LVLs. is going in a new direction beginning now. It will be shifting gears, yet staying somewhat familiar. Let me break that down for you step by step in order to better explain what I mean by that.
* It will be abandoning traditional news reports. Now, I’ve enjoyed posting about news here in the past. But when I look at the overall picture of LVLs., I think it’s the weakest part of the site. There are exceptions (and I’ll get to those in a second), but I really can’t compete with IGN, Gamestop, Kotaku or Destructoid with up-to-date news. I often report from GoNintendo or Siliconera, myself. I’ve never had any real scoops. So, I want to eliminate doing announcements of new games, new details on games, and stuff like that. That can be gotten elsewhere from people who are getting paid to do it. If I’m going to put in work on this site, it better damn well be worth it to me. On the other hand, I love covering (and reading about) niche, fan-based and esoteric news. This is stuff like Jason X’s Pokeymans project post, or Nester’s coverage of The Speed Gamers whenever they do something. Those are perfect for LVLs. for the direction I want it to go. It may be covered elsewhere, but it’s something that truly and honestly deserves more attention. Assassin’s Creed III news will be everywhere, but will some artist doing some cool project or a charity group who plays games to earn money to help people? Not so much. That is the kind of news I’m totally cool with, and you can expect that kind of coverage to continue.
* The overall site structure will be on opinions, features, and editorials. My anthropological interests will be taking much more of a role than they have in the past. I want to examine games with the tools and techniques I’ve been acquiring. I want to do Cultural Anxiety more often. I want to use LVLs. as a springboard into my hopeful research on female gamers. I want to really dig into what I like about games. I wish to delve into my favorite characters to understand why they are my favorites. I want to uncover the issues some games give to me and come to grips with why I didn’t like them. In short, I want it to be a little more academic.
* I want to broaden the site out a bit to include more content on books and anime and music. These have been marginalized at best, and I’d like to remedy that.
* I want to remove or revise features that require little effort on my part to create (i.e. Artistic Discussion, Gamer’s Playlist) in favor of more elaborate pieces that make people (hopefully) think and reconsider their positions on. At the very least, I want to put more effort into what I do. Fluff posts don’t really satisfy me anymore.
* I also want to be online less. LVLs. will be a weekend-only project during school, and it may stay that way in the summer and winter breaks so I can focus on some other stuff, like my art, creative writing or just some genuine gaming. The Internet sunk its teeth in too deeply, and I need to break off a bit. This plan will allow me to do more of what I really want to do AND still let me work on LVLs., just not as much.
* Weekly Whose Line? will be moved to Mondays. Music Wednesdays will still occur, and Fan Art Fridays will incorporate Gamer’s Playlist into its midst. Wildcat’s Art Sundays will tentatively remain a part of the site as well. These will serve as my lighter post material throughout the week, and the weekend will hit harder. I will program them to appear during the weekend as part of my routine. There is the possibility that these weekly events will not happen, or that I may not post on a particular weekend because of some other commitment. I will attempt to warn you when that will be the case.
* The Imagery will stay (it’s a nice attraction for people) and will continue to grow. That will be the “fluff” of the site, I suppose. I do like having art on my site for games (or just art) I adore.
* In terms of the staff, a major shift is occurring. Nester is sailing towards Lark’s Island as his permanent home (which will be an affiliate for the duration of both sites). Jason X is staying on with me and will be determining if this shift in focus is to his liking. Grace will continue to serve as a silent admin, occasionally popping up whenever she feels like it. As LVLs. is becoming more personalized to my interests, this is not a surprising development. Nester, Jason and I would like to continue doing Roundtables together, although they too will be more in line with the academic shift I want LVLs. to take. There are no hard feelings here, and I wish Nester (as well as TEi and Cammy) well in their future endeavors. All of the features, editorials and opinions of the staff will remain in the LVLs. archives with their blessings. Their work is a vital component of LVLs.’ past, and the site benefited greatly from their assistance. My eternal thanks to you all for everything. I also want to thank Jason for continuing to provide LVLs. with his unique blend of posting that adds some much-needed variety to my work. We’ll see how this goes!
* I plan on eliminating fluff posts (i.e. irrelevant site news and goofball posts) and all of the traditionally angled news posts in November to free up some space and to better focus the site for these changes. I also want to muscle through some of the older content and revamp it. Some of it is a little embarrassing to re-read. So, at first, new content will likely be sparse, but I’ll try to not only focus on revision.
* Other changes will likely be implemented beyond what I’ve listed here. I’ll announce them as they occur.
To sum up, I want quality to be the goal of LVLs. now. I want to have pleasure writing content that intrigues me and that I am proud to produce. I hope that you will join me in this revised endeavor. See you Saturday.