So as you’ve probably figured out, @Zutazuta and I recorded a podcast. We compete at naming US states/European Countries, talk about what we want from the future, and discuss useless politicians (not the controversial ones) (The AOE3 variety ).
I also pitch my plans for Smackdown to Zuta which I’ll summarize down below:
1) Smackdown Patch.
To stop things going stale like before, we’d like to use a custom patch where we can quickly introduce major changes to have fun with. Ordinary supremacy will of course remain a Smackdown staple… but at least every other week we’d like to try a new ‘format’. One week, players could start in the colonial age. Another week, settlers might train instantly! I imagine their being tons of good suggestions and no shortage of new decks & interesting strategies! Here’s a few good ideas posted the other day by 91!
Any permanent changes? Yes, Smackdown Patch will mirror ESOC Patch changes. Though, our ‘major changes’ will be reverted after each event/format! However, we’d also like to introduce a few permanent politicians changes to spruce up dead options. These types of changes in particular should inject more variety into Smackdown which should be exciting!
So this should explain something you may have noticed in the recent beta update:
EAGLEMUT wrote:- Added button for switching onto EP Smackdown version from Tools (works like another Beta channel with its own changes, more info on its purpose soon™).
- Automatically create desktop shortcuts for launching Beta/Smackdown channel upon first use of the respective button from within EP Launcher.
Big shoutout to Eaglemut for putting in all this work and agreeing to indulge my silly ideas
Over the next few weeks you can expect a few short videos from me and Mitoe discussing our changes on my YouTube channel. To be clear, this is not so much a ‘balance patch’. You can think of it as more of a ‘spice patch’. Our goal is to better express the options & possibilities available in the game which are currently held back by bad politicians & few other things.
2) Where will this be streamed?
Until recently, I was getting ready to power down my YouTube channel. But then AOE4 & a bunch of definitive editions got announced! I was so shocked. I never thought MS would do anything with AOE ever again. But here we are. I always told myself, if they make an AOE4 I’d quit my job and throw all my weight behind a fulltime streaming career. I know this sounds dumb but it has come at possibly the most optimal point in my life. I’m fresh out of uni and working in a bar. So I don’t really have any commitments or anything to lose. In fact, I’ve spoken to a few other likeminded people (mostly AOE2 content creators) and we’re planning to get a house together in Manchester (UK). That way we keep costs down together and can do tons of awesome colab stuff. (They’re defiantly into AOE3 btw, just don’t play it like we do). (Colab stuff will mostly be good for AOE4 but I’ll try and rope them into AOE3 too) I imagine I will inevitably end up playing some Age of Empires 2 as well.
So as you have probably guessed. Smackdown will be streamed on my own personal channel as it’s important for me to grow my own healthy channel rather than keeping it on the back burner. To begin with, all Smackdowns will be recorded off-air and published on YouTube using the new ‘premiere’ feature. Basically, every Sunday the video will stream LIVE and then afterwards it will be available like a normal YouTube video. To begin with I want to keep the audience all in one place to get the most out of the YouTube algorithm.
I’m going to have a full-time income for a quite a while still, I’ve not gone crazy! But as you can imagine, the end goal is to do content creation full time. I don’t expect that to happen overnight but I do want to start the beginnings of that and Patreon will be a good starting point. I don’t expect pledges. There will be no anticipation of donations of any kind. Smackdown will return regardless. But the option is there for anyone who wants to make my dumb dreams become a reality. Mitoe & I will be splitting everything 50/50.
SMACKDOWN PRIZE POOL
Whilst I’m still working a job, I don't want to take the communities money. Any donations received on Patreon or otherwise will be used ENTIRELY to fund Smackdown’s prize pool. I’ll also be putting some of the YouTube ad revenue towards this too. Ideally we’ll have evenly matched players on each week but I’m also very open to the idea of winner stays on for the next week. My hope is that a consistent weekly prize pool will make finding players considerably easier (and make preparing for the weird formats more serious). At some point however (hopefully), I’ll be able to leave my job and then I’ll have to figure out how much money goes where.