New Season, New Reviews

Website — By on March 24, 2012 2:48 am

This post was written by Dark_Sage. He is Dark_Sage.

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If you haven’t been following this site from the beginning, every season I add improvements to the review formula. This season is no different. However, I want some opinions on it.

Picture unrelated

Note: I will probably be doing reviews of Ozma before the new season is fully implemented. Any changes decided for the whole season will be retroactively added to these reviews.

Here are a couple ideas of how to improve the reviews:

  • Heavier focus on “script quality” than just “error manageability”.
    • Error manageability will still be the focus for B and lower grades, but B+ and up needs more content to the reviews. Editing is about more than just spell checking and I hope I’ll be able to reflect this here. Unfortunately, it will definitely add time to the reviews, but I think that at this level, it will be worth it.
  • Priority for reviews moved to “higher quality” shows.
    • Everyone’s looking for the best group for the best shows. I’m not going to focus on shitty shows that don’t matter. I’ll still do them eventually, but not at the start of the season. Outside of my opinion, I’m not sure how to determine this. Perhaps a poll (ongoing, of course)?
  • Greater separation between “script” and “visuals” in the reviews. Font/typesetting/karaoke in the “visuals” section and pure English focus in the “script” section.
    • Some people care about visuals; some don’t. My “overall grade” won’t change (fansubbing is a team effort), but you will at least have a clear separation.
  • Additional section to the information at the beginning of my reviews – English style. If it can be determined that a group is following British English or American English standards, I will reflect that here.
    • I don’t see any negative side effect to this inclusion.
  • Instead of the screenshots for OP/ED, include Youtube videos of OP/ED with music cut out (Youtube likes to ban people for music, but I’m assuming with visuals that include lyrics it might be harder).
    • Unfortunately, this probably won’t be implemented. It would add a significant amount of time to my reviews, and I don’t think it’s worth it. If someone can think of a better way to manage this, I’m all ears.

Of course, these are just my ideas. I’d like to see what everyone else thinks I should do to make the reviews more relevant and better.



Dark_Sage says:

Note: “Be faster” isn’t an option unless you’re offering me a valid reason to quit my job.

0.0 says:

Adding an OP/ED via youtube won’t take that long. Around 1-2 mins to cut them out and 4-5 mins to upload? Wow 8 mins! Just make somebody else do it.

Dark_Sage says:

Thanks, 0.0. I’m counting on you.

HeavenlyArmed says:

I personally feel that it should be B+ and lower that can be determined by error management alone, and only grades in the As should really need that extra something. That’s mainly because perfect error management is rather uncommon and I don’t feel groups should be getting nothing higher than a B- for missing a few minor problems. Besides that, I think all of these are good ideas.

Acnologia says:

Would script quality include OP/ED script quality? I know you already judge karaoke, but I don’t believe you judge how well the song is transliterated into English.

Many groups have some pretty shitty English in their OPs/EDs, and others, such as Evetaku, have outstanding OP/ED scripts (Evetaku’s Inu x Boku SS endings rhyme most of the time).

Another thing you could possibly do is encode quality. Not necessarily screenshot comparisons for each group, but maybe you can write if a group had a noticeably better/worse encode than another group.

Dark_Sage says:

Yes, I do plan to talk about the OP/ED’s script quality in Spring 2012. I guess that would go under the Script Quality grade because it doesn’t relate to the visuals at all.

Encode quality is… tricky. I never bothered to learn much about encoding and I still don’t really know all of its intricacies. If I start talking about encoding from a review perspective, it’s going to become very clear that I don’t know what the fuck I’m talking about. (This open-review system keeps me in check, which I’m thankful for.) However, I don’t mind making a passing mention of encode quality if it’s obvious to a regular viewer that something’s wrong. I suppose I could be a bit more sensitive to it than usual, but if you’re expecting a mention of the encode quality in every review, I don’t think I’m qualified to handle that.

Xythar says:

Those all sound good to me. As I mentioned before, it’d be good if groups could all be compared on the same episode instead of different ones, but I can also understand why that would suck for you and the first point you listed should hopefully make something of a difference in that regard as well.

leokiko says:

I think you should stop reviewing kiddy or endless animes, like Precure or Yu-gi-oh.

Dark_Sage says:

Initially: First seasons only unless I can be convinced otherwise on a case-by-case basis. Beyblade/Pretty Rhythm are out of the running. The basketball/soccer shows are also gonna be avoided. I would cut Saint Seiya out, but I owe Mexico for their delicious Tapatio Doritos, so I’m leaving it in.

This leaves me with 24 “main” shows and three 3-minute shows.

leokiko says:

Kuroko no Basket comes from WSJ, I think you should review that one. It won’t be oversubbed, for obvious reasons. And it’s not exactly an anime aimed for little kids.

Also, Saint Seiya is pretty famous here in Brazil, so I’m glad you are keeping that one.

Xythar says:

Oh yeah, one other thing – would you be able to include maybe a brief mention of timing quality in the reviews as well? I can go into more detail about what to look out for if you’re not sure, but the main indicators of crappy timing are subtitles that persist past scene changes even when the character’s line has already ended, and lines that obviously start before or after the actual dialogue.

There’s also more advanced stuff to consider like splitting lines appropriately on long pauses and line length to audio length comparisons but I’m not sure if that many viewers care about those as much.

Dark_Sage says:

I could focus on it more than I have in the past. I won’t be getting too technical with it, but if it clearly sucks, I can sound off.

Revy-chan says:

If you want, I could do that as an addendum to each episode you do.

Dark_Sage says:

Timing critique? I won’t turn down any help, but I hope you realize what exactly it is you’re committing to.

Revy-chan says:

I already critique timing enough as is whenever I watch anything in my head about bleeds/bad lead-ins and lead-outs. It’d just require me to take screenshots and explain why it’s wrong. Depends how in-depth I’d need/want to go though, and how bad an episode is.

Dark_Sage says:

Well, all right. Good to have you on board then. <3

Revy-chan says:

How shall we do it? You make a post then I follow it up or you’ll give me a list of stuff to get ready beforehand?

Dark_Sage says:

We’ll talk on IRC.

FalseDawn says:

There are groups out there who sub in Britglish?

Dark_Sage says:

Doki and Shini-subs come to mind off the top of my head. However, I’ve noticed it seeping into a few other groups too.

FichteFoll says:

You should try vimeo or another video upload service instead of Youtube. You won’t have the OLOOKTHISVIDEOHASCOPYRIGHTINFRINGEMENT hype as on Youtube. Probably a video might get deleted once a year or so, I don’t upload anime videos frequently, but it would be way easier than on Yt.

Dark_Sage says:

Gonna float this here. Anybody interested in seeing the encoding details? I don’t know if any encoding enthusiasts care about this or not, so I’m not gonna waste my time with it if y’all don’t.

And yes, I know that’s a lot of info. I’d spoiler tag it or something.

CWaffle says:

Yes, it would be useful to see sometimes.

CWaffle says:

Also, while popular shows get priority, please make sure to mix it up with some Hadena reviews, since they always end up to be pure comedy gold.

Shay says:

I agree with this, they are pretty hilarious.

beta says:

Maybe specify the degree the visuals alter the final grade at the end of that section. It usually won’t be by a lot, but it would be nice to know how much it altered the final grade (like from a +/- to a flat grade, or vice versa, or one grade tier if it’s amazing/godawful).

LazYSlackeR says:

I don’t think OP/ED videos would be worth it, especially without audio (isn’t timing important in karaoke?). Use that time to get more reviews out instead.

The rest seems like good ideas.

I’d like to see some reviews of movies and/or BD releases too (like Coalgirls when they modify the script or THORA), but I doubt you have time for this.

Revy-chan says:

The OP/ED is to showcase the karaoke, not the timing. You can’t fail timing karaoke. Like, it’s just not possible.

LazYSlackeR says:

I don’t know anything about this stuff, but I was talking about the timing of the effects (like when the syllables change color as they are spoken) can’t you fail at that?

Also the style could not fit with the atmosphere set by the audio or things like that, but well, I don’t care about karaoke anyway…

Revy-chan says:

Like I said, failing at karaoke timing is so impossibly hard, you’d have to purposely be trying to fail.

LazYSlackeR says:

Also, some people might care about speed (do they release in hours, <1 day, <3 days, a week?).

kawwmoi says:

If the ones that are released in a day are better than the ones released in a week it would probably be worth noting. Otherwise, people who want fast releases get early releases, people who want good releases can learn to wait or lower their standards.

Cd says:

Some releases don’t require the “visual” part imo. When reviewing Horrible-Subs for instance the “visual” value is a given…

mahru says:

“good” shows shouldn’t get priority. you should just do any randomly like usual I for one don’t like any drama filled and full female cast anime (which is apparently what people nowadays think is good) I like action/harem/shonen/ecchi generic anime and so what if they are not considered “good” to you guys but to me they are the best type.

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