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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."
My run was shown on second stream. This room was super chill for running games, It was however hot as fuck. There was the SRG fan keeping some people cool but this room could for sure use better ventilation in the future or hall B if avalible could be used for stream 2. From the layout sheets i saw on RTC i understand that hall B was where all the PC's from last year were for casual gaming. Back to my run because the setup for windwaker took a long time 2/3 of my run was showcased on first stream. In the future having audio on stream 1 for when they are showing stream 2 would be a big suggestion. Im glad my run was on stream 2 because if it was on stream 1 im sure the chat mods would of lost their shit like they did on me for my commentary for GTA 4, More on the chat mods later. My run was also not tweeted out trollbear666 told joshimuz he had a special blurb of text for my run when it got time to post it, However it never got tweeted out and this could of been big for exposure for the stream. Now weather or not those chat mods did this on purpose I can not say forsure but im sensing they did this on purpose from DM's I saw. Chat in stream 2 would of been nice aswell but we just set up a phone next to us with the chat on it alot of this is alot more to setup and I would rather have a second stream then to not have one at all. so big shout out to geekygoonsquad for doing this for us.
Selection process for my run was normal as far as i know. it was first submited as a race between mizterconfuzing and I. Once mizter dropped out, It was all treated as the same so no complaints in the selection process. to other runners out there raise your estimates next time to advoid ⌚ ???? .
Satisfaction with tech during setup. My run was the 4th run and the first PC run I cant blame them for not knowing we would need a ethernet cable but it was solved extreamly fast so good job to liva.
The host for my run was crazy charlie. His mic was on during the run and you could hear him laughing im ok with that because I know the dude and we had a hand mic in the crowd for my run. other runners prolly got triggered from this. I know the MCNUGGET incident happen and in cursed defence I told her its prolly just banter because its a dude eating mcnuggets get over your self lmao. And I saw zoton talk to the dude eating the nugs and im not sure what happen with that beside the dude kept eating them at that point. I thought this was a gimmik they were playing out but clearly it wasnt in the future I guess having tech be able to talk to the runner off stream through the headset asking if hes being serious might help but really I dont think that matters too much. I thought it was funny and I know alot of other people did.
To add to this, The reddit threads of people saying It seems like ESA hates GDQ. I think this is hardly the point if you look at current GDQ runs it seems alot like people just go there to network and shill there channels in the hopes of getting that boost in viewers on their own streams. ESA is a major step away from this and feels a ton more like people are there to showcase their game over them self. You wont see any runner at ESA handing out business cards to network with each other. GDQ is a poor excuse for a speedrunning event and more of a Speedrun confrence for networking the same you would see for any business confrence and im glad ESA is not anything near like that.
"Experience as a attendee."
Fortnox is set in a industrial area of vaxjo that being said im so glad we got mizterconfuzing to come to the event because we had rides to and from. we had also asked prior to the ESA vollentears getting a sign up for bikes asked about 3 months before then for bikes. That being said the Hotel partys we had at royal corrner were great for us because we did not have to go back to mass. that being said the people from mass that came every night had to walk back to the venue sometimes 30 minute walk depending on how much they had to drink. The location of the venue while being away from the hotels i prefered this because the hotels are into town and if you wanted to grab some real food instead of max burger or pizza or the wings at the grocery store you had a ton more options. The stars and Stripes is a scam with jacked up prices for the Quiz and terrible food for the price. There was a Sports bar into town near the bishops and arms that was amazing and 20- 40 sek cheeper then there.
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.
I was a host again this year. The setup was a lot better this year over the last. I prefer the couch setup but hate the laptops they had some what long enough cords that you could lay down on the couch and read donations from there. the Footpeddle was not what i would of gone with. The cords are extrealy small for how big the couch was so for interviews it made it hard for hosts who had headsets. also holding your foot above the peddle waiting for a good point to interject with donations was annoying to fix this i would go with a hand held button or toggle to talk setup for next year. The cam postion after changed was better. Pac had a surface he was using that seemed extreamly usefull for hosting but that costs money and I wouldn't bother buying it and just keep using laptops at that point. The desk setup from last year had it's perks but the hosting station was the place to watch any run because the chairs were terrible to sit in. Maral and ladaur did a great job with having a meeting with the hosts prior to the start of the event.
To save some face here the mention of talking about emoji movie seemed pointless we had to kill 40 minutes to get the schedule back on track. now 40 minutes is a ton of time to try and fill. The emoji movie had just come out and was filling my timeline so instead of babbling about nothing for 40 minutes we just talked about that and played pokemongo. A big shoutout to maral and planks for defending me against the chat mods who had a major problem with the hosting.The ammount of times i saw a certian head chat mod talk shit about me hosting and saying things like "ryedawg is lucky this is his last hosting shift" could of been toned back a bit. There was 2 dudes who started hosting at 6am already i know they are tired as fuck and it was the first day of the event and you are dam right I would of went out drinking just like them to socialize with my fellow gamers, but the chat mods raised a massive stink about this as well, They called for the hosts to be removed from hosting. what a massive over reaction from the chat mods the VOD was not even terrible like they said it was here is the clip the chat mods included in a effort to SAVE SOME FACE FOR THE STREAM (https://clips.twitch.tv/BigCovertBaconTriHard) .but more about the chat mods later. Hosting was great would do it again if they let me.
"Experience of side events"
Arcade was extreamly appreaciated. A expanded ammount of games would be great a 4 player game would be nice. i know everyone loved that gun game i played it once then it broke for the rest of the event. board games are always nice I never played them this year but last year I played a ton of them, there was a good location for the board gamers as well. The shop that comes and sells stuff to the people at the event is greatly appreaciated by the people who used them i was going to buy a few magica cards to join in on the fun but ever got around too it. The smash was great watched a few semi matches.
I had the pleasure of having a lot of encounters with the chat mods. From them talking shit in DM's to getting DMed saying if i dont start behaving on stream im going to be banned from the chat. So lets go back to the first time i hosted me and nozlar had a great time on stream lots of jokes being cracked at each other just some good banter on stream.(https://www.twitch.tv/videos/161185549?t=14h47m45s) After this hosting shift I knew there was going to be problems. Monday my run arives it goes well, Not tweeted out by the mods for what i can only asume the hosting shit prior and the fact that alot of the mods selected do not like me. Gta IV run shows up. Great run Reddit threads about the great banter ect. I get a DM from a chat mod that reads as followed:
"We the mods are messaging you regarding the meta-talk you practised today. This is a charity run, the focus should not be on the inside-jokes of different communities. Let chat be chat, don't instigate it to work against us or talk to chat unless there is something directly in the run that accomodates it, like a decision or similar things. This is not your stream, you are representing ESA as a whole by attending the charity run and are expected to behave accordingly.
Behave in chat, or you will be removed."
As i read this i just thought to my self what a power tripping jackass, like most people who sign up for moderation in any stream they are not cut out for it because anyone who wants to be a mod blows at it. The best mods can be found in your own chat the ones who commuincate and talk. The ones who know the event. The mods who dont ban kittymuz for quoting the video game being ran "dick heads everywhere yo!" So i DMed the messege to maral and asked if im going to get banned. Planks finds me its all good. Not surprisingly im asked to keep it tame on my next hosting shift in a few hours. That hosting shift goes over fine And still once again the Chat mods are in a stir about it. At this point in the event the GDQ moderation really kicked in is being banned also banned. alot of us are just trying to support out faviorte speedrunning by spamming TriHard. After his THICC is banned because and i quote
Momo - Last Saturday at 6:11 AM
@Ryedawg Thick isn't banned. thicc is.
ESA-Hosts - Last Saturday at 6:11 AM
monojira - Last Saturday at 6:40 AM
Why is "e" banned? Someone just got timed out for correcting a typo :thinking:
Chat Mod - Last Saturday at 6:59 AM
The single letters N, I, G, E, and R are banned, because people were trying to spell racist messages with them
Now at this point this is overbearing moderation to outright ban Letters as opose to just banning the word that would take care of it. The mods were letting -. .. --. --. . .-. through just fine untill i pointed this out to them. and ofcourse saying the n-word should be banned but there is just so many ways that chat is going to find a way to say it. but having gaves like GTA SA are going to get these people to spam and other on the edge of racist words because thats just the game it is. and that is just how twitch is unless they are out right saying the n-word I can not see a point in timing them out.
After my next 2 hosting shifts (picked one up from josh cause he was sick) I had had enough with the mods. The r9K mode was a stupied move and I called them out on it. from my understanding Planks and ednell had asked for chat mods to ban people who were copy pasta spamming. while this is understandable the copy pasta do run out in a easier way then just R9King the chat. R9k is afull feature to mod the chat because then you get.
Subscriber Turbo 16:20 Ryedawg: 3-copypasta-
Prime 16:20 Odyssic: Subscriber Turbo 16:20 Ryedawg: 3-copypasta-
And so on a easy way to fix this is emote only. it gives the chat the spam they want and it gets rid of a good ammount of the long spam and instead turns it into emote spam after 3 min of this the chat forgets what was being spammed and usually stops. thats how you control a massive chat room you give them something else to focus on instead of finding ways around restrictions. If you look at twitch presents over the last weekend the annie may weeb fest it was had a ton of spam and 0 moderation. The old GDQs use to be the best GDQs because of the chat memes the Spam and shit posting that goes on in chat makes these events worth watching at home as a commuinty with other people. In the futire i wouldnt mind seing mods who actually dont care about modding and are just there to time out really bad pastas and people who are just out right spamming the n-word. Twitch does have a auto mod setting now that if set on a low setting would keep most racist events out with mods having to aprove them after furth inspection but at that point i can see this being a bad idea and censoring alot of the really great memes that come out of events like this. Copy pasta related to the speedrun is really great that seems like a glitch OpieOP. this adds to the run and dies out until the next "seems like a glitch happens" As a regual ESA viewer seeing the chat slowly turn into GDQ chat is really painful to see. ESA is the biggest pure speedrunning event that isnt shills. NASA from what i saw had the best chat mods becasue they simply did not care unless it was extreamly bad. In the future dont get GDQ mods get NASA mods.
This event was a blast to be apart of and i had a really great time at it. I will becoming next year. I hope the location of the event changes alot of us are throwing the idea of prague out there because of how cheep it is. Sweden is so expensive to travel too but i have no problem budgeting for it. but i can see how alot of people have trouble being able to afford the price of Sweden.
Big shout out to Planks and Maral who did not ban me from the event
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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.
I have absolutely no idea how much this venue cost you, but I still think a more central location would be better for a growing event like ESA. I'm not even talking about changing the country which would include a lot of changes in organizations, but at least another city, maybe bigger, so that people can hang out more. That's just my 3 cents on a very complex issue.
I was in mass housing, and it was great. i'm not very difficult as long as I have place to sleep. The constant noise in the mass housing was slightly annoying, but I don't know if we could have done anything about that. I don't see the point about hotel complaints though, as this is a feedback thread on ESA , not where you decided to sleep. Changing the location could change this issue though, as a bigger town would have more hotels but maybe with higher prices.
Scheduling for the event was pretty tight, but I still think one thing isn't right: the scheduling team should have access to the different incentives for each game, as some added 5/10 min to the game, thus moving everything at least 5 minutes behind or ahead. Communication was good though, and there was always someone to check the schedule at least every 2 or 3 hours. The addition of chat screen next to the stream screen was really funny, even though it might have been distracting for runners, with such a big chat.
Stream 2 was great, I enjoyed its placement and just its existence. Liva did an incredible job at managing everything on stream and even reading donations when no one was there to host. I respect the fact the stream 2 was made on his channel too as he was a one man army of a sort. The problems with DMoMM were not solveable by him and it took tech guys almost the whole night to figure out what happened. Not pointing fingers at anyone as tech did a formidable job during this week., I don't know much about what really happenned during the Silent HIll run and I don't think it's worth mentioning in this thread.
Oh and if you bring back arcades next year, let me know ahead so I can organize real tournaments and a true esaarcade channel. The idea was honestly great and a lot of people had fun on it, even though they were old machines.
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.
Incentives though were way too high at the start of the event. and this needs to be adressed. We are not the european GDQ. We are ESA, our own event with our own organization, and we don't need to compare ourselves to them. Is ESA better than GDQ? It's not what matters, and it's not what we should care about. I'm not asking you guys to devaluate ESA, I'm asking you to be realistic. Incentives are supposed to be achievable, something that people thrive for rather than something impossible to reach.
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.
- The large screen made viewing runs a far greater experience than last year.
- There were vastly more PCs than last year which meant I got to use one pretty much whenever I wanted.
- The tech team were incredibly helpful and reassuring before my run. I had never done a run at a speedrun event before and they helped put my mind at ease.
- The spontaneous? disco post-main event was a lot of fun and it would be great if it remained a feature for subsequent years.
- Tech was good and as a runner I was especially happy that the schedule was firmly stuck to.
- I loved that the kiosk was open until so late.
- The arcade machines and especially the shooting one were a lot of fun and were a great addition. I met more new people though this than any other way this year.
Criticism and ideas for next time:
- Hand sanitizers could be placed at the end of every table/desk from day 1 and near arcade machines. I feel that the arcade machines may have been a huge contributing factor in the spread of germs throughout the event. Pretty much everyone I met had contracted something by the end of the event, and this didn't happen last year.
- There were times when no-one was manning the desk at the entrance. Proper security/wristband checks from the start might make people feel more secure at the venue.
- Local taxi information could be posted around the lobby of the venue.
-I'm undecided on the second stream. I think a lot of the time attention was needlessly divided between the streams but on the flipside I can understand it's a good way to try to grow the event.
- The hosts sometimes appeared a bit lost or confused.
- A different venue/city/country would bring a nice change of scenery but for the most part I like Växjö.
- One or two chat mods on stream appeared to be escalating arguments, pushing their own agenda and censoring slightly too much.
- Lanyards were way too big and bulky, they could have been half the size.
- I'm unsure as to Sweden's gambling rules, but a poker tournament at some point in the conference room (adjacent to Hall B and the toilets) next time would be a lot of fun.
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.
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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!
1) Tech problems were definitely rare. Layout and chat display to the side with the timer and the timer button felt amazing. When I was commentating on stream 1 I felt I had the POWER, man. Stream 2 had crazy good acoustics too and sound mixing on both streams was so powerful. This is the only event where I bring no gimmicky arcade capture stuff because I know what's up. It's so fucking great.
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.
A] Stream 1 host was probably too loud at times while the player mics were not very audible across the room, so that balance was slightly off from my opinion of it. Nothing major but still noteworthy.
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.
|Alko 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.
|Teleshot, Greenalink and Alko like this.|
This is gonna be pretty short because I'm not good at words.
° The stream area. The amount of TVs made it really easy for everyone on the couch to watch. The huge projector made it easy for everyone in the entire hall to watch. The speakers were good quality and loud.
° The hosting / interview area, and the wallpaper behind it.
° The tech work. Everything was super smooth and tech was able to communicate with runners and hosts discreetly.
° The second stream. Really fun, and a good relaxed alternative to the main stream. Shoutouts to Liva for that.
° The flags. Shoutouts to zoton2 for getting them to work just right.
° The chat on the smaller projector was too small and hard to read (this is literally the worst thing I have to say about the entire event, so ).
° The big lamps were often blocking the screens for people on the couch / in the audience.
° In some cases, there was need for more than three headsets / microphones, maybe there could be four for when there's more interaction from the couch.
° More of a question, but why didn't the "crew" folks, who were emptying the bins around the venue, not do anything to clean the kitchen? The bins in there were never touched, and it would have been nice if putting all of the cups lying around into the dishwasher every few days was among their duties.
° The lanyards were a little on the big size. For reference, I think this year's SGDQ badges were the perfect size.
° I didn't like the design of the T-shirts and wasn't even slightly tempted to buy one. The colour (grey) was nice, but the pig, a meme from ESA 2015, wasn't very attractive.
Anyway, absolutely loved the event overall.
First year not running anything, sixth year attending. This was a very good year overall from my perspective.
The very good:
- The A-hall PC area was pretty cramped and had no room for laptops, but B-hall was excellent. Having the lights on in the B-hall also made it a nice place to be.
- Burger King delivery was nice, though I didn't use it often because of its limited hours.
- Overall the venue and the areas surrounding it felt more functional, just having gotten used to it probably helped a great deal.
- Second stream room was often not pleasant to be in. Ironic to have ventilation ads surrounding the one room in the venue that seemed to have no ventilation in it.
- Heard someone mention this during the marathon and I'm not sure how it was handled for the most part, but the interviews would be more interesting if they were about upcoming runs rather than runs that just finished.
- No couches in the viewing area, those were great last year.
- I did not like the shirt/lanyard design at all and made the mistake of buying a shirt before the design was revealed. The pig meme was funny in 2015, but it should've been left there.
- A "Keep the door closed" sign could've been nice at mass housing.
- Somewhat unrelated to the event itself, but the ongoing vod uploads are often cut in a really annoying way. The vods seem to end as soon as the timer stops, even if the runner is still talking.
|Sphere, Greenalink, Yvathacal and Alko like this.|
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.
I always tried to be mindful and put my stuff together after I stopped using it. I unplugged my controller, rolled up the cords and put them on top of the console. I unplugged the power cord from my console because there was always a shortage of plugs (because people felt the need to charge their phones and power banks there).
So maybe also try to provide multi USB charger plugs so that not everyone needs to take up a whole plug to charge one phone, but like 5 people could charge their stuff with one adapter.
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.
* BK deliveries: I only used this service once because I wanted to have a nice variety of food at the event besides burgers, burgers, burgers
* 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.
* Friday evening, I've noticed that someone took off a long yellow label on the back of my Gamecube controller, fortunately, it still had 2 extra labels so I knew it was still mine but come on, that label is there for a reason.
* Hiddenpower13 losing a pretty pricey Gamecube broadband adapter, again this one has a label, so please send it back to him.
* The main venue felt a bit dark and having super bright white sponsors around the walls were not good for my eyes.
Great event as always, I went out a lot more often than previous events so I was not affected by ESAids.
|Alko likes this.|
(Check below for the long rambling)
– Me getting a lanyard
– No security checks whatsoever (while I was there)
– Serious lack of kanelbullar
– Quality of the T-shirt print
– Me being flagged as German rather than Bavarian.
~ Not hearing tech do a soundcheck with the runner as a host during setup would be great
~ No food options between ~ 2 and 11 a.m.
~ No spare tables for weeb corner (where did last year’s swamp get theirs? ô.o)
~ Host camera and TV positioning
~ Host schedule having weird day breaks
+ Organisation of hosting for stream 1
+ Layout of the area, including use of hall B
+ Burger King delivery and longer Kiosk hours
+ Enough chairs.
I think I made it pretty clear multiple times to all staff that I did not want a lanyard. I thought my hint of leaving a space in the name field rather than adding a nick was clear enough. Then the sign-in desk wanted to give me one. I left it with them. I hope this serves as a hint. A wristband is used for identification afaik; as long as it is a lanyard is not needed and I do not want to get one (that I would have to throw away).
Despite the attendee info saying there would be checking of the wristbands performed not a single one was done the entire time I was there. I’m wearing two purple ESA wristbands and it would at least take a second glance to make sure this year’s was among them yet that never happened. Please, with an event this size checking at the door must happen. Peculiar trench coat guy case (which I did not witness personally and only saw discussed on Discord after I left) would have taken a different path altogether.
The kiosk needs to sell them. This is Sweden. Over and out. Additionally, the kiosk selling tea (or hot water) in addition to coffee would be great. I did have tea on-site, but the kiosk was much closer to mafia.
In my opinion, the design of the print was hm or meh but not actually bad. However, the quality is bad. It seems to me like I could just pull the entire print off the shirt. Every single GDQ shirt I bought so far and every ESA shirt of the previous years (official or not) did not have that issue. I’m somewhat scared of washing that shirt because it might only survive one or two washing machine runthroughs. Please go back to a quality last year’s or the year before’s shirt had.
Wrong Flags with Names.
As much as I like the idea of flagging by origin next to a runner or host, the flag displayed next to my name was still wrong (Germany) rather than correct (Bavaria). Yes, this is important to me.
Audio in Host Headphones.
While it was generally great to hear tech and runner through our headsets during runs, it was a bit off-putting to hear tech in-between runs while hosts were attempting to concentrate on keeping the stream and chat amused. The signal for ‘tech is ready’ was communicated to us as being tech people waving which catches the eye and does not require us hearing. In one case, where the runner of the next game was not to be found it was helpful to hear from tech, but I feel tech pressing a button or flipping a switch to talk to hosts between runs would be a much better solution.
Food Options Timeframe.
Max closed at midnight, the kiosk at 2 (technically, if the card reader wasn’t broken) and Burger King at something like 11. Burger King reopened around ten and the kiosk at 12 iirc. However, this was a marathon and my sleep schedule was pretty much fucked up from the moment I arrived. So I would find myself waking up at 6 pm, having breakfast and then immediately having to think about dinner so that I would not be left hungry. I understand that 24/7 is not really an option but maybe the two services could be coordinated so that they better spread around into the graveyard hours. Last year’s hot dogs were available around the clock.
Tables for Weeb Corner.
Thanks to the swamp relocating, the weebs decided to occupy where the swamp was last year. Unfortunately, there were no tables we could use. It was fine for our anime nights when we just cuddled onto a blanked with a daki but sitting required laptops on the laps. (Rockband didn’t need the entire room and was hardly used anyway.) If a few tables could materialise there, it would be great.
Host Camera and TV positioning.
In general, the setup of the hosting area was great (see below). However, it was slightly hard to look down at the camera while you want to watch yourself in the TV. I’m not sure how this situation can be resolved but I also feel there must be a better solution out there.
It took me three times to realise on which day my first hosting shift was and then I still got it wrong. If the label at the top of the column says Tuesday but one third of the column is already Wednesday (namely the bit between midnight and whenever the pull over to the next day was) it is not easy to get the date right at a glance. Thankfully, only one of my hosting shifts was in that timeframe of terror.
Hosting Stream 1.
(Note: I didn’t do anything at stream 2 so I don’t really know about it)
This was very. Well. Done! The organising team did a good job at organising, scheduling, rescheduling and the setup of the hosting station was equally great. We could have gotten a little introduction to the button thing in the host briefing pre-event so that I didn’t look like a total idiot selecting an StC ad but that’s something minor. It was also very nice to both see the stream ahead of us and tech to our left.
I already talked about the hosting station above but the layout of the entire event deserves another round of applause mention. I liked that hall B was used (which stood empty last year until the LAN party started) and I liked the way runners, audience, hosts and tech was grouped. A minor nitpick would be to say that PC runners were very hidden in the corner but at the same time that is somewhat the fate of PC gamers (not usually playing on couches). Please keep up the good layouting work!
Kiosk Opening Hours and Burger King Delivery.
This was so good to have despite my nitpick above. Please keep them!
The weather was much more agreable for cold-loving creatures like me this year. In fact, I did feel that the temperature in mass housing was cooler this year than it was last year (and I have evidence to prove that). This again confirms that there cannot have been such a thing as air conditioning in there and that those who complained about the cold last year either had bad spots or can’t take average temperatures. Remember that this is a sports hall with poorly insulated walls and ceiling so it will pretty much pick up the temperature from outside. Not as much as sleeping in a tent but way more than a bed in a proper house designed for living in. So if you came to mass housing thinking it would be the same general temperature as in a hotel room, you were mistaken from the start (and it never was advertised as something like that). Expect it to be cooler at night and warmer at day, less than outside and maybe draughty at times.
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 second stream is back! And I hope it's here to stay
- I liked the game/category selection a lot. Some people might say that there was too much of GTA or Final Fantasy, but that didn't bother me, there's always going to be a block that you don't care about (like all the Mega Man stuff for me).
- The ESA atmosphere is still there, despite some slightly more GDQ-ish vibes.
The bad stuff:
- The second stream should be organized better. It was hard to find compared to the first one, which brings me to my main point...
- The second stream should not be outsourced, it should be hosted by ESA itself! There were many delays on the second stream and the chat was significantly worse, people were at times free to insult runners or hosts as "autists" or spam borderline racist "memes" without getting banned, just to name some examples. It doesn't matter that it was technically a different Twitch channel, since it did represent ESA at the time.
- At the same time, putting streams on follow-only mode is a terrible thing to do, it's the reason I didn't use the chat myself.
- And my other main criticism: Don't become European Games Done Quick, don't focus on the charity and the sponsors as much! I don't want to see those ads at an ESA, I don't want those "walls of sponsors" behind the hosts, I don't want a stream layout that visibly suffers from this! Remember who you are, a lot of people are like me and like ESA as the event that is "by speedrunners, for speedrunners"!
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!
This was my third ESA, with my first one being ESA15. I have ran games this and last year. This year I ran the Playstation game Mort the Chicken on the second stream. I also helped out commentating a couple of PC runs and watched many PC games being ran.
The space in the venue felt a lot better planned this year and the small round areas with TVs felt a lot nicer than the long rows of last year. There was always a CRT free somewhere when I wanted to practice for my run. It was really nice to see that there were good, modern practice PCs around this year and I really liked that we still had access to the less powerful Dreamhack ones. Since the inhouse practice PCs were usually occupied with people doing practice for their runs it was great to have the other PCs to practice older, less demanding, games or just mess around and do silly races and runs on. I would have liked if the two sets of PCs were closer to each other, not in different halls like they were this year. It's nice being able to hang around and watch friends practice their runs, but as I mostly hung out around at Dreamhack PCs it was hard to know if any of my friends were doing practice I wanted to watch.
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.
First of all I want to give a huge shoutout to Liva for making the second stream a great experience both for the people watching the stream and for me as a runner. I am incredibly impressed by how he managed to deal with all the tech and still interact with runners in a great way. The entire second stream had a really nice feeling to it with a lot of good jokes and memes and a nice, cozy atmosphere. My run went really well and I have really nothing to comment on. Simply a great experience as a runner.
Stream and Main Stream Hosting:
I love that the second stream was brought back. I really like how ESA shows off the a selection of games and not just showcases the most popular titles. Having the second stream to show off some more obscure games or other cool things that you wouldn't normally see on a main marathon stream (like the sm64 relay) is a huge strength for ESA as a marathon. It was a bit confusing that the second stream was not on an ESA twitch account, but that might be because there had been conflicting information earlier. If it's advertised well it shouldn't be a problem.
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:
I feel like there was a lack of information regarding donation incentives this year. The incentives weren't posted anywhere before the marathon, at least I didn't find them, which probably means the typical viewer wouldn't either. I feel like this was a shame, since cool donation incentives can get people hyped. I don't like how donation incentives could be added on site. I would like to have that stuff figured out before the marathon, so I can focus on practicing and hanging out with my friends during the actual event.
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.
The different hotel choices and the prices were really good. I stayed in a triple room at Royal Corner. I think none of us had any complaints with the hotel. Room, breakfast, cleaning was all really good.
I rented one of the bikes that was offered. It was really nice to be able to get around fast, even though I didn't use it as much as planned because of often walking with friends who did not have bikes. The bikes themselves were really nice and sturdy. Pickup and return also worked great. Overall a really nice concept that I hope will return for future events. Would be nice if there was a way to get even more bikes, because I know there were many people who missed the opportunity this year.
Thanks for a really nice event with big improvements over last year.
I really like the idea of ESA winter and will try my best to make it possible for me to attend.
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 positioning of the tables was good this year, giving more space for attendees to sit or to move in the venue.
- The partnership with Burger King was a good idea.
It’s really cool to have multiples ways to make the run entertaining, through performances, commentaries, and even doing memes sometimes (shout-outs to Ladaur, Fuzzyness & the staff who was there Friday in the early morning to make the french baguette meme possible during the Pandora’s Tower run).
- Mass housing is still fine for me.
- The interviews sounded randomish this year, if we compare to last year.
- 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.
- Second time doing a race, second time facing technical issues. Bad luck Kappa. I still believe.
- 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.
Honestly, not much I can criticize here. I think you did a great job, with the location this year, can't think of anything specific that needs to be improved. Doesn't mean there is nothing though!
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.
Attending for the second year, nearly everything felt better handled than last year. Thanks to all the organisers, had a lot of fun!
Feedback on a few assorted topics:
- Arcade -
Arguably my favourite part of the event. (Yo Qlex!) Hope to see this again next year with more cabinets, in better condition and remaining on site until the end of event. If a tech/support person to run the arcade is needed, I can volunteer as I will anyway bring some of my own arcade gear again for people to play.
Due to both practicality and noise issues, walling off an arcade / freeplay section from the venue with eg. cubicle walls might make sense, with an entrance and some basic information on it (no foods/drinks, per system usage instructions, don't move anything to/from the area without permission, etc). If the awesome Mario Kart setup is coming again, I'd have it also here.
- Couches -
It would be great if attendees/groups could rent couches beforehand and have them delivered to and from the venue, so those of us spending most of our time playing games at the venue would have an alternative to a sore butt.
- Stream -
Loved the new screen/audience/tech/host layout, great work. From a viewer perspective, only things worth mentioning were lights placed partly in front of the screen, and often poorly handled audio balance.
See you next summer!
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:
- The second stream idea was a pretty nice change.
- Chat was really nice.
- The donation tracker didn't work for part of the event I guess, which sucks, but I guess it was on Paypal's end?
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!
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