The Patreon Poll

Ok so I got a video coming up on Thursday, 3/30/17 talking about this, but I figured I would go ahead and post this, and ask for some opinions. I had a poll on twitter but I realized I cannot really explain my “plan” if I was to go ahead and do this.

In short, this is a poll about me opening a Patreon for my youtube channel, Terminally Nerdy. You can find the channel right here if you had no idea where it was.

Lots of folks have Patreons. Its the new “hotness” as it were. I have been waffling off and on for a while about if I should open one, if people would support it, hell what I could offer as perks / reward tiers.

Here is what I have come up with, if I were to do it:

There would be a single tier of $1, and it would be Per Episode instead of monthly. I release an episode every 2 weeks, meaning a Patreon could, at most, be charged $3 a month (March for example had 3 episodes release).

My only primary goal would be $20 an episode.

What would a person get for that $1? They would have access to a Terminally Nerdy discord channel. They would have the ability to vote on future episode topics and help me decide my release schedule. They would help determine what gets reviewed, and in what order (to an extent). Also, if I hit my goal of $20 an episode, then every month I would take some of that money and use it to purchase a set of dice or maybe a tabletop RPG book of some sort, and have a giveaway that only Patreons would be eligible for. Maybe do a Q&A video every month or something I dunno.

The money itself would be used to do things such as upgrade my PC (so I can keep up with the latest RPGs for review), pay my Net Bill (upload speeeeeds!), and buy products for review purposes such as new books, dice, terrain, ect.

Thats really all I got.  Thats all I really have TIME for to be honest.  I have had a few suggestions such as higher tiers but I dont have anything to really offer for them.

So the big question is: should I do this?

Please, go vote here in this strawpoll and let me know: THE POLL IS HERE!

Patreon: Thoughts and Musings

As I get nearer and nearer to 300 subs on Youtube, I start to ponder where I should be going with it. Granted, my recent shift in focus to RPG content in general seems to be perfect. People love my RPG stuff (I think?) and I am doing well overall.

I think one the coolest things I have gotten into is reviewing RPG products. Recently I released my first review, on the campaign setting the Ice Kingdoms, and it was (I feel) pretty well received. I got a few more things to review already, and I really enjoy sharing these products. Its also easy to do (For me at least).

However, I have one limiting factor in all this. Its the same thing that limits me upgrading my equipment such as a better camera, or getting new games for reviewing, and so on.

Its money.

Now Patreon is a BIG THING in the internet world. Its basically crowdfunding artists and creative types. I know a ton of people who have em, and for a while I even backed a couple (minimally, had to stop cause, well, money!). Hell I even have seen a guy create a patreon before he even has a prodcut / show / blog / anything! Its a big deal. Popular folks even live off patreon like it was a full time job (Which given some creators, it actually is!)

I like the idea of patreon as well, personally. I like the idea of the fans of something / someone helping to support it. I love how fans can pledge as much or as little as they want, with limits built in. I like how Creators can have rewards for pledge levels, goals, and even setup if its monthly or per “creation”. I have had a few folks I know tell me I should create one… But the fact of the matter is, I don’t know if I should.

Most Patreon accounts have reward tiers. Stuff like “Pledge $10 an episode and get a free sticker!” and shit like that. Thing is, when thinking about my own show / videos, I dont really have anything to offer. I have no merch, although my wife is working on a shirt design at the moment, I have no time to do things like game nights and the like. I just dont have anything to offer BUT my work. It seems silly, and a bit rude, to ask for cash for no other reason then to do so.

Then there is the issue of reach. I have roughly 290 subs on Youtube, 1500 followers on Twitter, and a smattering of folks elsewhere (here on the blog and tumblr ect). I seriously doubt any of the folks following me would in fact support my weird ass little youtube endevour for no reward at all.

Granted, all I would use the Patreon money for would be things to support the show. Stuff like more products to discuss and the like, maybe giveaways and things. Or paying my net bill (cause I need to keep my upload rate!)

I dunno. Just thinking out loud I suppose. Sometimes I need to do this so I can put my thoughts on paper.

What do you think about Patreon?

My First 3 hours in Mass Effect Andromeda, NO SPOILERS! :)

Got to the Nexus, almost time to go to my first actual planet.

First area (tutorial area) is actually really open. Lots to do and explore in this tutorial level. This is BEFORE the Nexus, basically right when the game opens. Tons of side stuff, actual platforming (yes, platforming!) and exploration. And enviroment hazards (actually more then one). I ran into a couple of little puzzle bits in the first area as well.

Game reminds me of Dragon Age Inquistion in quite a few ways, blending with ME2/ME3. Tracking is very Skyrim-esque (icons up top on the compass). When you complete a side “area” the icon will change color to let ya know (white to blue) Thats handy. On the map you CAN SET WAYPOINTS! Which is SUPER handy. They show up on the Compass as well.

Combat is GOOD. But I keep trying to go into cover with SPACE and end up jetting up into the air. Fluid, fun, I dont spend all day in cover if I don’t want to. I like being able to hover and pop baddies in the HEAD! PEW PEW! Having all abilities on their own cooldowns is nice. I chose the “Engineer” styled background during Char Gen, so I started with a power that drains shields and gives them to me. Got Incinerate early. Every level up gives you 3 Power Points to spend as well. Each level of a power costs that many points (level 1 = 1 point, level 2 = 2 points, ect).

Your ammo is refilled at little ammo packs you find, but those packs are NOT infinite. There are little visual meters on em that look neat that show how much ammo is left in em. I actually DID run out of Pistol Ammo early on, and even died in the tutorial area cause I was not paying attention to cover.

Dialog is decent, nothing cringy or anything. Facial animations are still a bit wonky. Frequently my FemRyder looks like she is staring up and to the right lol Voice acting is decent as well and there are tons of it, as well as lots of “ambient” dialog as well. I stopped quite a few times just to listen to NPCs discussing things. Also it appears that some side missions will show up as a Blue Exclamation Point on the tracker / over an NPCs Head. I found one that way on the Hyperion.

Scanning in game is a bit odd. I have to hit G (which means every so often I hit F and do melee instead!), and its kinda clunky feeling at times. I dont mind it, but I can see that people could get aggrevated with it. Tons of lore doing it though. And you can scan quite a bit, and sometimes the same types of things multiple times (like you can scan Kett Corpses more then once for some reason)

Also the UI Menus are pretty rough. Definitely designed for consoles. I can bring up the map with M, but I gotta hit ESC twice to close out of everything. And its all nested. I can navigate it easy enough, but it takes time. And I mean NESTED. You gotta click a lot to get to weapons, and then types. Also the shop interface was a bit wonky too.

Technically I am running this on a i7 4770k, GTX 970, and 16gb Ram. I let the game choose “Auto Detect” for graphical settings and its working really well. Pretty sure I can set it to High and be fine. Running at a steady 50-60fps with these settings. I might turn off Temporal AA and it kinda makes things fuzzy at times, and I am not a fan. Honestly I had it set to custom early on (Shadows and Lighting on Medium, everything else on High, AA on MSAA) and it ran solid as well and I dont really notice a difference.

Graphically this game is stellar as well. While facial texures are kinda wooden on the humans (And why is Sara Ryders default mouth so LARGE and her eyes so damn LARGE!) every alien looks WONDERFUL! I already got a few characters I really like as well (Liam is actually really cool, Cora is alright) squad wise, and even some of the NPCs I have encountered feel very alive.

Strike missions are this games War Table missions (Dragon Age Inqusition). You send out agents (Who I guess you have to find) to go do missions and you get loot boxes for em. Apex missions are still strike missions, only you can do those yourself via Multiplayer, and get extra rewards.

Story wise I am hooked. I want to know WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON WITH EVERYTHING and I want to explore. I want to actually go out and solve the mysteries already presented to me. Nothing really feels forced either for me so far.

As a whole I am very pleased with this. I loved Dragon Age Inqusition (190 hours in that game alone) and ADORE ME2. This seems like a solid blend of the two, and that pleases me more then anything right now. However, if you were not a fan of Dragon Age Inqusition, I can see you possibly not enjoying this as much. It is more open then the previous games so far, and it DOES dump a LOT of info on you early on, much like the very first mass effect. I dont mind that, others might. And I did find a couple of “Collect X Things” on the Nexus for side quests, but they are things I would be doing in my normal gaming (one was scan 10 creatures, which I would be doing anyway) so that doesnt bother me at all since I do not have to go out of my way to do it.

10 hours for this trial is not enough. Tuesday the 21st Cannot Come Soon Enough!

Oh and I have not touched MP. I am not big into MP generally so I dont think I will be bothering with it for a WHILE.

So you wanna become a “Professional” Reviewer?

Hello folks, the name is Clay. Some know me as Terminally Nerdy. Its probably the youtube channel. And the title of the blog. And my twitter handle.

Anyway, I want to talk to you a bit about getting into the “Review game” as it were, and what you should expect.

Reviewing things is a ton of fun. You get to share your passion with the world, help people make informed decisions, and generally talk about things you love. You also have the potential to get free shit. Who doesn’t love free shit?

But, reviewing stuff is not for everyone.

I have, to date, reviewed games, tabletop rpg products, books, music, and even dabbled a touch in comics. I am established enough now that I have people coming to me to request my services in reviewing their items. Suffice to say, I got a bit of knowledge on how to do this.

First and foremost: Dont expect free shit. Its a perk, to be sure. But until you get established, until you get your name out there and show that you are a legit reviewer and that you KNOW what you are talking about, don’t go around asking people to give you their products. Some of these things (games and tabletop products) can get pricey! (I just got a book that retails for $45 sent to me) and a publisher / creator / developer is not likely to trust sending you something like this unless you have a track record that shows you can deliver.  Hell I got a custom dice box thats going to retail for $50.  Because I am now a known quantity in the world of Tabletop products.

Secondly: Don’t bite off more then you can chew. If you don’t understand something, don’t try to review it. I personally wouldnt really talk about movies too much, as I am not a bit cinemaphile. Comics are another thing I refuse to touch now, as the medium doesn’t work for me. If you love video games, and decide you wanna review books but are not well read….then thats a big issue.

Third: Review things you own and GET ESTABLISHED. If you wanna review tabletop stuff, go look for free shit on DriveThruRPG. Talk about the systems you already own. Wanna review games? Talk about the ones you already have and played and understand. Get content out there for people to see.

Fourth: SET GUIDELINES and BE PROFESSIONAL! Make sure you have a review guidelines page or list of things you are willing to look at, so you can point people to it. Be professional about it. If you want to request something from someone else, make sure you send them a formal request to their press contact if you can find it. Explain why you are interested in their product, what experience you have. Its kinda like applying for a job.

Its not easy, but it is rewarding, and for me, the best feeling is having someone ask me to look at their work. It tells me that they trust me enough to want me to give my thoughts on their product. Or they are desperate. One of the two.

But there ya go. Now get out there and show us all what you are made of!

POSSIBLE Change to TNT Format

After really thinking about it, I have come up with a Pros and Cons list of my TNT Wrestling Stream Promotion, and I am looking for some thoughts from my possible viewers / friends.

Right now, I have 2 formats. One is 1 Week of Game time per stream, and the other is 2 weeks of game time per stream. Universe Mode is played out in shows, and each week my Universe will have 2 shows. One, the Major show, is TNT, or Terminally Nerdy Thursdays. The other is a minor show (Think house show or just more focused show) called Main Event.

Here is how I see the pros and cons of both:

1 Major + 1 Minor Show a Stream (1 Week of Universe)
PRO – Expanded Minor Show to 5 Matches vs 3 (12 matches per week total + promos)
PRO – Can create the Major Show card before the stream, making it more exciting as no one will see the matches BEFORE hand.
PRO – Can have additional promos from people if needed
CON – Shorter Stream (possibly) as it would be 12 matches + Promos. Can fix this by doing fun Exhibition matches
CON – May need more Promos so more work for you guys.

2 Major + 2 Minor Shows a Stream (2 weeks of Universe)

PRO – More matches / action (total matches 20 + promos)
PRO – Storylines / Rivalries in game advance faster
CON – Longer Streams, may not be doable
CON – Will have to create the second major show card live, takes longer.

Pay Per Views will have to be on a stream of their own, even if its shorter, mainly because they are special and I want them to feel that way.

I am kinda leaning towards 1 week per stream vs 2 weeks per stream. But I wanted to ask you all for some thoughts here :)

TNT Wrestling: What is this whole thing?

So you might have seen me tweet about my new fake wrestling show, TNT Wrestling. Recently, I got a hold of a copy of WWE 2k17 and, realizing that I finally have a PC that can stream, I decided to try streaming this.

Originally it started with just showing off the game, but then the bug that has been in the back of my mind since WWE 2k14 came forth and bit me.

I could do it. I could run a fake wrestling promotion. And I had a ton of friends who were willing to let me make fake wrestlers (aka CAWs) for the fed and to use them in it against regular WWE Superstars.

But what is TNT Wrestling?

————————–THE STORY—————————-

WWE has fallen on hard times, and Vince decided to hire a up and coming youtuber and wrestling fan to become the GM of a new weekly show. Disbanding RAW and Smackdown, this new Show would be called “Terminally Nerdy Thursdays” aka TNT Wrestling. The monthly Pay Per Views would stay the same (Wrestlemania, Money in the Bank, ect), and in addition to a new group of stars, some of the old guard would be a part of this new exciting show.

————————–THE SETUP—————————-

Yes that story is nuts. But hey, I have a story. A wrestling is nuts.

Every Sunday, from 11am EST to 3pm EST / 3:30pm EST I will be streaming TNT Wrestling. I will be doing my best to complete 1 week of Universe Mode in game.

There are 2 Shows each week.

  • TNT, aka Terminally Nerdy Thursdays: This is the main show. It has a TNT World Heavyweight Champ, and a TNT Intercontinental Champ. It also has the TNT Tag Team Champs, and a TNT Women’s Champ.
  • WWE Main Event: Saturday Nights, a minor show hosting 5 matches a week.

So a total of 12 matches + 2-3 In Game Promos in 4 to 4.5 hours. If I have spare time I will do some exhibition matches and the like as needed.

Pay Per Views will be their own week as well, because they are special.

No matches will be simulated, and I will be playing the role of the main GM. I am going to use the AI as a Booker. Basically I will look at a card, adjust it as I see fit, set up active rivalries (manual rivalries) BEFORE THE STREAM, and then play the matches and provide some commentary on them while also interacting with the fans in chat. The matches will for the most part be AI Controlled save in certain situations where I want a particular wrestler to WIN or LOSE for the story. Promos will also be AI Controlled.

There also will be surprises here and there, such as live promos, live interviews, and other things as I can manage them. Its a little nuts what I already have in store.  These will be inserted into the show at appropriate moments.

Currently, there is a ROSTER available for viewing, but it also has a lot of notes on it showing what I am working on.

If you wish to chat with the talent, you can join the Official TNT Discord Channel. You can also keep up with announcements of episodes and see the full episode archive there, including the Episode Zero at the bottom of this page, which had the tournaments I used to crown the inagural World and IC Champs.

————————–EPISODE ZERO—————————-

Below you will find the first 3 hour stream, aka Episode Zero of this whole thing.

I hope to see you guys there. There is also the possibility of joining the roster, but for that, you need to join the discord and talk to me.

STAY NERDY FOLKS!