2 Years Later…
This post is just gonna be me reflecting on where I’ve come from in the last two years and where I’m planning on going in the future. This article is going to be a lot of rambling, whining and a lot of… not actually saying anything important, so feel free to skip this one.
However, if you are interested in me talking about how I came up and what are my short-term goals for the future of this site, read on.
~2 Years Ago~
Two Years Ago this time I was probably standing in a Lost Song lobby, salty because I didn’t have a Max Attack 1Hand Sword. I was probably also saying something along the lines of “I’m going to try to make a guide for the next SAO game.”
So as I was trying to make that intention a reality, a few months later in August 2016 I set up bkbrent.wordpress.com as a free wordpress blog. It was bare and I had nothing to put on it, so I just threw on my old Senran Kagura and God Eater videos and wrote a few posts about Lost Song.
It was a start.
Before long, November 2016 rolled around and I started playing the newest SAO game at the time, Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization. But at the same time, another event happened in real life that kind of fucked me up emotionally and mentally. I couldn’t function properly and ended up throwing myself completely into Hollow Realization even though I didn’t really like it that much at the time.
I have absolutely no recollection of what I did in HR in that time but I was just trying to escape from IRL stuff so it didn’t matter what I did as long as it took my mind off the other event. I mean, no other person in their right mind would actually try to farm for 0.1% drops, right?
So with a combination of real life shit happening and not really liking HR that much, this site kind of just festered with no purpose for a few months.
That was, until March 2017 when Accel World vs Sword Art Online: Millennium Twilight released in Japan. I picked up the Japanese version and on release date I still remember how clearly I said to myself: “This game, is going to be MY game.”
I had recovered from the IRL stuff and was super motivated to make a guide for this game. If you’ve been with me since AccelSword days, I’m sure you know the story from here.
I put colossal amounts of effort into translating the official Strategy Guide and composing tons upon tons of worthwhile information. It was all for the purpose of giving the playerbase a one-stop site where anyone can stumble upon it and be nurtured into a high caliber player if they’re willing to learn.
Shortly before AccelSword was released in English, I made a decision to buy a domain and upgrade my wordpress plan thingy. I took the tier two option because I feel like I had something worthwhile here and maybe monetizing with ads would be enough to cover the cost of the new plan. (I was wrong btw)
Thus, bkbrent.com was born.
I didn’t really like that it was named after my screen name but oh well…
Fast forwarding a bit, I made a decision to step back from AccelSword at the end of 2017.
Before hesitating to make the Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet guide, I took a risk and bought web hosting and leveled up my site in the beginning of this year, 2018.
Web hosting certainly isn’t cheap, but I decided to fix up my site into something that looks like it holds quality information. Adding a Donation button and more ads to cover hosting costs became a part of the plan when someone who used one of my guides changed my whole perspective on the matter by saying:
“Since you’re giving up so much of your life to help people, who is going to help you when you don’t realize you need it?”
Then after tweaking the site and getting it to look better, I started work on the Fatal Bullet guide.
Which brings us to present day where I have stepped back from Fatal Bullet and am making small additions on the site behind the scenes while planning what to do from here.
The past two years have been a hell of a learning experience, to say the least. But I always think that one should have a firm grasp of where they have been before they try to set new goals and aim for new horizons.
That is why I am writing this article.
Over the last two years, I’ve seen some good growth all round. This website is up to around 1.5 Million views and my YouTube views are up over 2.2 Million. Two years ago I had around 1500 YouTube Subscribers and I am currently up over 5500.
The numbers don’t really mean a lot to me though if I’m being completely honest. Its nice to see the growth, of course, but I’d still put in the same amount of effort whether I had two views or two million views. A good example of that is the AccelSword guide where I wrote 90% of it months before English release and it wasn’t being seen by anyone for the longest time.
The one thing I can say and will admit openly, is that making guide for a game means that I have to sacrifice my playtime for it. Which by extension, means that I do not grow as a player as much as I would like to. Its an obvious and natural outcome, but I still get selfish and stubborn when I feel like I’ve fallen behind a certain level that I would like to be at in the game I’m making a guide for.
Then because I’m doing both guide making and trying to keep up with the absurdly high standards I set for myself, I eventually burn myself out on a game and find it hard to continue doing anything on it without taking a break. But the breaks don’t really change anything and I end up being just slightly less sick of the game.
Its a vicious cycle and one that I will continue to suffer through every time I make a guide. The fact of the matter is that I want to both play the game and make a guide for it. But both use up the same abundance of time and ultimately, clash with each other in a way that makes it so I have to pick one over the other. Which isn’t something I can do easily.
Anyway, due to my somewhat rapid growth I have attained a newfound popularity in some circles. Along with popularity comes both hate and the pressure to uphold an image and a reputation.
I’m gonna go ahead and skip talking about that stuff though and the only thing I’ll say is that it’s been hard for me to adjust to being someone many people care about.
But instead of dealing with that adjustment, I decided I wouldn’t change anything about myself and stay as the same old Boss Killer Brent that makes dirty jokes and works his hardest for the things he cares about.
Anything other that that wouldn’t be good enough for my perfectionist self.
~Why Do I Write Guides?~
Its kind of a late question to ask now, but I think I need to address this properly going forward. The short answer is that I have a passion to help players get good at games I care about. The longer answer has a more selfish component to it.
Originally, I come from a Fighting Game type gaming background where getting good is the name of the game and knowledge and practice are the keys to making it happen. Since I didn’t really have many people to play with offline, I would often explain complex fighting game mechanics to my friends and family members who were only mildly interested in the genre.
I got trolled by my family members and became “Teach Me, Ms. BK” for it, but when I was teaching them how to play those fighting games I realized just how abstract and hard to understand certain things in any game can be. Especially if the game doesn’t have a good tutorial or has a good tutorial but it bores the player and they skip it anyway.
It was around that time I realized that I really love breaking down game mechanics and explaining them in an easy to understand manner, all the while providing tips and good practices that could potentially make you a good player should you be willing to learn just a bit.
Now, I try to write guides that would potentially help players of any skill level in the same way.
Of course, just saying that I write guides to help people sounds a lot like a biased attempted at painting myself as a charitable saint. But the reality of the matter is that its fueled by a very selfish reason.
The selfish reason is that its not fun for me to play online or witness gameplay footage where the players are all free as hell. ‘Free’ in Fighting Game terminology is a word used to describe a player that is so bad, so useless that it requires almost no effort for a seasoned player to beat or to be better than that player. They are a Free Win.
We’re all free when we start a new game man. Like the wind in the skies and the waters in the ocean, such is the way of life. But that’s exactly why I want to create a platform where all kinds of players can come through and potentially learn a thing or two about how to get better in whatever way.
My deepest hopes is to write guides that may end up yielding a highly skilled playerbase which would in-turn increase my own personal enjoyment of a particular game.
~Plans For The Future~
Its really hard for me to talk about the longterm future with certainty because there are so many unknown factors in play. But I can talk about the direction I would like to go in as well as speculate what the future could hold.
The first thing I should say is that in 2019, I might get really busy with work. If that happens I won’t have the time needed to play games thoroughly or upload guides at a rapid pace which might mean that the growth of this site and my YouTube might slow down.
I am still intending to keep this site alive in the coming years though so I don’t worry about me potentially being close to shutting down this site any time soon.
The main goal I have right now is to try to expand this site and my YouTube to accommodate more games. Of course, creating guides and videos takes time and I need to have even more time beyond that to play a game and garner a deep understanding of it before I am even eligible to make good guides and videos. That’s why there isn’t much content on this site even though its been around for two years.
But because I am a perfectionist, I keep thinking that every single guide I make has to be as detailed as the AccelSword one. I decided I’m going to gravitate away from that idea only and potentially make less meaty guides for other games like I did with Fatal Bullet.
That is not to say that there won’t be a guide as heavily detailed as AccelSword’s was, but it means that I will try to make content for a game according to how much I enjoy playing it and how much time I want to spend on it both guide-wise and playing-wise.
Its tricky to put into words but the basic understanding that I want you to take away from this, is that I want to make more guides but the amount of detail will be directly related to how much I like the game and how much time I’m willing to give up for it.
In addition to more guides, I also want to write more posts like this. Well, maybe not exactly like this because this one is sappy and annoying. But I would like to maybe write a few posts on game theory or any other ideas I get that I feel are worth reading.
Another thing I was considering, was to write up a glossary of phrases or words that I use that are hard to understand. I sometimes use a lot of Fighting Game slang or inside jokes that not many people may even begin to understand because they’re beyond abstract. It would make the process of explaining things become easier because sometimes I am not even aware I’m using slang.
I have also made up my mind to make a “Upcoming Projects” post whenever I am in-between games to help give readers an insight into what I’m planning to do next but also for me to gauge interest in potential games that I may write guides for. The first one should be up in a week or two.
In essence, the short-term plan is to just keep this website alive by accommodating more games and posts but at the same time not letting my quality and attention to detail slip in the content I create. Balancing YouTube and this website is draining but I’ll try to do my best as I have been doing.
I will also take regular breaks from all of this to stay fresh whenever I get some down time.
As for the long-term future, there’s not a lot I can say man. I’m not really someone who thinks far ahead and tries to plan for a big goal. All I can say is that I’m going to keep going. Nice and steady and at my own pace and I’ll see where it takes me.
Who knows. Maybe Bandai Namco or IGN or someone big will actually see all the work I been putting in for some of these games and give me a permanent position as English Strategy Guide author w
Or more realistically, they’ll just retweet something of mine on Twitter with that swifty eyes emoji.
You never know.
Either way, if you’ve made this far, Thank You For Reading.