Have You Seen Noclip?

I'm not talking about the command (even though the command is the inspiration for the name.) What I'm talking about is the Youtube channel created by former Gamespot journalist Danny O'Dwyer. If you don't know, Danny O'Dwyer left Gamespot and decided to start his own Youtube channel called 'Noclip,' in which he makes crowd-funded video game documentaries on specific games. If you don't know about this new channel or haven't checked it out yet, I would strongly advise you to go and watch his documentaries; I'm not saying this as a thing to go do before reading this though. I'm not spoiling anything, I'm just recommending you to go watch these documentaries. I feel that their are not many video game documentaries out now, so having O'Dwyer take on this challenge is good not just for the video game community, but for the documentary community as well.

Their are not a lot of video game documentary series out, but their are a very few if any that is about the trials of creating a specific game. That is what I see in Noclip. A lot of the documentaries on video games that I see are about the industry as a whole, but Noclip is on specific games. In these documentaries, O'Dwyer interviews various people involved with making a specific game and talks about the process of making that game, from before and after the release of the game. But what makes these documentaries amazing is that he doesn't stop there. He talks about what inspired these developers to make this game, the early stages of their career and the early stages of the game itself, why the developers made their game a certain way, what they want you to experience playing their game, and more. O'Dywer and his interviewees go deep into a game and its development where others don't. Where I see one thing, they see 1 million. They show that everything has reason in games. Nothing is their by mistake, nothing is random, and everything you see, think, and feel has deeper meaning to it.

This video was an introduction to a series of future documentaries as well as talk about the art of discovery and mystery in a game. This doc showed how these two aspects are important to games and how they are often overlooked.

This video was an introduction to a series of future documentaries as well as talk about the art of discovery and mystery in a game. This doc showed how these two aspects are important to games and how they are often overlooked.

Those ideas impacted me in many ways with the different games that he has been over. Even though I loved The Witness, I could not find a way to look past the fact that is just an island full of puzzles. But the documentary on The Witness opened my eyes to many things. After the tutorial area, the first puzzle you see is an insanely hard puzzle that opens a bunker door. Where I see that it's just a puzzle to skip, Noclip showed me that the puzzle was a way to show you that their is no linear path in the game. That it is ok and will probably happen that you get stumped on a puzzle and that it is ok to just move on to the next. Where I thought that the game should have a progression meter on how many puzzles you solved versus the total amount of puzzles, Noclip showed that having this meter would ruin the mystery exploring aspect of the game and that not knowing how many puzzles are in the game is what makes the game great. These developers of games really showed me how deep everything is in their games, and I found this to be an eye opener.

John Romero on the profile video.

John Romero on the profile video.

Danny also is starting a separate series in Noclip that is about interviewing specific people. So far, he has only interviewed John Romero as part of this new series, but I do believe this series has potential to see what these people and their careers are really about.

The Noclip profile video on John Romero is something that should not be missed either. Where the other docs about about a single game, the profile on John was about his entire career. Danny didn't just talk about Doom, Doom, Doom. He talked about what got him motivated to start making games, the beginning of id software, after leaving id, and more. These profiles allows us to look deeper into John than just the guy who made Doom.

Noclip is a fantastic Youtube channel that both gamers and non-gamers should watch. It opened my eyes to new ideas as well as showed me how these developers started and how inspiration from older games transfer into their new games. Danny O'Dwyer is doing something new with creating many different documentaries that are completely crowd-funded. Not only that, these documentaries are high quality, which is very pleasing to the eye. If you haven't subscribed to his channel or didn't know about this before this post, go subscribe to his channel and see the games and the people behind those games in a whole new light.