Waypoint |OT| video games...are good

Oct 25, 2017
10,182
Prepare for the worst, yeah, but I’d point out that it’s not “cuts”. Verticals are getting combined; supposedly no one’s getting laid off in the process either. That could of course change, and who knows how they’re handling who’s running the combined verticals, but I think that’s a bit too pessimistic.

But we’ll see.
 
Oct 28, 2017
3,275
Prepare for the worst, yeah, but I’d point out that it’s not “cuts”. Verticals are getting combined; supposedly no one’s getting laid off in the process either. That could of course change, and who knows how they’re handling who’s running the combined verticals, but I think that’s a bit too pessimistic.

But we’ll see.
Didn’t they announce 15% of the staff would be cut also? Has that changed?
 
Nov 7, 2017
582
I'm glad they're doing stuff that is feeling rewarding for them and that Austin is optimistic, but I guess I'm still apprehensive or skeptical that a podcast only thing can maintain itself for a lengthy stay. And I gsuppose I'm just personally disappointed in no more streams as I can't really get into podcasts. My attention wanders way too much. I also just vastly prefer watching video games than only hearing discussion about them. I do hope for their sake though that they can stick around as long as possible, as I really do value all of their contributions to games media.

The other thing with a lack of video is that they're kind of cutting themselves off from generating any potential viral or meme content. I don't actually know how important that is overall in terms of growth, as it is rather unpredictable, but I think it is a meaningful source of visibility. I think of Drew's blinking white guy meme, and how yeah it was silly but I'm sure when people got curious as to who the man behind the meme was they may have discovered giant bomb. Who knows how significant that was, but without any video that kind of thing just won't happen at all. Podcasts don't really generate memes or anything like that, as far as I'm aware of.
 
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Nov 7, 2017
582
Absolutely no one that sees white man blinking thinks, "I want to know more about Giant Bomb" as a first instinct.
I don't mean as a first instinct. I mean when someone goes 'who is that guy?' and looks up where he came from. Then they're exposed to Giant Bomb. Like I said though, who knows how much impact that kind of thing has on viewership.
 
Oct 25, 2017
681
I appreciate his honesty and that he would rather not overpromise saying things like "we'll get back to streaming like we used to!", but that tells me I shouldn't be expecting more video content (or even text, I feel like there used to be more articles in the first years), and should only expect these podcasts, at least until this experimentation phase is over/they potentially launch a subscription system.
 
Oct 27, 2017
6,862
Alright I actually read Austin's state of the site post and I think I'm fine with where Waypoint is right now.

This bit
What is an optimistic truth, though, is that communities like this are much more sustainable and solid than any media enterprise. Communities like this one are built by affinity, not profit margin. By shared interests and ethics, not by trending topics. So what I can promise in 2019 is that we’ll continue to do our best to foster this place, to work with the incredible mod team that makes this place possible, and to find ways like Savepoint 18 to keep working with y’all to channel the power of this community to do good in the world.
gives me a lot of hope for Waypoint's future. That Waypoint affinity is what I'm there for, so as long as they're not changing that, I'll follow them to the ends of the earth. Stream, pod, or article, I'll be there.
 
Nov 7, 2017
582
I honestly wish I could follow waypoint with this podcast stuff but I have add which makes it really hard to focus on listening to people talk for stretches of time. I use up all my attention power in that way in my crisis counselling career.

I’ll definitely be there if or when they ever get back to streaming though.
 
Nov 4, 2017
371
Minnesota
That's really unfortunate about the Twitch content. They were really starting to grow an audience toward the last couple of months, and iirc the Extra Life stream was in well above 10-15k off peak hours. But yeah thousands of people watching don't equal revenue without subscriptions and with that little in the way of people (-1 because Patrick works remotely) probably makes it unsustainable.

I'm curious though, Austin said they were doubling down on experimenting with a subscription model but used Twitch. Were they using the Twitch analytics to option the higher-ups for a proprietary video and subscription service?

As for the recent cast: I hope they do a deep dive on The Missing after they're all finished with it, real curious about their takes on the game.
 
Oct 26, 2017
2,657
They are a really small team and Rob and Patrick are working remotely. Podcasts being the most efficient use of their limited rescources makes sense. And it's good to hear that they apparently do well in that area.

Their videostuff has always seemed to be challenging for them, logistically.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,182
Didn’t they announce 15% of the staff would be cut also? Has that changed?
The article said they’d be losing some % of Vice staff but through a hiring freeze + attrition, not cuts. Well, the subheading says that; I can’t read the full article so maybe it’s not just that, but given that they put it there...

I honestly wish I could follow waypoint with this podcast stuff but I have add which makes it really hard to focus on listening to people talk for stretches of time. I use up all my attention power in that way in my crisis counselling career.

I’ll definitely be there if or when they ever get back to streaming though.
Ironically, it’s being medicated for my ADD that’s made it harder for me to multitask with podcasts this year and that’s why I’ve not listened to much of their output as a result, hah. I just keep forgetting to put podcasts on while focusing more...
 
May 29, 2018
605
I'm glad they're doing stuff that is feeling rewarding for them and that Austin is optimistic, but I guess I'm still apprehensive or skeptical that a podcast only thing can maintain itself for a lengthy stay. And I gsuppose I'm just personally disappointed in no more streams as I can't really get into podcasts. My attention wanders way too much. I also just vastly prefer watching video games than only hearing discussion about them. I do hope for their sake though that they can stick around as long as possible, as I really do value all of their contributions to games media.
This is interesting to me because I vastly prefer podcasts over streams. I can put a podcast on in the background while I do other work whereas with streams I feel like I have to focus more on them.

Different strokes and all that, which is why it's disappointing they're not able to do as much streaming because it limits the number of channels they have for finding an audience.
 
Oct 28, 2017
3,275
The article said they’d be losing some % of Vice staff but through a hiring freeze + attrition, not cuts. Well, the subheading says that; I can’t read the full article so maybe it’s not just that, but given that they put it there...
Attrition usually means we don’t want to buy out your contract but we ain’t offering you a new one so start packing your bags. It’s just a roundabout way of cutting staff.

Intel were infamous for giving staff nothing meaningful to do when they wanted rid of them rather than outright firing them. The stereotype about Japanese corporations is something similar. Some companies have strange ways of operating.
 
Oct 27, 2017
2,773
My two cents on some stuff:

Studio streams are a waste of time and money, which they've said as much. The studio style works for Giant Bomb because they have a dedicated studio that they have control of and can dictate every aspect of it's design and workflow. Waypoint never had that and will never have that in it's current state - so every stream is a huge time-sink. Whereas home streaming is a far better solution in this case - it sounds bad but tbh they would be far better served leaning into a Youtuber style setup with solo streams or group streams for multiplayer games. I dunno the solution for group streams where they all need to be looking at the same stuff.

Ideally they could build out a sub service to fund something dedicated to them that they can always rely on being available.
 
Oct 25, 2017
408
Game awards coming up soon, and almost the one year anniversary of the waypoint game awards stream ,which imo is the best peice of content waypoint has ever done. Danika was my waypoint mvp and it still sucks that she isnt there anymore.
 
Oct 27, 2017
68
"San Diego"
Not sure if you guys saw it but Austin posted a great summary of the last year over on the Waypoint forums:

https://forum.waypoint.vice.com/t/disconnect-between-forum-and-site/18144/20?u=spartycrunch

It's worth reading in its entirety so I'm not going to quote portions here. But long story short, they've been intentionally experimenting with different formats over the last year, and it's been rewarding for them to do so, and that he's optimistic about its sustainability.
I hadn't even thought about how small of a production they run, six people is incredibly small considering the sizes of other major outlets so they were on a relatively thin margin of error with streaming or any video productions compared to others
 
May 29, 2018
605
I hadn't even thought about how small of a production they run, six people is incredibly small considering the sizes of other major outlets so they were on a relatively thin margin of error with streaming or any video productions compared to others
This part here:

It means doing 6-8 hours of streaming a day, 5-6 days a week. All to reach an audience that (devoted and lovely though it was) was much smaller than our podcast audience, even on a good day.
Is completely untenable for a team that small. The entire team would have to do nothing but streaming in order to not burn out people, and even then you run the risk of burning out everyone after a month or two of it. Completely understandable that streaming was the first thing to go.

I have to applaud Austin for being so forthcoming in that post. I have a much better idea of what's been going on with them this year and where he's trying to position them going forward. If they do a subscription plan in the future I'll be there on Day 1. Hopefully that will also come with a new CMS because the current layout just sucks. Although that's probably more a Vice mandate/problem if looking at Motherboard is any indication. I still do not understand why these media conglomerates like Vox, Vice, and whoever owns Gawker's stuff insist on building out their own CMS and front-end and forcing it on every site they own. At least Gamer Network allows their sites to have their own layouts and CMSes if they choose.
 
Nov 7, 2017
582
I guess I kind of (naively) assumed being with Vice meant they would get enough resources to cover for their smaller team. Suppose I should've known that wasn't the case, when they would often be having people outside their team coming up to the door to their streaming room pretty frequently, or when they'd talk about having to book it and stuff like that.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,759
Is there any legitimate reason to suggest Waypoint is dying or is it just because it's not popular on this forum?
They publish significantly less articles than they used to, they don't do as much freelance stuff, they stopped doing streaming, and "pivoted to podcasts"
Also, Vice has already announced they are doing cuts, and they already have a longer established verticle, Motherboard, that does video game stuff
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,036
The biggest problem is Vice as a whole isn't doing well (open link up in a private/incognito window since WSJ is paywalled). People also had concerns due to the changing nature of how they're doing content (lot of livestreaming and then switching to mainly podcasts).

Also I can't believe the big anime they're all going to dive into is Eva of all things. That's gonna be...something
 
Aug 17, 2018
5
Is there any legitimate reason to suggest Waypoint is dying or is it just because it's not popular on this forum?
In addition to what others have said, I think we’ve all seen this pattern play out many times before. Site with a bit of a niche audience pivots several times in a year, all while rumors circulate about the parent company making cuts. Suddenly the site gets shut down or loses a bunch of staff. And it’s not hard to connect the dots on revenue- for example, the numbers for the twitch streams and YouTube archives were easy to see. Worrying about it in a neutral area like this is natural.

That being said, Austin’s talked quite often about liking his bosses and them supporting what Waypoint is trying to do. So this could easily be the exception that proves the rule. I definitely hope so.
 
Oct 26, 2017
1,879
Have really tried to be there for Austin's efforts here because I'm such of a fan of the work he did with GB, but it's become so difficult. Waypoint's podcasts were never easy listens for me because I find most of the members of their staff varying degrees of insufferable. Now their podcast feed is a deluge of topics I rarely care about discussed by people I don't like listening to, in a format that really, really sucks (Skype podcasts). I insta-delete every podcast Austin isn't on, and even when I do listen, I tend to skip through a lot of discussion lead by others.

I get why the streams stopped, but they were some of the most fun I had with the Waypoint staff. It's not for everyone but "Austin and Rob on their bullshit" speaks to me on a deep level. The Stellaris stream series is one of my favorite pieces of gaming related content ever. I would have paid to subscribe if these streams, as well as Tactical Tuesdays, Mecha Mondays or whatever other themed "Austin and Rob on their bullshit" stream they could come up with could continue unhindered by their need to maintain a business, but alas I'm well in the minority there. People like me aren't going to keep the lights on there. So more power to them with this new direction of daily podcasts, but it's going to be without me.
 
Oct 25, 2017
6,684
United States
really enjoyed the Eva talk on the most recent waypoints
I saw the show much younger than I probably should have so most of what that show actually was didn’t click for me, I enjoyed it cuz it was weird but I didn’t really “get” it
very much looking forward to seeing it again

also my brother is a Tommy fanboy so naturally I had to dislike him
Kim #1
 
Oct 27, 2017
665
Eva discussion was everything I wanted though it seems clear to me that there is very little fan service. His classmates think living with a cool sexy woman must be amazing and try to sneak peaks at her but its contrasted with Shinjis obvious discomfort (same with him falling on Rei)
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,182
ooh, I’m super behind on the podcasts for reasons mentioned before, but I’ll make a point of listening to this one

it’s been years since I watched Eva and I was probably a lil too young (though, like, still late teens) to appreciate it as much as I could have; I know Austin tends to prefer real robot stuff so I’m interested to hear his thoughts
 
Oct 28, 2017
3,275
ooh, I’m super behind on the podcasts for reasons mentioned before, but I’ll make a point of listening to this one

it’s been years since I watched Eva and I was probably a lil too young (though, like, still late teens) to appreciate it as much as I could have; I know Austin tends to prefer real robot stuff so I’m interested to hear his thoughts
How much realer can it get than a robot that is

your mom?
 
May 29, 2018
605
The biggest problem is Vice as a whole isn't doing well (open link up in a private/incognito window since WSJ is paywalled).
Not just Vice. Mic (which I'd never heard of before) is folding, and is a VC backed publisher akin to Vice. That whole market segment is apparently struggling currently. According to Columbia Journalism Review Vice is one of the one's that's better off financially (or was ~6 months ago)

Also I can't believe the big anime they're all going to dive into is Eva of all things. That's gonna be...something
Netflix announced they've got streaming rights next year this week, which I assume was the impetus for the discussion (I haven't listened to it yet). Also isn't Austin a fan of the Xenoblade games? Maybe someone can nudge them to do a Xenogears 101 next year lol.