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Who Is Video James?

We’re back for the last recording from this God-forsaken apartment. 

Last week’s show focused mostly on the ArenaNet/Guild Wars 2 firings and was easily one of our most feedback-provoking podcasts of all time. We found listeners heated about the topic, without being particularly angry, either at us or the people involved on either side. This was a pleasant surprise, and surely speaks once again to the quality of our community. It’s easy to watch Twitter drown in its own vitriol and get discouraged, but they seem to suffer from problems we don’t have.

We open this week with a look at home life and how the community is holding up. I was pleasantly surprised that Todd Duane, composer for Extreme Paintbrawl soundtrack I’ve written about here on the site, not only found the article (somehow), but even saw fit to post it on his official Facebook page. There’s a lot to love here. He read a lot of personal thoughts that speak highly of his work that I would have never sent directly to him. It’s awesome to see he’s still out there shredding. I’m even happy he didn’t seem to need to correct anything in the story!

We managed to get derailed for some time on the topic of multi-level marketing programs being bullshit, but I do have big ideas for an MLM sim game one day. I bring this up because I determined to find the Apple II-era gambling simulator that stayed in my brain long enough to give me the idea later. That didn’t actually pan out. Most searches lead me to Monte Carlo, released in 1987 by PBI Software, but the mysterious yard sale disk I inherited was even more simplistic, involving no interaction from the player whatsoever. Run wild, cybersleuths.

If you want to read about Gearbox’s notorious one-character typo that befuddled its own aliens for the last five years until a group of modders discovered and fixed it, you can do that at JavaDoc MD. Riot’s excellent discussion about its anti-cheat strategies can be found at Riot Games Engineering. My article on cheating that came up in the same discussion can be found at Ready Set, Zam, or whatever they’re calling themselves when you read this.

Finally, we settled in to chat about a recurring theme on Reddit: recovering from burnout.

We found this topic interesting, because normally we all discuss avoiding burnout. For some folks, it’s too late.  Many have reached this point, and many have quit altogether as a result. We wanted to break this down and look at the steps we would take to get back in the saddle.

Burnout is real. It impacts us, as we discuss in the show, in measurable, physical ways, and there is only shame in failing to address it. We found that we both had personal stories involving ourselves and those around us about times we had absolute showstopper circumstances we had to recover from. It’s crucial to recognize it in ourselves, and I even wish we’d taken a moment to discuss the importance of recognizing it in the people around us. Imagine how much farther we could go if we put an emphasis on presenting burnout as a team, and thought as often about helping one another push as we did about motivating one another to ignore it.

That said, sometimes we encounter burnout that we simply have to deal with, and we talk about handling that as well.

Thanks again to everyone who reached out over the last week with feedback and even those who thanked us for rationally discussing the issues at hand. I think we managed to keep things much more upbeat this week. Next week, we might even keep it educational.

If you enjoy the show, we’d love if you’d share it with a friend, subscribe on iTunes or Google’s shiny new Podcasts app. You can catch our audio shows at SoundCloud and our video shows on YouTube. We’re always happy to hear from anyone who doesn’t introduce themselves as an “influencer.”

Catch you next time!

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By Todd Mitchell

Todd Mitchell is a US Midwest-based independent game developer and freelance writer. He's the author of Inside Video Game Creation, the founder of CodeWritePlay, and host of the GameDev Breakdown podcast. Follow him on Twitter @Mechatodzilla.

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