tuesday and played that ad and was immediately greeted by twitch chat complaining about how many times it had been shown. From my perspective, I had not seen any of the stream at that point and didn't know which ads were overplayed. Part of that is on me but I think if we have a similar setup next year the ads should be randomised or play in a pre-defined cycle, rather than giving it to hosts who probably don't have a good context to choose specific adverts. Letting hosts choose WHEN to play the adverts was a good move. Maybe have a tracker showing us the length of time since x ad was last played?
Not all of the layout buttons worked as planned. I tried to change the stream to show second stream between games and was presented with a big screen of my ugly mug 🙁 Keep the buttons though as it was a good idea.
Next year, can we get a short highlight reel of each game to show off between runs, where you see upcoming games? It might be more interesting and get viewers hyped up for the next run, rather than host faces 🙂
Donation incentives and goals didn't always show up in order and didn't auto-update in the tracker, meaning it was sometimes hard to see where different incentives were and what to plug without cross-referencing it with the schedule. I'm also not a fan of the foot pedal and would prefer a hand switch for the mics.
For those complaining about long FF runs, I get that you're not a fan of them but I don't particularly care about Mega Man or Super Mario Galaxy - I found something else to do during those runs (and there were a LOT of excellent options!). I only got to see FF8 but I thought the runner and commentators were amazing, and kept it up for the entire run, preventing it from being a 9-hour menu-fest (plus they didn't seem to mind me jumping in every so often!)
The PayPal thing was a shame as I lost a donation I made during My Summer Car (looking forward to whatever next year's meme-game is!), for some reason when I donated with PayPal it didn't make the tracker, but when I used my card, it did (even though PayPal uses the same card!)
Big props to everyone involved in tech for the amazing job and especially for the ridiculous amount of work it presumably took to get a co-op Game Gear game on stream!
Nobody has mentioned the fact that the timetable linked to the games and runners profiles on Speedrun.com - when hosting this was invaluable to look up things like PB/WR times (cos chat always wants to know WR times), other games the runner runs, level of activity in the game (are there 3 runners or 300?) etc.
I'll add another post if I think of anything else.
|AlkoAlko, GreenalinkGreenalink and TeleshotTeleshot like this.|
This is gonna be pretty short because I'm not good at words.
Anyway, absolutely loved the event overall.
|NoiceNoice likes this.|
First year not running anything, sixth year attending. This was a very good year overall from my perspective.
The very good:
AlkoAlko, YvathacalYvathacal and 2 others
A few more LCD TVs would have been nice. Maybe even just one. And I'd have no problem with them being smaller if that makes them more affordable. Also because that gives more room for consoles and other tech on the tables, too. (And I personally get headaches rather quickly on CRT TVs and there are more and more modern consoles nowadays, too, that don't really work on CRT).
People left their stuff all over the place. Be it trash (BK bags, Soda cans, bottles) or their tech. I hate people who do this. I don't say that you have to unplug and remove all your tech and consoles from TVs but please at least tidy it up so that other players who use the TVs after you don't need to deal with all that stuff. Wanting to use a TV, I often had to figure out what a lot of the cables are, what they are plugged in to, be careful not to unplug currently used tech, be careful not to accidentally pull a cord and pulling or throwing tech off the tables, not tipping over open soda cans or bottles which may ruin or destroy a console... the whole ordeal. It was just a mess in some places.
And the schedule had too many GTA and FF games and all of them were at prime time I felt. Meanwhile Golden Sun, Metroid Rotation and other shorter runs were in the middle of the night. I think having long runs at night or early morning would be better because that's when the least casual viewers tune in. And casual viewers stick around more and check back more often when there's shorter games. Also you'd inconvenience less runners with having to stay up very very late just for their 30 minute run.
Healthier food options would be great, indeed.
And I liked last year's practice TVs layout much better. The round areas have way less space for people sitting in front of the TVs. Thankfully people just out the TVs in a straight line and opened that up again.
The speakers with the donation reader was way too loud. And apparently the couch headsets were too loud, too (I've been told).
The Mario 64 relay was awesome but having the participants stand in a line that went out the door so they couldn't even see was just a bad decision. Which could have easily been avoided by having the relay on the main stream. I know this was probably not possible but take it as a suggestion for next time. Maybe have a donation war for an "open" block so the viewers can vote which of two or more options will be shown on main stream and which will be on second stream (or not shown at all if they don't get enough votes).
Last thing, the lanyard's were too big and I'd really prefer to have a picture or avatar on them again.
Other than that, I liked it much better than last year. The projector and the crowd seating area were amazing! I enjoyed it very much because in the big picture, all of the above complaints are very minor.
¤ ROLLING START Daytona and the surprise hit Quick and Crash were highlights of the first half of the venue. I would love to see a Darksoft CPS2 setup sometime in the future (basically Capcom's prime arcade games in the 1990s from Super Turbo to Alien vs Predator).
¤ Mario Kart Double Dash first 16 player co-op, 16 race LAN session was by far the most unforgettable MK experience yet, pop-offs when reaching first place and using the first Blue Shell at WR pace.
¤ Pixelbot Arena, accidentally triggering moonwalk glitch which allowed an option select arm cannon.
¤ Saturday night music.
¤ Healthier food options would be nice such as actual fruit, something for people not into Burger King.
¤ Mass housing felt very cold in the early mornings but this is very likely because I placed mine nearby the entrance used for last year's event and other people said that they were warm, unless they were being sarcastic. So this is more likely my fault and not the mass housing.
¤ Lanyards were pretty big, I get that the pig was the mascot but looks like the reception wasn't positive because there weren't enough gaming nods other than faint images on a white background.
¤ I always felt guilty going into stream 2 room and trying to get something to eat during a run because I did not want to distract the audience in the room trying their best to listen to the commentator/runner.
¤ Food waste, BK bags, water bottles, come on people, use your legs and throw it in the bin.
¤ Nearby the front of the first stream I've noticed the floor was sticky due to a possible drink spillage.
¤ Hosts were reading their donations super loud by accident that it nearly pierced through my ears.
¤ There were not enough LCDs which might not be a huge issue for the Switch thanks to portable mode but it will be an issue for future runners playing PS4, Xbox One and/or NES/SNES classic minis (lol). If you're using composite on a LCD TV, go away and use a CRT.
¤ People going into mass housing late at night by bashing the door open and not quietly.
|AlkoAlko likes this.|
Wrong Flags with Names.
Audio in Host Headphones.
Food Options Timeframe.
Tables for Weeb Corner.
Host Camera and TV positioning.
Hosting Stream 1.
Kiosk Opening Hours and Burger King Delivery.
This is the first ESA that something was stolen from me. It was not labelled and I lost something like €15 or €20 to it, so I don’t really care. Just saying. Maybe someone borrowed it but did not give it back in time. Whatever. Just putting this here for randomness.
Hand sanitisers placed everywhere will not prevent the spreading of germs any more than regular hand washing (with soap and water in a sink). Hand sanitisers and using them too much will, however, wreck the flora of your skin, harm your skin in general and make you more likely to get an infection if you stop using them. There is even some evidence that a healthy skin flora helps prevent infections. The best way to prevent catching colds is what our teachers, parents and grandparents taught us in kindergarden age: wash your hands after going to the toilet and before eating.
I didn't attend ESA this year, but I watched it and participated in the German Restream. It appears that a lot of the problems I had last year, when I attended the event, were improved, but i obviously can't comment on that without having been there.
The good stuff:
The bad stuff:
Overall, the good things outweighed the negative things by far for me. I got to see a ton of great runs, many of which I would have never been able to see at a GDQ. Host the second stream yourself the next time and you're almost perfect!
The kiosk felt quite a bit improved since last year with more options and better opening hours. Sadly it closed earlier than promised many nights and for a bit I think there were some issues with the card reader, but apart from that I think it was really nice to have a close accessible option for food and snacks. I didn't utilize the burger king delivery so have no opinions about that.
I would have wished security concerns such as checking wristbands at the entrance and making sure nobody entered through back doors would have been taken more seriously. I understand this is something ESA attendees are not used to, since the event has always been very chill and had the feeling of just a gathering of friends, but as ESA grows this is something that has to be dealt with. Especially when ESA is combined with other events such as the smash tournament and LAN party it is even more important to make sure only the event attendees are allowed in the venue. There were good wristband controls during the last couple of days, but during nighttime there was usually still no serious checks done.
The main stream area was a lot nicer this year with the big projector. Even though couches are nice, having a lot of chairs worked a bit better. The placement of the PCs felt a bit off to the side behind the host wall. It would have nice if it was a bit more centered, especially since it felt like there was space for it.
Stream and Main Stream Hosting:
Layouts were a lot better this year. I liked scrolling donations on the overlay, but might need to make sure those that show up on stream are filtered a bit more harshly. The addition of flags was a nice touch, really showing off how international of an event ESA is.
One thing that could have been improved when it comes to the quality of the stream was the camera angles. Especially for the PC games it felt like tech was a bit scared to even move the camera around, even though it sometimes cut off the runner and left commentators outside of the picture. Liva did a great job on the second stream adjusting the camera for basically every single run and I wish tech would do the same on the first stream. I think this was improved throughout the week, so might have been something that was noticed and fixed during the marathon.
I like how ESA does hosting, but it is quite hard to balance professionalism and fun. Hosting needs to always be discussed and tweaked to make it as good as possible. It's great how almost anyone can be a host, but I think ESA should be able to expect more of many of the hosts. Hosts aren't on for that many games so I feel like they should take the time to learn a bit about the games so they can give a good introduction and possibly hold some interesting interviews. This obviously depends on the hosting schedule being ready some time before the marathon so there is time for preparations. Generally I think that many times this year the hosts were talking a bit much about random things and not enough about the game that was just completed or was coming up. In general I think hosts stayed on for a bit long and they shouldn't be afraid to cut to the setup screen when they have nothing more to say.
Donation Incentives and Tracker:
Tracker had some technical issues, but I think the people are aware of that and my input isn't really necessary. Tracker was pretty good, but I wish there would have been a clearer way to direct donations towards stream one or two. Just like a box to tick for stream 2 donations would have worked. I am also a bit confused over how ESA wants to use it's website. Information and links regarding the event are a bit all over the place around esamarathon.com and speedrun.com. Would be a good idea to make sure everything is on the same site to avoid confusing viewers.
Thanks for a really nice event with big improvements over last year.
Second time attending ESA, but first time doing it the entire week (last year was a big fuckery because I replaced someone to save a race in a hurry) :
- The partnership with Burger King was a good idea.
- Mass housing is still fine for me.
- Like others said, the use of couches for people who were watching any runs was lacking this year (probably because they were used for chill/training areas instead).
- The Save the Children ads are good, but not really adapted that much to be used between 2 runs inside a marathon like ESA.
- The tchat on the big screen can be really fun if viewers are cool, but at the opposite, it might completely become a painful experience if they decide to get mad or trolly towards runners/commentators, especially if we have no choice, but having it in front of us during runs. The runners/commentators should probably decide to have or not the tchat visible during the performances imo.
- I’m not especially involved, but the fact that ESA’s donations were fast only if they were done with credit card instead of using Paypal can be annoying for people. Few runners probably tried to add some fun by doing some special donations during runs, but because of the use of Paypal, it wasn’t done in time.
Good week for me.
ESA is over for more than a week now, but since I had some nice vacations in Stockholm and a successful job interview afterwards, I only now find the time to post in this thread. I hope it still gets read in time for next year's ESA!
Experience as an attendee:
Second ESA for me. Last year I slept in the mass housing, this year I decided to use the luxury of a hotel. Would probably do again. 🙂 Way to walk to the venue wasn't too far, lots of stores around! The venue was very similar to last year, with the stream being a bit more its own area this time, which I liked. I also really liked the super duper comfy second stream! Too bad I didn't try out any of the other attractions like arcade machines and the melon controllers. Once again, super trusty community. Want to leave your expensive gear around? Okay, sure, it'll be in the same place 10 hours later. The WGW wifi was also fast and available practically all the time, which was nice this year as opposed to having to wait for the Fortnox Arena wifi to give you access. 😃
Experience as a runner:
Setup for the two runs I had went quite smoothly, not really some problems I encountered, except a very nervous Ladaur coming to me, asking whether I'm Zet and ready, while I had to rush back to take my keyboard with me. 😃 The pc crash during my Inside run was a bit unfortunate, but I understand that this is a live event and even the most expensive pcs aren't 100% reliable all the time. It eventually got resolved and the machine kept running smoothly until the end. Being able to see the chat is nice because you know what is going on. It is not so easy when chat is once again being toxic and just complaining how shitty the run is you're doing. Also I saw on youtube comments that it's a bit unnerving for viewers to see the runners constantly look in the corner which we did for the chat but I'm not sure if the viewers knew we were looking at the chat. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
As for the donation incentives, I totally understand the motivation, but maybe next year have them a little smaller in the first place. It feels odd as viewers, runners and attendees when you have incentives of 1000$ that suddenly shrink to a 200$ one because it's clear they wouldn't get matched. It lessens the value of those incentives a bit. I totally understand how hard it is to coordinate all of this so I see why it went wrong but for next year this would be something to keep in mind and learn from this year's problems. 🙂
Experience as a host:
Now, this was something completely new to me and it was a blast! Well, not completely new, as I did some hosting during ESA Germany but this was my first hosting experience at a "larger" event like this. Hosting shifts with two people is a nice idea since you can start a conversation with your shift partner as opposed to being awkward on the couch, not knowing what to say during intermissions. Unfortunately, both me and my host partner SirRouven couldn't attend the host briefing because we hadn't been on site yet back then. It would have been nice to get some detailed description of how the stream deck worked and what playing ads was like etc. Maybe have a constantly updated Google doc with a link pinned on the volunteer discord somewhere would be nice! Fingers and the other person in the hosting shift before our first one did their best to explain the equipment to us but in action we realized we had misunderstood what they had told us before in the crash course. Especially that the view wouldn't automatically shift back to host cam after the twitch ad was finished was something we weren't aware of. We sure made up for it during our second shift - which even 4chan seemed to have found comfy 😃 - so I guess it's a learning process, as always. Maybe, for next events, hosting pairs could be matched up as in one with more and one with less experience, but then again it's up to the hosts to find their shift partners. This might however, be a suggestion to host volunteers and also an encouragement to veteran hosts to also ask newcomers to partner up with them. 🙂 I definitely want to be a host again next year and although two shifts seemed a bit slim, I understand that everyone should have the opportunity to get a shift, so not everyone can get inifite many hosting shifts. Mayyyybe organizers can look into giving hosts from previous events which the viewers reacted positively towards and which brought donations in and such a slight preference when distributing the shift times. But again, I don't want to advertise ignoring newcomers or the inexperienced. Just thinking out loud. 🙂
About the whole donation process - I know we're not GDQ and we don't want to look like we're selling out but I realize we had some difficulties reaching the match up goal. Maybe for next year, not all the tiny donations should be read by the hosts and the good cause (and hopefully the upcoming match) should be promoted a bit more, as well as the upcoming bid wars or donation incentives.
Now, my feedback post got way too long already, so I'll stop here! Thank you for giving us this wonderful event once again, I can only imagine how much work it must be. I heard rumors next year was set to be in a hotel again instead of Fortnox or something entirely different... I guess I'll just wait and let the revelation be a surprise to me. See you next year. Hopefully.
I did two runs on the second stream and without repeating the points which have been previously mentioned by others, the actual process of submitting your games and the rules needs to be improved.
When I submitted my two games which made the cuts, Country Justice: Revenge of the Rednecks and Postal 2, I did so with donation incentives. At the event I was informed that since Country Justice is on the second stream the bid-war for the name of the save-file would not be possible and the length of the Paradise Lost DLC incentive was too long.
Needless to say, this was a serious kick in the balls for me and needs to be fixed for future events.
Better late than never I guess.
This was the second ESA that I viewed, and it was pretty amazing. I don't have a lot to say, but here's a few notable things:
One complaint I do have is the official schedule. The times adapted to my local time zone (9 hours behind ESA time), but the days did not. I would recommend using Horaro, as everything adapts to your local time. The schedule actually caused me to miss a run because I read the schedule as it was on Monday, when it was actually on Sunday.
Other than that, amazing event and I can't wait for next year!