Monday, December 11, 2017

Kingdom Hearts Primer - Dream Drop Distance - Episode 10 - The God of Sora's Heart

At least, we have completed the primer series. We're done.

And that's that. Sam and I stand by what we said at the end this. Despite the many trials and tribulations to get this series to you guys, we are glad to have done it and hope it was as fun to watch as it was for us to record.

However, I think it's also worth going over some of the lessons we learned doing this series, so that the audience, should they choose to follow in our example and do long form video let's plays on games, can learn from our mistakes.

  • Don't get too attached to your original plan and adjust to changing circumstances: When we originally conceived this idea, it was intended to be an easy to produce mini-project. Instead, it dominated our production for over a year. Realistically, after first recording of original Kingdom Hearts, we probably should've scaled back to do smaller, more focused retrospectives (either as a podcast or in smaller episodes where we just took chunks of footage as B-roll). Learn from our mistakes and don't be afraid to scale back when a project it bigger than you anticipated.
  • Make sure the game/series you talk about is "Let's Playable": In hindsight, the fact that it never even occurred to us to play through Kingdom Hearts for the channel should have been our first hint we were taking the wrong approach for a long-form video series. Even doing cutscenes only, there were large chunks of the Primer series where we didn't have much to talk about. A lot of Let's Players refuse to play RPGs like Dragon Age because of the way they're paced is not conducive to keeping viewers entertained. Kingdom Hearts is in that vein, and we should have acknowledged that while we were planning the series.
  • Pace yourselves: This is something I think Sam and I did fairly well. With any project, especially once this long, it is important to keep a steady, but workable pace. It's a marathon, not a sprint. When it gets finished is not as important as the fact that it did get finished. Since this is a passion project and not paid work, that's even more important. Passion projects live or die by how willing the project owners are willing to put in the work. If you burn yourself out, that dream project you've always wanted to complete will never get off the ground.
And give credit where credit is due. As the person who writes these articles, I have more "presence" than Sam does, but he's been the one diligently editing all of these videos together for your entertainment. A more even distribution of the workload, whenever we return from our long-deserved break, is a crucial element we'll need to work on going forward. I'm not as good an editor as Sam is, but I can do it myself (as seen in my Hitman LP) and it's not fair to him to have to do all of that.

Speaking of new video content, it may be quite some time before we get back into the swing of things. This was a tough project, and both Sam and I have jobs now. As a result, we need to have some serious talks before we can even think of continuing. Odds are we'll be back eventually, and I've been thinking about getting more heavily into writing again, but for now Interactive Friction will go silent.

Farewell for now, and I hope to see you all soon. Kingdom Hearts has been quite the ride.

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