Thursday, July 25, 2019

Eric Vs. 365 - Day 25 - Castlevania Anniversary Collection

Day 25 of Eric Vs. 365 is really eight games in one as we played the Castlevania Anniversary Collection. Why play them all at once instead of one game at a time individually? Because Eric doesn't actually like oldschool Castlevania much, that's why! Not being critical, just different preferences. We came up with a unique concept for the video, though, so watch and enjoy and don't take it too seriously and get mad. Keep reading for what we mean.

I won't make any excuses, I just don't like old Castlevania much. I appreciate a lot about it - I love the setting and the music is great - but I don't enjoy the punishing gameplay and never really have. I do love Symphony of the Night, and other more modern takes on the formula, though, so it isn't a total loss.

Watch our full Castlevania: Symphony of the Night Let's Play here

For this video I had the idea of playing each game up until the point where I got frustrated and quit and then moved on to the next one. I only got to about the first boss or a little after in most of the games before I called it quits. The raw footage of this entire project only totaled around 35-minutes for me to play and quit out of frustration in 8 different games. That's, like, a record or something, right? 

The first pass of editing took it down to 29 minutes and I left most of the actual gameplay intact, but there were long segments of not talking and nothing interesting happening so I started hacking it down to just the entertaining bits and ended up with a little under 17-minutes total. In the back of my mind I couldn't help but think, however, that "People are really going to freaking hate this", so I came up with some ideas to cut the haters off at the pass.

Originally I thought I'd do a sort of peanut gallery where I'd put in booing and heckling into the audio track. That didn't make it into this video, but I'll likely do it in the future sometime for something else (I'm not saying it'll be Sonic, but it'll almost certainly be Sonic). Instead I decided to do a sort of mean YouTube commentary generator. I considered doing a Pop Up Video-style mean comment thing, but that was a lot of work, so I ended up with a scrolling news chyron across the bottom of the screen instead (which was also a lot of work, I must point out).

I watched through the video and wrote dozens of mean comments that I expected people to write. Some of the comments are sort of synced to specific times in the video, but many of them are not due to the way you have to make a chyron in Adobe Premiere - the scrolling speed depends on how much text you have and how long the duration of your text box is. In other words, if you don't have a lot of text and stretch it out too long, it scrolls really slowly. I wanted it to scroll faster so I kept adding more and more comments and eventually just started pasting in notorious forum / social media memes until it filled out the length of the video at a scrolling speed I was happy with.

The result is pretty entertaining, I think. Between my dumb commentary, awful play, and funny chyron on the bottom, it's pretty solid when taken as a whole package. It helps take the sting out of the undoubtedly nasty comments the video would otherwise definitely get (if anyone actually watched ...). You can't say anything I didn't already say. Ha ha.