Wednesday, December 14, 2011

EXP Podcast #151: We Got Next

No matter how many hours Scott and I spend playing, analyzing, and writing about games, there are still so many sub-cultures to which we remain largely ignorant. Competitive gaming, particular around the fighting game genre, continues relatively under the radar of both gamers and the public. I Got Next, a recently released documentary by first-time film maker Ian Cofino seeks to shine some light on the relationships players have with Street Fighter and its competitive gaming community. This week on the podcast, Scott and I discuss the movie, competitive gaming at large, and the fascinating community of Street Fighter players, friends, and rivals. As always, we encourage you to leave your thoughts in the comments section below. If you would like to watch the film before listening to the podcast, you can find a direct link to the Hulu source in the show notes.

Discussion starters:
- What are your experiences with competitive gaming?
- How might the competitive scene change if it were taken more seriously by the public? Is there something about gaming culture impeding its progress?
- What are your thoughts on the film?

To listen to the podcast:
- Subscribe to the EXP Podcast via iTunes here. Additionally, here is the stand-alone feed.
- Listen to the podcast in your browser by left-clicking here. Or, right-click and select "save as link" to download the show in MP3 format.
- Subscribe to this podcast and EXP's written content with the RSS link on the right.

Show notes:

- Run time: 36 min 47 sec
- I Got Next, via Hulu
- Music provided by Brad Sucks


  1. King of Kong is, of course, a great gaming related documentary, though in many ways--given the way that it is crafted--it really less about video gaming specifically than it is about the nature of competition and the psychology of competitors.

    I watched the beginning of Jason Scott's documentary Get Lamp a few weeks ago, and it is a documentary that I keep intending to get back to (the holiday break might finally afford me the opportunity). It concerns the history of the development of text adventures and is largely told via interviews with the original designers of those games. From the little I saw, it seems really well put together, and I suspect it is very much worth a full viewing for those interested in the early days of gaming and gaming culture.

    The whole two hour movie is available on YouTube:

  2. King of Chinatown - a film about Justin Wong, a premier competitive fighting game player, is another highly regarded look at this scene. I am looking forward to listening to this podcast and checking out I Got Next.

  3. I love King of Kong, particularly since its game roots are so old and largely inconsequential for the larger gaming community, which makes the drama between the competitors that much more explicit.

    I also heard about Get Lamp awhile ago and hadn't seen it was available on YouTube. We'll definitely check it out.

  4. Great podcast as always! RE: fight footage in the documentary...I am certain that there were legal issues in including gameplay footage in addition to technical issues in capturing the footage to film.

    If you want to see the reason why fighting games should be on ESPN check out this You Tube clip from EVO 2004 between Daigo Umehara (Ken) and Justin Wong (Chun-Li).

  5. Unsurprisingly, I looked up that video immediately after finishing the movie. The word "epic" is thrown around a lot, but I'll be damned is that wasn't an epic match.

    That video also shows how "readable" fighting games are. Similar to watching a sport like boxing, the general principals make it a great spectator sport. Even if you don't know much about Street Fighter, you know something amazing is happening.