Oswald Rant: Lost in the Airwaves

While shoutcasting is still relatively a new concept when it comes to online gaming, it has seemed to peak in the Urban Terror community. With the advancements in GTV, gamers would rather watch the action than listen to coverage. Now, I am not going to fault anyone or say that’s not right. Each hold a place in the gaming community. Unfortunately, it looks like the listener support for shoutcasting in the Urban Terror community has really faded.

I believe it was JeffT at the Team Sportscast Network who offered the first shoutcasts of Urban Terror. Since then, Whizperz, Vansilli and yes, even Blankz and Wheat with their “memorable cast” have covered the Urban Terror action. I have been “shoutcasting” weekly coverage of Urban Radio since December 2001 before I was picked up by TsN. This gave me a larger outlet to get the word out about the mod to the gaming community.

Recently though, there has been a lack of support when it comes to tuning in. Part of that responsibility I will shoulder as I have not done many episodes of Urban Radio because of that “lack of support” from the community. I still see weekly match requests being sent to provide coverage, but seriously, who is going to tune into a 60 vs 62 match up on the OGL? TsN is not solely about numbers, but if a game does not draw the support its required, why should it occupy a server for an hour or two?

Is there any corrective action that can be taken? I don’t know, been asking myself that for a few months now. Action seems to ebb and flow, like the SoCal tide on those sandy beaches. Could it be the mod is loosing its luster? Sure, probably to some degree. But the numbers do not really back that up. Still solid support for Urban Terror as we begin our third year in existence. Could it be we just need to “get the word out” again? Are gamers looking for something new when it comes to the mod? These are all valid questions and each hold a key to the overall answer.

I don’t think it’s fair to group Urban Radio and the match shoutcasts together. I don’t want to say there is no support for the show, because there are still solid numbers to support a weekly show. Remember I said part of the blame was on my shoulders? I just have not been all that excited to do a two hour show, working all week to fill the Internet airwaves with terror. Like the community getting complacent about our development, I have just reached a plateau and will have to look at taking the show to a “new level” with the impending release.

With each new release, there is a renewed vigor and excitement that swirls among the community. This is not only seen and felt by the community, but by those on the development team. The next release will sure be a welcomed relief and it will provide the support needed to get those airwaves open once again. But if the community wants to hear matches covered and a weekly shot of Urban Radio, they will have to make an effort to tune in, just as I will have to make an effort to do the legwork to create an informational show.

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