Do you think IF LPs is a bad idea?

I’ve tried this many times on youtube, and it never seems to pick up. I may be doing something wrong. It doesn’t help that I often have to go through the puzzles inexperienced. Maybe I’m just not very entertaining?

If you have any advice, I’d feel great. I don’t know what might make the videos more fun. My RPG videos have decent hits, but nothing I’ve uploaded that’s IF related does. People would much rather see me explore a more graphic world.

You know, I’m beginning to think; do you think youtube just isn’t the place for this? I know transcripts have been around, so do you suppose IF is more meant to be read instead of watched?

Well, I don’t think they’re meant to be watched, but rather experienced. I often do play throughs with my friends and my wife, where others can add their input and share in the game, give advice, things like that. You could see if there is anyone locally willing to join a group for that kind of thing and you could do regular meet-ups. Alternately, live-streaming with chat could also work. Turn your watcher’s into co-players.

Yeah, I think YouTube is not inherently a very good format for IF playthroughs. I’ve seen IF LPs done successfully on a forum; in an interpreter ported to a MUD; and as group play in meatspace. The first two have the advantage of being in IF’s natural medium of text; the latter two allow for quicker response and finer-grained audience participation. I’m not sure what special advantages a video of play would bring.

(Also, what are you meaning by LP? I’ve seen two senses: one with strong audience participation, one that’s just ‘here is my play session’.)

What does LP stand for?

Um, yeah, a video of text is pretty boring to look at, and video is pretty demanding on older computers.

I could imagine videos of I-F playthroughs with commentators in the room, almost doing an MST3K thing a la the Angry Video Game Nerd.

Also, for highly entertaining platformer design critique, search youtube for “egoraptor sequelitis”, assuming I spelled that correctly. He only has 2 episodes so far, but way funny.

I was wondering about that myself. I’m of the generation to which LP means a vinyl record that plays at 33 1/3 rpm – which gave rise to the expresssion “groovy.”

Robert Rothman

LP stands for “Let’s Play.”

Video is probably a bad format for text games, but there are plenty of forum Let’s Plays of Interactive Fiction. The Something Awful forums has a “Short Text Games Megathread” at, where they are currently playing Gun Mute.

The thing I’ve learned (through the testing process) is that a raw, honest transcript of someone playing a text-adventure for the very first time is an almost uncanny window into their thought process. You can really get a sense of what they’re thinking, what they’re attempting, at what point realization dawns, etc.

Throw in a few asides and commentaries along the way, and a transcript can be an amazing textual equivalent to a gameplay video, and more suited (I think) to IF.

Yeah, this is why watching the video-form review of my Comp game was so painful, once I got over the thrill of hearing my prose spoken aloud in a charming accent and the hilarity of hearing my name and gender mangled. It was just a little… too honest, ya know? :slight_smile:

In general, I have very little patience for watching videos when a transcript would be as good. I do occasionally watch gameplay videos, when I can’t convince anybody to play a particular game in front of me in real life, but for IF, I’m perfectly happy with the Club Floyd transcripts.































I mean, I think I watched five minutes of him playing a game that starts “now all you have to do is take the chalice” (approx.), and the mfer hadn’t even typed “take chalice” yet. I realized that I had some paint that I could be watching dry instead.

Thanks for all the advice. I think I’ll just either save IF for a live-streaming thing, or just try to find people nearby in my town who might be interested in playing. Maybe I’ll talk to people about it in a gaming club, or something.

I totally agree about transcripts being a more appropriate experience. I guess the video format just wasn’t a very good idea. I’ll keep looking for new possibilities, but this one just didn’t seem to work. I appreciate all the input, everybody.

Social play can be amazingly fun. :slight_smile:

Double plus true.

I play IF with a friend in Berlin – in fact, it’s so much fun this way that I play more games that way than any other way. It’s very simple all we do is both keep a chat window open at the same time as a interpreter window, and exchange tips, and make new score/advancement announcements. We generally avoid spoiling each other, but act as each other’s hint fairies. Essentially it’s a collaborative solve.

We tried it with video conferencing too and that works OK as well.

Notice the key fun-generating principle is that it is splitscreen. Perhaps a similar YouTube approach would work. Two people debating over what to type into a single game: their interplay provides the sizzle – the IF transcript on the other side of the screen provides the steak. And I wouldn’t read every single thing out, either – I would only read the important things. The actual story is the story of two people playing a game – their interplay is the most important thing; text should only be read out if it is key to that interplay. The interlocutors serve essentially as curators for the text, picking out what’s important so you don’t have to read everything. For that: play the game.

Just suggestions.


You could try a podcast, if you have a good voice and good commentary as to why you chose to input one command over another.

Also, the ifMUD has Floyd, a bot for playing IF with multiple people in the MUD. It’s fun too.

Yea, sort of like an audio book format, you can read the text said.

I think all these suggestions are good. but I’m still having problems with my channel. Do you think I just shouldn’t make LPs since I’m not witty? I know this isn’t very related to IF, but it’s something that’s bothering me. I don’t have a very sharp sense of humor, so maybe making LPs just isn’t a good idea for me. It might be possible for me to do something like and LP that can bypass this weakness, but I don’t see myself as a funny person.

Should I just forget about this? I’ve been watching LPs for the last few years, and I enjoy them thoroughly, but I just don’t have the clever disposition that good LPers have. I can’t think of clever commentary on the spot, and that’s really the bread-and-butter when it comes to this medium. I’m good at telling people how I feel about things I see in the game, but I’m not humorously insightful. Maybe this kind of thing really just isn’t for me, and I should move on to something else. But then again, maybe I could just make Let’s Plays without any commentary, and that way people can just expect to see the game. What do you think I should do? I don’t think I’ll ever be a clever person, unless I do it by writing stories. With stories, I can think my ideas through. Let’s Plays are very much impromptu, and I’m no good at this. I just thought this medium might be a nice project to broaden my horizons, especially since I’ve enjoyed watching them. My problem is, I’m not very good at making them, and I just don’t believe I have the talent for this sort of thing. Should that stop me? Do you think I should just stay out of this, if I really don’t believe I’m any good at it? I can’t watch my own videos, because I think they’re so bad. Maybe I should just put this idea behind me, and leave kind of projects for other people. Right now I’m thinking, I’ve already tried this, and the results have not been good, so maybe I should use my channel for talents that come more naturally to me, if such an opportunity ever can arise. I like watching youtube videos, but I can’t find my strength in making them. I don’t know what I have to offer people with my channel.

I think you need to read this: … -our-work/

If you were pondering a career as a surgeon … or even a public bus driver … then yeah, being bad at something should stop you :slight_smile:

But you’re talking about doing something as a pastime, and posting it free to the Internet. If you enjoy it, do what you enjoy (even if you don’t enjoy watching your own videos, do you enjoy making them?) … if not, not.

If your goal is to ‘give back’ to the community that makes the videos you do enjoy watching, just thank them and provide feedback and the other usual stuff.