5 years later.
This game guide website turns 5 years old this year. In this post I will be reflecting on my journey with this website and my life as a content creator. This post is super depressing. Don’t read it.
5 Years is a Long Time
Okay, I’m gonna give you a long history lesson about this website and my life as ‘BK Brent‘ on the internet up until now. Despite my website being named after my screen name, I don’t like talking about myself at all. There’s a reason for that which I will get to in a bit, but a serious event happened in my life very recently. Which has now made me think that I should be a little bit more transparent with what I am feeling and what I am going through. So hey, this might just be your one chance to hear me say things I will never talk about otherwise.
I’m going to tell you upfront though: this story isn’t nice. Especially not with the way I am going to tell it. If you are a sensitive person, don’t like listening to whining, or you don’t want to change the image you have of me right now, don’t read the rest of this post. You’ve been warned twice now.
Here we go. So, originally, I started this website in 2016 as a small blog to help people, and to share tech or cool ideas for games I was playing at the time (SAO Lost Song). I initially had no intention to become a content creator or a YouTuber. If anything, I hated gaming YouTubers because many of them half assed things and got recognition for not necessarily doing anything meaningful. It was just low effort let’s plays, memes or casual play. Elitist? Sure, but I have very high standards for what I consider quality content.
In any case, let’s fast forward to when I first became someone with an online presence.
The Accel Sword Phase
A few years ago, I was getting a little bit of traction online with my GE2 Blood Art vids and that Legendary Weapon Farming Guide I put together for SAOHR. It was around this time when Accel World vs Sword Art Online (Accel Sword) was announced. This game was essentially gonna be Lost Song 2, and thinking back on how irritated I used to be and how lackluster LS netplay sessions felt, I decided to write a complete guide for Accel Sword.
We will overlook the fact that I might have been projecting negative emotions from being in a fucked up relationship for over 2 years at the time, but I thought “I need to protect this game“. Protect from what, exactly? Uninsightful content creators doing low level shit in videos and then making people think it’s all the game is about? Foolish players spreading misinformation just so they can get some clout? I guess… I mean I had a lot going on and maybe I just needed an outlet for stress.
I can’t quite recall what the driving factor was, but I started work on what I called in my head ‘The Super Guide‘. I was initially intending to translate the official JP strategy guide, but my country’s customs screwed me and by the time I actually received it, it was completely outdated due to version updates. So all of the information aside from drop lists was thought up, compiled and tested by myself. Sometimes with the help of a nice smash player or a nice 40 year old man.
It took a lot of work, but the Super Guide was starting to take shape. A guide that essentially defined and documented the entire game and it’s meta. A guide that was so robust and detailed that anyone could open the link and be elevated to the level of an intermediate player. A guide that almost made my fail my post-graduate studies and gave me insomnia and eventually nihilistic personality traits.
A guide that got me isolated from the very players I was trying to help. The thing that either got me put on a pedestal or shot on sight. Join a room and I was either kicked instantly, or people were over excited to play with me on a 8:2 ratio. Or I got kicked while playing with the people who were excited to play with me, and they thought I just left the room like a jerk.
Say. Do you know what it feels like to be told to kill yourself? It’s a funny scrubquote lol tee hee, yeah. But do you know what it feels like to be told to kill yourself by a different person, every single day? This is after you have given them your everything, plus ultra, to the point where you made sacrifices that might have cost you your health or your future. You just wrote a little guide for a fucking video game and now people who have not done a thing, are within their feelings and think it’s okay to attack you for I don’t even know why. Oh by the way your gf is cheating on you.
Okay let’s calm down. I low key hate it when you bring up something like this, and then someone always has to say “just ignore them lol” like you know what this shit is like. I remember just turning off at some point and I became immune to toxicity at the cost of being able to properly interact with other human beings online. I felt like I became a martyr because, yes, many people were using my guides to enjoy the game and better themselves in it. But I couldn’t enjoy it with them without being ‘BK Brent’ first. I had to tip-toe around managing a public image I didn’t even want to have because for some reason, a good reputation goes hand-in-hand with how trustworthy your information is. That’s not to say that there weren’t many more nice and supportive people than there were toxic ones, but being in a dark place mentally makes the negativity drown everything else out.
The Fatal Bullet Phase
Also known as the “what the fuck am I doing with my life” phase. I somehow tricked myself into thinking covering SAOFB was a good opportunity for growth even though I deeply loathed the game. Even though I never really wanted to be a content creator or a person of interest in a community. I just thought that because I did the Accel Sword guide and because people had high expectations of me, I should just continue my duty as the SAO guide guy despite what I was going through.
Why am I doing this? Why am I playing this game? This isn’t fun. Why am I slaving away for this community? I don’t even like SAO. Why am I still in this relationship? I don’t even like this person.
All I could think about, was to not think. To suppress my emotions. To endure and stay focused. To try my best. But the toxic messages only got worse. The slander was escalating and people were claiming I had plagiarized my Accel Sword Super Guide and were trying to cancel me. Then eventually everything reached a breaking point.
I don’t really know the full story, but I found out I was doxed on [redacted]. If you don’t know what it means to be doxed, it’s essentially when someone posts personal information about you without your consent. Stuff like images of you, your real name or your home address.
So, how2 endure that? I could not. At the very same time, that shitty relationship I was in finally broke apart even though I was trying my best for fuck knows why. There’s even more terrible personal things that happened that I’m not comfortable talking about here, but it felt like everything fell apart.
My already bad mental state got a whole lot worse. I had 0 self esteem. I hated myself. I hated the decisions I made. I hated everything. I started to become very negative, very nihilistic and a very sarcastic person to mask my depression. I also stopped talking about myself completely in any social situation where anyone I didn’t completely trust was present. Talking about myself online was completely off-limits. Ask me a direct question about myself and I’ll find some way to dance around the topic.
You know, the thought process of persevering and trying my best even when my self esteem was stripped away is why I still use Persona Vabel as my online mascot. A forgotten character in a forgotten game no one cares about who tried her best, only to became disgruntled with her own existence and the decisions she made. Stricken with a deep loneliness, she wanted to make herself disappear by trying to erase herself. This part refers to what I almost did before starting GE3, but this character represents more or less everything I was experiencing here and I made her my online image so that I would never forget that this is where I came from and what I once stood for.
The God Eater 3 Phase
This is probably around the time you found me. I can remember cueing up all those ‘basic weapon showcase‘ videos for that week in December 2018, and then signing out of all my accounts because I needed to think. I don’t think my mental health has ever been worse than it was at that point. It was so bad that I had the “delete website” screen open in front of me and I was about to click it and be done being BK Brent.
I wanted out. This was not the life.
But unfortunately, I am bad at giving up. At everything. If I care about something, I will try my best regardless of the circumstances. Even when I am unwell, and even for people who don’t appreciate me. So with equal parts of needing something to help me cope, and needing something to distract me from my own thoughts, I went into God Eater 3. I remember promising myself some childlike shit on some “I will be this game’s MVP” because I needed to stay motivated. I also needed something to keep me from thinking… certain thoughts that were brought on from being told to kill myself every day.
And so, I did what I do. I played, I practiced. I made guides, but was suffering some PTSD from before so made videos the main medium of content. It was very hard in the beginning because I kept thinking that this wasn’t the right decision and I should have disappeared, but I didn’t want to give up. I felt like, at least 1 thing has to go well in my life and I wanted it to be GE3, if not anything else.
About a year passed like that. I started to be a lot less depressed. If anything, I was productive and distracted from what I was feeling at the time.
But then there was someone who was ‘inspired’ by my work and started releasing GE3 videos too. Except they were blatant copies right down to the long video descriptions, the thumbnails, playstyle and even the music used. It didn’t stop here; this kid was even using my slang, points of views and phrases in sum GE discord. It got so out of hand that people were screen capping things this person said and accused me of trolling in the discord on a sub account.
There were 2 reasons why this pissed me off a lot. One was because it felt like this kid was capitalizing on the market I struggled to create for my style of video. The other was because this fucking kid didn’t know the kinds of things I was going through and the kinds of feelings I was playing this game with.
It felt like, originality was dead. Like I wasn’t even allowed to have my own content style. Nothing is mine. Not my ideas, not the music I like, not even the way I speak. I was trying my fucking best to keep myself together, only to be turned into raw material for someone else’s online persona. Kid couldn’t even let me have the 1 thing that’s helping me cope with depression and making me hate myself less. How does that feel?
…Phew. I digress. If you’ve actually been reading all this shit, take a break. Rest your eyes. The pointless whining momentarily stops here.
Looking at everything I’m saying here, you might sense a kind of disassociation and think that I am taking these games too seriously. You might just think I am getting tight over small occurrences on the internet which don’t really mean anything in the bigger picture of life. I can agree to some extent. But even though this may be a game, it’s not just something you play, man. It can be a lot more than that if you let it.
In any case, I was not treated badly by GE3 players like before. At least, not too my face. Whether that was because I put up walls in dealing with people or I just expected worse, I am unsure. But most importantly, I was able to regain some self-confidence and meaning in what I do online through GE3. This all culminated in the God Eater 3 Community JG video. The positive impact that video had on me and my approach to content creation is really put into perspective when I lay the full story out like this, huh? This kind of community thing was unimaginable to me a couple of years prior.
In short, I was able to recover from hitting rock bottom and GE3 was one of the irreplaceable tools that helped me get out of that dark place, and back on my feet. It made it feel like not deleting the BK Brent name might have been a good idea.
But I didn’t want to make videos for this game forever, so I made a decision to step back from making videos even though I would continue playing for a while. That was at the end of 2020.
2021 and the Dark Timeline
I rounded up most of what I was feeling this year in the Upcoming Projects (2021) post I did in June. Basically, I spent this year being burned out from doing GE3 content for 2 years straight. That, and I was too unmotivated to do anything productive. I set up my Twitch Channel and I became okay at streaming this year. I promised a Tsukihime guide, but the game has an in-game flowchart and a help corner so it has absolutely no need for a guide. I also promised DMC5 videos, but that game is very hard and very hard to stay motivated at. So I’m currently slowly doing Melty Blood videos now on my 2nd YouTube channel, but it’s still hard to stay consistent.
I found 2021’s new game releases painfully dry though and I had no new games with substance to dedicate myself to. I was complaining that I was bored non-stop. I eventually decided to work on Platinum Trophies and games I’ve had backlogged for years.
Gunvolt pulled me out of the cycle of boredom. But Melty Blood Type Lumina got a release date that was sooner than expected, and it was actually looking pretty good. This sparked up my drive for fighting games again and I started playing BlazBlue Central Fiction almost every week with one of my best friends that I’ve known for around 10 years. This continued right up until Type Lumina released and we played that for about 2 months. I even streamed quite a few of the sets to Twitch.
2021 earned the nickname ‘The Dark Timeline‘ for many, many reasons. Mediocre games being given high praises because there’s nothing else to play. My favorite series’ being turned into phone games or being killed completely. GG Strive. The whole ‘Honesty is Banned’ thing and more. I was going to talk a little bit about these, especially the Honesty Ban thing, but this post is already way over how much I wanted to write, and how much you are willing to read.
So I’ll just go ahead and tell you why 2021 really is the Dark Timeline. Why I am being so honest, why I am writing all this, and what the serious event was that I mentioned in the beginning of this post.
There’s no easy or subtle way to say this, but 2 weeks ago that same best friend passed away.
I don’t really want to talk about the cause, but he had a serious condition that he didn’t really tell anyone about. I was hit with equal parts sadness and frustration at myself for not knowing what he was going through. But the thing is that he and I might have had similar personality traits, in the sense that we would never show it when either of us were going through stuff. We also wouldn’t pry, but listen if the other wanted to talk.
It got me bad because we used to talk almost every single day and now he is gone. This guy was the first person I had fun playing a fighting game seriously with. This guy helped me build my new PC and would always egg me on to do streams and then clown on me in the chat. This guy and I promised to play BBCF offline on the very Saturday before he…
Okay, let’s stop there. Being hit with a shock like this, I started to think that maybe it’s not so bad to be open with some things on occasion. I still have the whole no personal information thing hard-wired into my online personality, but I wanted to tell the story of what it was like being on this side of the upload button even during troubled times.
I’m doing okay now, and while I am sad about losing him, I do not want to be so depressed again. So I am trying my best to accept this and keep on in the way he would have wanted me to. I will learn Rachel in BBCF though. She was one of his characters and he would often complain about how he was struggling with her despite bodying me EZ w
Alright, I’m gonna end this post here. I mainly wrote this to give myself closure and to give you insight into things that I don’t talk about. Understand that there is a lot more I don’t bring up, and you never really know what people are going through out there. So don’t be a dick, be genuine and just be your best self.
I also don’t want sympathy btw. That’ll just make me feel worse.
Early next year I will write another post talking about plans for my website, twitch and youtubes. Despite all this negative BS that comes with the territory, I really like playing games, making guides and helping people. I have also made the decision to stop considering to close this website because there is a blessed monthly donor that helps greatly with the hosting costs.
We might be in for another few years, boiz.
Thank you for reading.
Happy Holidays. See me in 2022.