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This Elden Ring Hype is Giving Me Déjà Vu

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New York Yankee Hall of Fame Catcher Yoggi Berra is famously quoted as saying “This feels like déjà vu all over again.” While Mr. Berra was a bit confused when he said that. It describes perfectly how I feel about the hype surrounding Elden Ring. It reminds me very much of the pre-launch hype for Cyberpunk2077. Why do I say that? Well, let’s look at some comparisons.

Elden Ring and Cyperpunk2077 were announced at E3 with huge premiere trailers

Both games were announced with trailers at E3 and everyone went into orbit. Cyberpunk2077 was announced during E3 2018, and Elden Ring during E3 2019. Social media erupted with mentions of these games even though the gaming public knew next to nothing about them.

Elden Ring and Cyberpunk2077 both come from developer studios with impressive pedigrees   

Elden Ring is being developed by From Software. The studio that brought us the long running and extremely popular Dark Souls series. As well as the popular PlayStation hit Bloodbourne. So, the gaming masses have the opinion that From Software can do no wrong, and Elden Ring will be the studio’s next blockbuster hit. Add to that that George RR Martin the famous Game of Thrones author has written the story, and everyone just gets into a frenzy. Hmmm, sounds very familiar.

Cyberpunk2077 was developed by CD Projekt Red. The same folks that brought us The Witcher series. With Witcher 3 being what a lot of gamers consider a must play. Many of my gaming friends and acquaintances feel that Witcher 3 is the best game they have ever played. So, a lot of gamers felt that surely CD Projekt Red would deliver another masterpiece. We know now that unfortunately in most gamers opinions that was not the case. After several long delays Cyberpunk2077 launched with a whole host of issues. Glitches and bugs plagued the game, and last gen console players were especially unhappy. The game ran so poorly on the PS4 that PlayStation offered refunds and took Cyberpunk2077 out of the PlayStation store. Read more about this in this article from CNBC.

Overall, even players that were able to play Cyberpunk2077 felt that it fell far short of expectations. That it was a huge disappointment and not at all what they expected as a follow up to the massively popular Witcher 3. Here’s an example from Games Review.

Very little shown prior to launch     

Cyberpunk2077 was able to keep the gaming public clamoring with a few screenshots here and there. A couple of trailers and small snippets of gameplay. So far, Elden Ring is following the same formula. The Elden Ring closed network test this week is the most anyone has seen of the game so far. If, you were lucky enough to be selected of course. So far, I personally don’t know of anyone outside of the major gaming media outlets that was selected to participate in the closed network test. We get a look at fifteen minutes of gameplay from IGN here during the test. Still, not much to go on for a buying decision.

Nothing seems to derail the hype train  

Oh sure, the hype for Cyperpunk2077 did take some major hits with all the delays. A lot of people claimed on social media that they canceled their preorders. For the most part though, gamers that intended on purchasing it did so anyway.

So far, the hype train for Elden Ring is still rolling right along. Even though all we really know is that it’s an open world Dark Souls.

Hopefully, the comparisons end there, and Elden Ring is the next great RPG. Setting the bar for years to come. Time will tell.

Business

What Trovo Should do to Get to the Next Level

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trovo

Trovo Live recently announced they will be coming out of Beta on December 12th. For those not familiar with Trovo it is a live streaming platform primarily focused on gaming. Trovo is owned by Tencent which also owns Riot Games, and PUBG. Tencent also has heavy ownership stakes in Epic Games, Ubisoft, and Activision Blizzard. Trovo was named “Madcat” at its start, but the platform rebranded when the decision was made to try to build it into a solid Twitch and YouTube competitor. Trovo has been in beta for nineteen months, and during that time has grown steadily.

Read More – Tencent

Trovo offers good stability, and quality video for the viewer. The chat is very solid as well with very few instances of disconnects. New features are tested thoroughly before they are added and perform as advertised once launched. These are all things that Microsoft’s Mixer could never accomplish during its short lifespan. Trovo has recently added squad streaming. A feature that allows up to four live streamers to share their video and chats together. It’s like Mixer’s bug plagued co-streaming feature. So, what should Trovo do to step up with the big dogs? I posted a YouTube video on this subject a month ago, but for my latest thoughts. Read on.

 

Continue to identify risky or abnormal viewer accounts

Trovo staff has done a bang-up job of this so far. They have continued to upgrade the platforms risk control algorithm to identify accounts that may be bots in one form or another. This is vital as Trovo has been open about the fact that they want to attract advertisers to the platform soon. Potential advertisers want to know that their ads are being seen by real live humans. This is important for Trovo’s individual content creators as well. As some will grow and begin to seek out partnership and sponsorship opportunities of their own.

This gives the Trovo partnership program a credibility boost also. Currently the Trovo Partner program (called the TROVO 500) is based on total viewer hours. So, it’s important that these hours watched are also from real live human beings. In the past week Trovo also announced that for viewers watch hours to be counted they must also be an active chatter. This is like what Twitch requires for a viewer to even show up in the active viewer count. Once again, this is a good thing. Potential advertisers or sponsors want to know that their products will be seen by actively engaged viewers.

 

Ditching Trovo Play

Trovo has announced that the Trovo Play Program will be ending December 1st. I mentioned in my YouTube video that this program needed to go away badly. What is it? It’s a program that incentivized streamers on Trovo to play games from a list referred to as “community favorites.” What this created was an extreme lack of variety of games being streamed on the platform. Going to the front page and seeing nothing but Apex Legends streamers for example is not a good thing. If someone visits the site and doesn’t care for Apex Legends or battle royales in general. They may leave and not give Trovo a chance again. Lack of variety is one of the factors that lead to Mixer’s demise. Mixer continually featured nothing but Fortnite content for months on end. Driving many away that were seeking other content.

 

Treasure boxes need to go

Treasure boxes on Trovo are basically a built-in prize giveaway system. Streamers have the choice of creating Discovery Treasure boxes, which are a featured giveaway for the entire platform to join in on. Or Community Treasure Boxes that are for that streamer’s community only. Streamers purchase Elixir, which is the paid currency on Trovo to use for the prizes in these treasure boxes. The intended purpose of treasure boxes is to for streamers to use them to attract viewers and thereby gain new loyal viewership.

However, as many of us that have been in live streaming for any length of time know all too well. Giveaways, in any form do not grow a channels viewership. Viewers will simply follow a streamers channel to enter the giveaway, and then leave once the giveaway is over. Only returning when, (yep you guessed it) another giveaway is happening. This creates a lot of “empty follows” and as we all know in live streaming metrics viewer numbers are what matters not follower totals.

The treasure boxes have adversely affected the legitimacy of Trovo’s partnership program as well. With some simply buying their way into the program by spending big on treasure boxes in order to rack up the necessary viewer hours to qualify.

Eliminating treasure boxes would be a huge step in the right direction for Trovo streamers to begin to cultivate more quality viewership.

 

Ease up with the mobile gaming emphasis

I realize mobile gaming is what helped Trovo get its feet under it, but now it’s time to evolve. I’m not saying abandon mobile gaming streams altogether. Just stop showcasing them as much. It gives first time visitors a bad impression. When I told some of my content creator friends that I had made the move to Trovo a common response was. “So, are you streaming Call of Duty Mobile now?” Followed by laughter, because when they visited the main page mobile gaming was all they saw.

In order to really step up and give Twitch and YouTube a run for their money PC and console gaming has to be the emphasis. That’s what viewers want to see and will come to the platform for. Let’s face it, a lot of people watch live streams and videos to help them decide to purchase a particular game or not. There’s not as much need for that with free or inexpensive mobile games.

 

Completely overhaul the partnership program

As I mentioned earlier the current Trovo Partnership Program the “Trovo 500” is based on total viewer hours watched. A streamer must have a total of nine hundred hours watched to get into the entry level tier of the program which is bronze. This not only earns them a partner badge on their channel but enters them into a prize pool of gems. Gems are the virtual currency with which Trovo pays its streamers. 10,000 gems equate to $100 US Dollars. Higher hours watched goals gets them into silver, gold and so on. With each increase in tier resulting in a larger prize pool of gems.

Not a bad concept if it was it was being approached by the streamers as I believe it was intended. Which would be to focus on growing their viewership to reach the tier goals. What is happening however, is some streamers are doing insanely long marathon sessions to reach the tier goals. Let’s break it down.

A Trovo streamer with 10 viewers per session must stream for 90 hours in a months’ time to achieve 900 viewer hours

By comparison a Trovo streamer with 30 viewers per session would only need to stream 30 hours to hit the 900-viewer hour goal for the bronze tier.

When you look at the fact that the goal for the next tier of Silver is 3100 hours and increases up to the Master tier of 27,000 hours. You can see that someone should really be focusing on growing their viewership to attain these goals. Instead, many are streaming for very long periods of time. Twelve, sixteen, twenty fours and even longer in some cases. This is very unhealthy both physically and mentally. In this article from The Mayo Clinic you can see that people that sit for prolonged periods are more susceptible to a number of health issues. Including increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist and abnormal cholesterol levels. This Newsweek article shows that prolonged sitting can also lead to premature disc degeneration in the spine. As well as the most concerning health issue, deep vein thrombosis. Deep vein thrombosis is when a blood clot forms in the legs. Once the clot breaks free it could travel to vital organs like the lungs or brain. Possibly resulting in death.

As I said in my YouTube video, I believe that Trovo staff are good people. They in no way intended for streamers to conduct unhealthy marathon streams to reach the goals of the Trovo 500. Instead, they intended streamers to focus on growing their viewership as I said earlier. Given what’s happening instead, it’s time to change the partnership program.

A good start would be to adopt the industry standard of concurrent viewers per hour. Trovo is a smaller platform at present. So, 20-25 concurrent viewers maintained for A 30 day period seems appropriate. With a reasonable requirement of days streamed during the 30-day period, say 10-12. This would eliminate most of the unhealthy marathon streams, and cultivate a talented pool of Trovo partners that could become the faces of the growing platform.

I see a lot of potential with Trovo. Otherwise, I would not stream there myself. A solid competitor to Twitch and YouTube is needed in the market. I believe that Trovo can become that competitor.

 

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Business

Black Friday’s 2021 Deals!

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Black Friday is officially tomorrow, November 26. Retail stores all over will have a lot of major gaming discounts. There will be reduced prices on the PS4, PS5, Xbox Series X, Xbox One, and Switch games and consoles, to sales on gaming headsets, keyboards, and mice. There are also a bunch of gaming hardware offers ready for you to purchase so you can upgrade your gaming PC.

Best Buy will be selling a Nintendo Switch- Neon Blue/Neon Red Joy-Con + Mario Kart 8 Deluxe(Download) + 3month Nintendo Switch Online Membership for $299.99. Walmart, GameStop, Target, Amazon, eBay will also have a lot of amazing gaming deals that you will be able to purchase.

Even though Black Friday officially starts tomorrow, that does not mean that you can’t start shopping online to start taking advantage of these amazing deals going on right now.

PlayStation released its sales plans for Black Friday 2021, including a list of over 400 games that will have their prices discounted for the holiday. Every year Sony provides a list of digital games that it’s planning on discounting on the PlayStation Store for its Black Friday sale. There are multiple versions of the same game included. Make sure to bookmark the PlayStation Black Friday homepage to track every sale currently available.

There will be 100 games that will be on sale for the PlayStation 5, with some of the biggest releases on the platform to be discounted. Death Stranding: Director’s CutFinal Fantasy 7 Remake IntergradeGhost of Tsushima: Director’s CutMarvel’s Spider-Man: Miles MoralesRatchet & Clank: Rift Apart, FIFA 22NBA 2K22, and Madden NFL 22Back 4 BloodTales of AriseResident Evil VillageFar Cry 6, Guilty Gear Strive, Minecraft Starter Collection PS4, God Of War III Remastered PS4, God Of War PS4, Hitman 3, It Takes TwoLife is Strange: True ColorsRiders Republic, Returnal and many other titles are on the list. Doesn’t look like Call of Duty: Vanguard or Battlefield 2042 will be on the list of available discounts.

Knowing that all of these gaming sales are currently available to purchase, tomorrow make sure that you don’t miss out on all the other amazing great Black Friday Deals!

If you want to find out other gaming-related news, follow Gamactica Portals

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