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Time Spent on Editing Play Sessions


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#1 harsten

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 05:43 PM

I have a simple question for all of you who record your sessions. How much time do you spend in editing, and how much editing do you put into it?

Almost all of my current groups sessions are played remotely, using Virtual Tabletops and VOIP, and we record just about everything. In an effort to try to keep a sort of a log of play, I’ve tried going back and editing our sessions to remove most of the out of game chatter and I find it quite time consuming. Our “Signal to Noise” ratio is very low apparently, but it totally works for us as its an excuse for a bunch of old friends to get together.

When I listen to a lot of the sessions I notice that most of the groups manage to keep their out of game chat usually limited to the start of the session and only a few minutes. Is that because of editing or are your groups that focused?

I have developed an appreciation for the work that everyone puts into their recordings, as it isn’t as simple as hitting the “Record” button.
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#2 PrestoJeff

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 09:00 PM

I don't spend a lot of time editing the Gaming Grunts sessions. Most of the time, it's pretty quick: noise reduction, compression, add the intro track, export as MP3. Maybe an hour to 80 minutes all told?

I'd say the biggest time sink is the export to MP3 and the FTP to upload the finished file.
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#3 Daniel

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 03:48 AM

45 minutes for the FTP transfer, then 45-60 minutes for the editing, mostly background processes. This is increased to around 10-12 hours for the Tropis episodes, of which 80% of that time is hunting for appropriate backing tracks.

For non-Tropis episodes the editing is significantly light. In game we stop and restart the recording every 30 minutes to avoid audio loss, so I tend to remove the "I'll stop the audio there" and "Three, two, one: and we're back" from the beginning/end of each segment.

For Tropis episodes the editing is significantly more complex. The first stage is performing all that editing used in non-Tropis sessions. Once that is done, I listen through to the entire episode taking timestamps for where SFX and music should start/stop and for any special modifications which need to be performed on voices (if they are in a cave, or example). This generally takes the length of the episode, plus 10-20 minutes; sometimes less, sometimes more.

Once I know what I need for the episode I begin the hunt for appropriate SFX, depending on the complexity of the episode this can take up to 3 hours. Once that is done, the SFX are applied to the audio while I begin to search for suitable music. This is the part that sucks up the most of my time, with complex episodes sometimes taking half a day to find suitable music. Once the music has been found it is applied, taking care to modulate each song so that it is in the background, not the foreground, of a scene. The entire episode is then listened to one last time.

As far as the OOC Banter goes we generally, as a group, view ooc banter as a bad thing so once the recording is on we try to stay focused as much as possible. Sometimes this doesn't happen, especially recently when we've just wanted the holiday to hurry up and arrive - also EVE: Online entered our lives so we like to talk about that sometimes.
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#4 BigJackBrass

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 03:57 AM

There's a reason why we chose the puntastic name Whartson Hall for the group :D Editing is kept to an absolute minimum. We've done "live" editing once or twice, hitting pause while we discussed something we didn't want recorded, and on the more recent SLIDEWAYS recordings I tacked the intro music onto the file and did a brief fade in / fade out for the sessions, but other than that probably the closest to editing or file processing has been to boost the sound on a few too-quiet recordings.

It's not entirely down to sloth or unfamilarity with the editing software either :D We decided early on that we would present something as close as possible to sitting in the room with the group. If there's too much chatter then listeners can skip ahead and let us know their views on the forum, but for the good of the group I suspect we'd all prefer to stop recording rather than make too many concessions to being "on air." The result may not be professional, but then there are other groups who can provide that ;) Hopefully it's enjoyable enough to keep a few faithful souls listening.
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#5 dualshock71

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 09:25 AM

There's a reason why we chose the puntastic name Whartson Hall for the group :D Editing is kept to an absolute minimum. We've done "live" editing once or twice, hitting pause while we discussed something we didn't want recorded, and on the more recent SLIDEWAYS recordings I tacked the intro music onto the file and did a brief fade in / fade out for the sessions, but other than that probably the closest to editing or file processing has been to boost the sound on a few too-quiet recordings.

It's not entirely down to sloth or unfamilarity with the editing software either :D We decided early on that we would present something as close as possible to sitting in the room with the group. If there's too much chatter then listeners can skip ahead and let us know their views on the forum, but for the good of the group I suspect we'd all prefer to stop recording rather than make too many concessions to being "on air." The result may not be professional, but then there are other groups who can provide that ;) Hopefully it's enjoyable enough to keep a few faithful souls listening.


Oh yes. It's actually one of the reasons why I love Whartson Hall's games. Your players have this deliciously wonderful tendency to get off topic the very instant you let them. I find it enjoyable. :D
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#6 nortonweb

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 11:45 PM

BJB I'm with dualshock on this its also one of the reasons I love Whartson Hall games.
It was only recently I read about the groups intentions to try to make the listener fell like they are at the table and I have to say you do it very very well indeed :D
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