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  • #51: A Marvelous Move - Death Battle's Road to 100

    1 month ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 78 Android 18 VS Captain Marvel, 79 Metal Sonic VS Zero, 80 Lucario VS Renamon


    Out of all the Season 4 episodes, these three were potentially the toughest projects. (Except for maybe Naruto VS Ichigo, but I’ll save that for later!) They were difficult to make not necessarily because of amount of research required or some debating debacle. This was the summer ScrewAttack moved to Austin to join Rooster Teeth proper.


    Death Battle is already a very complicated production affair with a lot of moving parts and connecting pieces, so uprooting the lives of the entire staff across the span of two months certainly put some strain on our schedules. Some of the writing may have suffered a bit from our divided attentions, but overall I don’t think the controlled chaos was very noticeable thanks to the team’s skill.


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    Fortunately, the battle sequences didn’t falter! Animators Zack and Aquilla returned after a long hiatus to work on 18 VS Marvel and Lucario VS Renamon respectively, while Luis took on Metal Sonic VS Zero. This was around the time when Luis joined Torrian in the office to become our main 2D animator. Ironically enough, his Metal Sonic VS Zero was also the first Death Battle to incorporate both 2D and 3D animation! Given what I’d seen him do before, I really wasn’t sure how he’d pull off something as crazy as Metal Sonic’s Metal Overlord. Luis told me not to worry, he had a plan, but I still wasn’t expecting Overlord to have very much screen time. Then lo and behold he shows off this awesome battle sequence!


    Before we could get started on Lucario VS Renamon, we had a long discussion about whether or not evolution should be included. I didn’t want it to be a repeat of Pokemon VS Digimon, so trainers/tamers were out the window. However, there was some evidence to suggest Renamon could digivolve on her own, and Lucario technically Mega Evolves on his own in Smash Bros.


    Both instances required very specific circumstances, but existed nonetheless. Ultimately, it was my desire to keep this match-up different from Pokemon VS Digimon which led to evolutions being banned regardless, making this a very straight-forward one-on-one fight.  I believed it would be a closer fight this way, and given the Digimon’s huge advantage last time, avoiding the possibility of such a power difference would likely encourage viewers to enjoy it more.


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    Also, while returning characters are far infrequent in Death Battle… I actually think it would be worthwhile to give Captain Marvel another chance at the arena. She continues to be a highly requested character with all sorts of match-up ideas. Who knows? Maybe one day...


    Well, now that we were settled into our new space, it was time for Nick and Torrian to get started on a pet project they’d been talking about all year long. No blog tomorrow, but on Friday I’ll talk about Balrog VS TJ Combo!


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. Of these 3 episodes, which was your favorite and why? Which was your least favorite?

  • Red Dead

    1 month ago

    burnie

     I know I’ve been posting a lot of video game related things on here lately, but I am really excited for red dead redemption two.  I feel like that title is going to be an absolute game changer. I hope I’m not hyping myself up too much for it 

  • Help. Productivity has plummeted

    1 month ago

    Chelsea RT Community Manager

    Chai fell asleep in my lap.


    I can barely reach my mouse or my keyboard. 


    This is a good problem. Sorry boss. 


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  • #50: Fire and Ice - Death Battle's Road to 100

    1 month ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episodes- 76 Natsu VS Ace, 77 Sub-Zero VS Glacius


    While the episodes themselves weren’t really built to play off each other, their timing next to each other seemed too convenient. How could I not refer to these episode as the Fire and Ice episodes?


    Natsu VS Ace was one of the earliest planned episodes for Season 4. In fact, remember the long and arduous research process for Zoro VS Erza episode from Season 3? We spent many, many months going through One Piece and Fairy Tail for that episode, but there was a secret motive behind it; Sam and Jessica were actually researching two episodes at once! Essentially, since we already knew we’d be doing Ace VS Natsu the following year, they took notes on Zoro, Erza, Ace, and Natsu all at the same time. The hardcore analysis for Natsu VS Ace took place later so they could focus on Zoro VS Erza, but when it was time to get to work on this episode, they already had a great head start. It worked out well!


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    This season presented a lot of match-ups which required extremely complicated discussions. As Natsu can eat fire, one such discussion was whether or not he could actually eat Ace, who can transform into fire. On paper, it sounds pretty simple. Why couldn’t he eat him? Except since Ace can activate and deactivate his fire form at will, we realized that he could not only resist being eating, but also Natsu might not have a way to hurt him at all, despite being much more powerful. We had a hard time determining a reliable way for either character to win, making this one of the closest match-ups in Death Battle history. Also, personal opinion here, but I can’t wait until we bring Luffy into a Death Battle! One Piece is such a joy to watch, even if it’s so incredibly long it’ll cost half your lifespan to get through.


    As for Sub-Zero VS Glacius, it was easily one of our top gaming related viewer requests. Given Nick’s history with Killer Instinct, it seemed like a natural fit! Sub-Zero is actually one character I’m surprised we didn’t bring into the Death Battle arena back in the old sprite-only days.


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    I do remember us talking about a bunch of other possible match-ups for Sub-Zero. Street Fighter’s Ryu was fairly requested, of course, and so was Iceman from the X-Men. But the most surprising request that kept showing up was Elsa. You know, the ice-queen from Frozen?


    Yeah. The concept of Sub-Zero VS Elsa came past my desk more than just a few times while planning 2017’s lineup. It’s a funny idea, but after putting it through the Death Battle machine, I’m not so sure the people asking for it would like what it would be. Well, unless you like the idea of Elsa being skewered by a dozen ice swords and having her spine ripped out… I guess…


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. Luffy will likely appear in Death Battle at some point, and I’ve seen a lot of good match-up requests; Naruto, Ichigo, Mr. Fantastic, Saitama, Toriko, Popeye, and so on. I can’t decide which one we should do! Who would you like to see Luffy fight in a future Death Battle?

  • I'm sick =[

    1 month ago

    kriss Community Manager

    Taking the day and night medicine as needed, grabbed some orange juice and soup, staying burrito-ed in a blanket on the couch, and trying to sweat it all out. 


    Aside from eating a lot of ginger candies, this is usually my go to method for fighting the plague.


    I suppose it's not a completely horrible experience. I'm at home and watching the girls. Chloe has been slowing down quite a bit, and she's not eating, so I boiled some chicken and made rice for her. Mix that up with her dry food and she at least eats half her bowl. 


    So as my mountain of mucus covered tissues pile up as the day progresses, tell me about yours. What's been happening lately? How y'all doing? 

  • #49: Robot Wars - Death Battle's Road to 100

    1 month ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 75 Power Rangers VS Voltron


    Season 4 was an incredibly important year for Death Battle, possibly rivaling the importance of Season 3’s massive production restructuring. For one thing, this was the year we moved to Rooster Teeth’s headquarters… though I’ll get to the challenges and opportunities that presented when I cover the summer episodes. The other change was that Craig had officially moved on from ScrewAttack, leaving the company in the hands of Sean Hinz and Chad James. While ScrewAttack may have looked just the same as always on the surface, things were very different behind the scenes. In a very good way!


    ScrewAttack had been stretched a bit too far across its small staff, so in 2017, Death Battle became a much greater initiative for ScrewAttack, with further staff and support put behind related shows DBX and Desk of Death Battle along with a new Death Battle podcast. For the cherry on top, Death Battle got a long overdue new look!


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    The original look for Death Battle was very much inspired by Mortal Kombat and… yeah, that’s about it. Oh, also the slamming metal doors from a classic UK show called Robot Wars which I’d watched as a kid in the mid-90’s, but I didn’t even realize I was subconsciously drawing from that until years later. As far as the themes went though, Death Battle was originally produced with video game audiences in mind, as ScrewAttack was primarily a gaming website back in 2010. Since then, the audience had grown, and attention had shifted. It’s no secret that our most viewed episodes are typically those with comic book or shonen anime characters. It was past time to change Death Battle’s look to reflect that, while still keeping a little of the good ol’ fashioned look.


    Can I take a moment to just gush about how incredible the graphics artists are at Rooster Teeth? I absolutely adore the new logo and assets for Death Battle’s fourth season. When that aired for Lara Croft VS Nathan Drake, it really felt like a whole new Death Battle had hit the scene. For me, Season 3 had been exactly that; a complete rebirth of the show. Season 3 had plenty of growing pains, but I think we wound up with a show that’s far superior to what it was before.


    And this hit me smack in the face with Power Rangers VS Voltron. Like… a good smack.


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    This is without a doubt one of the most ambitious animations we’d ever done. Five lions, five dinozords, 10 characters, 2 giant robots, tons of weapons… almost all of which had to be custom made from scratch! Not to mention 10 voice actors for each unique character, and a script with enough going on to give each character a moment to shine and two whole transformation scenes! Listen, if you don’t know squat about animation, that probably doesn’t mean much to you. How hard could animating all this be, right?


    Just so you know, it was hard as balls.


    This is an episode we’d been trying to get a foothold on for years. I was already working on a potential battle script as far back as 2012, before we even tried 3D animation in the first place! Back then, I figured the available budget would never allow for 3D animation. Without the growth that was being denied, I figured Power Rangers VS Voltron would have to be 2D and started looking for someone to make custom sprite work for it. That didn’t end up working out, but I think that’s for the best. It was worth the wait!


    There are a lot of standout moments I remember from working on this one. Nick was the writer and project lead for this episode, and he’d never watched Power Rangers before. About halfway through the research weeks, there was a memorable moment at lunch when Nick started lamenting at how he was really bummed that he hadn’t watched it as a kid!


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    Some of the models used in the animation, including the Megazord itself, were built by Reid Fagerquist. Because she was building it from scratch, Chad actually brought in an old Megazord toy he still had from his childhood to be used as a reference model!


    As a kid, I always wondered what each of the Power Rangers did while they were in the Megazord cockpit. Only Jason held a control stick, but the other Rangers were busy looking at screens or… something. Right? Even though it really didn’t matter in regards to the fight itself, I made it part of my mission during our research to discover what each one of them was actually doing when the zords all came together. I paid attention to every piece of throw away dialogue and specific conversations held in the cockpit, like how Zack was usually the one who checked the status of their weapons, or how Kimberly was the one who would establish contact with Zordon and Alpha 5. You can see all the roles listed on each character’s info slate in the episode! That was fun to figure out.


    Even back in 2012, I’d always imagined the Rangers and Voltron pilots would be voiced by fellow YouTube stars I’d met over the years. When it finally came time to make that happen, our casting director Marissa totally agreed. Matthew Patrick, Austin Hargrave, Amanda Lee, Jeff Fabre, Andre Meadows, Melonie Mac, Scott Frerichs, Nick Landis, Morgan Berry, and Alejandro Saab all lent their voices to this crazy thing, and I’m so thankful they were all so on board with it despite how busy the script was, how most of them would record remotely, and they all had incredibly busy schedules. And for the icing on the cake, musician Brandon Yates returned to create an awesome original soundtrack for the battle. In the end, it all came together beautifully!


    I’m immensely proud of everyone who worked so hard for so long to put this amazing episode together!


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. What did you think of the new Death Battle logo and re-branding when it first showed up? What do you think of it now?

  • When Something Has To Give

    1 month ago

    LoZelda Supposedly An Adult

    Taking care of your mental health is a lot easier said than done. You can recognize something needs to change, even recognize exactly what that is and how to do it, and still struggle to address it. I've been having that internal fight for a while now and I finally have a bit of a plan for how to maybe start addressing...

    *gestures to entire being*

    ...this.

    So here's that whole brain dump for ya. Take care of yourselves  purple_heart

  • Generation Gap

    1 month ago

    burnie

    I was at lunch with Teddy and Ashley at a cafe in France when I got a small but shocking indication of how much the world has changed during my life. 


    Teddy held up something from the table and said “what’s this?”

    I replied “haha. You know what that is, put it down.”

    He swore to me he had never seen one before. And then I realized that he might really never have. 


    It was an ashtray.

  • This Week At ScrewAttack - 9/21/18

    1 month ago

    JoshuaKazemi @joshuakazemi

    Another week, another round of random thoughts disguised as insightful editing notes. Here we go!


    The Desk of The Desk of DEATH BATTLE - Powerpuff Girls meets Dragon Ball Z  -  Editor Notes 


    • I was really happy to start this edit. I've been waiting to do a Desk of on this show. (Powerpuff Girls Z)
    • The nostalgia was strong with those Toonami commercial I used in the intro. 
    • Originally I had something different planned to show PPG fusing with DBZ but then after the 2nd or 3rd time listening to the V.O. I realized it had to be a blender. (Also at this point I honestly can't remember what my original idea was)
    • Death Battle should probably do a PPG fight huh?
    • It is SO HARD to find a song that sounds like the PPG theme song. I would find something with that distinct beat but then the feel of the melody would be off and vice versa. I think the song I ended up with works but obviously you can't beat the original song. 
    • No offense to Phineas and Ferb fans, it just started in 2007 and that's why I used it. 
    • All things considered the Black Mirror clip I used right after feels extra dark. 
    • Here's hoping "Z rays" is stylized as "ZrayZ" 
    • We didn't include it in the actual episode so make sure to check out Lisa singing the PPG theme song in this promo clip. 

    Watch the episode!




  • #48: Scrooging Venom - Death Battle's Road to 100

    1 month ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 73 Scrooge McDuck VS Shovel Knight, 74 Venom VS Bane


    Let’s talk about Scrooge McDuck VS Shovel Knight!


    Some of you are probably wondering why this match-up exists. It is certainly an unexpected one, I’ll give you that. This is a match-up that exists more so because of the characters themselves rather than the match-up idea. Let me explain… we had wanted to bring both Scrooge and Shovel Knight into Death Battle for a long time.


    Many of us at ScrewAttack are huge fans of Shovel Knight, and Scrooge is such a wacky character with an extraordinary history that we were really interested in diving into that vault of gold to dig up his dirty secrets. After discussing numerous possibilities, this match-up seemed like the best combination!


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    I believe bringing Scrooge into a Death Battle was Sam’s idea. While most of each season’s list of episodes are based on popular request, we love doing something unexpected every once in awhile. So when we sat down to plan out the episodes for 2017, I asked the rest of the team what sorts of episodes they’d like to work on. Sam brought up Scrooge, and the rest of us looked at him like he was a crazy person. We had no idea what Sam had discovered while working on a recent Desk of Death Battle episode… Scrooge has some absolutely ridiculous feats of physical might!

    Can I just say that I absolutely adore this episode’s animated battle? Luis tackled this one, and I believe this is the only Death Battle which truly embraces an 8-bit style, complete with appropriate sound effects and music. Overall, I like to think this is a very charming gag episode.


    In contrast, Venom VS Bane is dark and serious as shit.


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    We get a lot of requests from viewers every day, and some people will spam the same requests over and over. (Please don’t do that.) I thought it was strange when I saw that Venom VS Bane was one of our most requested match-ups ever. “It must be someone spamming it, right?” I though. “What’s the connection for this match-up? Why would people want to see Venom and Bane fight? Surely it can’t be just because Bane’s super-steroid just so happens to be called venom…”


    Spoiler alert; it was.


    Buuuuut sometimes the off-kilter requests can actually turn out to be really interesting. It was pretty fascinating exploring Bane’s history in particular, a character who everyone recognizes, but not many actually know much about. 


    And props to Kayas for a really stellar animation. Watching it now, it’s cool to see just how far we’d come from the animations of just a few years prior. Also, fun fact, the killing blow at the end of this one is a reference to Chad’s suggestion for how Batman VS Spider-Man should’ve end. (He wanted Spidey to shoot webbing down Batman’s throat, choking him to death. Euagh…)


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. Are there any unexpected match-ups we’ve done that you weren’t sure about at first, but came around to it when the episode aired?

  • Book Club: The Lies of Locke Lamora

    1 month ago

    Ashley The Know

    This week on Club Club we're reading The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch! It's a fun heisty fantasy book with a strong cast of likeable characters, shenanigans, and unexpected developments.


    What do you think of the book!? Leave your thoughts on a particular moment or element of the book you particularly appreciated in the comments, or tweet us using #ClubClub.


    Want us to address a specific theme, event, or story element? Suggest those too!


    NEXT

    Tabletop Club - Mansions of Madness

    Game Club - Little Nightmares

    Movie Club - Spirited Away

  • #47: Season 4 Fuss - Death Battle's Road to 100

    1 month ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 72 Lara Croft VS Nathan Drake


    It’s time to dig into Season 4! Get it? Dig in? Because… because they’re treasure hunters…


    Right, well, we started off with one of the most popular requests we’d seen, Lara Croft VS Nathan Drake. I’d always wanted to do this one, but knew it would be pretty tricky to pull off a fun battle sequence. Lara and Nathan can’t just fight each other, they have to duke it out over some lost treasure!


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    Surprisingly, this is one of our worst received episodes (in terms of likes versus dislikes on YouTube’s website, at least) and some of the criticisms are honestly a bit confusing to me. There are two main ones I see over and over. 


    First, the death blow was apparently considered a cop-out. Specifically, the fact that the helicopter blade is what deals the final blow by impaling Nathan on the ground. I don’t really understand this criticism. I mean, I would if the death was completely unrelated to the fight, but Lara was the one who destroyed the helicopter, sending Nathan to the ground and breaking his back. She had already won by that point. The impalement was just a creative way to end it, because I really didn’t want the final blow to be something as boring as a gunshot to the head or something simple like that. It’s not like this is the only Death Battle to do such a thing. These characters are all about grand adventure and expansive vistas, so I wanted that to play a major role in the fight.


    The second major criticism that I have trouble understanding is the one that argues that our main argument for Lara’s fight was the line “luck always runs out,” implying that Nathan only lost because he wasn’t lucky enough. I would certainly agree that that’s a lousy argument for a Death Battle victor… but that’s not what it was. That line is literally preceded by nearly 3 minutes of Wiz and Boomstick explaining how Lara is stronger, tougher, and smarter than Nathan. I dunno, I guess it could have been presented better, but it’s strange to me how this idea of luck running out became a sticking point. It’s not like Nathan has Domino’s superpowers or anything.


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    A criticism that I definitely agree with is that there’s some janky cuts in the fight. Nathan pulls out his rifle while Lara has his pistols trained on him, Lara shoots the grail and blames Nathan for it, and Lara magically gets a motorcycle from… somewhere. This was a project that was riddled with technical problems, mostly because of how many set changes were involved. I don’t remember the exact numbers, but I want to say it took 4 to 6 hours just to render 1 second of animation inside that temple. It was a much rougher process than we expected, and when some shots kept having render problems after 3 or 4 attempts, some things had to be prioritized. For example, there were a few shots made for the beginning of the fight where Nathan drives up to the temple in his jeep and sees Lara’s motorcycle parked by a wall. He shouted something to the effect of “Hello? Anybody here?” as he entered, which explains why he seems so talkative to nobody in the final cut. Thankfully this sort of problem is no longer an issue these days!


    Part of the reason why this happened was because this battle was really different, and a lot more complex, than our other animated fights. This wasn’t just a battle, it was a chase. Similar to Solid Snake VS Sam Fisher, the characters’ goals in this animation was first and foremost to get a specific object. Unlike Snake VS Fisher, Lara VS Drake featured multiple sprawling set pieces and a collapsing fortress! It may not have ended up exactly like we planned, but it was exciting to see it finally come to fruition.


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. There’s a ton of fun Season 4 episodes to cover! Which Season 4 episode are looking forward to seeing covered here, and what would you like to know about it?

  • Post RTX London Feels

    1 month ago

    kriss Community Manager

    I survived London! \o/ 


    I am now back in Austin and definitely feeling the post con blues, but I have returned with a lot of good memories and a crap ton of chocolate. Some highlights from my trip: 


    Had my first British Breakfast! 

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    The ExCel!!! 


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    Everyone told me I should get an Oyster, and I said "I'm not hungry yet..." HAHA. Needless to say, I took a real train for the first time ever! 


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    Went on a boat and hung out with a ton of RTUK peeps! 


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    Talked quite a bit with the RT Ireland group! We got kicked out of a bar! (It was only 11pm)



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    Checked in often with the Community Corner and it was hoppin'! 


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    Almost put my hands through a trash bin thinking it was a hand dryer.... 


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    Proudly supported some of our awesome community leaders at their panel (Scotland, Ireland, UK, and Germany represent)!


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    Cried while we said our farewells to our AMAZING Guardians. 


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    And the team leads. 


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    To close out the weekend, I attended the RTUK charity wrap party, and throughout the weekend, RTUK was able to generate over £3,000 for Special Effects!


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    I wish I had more time to explore and talk to everyone, but there's no denying that my first trip out of the States was memorable and an experience I will remember for the rest of my life. This community is amazing and wholesome, and being able to talk to those who are from different cultures and share mutual love for community and RT was so invigorating for me. I return home with a full heart and even more blessings in my life. 


    Special thanks to @Tudor for adopting me the entire weekend and making sure I didn't do something silly like walk out in front of a white van because I looked the wrong direction first. 


    Special thanks to all the Guardians who helped run RTX London. I've said it before and I will shout it from the mountaintops again and again. RTX cannot run without you. Thank you for making me feel welcome, for always being willing to help at the drop of a hat, and for continually holding your heads up high while kicking ass at your jobs even when things got tough. YOU are the heart of RTX. @Boomer @Arileya you are both wonderful Head Guardians, and I couldn't be more happy with how the event turned out. Your hard work and efforts do not go unnoticed. Thank you <3 


    We really have some of the best people in the world in this community, and I am so grateful for the opportunity to meet more of them during this trip. 

  • User Interviews

    2 months ago

    revelsrouser twitter.com/revelsrouser

    We want to deliver the best possible experience for watching content on our website and app. I need your help to make that happen! I'm looking for FIRST and non-FIRST members to do a quick user interview with me on google hangouts. I just want to get a feel for what's working, what needs improvement, what features you'd like to see, and get some general feedback from the community. The focus will be on the video platform, but we'll do the same for the community side soon. Even if you're not interested in participating in an interview, I'd still love to hear from you. If you'd take a moment to fill out this quick survey I'll get things set up. Thanks! >https://goo.gl/forms/tvJi4BogwVNrJ28B2

  • #46: The Pink Pony - Death Battle's Road to 100

    2 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 71 Deadpool VS Pinkie Pie


    And so we come to the season 3 finale, the end of one of the most difficult and rewarding years of Death Battle thus far. To celebrate such a grand occasion, we chose to end the terror that was 2016 on an epic match-up between fan-favorite Deadpool and a… perky pink pony?


    Yeah, that announcement turned some quizzical heads and probably gave someone an aneurysm. It’s a weird idea, but believe it or, it was a rather popular request. Our previous Deadpool episode was easily one of the most popular Death Battles we ever made. Usually when a character appears in Death Battle for the first time the number of requests for other match-ups with that character seriously drop, but Deadpool was a different story. The number of requests for a Deadpool reprisal was higher than ever before! We knew we would bring him back eventually, but it was a pretty difficult task figuring out which match-up would be a good fit.


    Until we stumbled across a truckload of posts requesting this mad idea.


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    Though to be honest, throughout most of 2016 we never planned on making this episode. Originally, the season 3 finale was planned to be Lara Croft VS Nathan Drake. As you might recall, the 3D animation schedule was lengthened mid-way through the season, so Lara VS Nathan had to be pushed back to the season 4 premiere, and we figured we’d swap it with what was originally planned to be said premiere. We had already talked about bringing Deadpool back in early 2017, though we didn’t have a match-up picked out until after deciding to bring the merc with a mouth into this finale.


    And so we made one of the silliest episodes ever!


    Back when Nick wrote Deadpool VS Deathstroke, we had to cut some of his ideas because they wouldn’t fit the more serious tone Deathstroke was bringing to the fight. Such as Deadpool reaching out of the YouTube player, grabbing the Like/Dislike bar, and wielding it like a sword.


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    One of the reasons Pinkie Pie seemed like an obvious choice for his opponent was because shenanigans like this would totally fit this fight, turning the battle into a brawl of the fourth-wall-breakers! We had never done anything like that with Death Battle before, and it’s always a joy for us to craft something new out of the familiar series. Though it is pretty ironic that for our first ever actually planned season finale we wound up with something as crazy as this! (Goku VS Superman and Pokemon VS Digimon were dubbed season finales post-production because we weren’t in seasonal cycles at the time.)


    That wraps up the topic Season 3: Growing Pains! On Thursday, I’ll begin covering Season 4… another important year with some important changes as we finally made the move to Rooster Teeth’s headquarters in Austin, Texas. I’ve been looking forward to talking about the 2017 episodes for another reason, too; since it’s more recent, I’ve got a much better memory about it! Ha! Point being, I’ll have some interesting stories to tell about Season 4’s ups and downs, and I hope you’ll join me on the adventure.


    See you Thursday!


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. What was your favorite episode from Season 3?

  • RWBY Volume 6 on Rooster Teeth

    2 months ago

    matt

    Hey everyone!


    RWBY Volume 6 is coming up, and we couldn't be more excited. The show has changed in so many different ways since it premiered in 2013... but that's not the only thing that's changed.


    We have decided that RWBY Volume 6 will live only on Rooster Teeth. It’ll be available for FIRST members for one week, and then totally free to watch thereafter.


    Before you freak out, we want to explain exactly why we are doing this. It wasn't an easy decision – we know a lot of you enjoy watching on YouTube, and it's how a lot of you even found RWBY in the first place. But if you love this show, the best way to support RWBY is to watch it on Rooster Teeth.


    YouTube has evolved as a platform, and as we grow as a company we've found that YouTube isn't the right place anymore for some of our content. We won't stop putting shows on YouTube because it's still important to us in many ways, but in the end we don’t control our own destiny when we put our shows somewhere else.  Just one example: many of our videos, even some that are five years old, are getting demonetized for reasons ranging from inappropriate language, to using "unusual capitalization." Heck, even a video we made ABOUT how to make a successful YouTube video got demonetized.


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    We've always believed that we should make the content we want to make, but by doing this, we take a hit by continuing to focus on YouTube as a platform, as it does not benefit our growth. We are unable to make money on videos for reasons beyond our control, and we want to stay true to what RWBY and our other shows should be.


    We and an amazing team of engineers have also invested a ton of time, energy, and money in our own platform to make the viewing experience as good on Rooster Teeth as anywhere else. And along with RWBY’s release this fall, we’ll also be unveiling some much-requested features on Rooster Teeth, including the following:

    • Closed-captioning support for RWBY Volume 6, and captions for other major new animation releases coming soon after

    • Chromecast support

    • Tap to rewind and fast-forward

    • And last but not least, in-app video downloading for paying members

    Pretty cool, huh? And just in case you missed it up there, watching videos onRoosterTeeth.com and our mobile apps is COMPLETELY FREE. RWBY will be available COMPLETELY FREE to watch on Rooster Teeth one week after the premium release.


    This means that a week after the premiere on October 27th, you can watch RWBY on Rooster Teeth without even signing up. And you want to know the best part? THIS is what helps support our show. Plus, there's no better place to watch RWBY than with the biggest RWBY fans in the world, right?


    We are so excited to bring you all home, and to kick off our 6th volume of RWBY in a huge way. We couldn't do this without your support, so please join us (on RoosterTeeth.com and the apps) this fall for the premiere!

  • #45: Hulked Out - Death Battle's Road to 100

    2 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 69 Hulk VS Doomsday, 70 Zoro VS Erza


    We’re nearing the end of Season 3, which means we have two of the biggest, most requested match-ups we’ve ever done; Hulk VS Doomsday, and Zoro VS Erza! Both of these episodes required  massive hulks of work, pardon the pun, and were definitely some of the toughest projects we’ve undertaken from a research standpoint. For Hulk and Doomsday, it was specifically a difficult task coming up with a solid answer to our usual question of who would win. It was simply too close to call for the longest time! But I’m getting ahead of myself.


    Even before Season 3, I was planning on doing an episode with Hulk. Hulk had always been a highly requested character among viewers, though in Death Battle’s early years, that request was a little different. In fact, one of the top requests for the longest time happened to be Hulk VS Broly, the Legendary Super Saiyan! That’s what this episode was originally planned to be.


    I knew this one was going to be a complicated affair, so I’d already begun preliminary research. Hulk and Broly were both impossibly powerful characters whose upper limits are ill defined, so I was already digging through sources to discover what abilities or techniques they each had which would potentially pull off a win. It was pretty slow going, but as my understanding of the characters grew, so did my ideas of how we could resolve such a cataclysmic battle.


    And then Doomsday appeared in the Batman v. Superman trailer.


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    Suddenly, the Hulk vs Broly suggestions vanished. It seemed everyone had changed their minds. Like some sort of hive mind, the fans had decided that Doomsday was the better opponent… for better or worse. That might sound a little presumptuous, but the polls and discussions I had with fans made it clear that the tide had turned. So it was time to scrap half a project and start working on a new one!


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    Zoro VS Erza was another episode that required a lot of pre-planning. It wasn’t exactly a complicated match-up or anything, in fact it was a lot more straightforward than I expected. No, there was only one, small, problem with Zoro Vs Erza… One Piece and Fairy Tail are really, really, REALLY long! Seriously, these are two of the longest running manga/anime series in existence, and we had to dig through thousands upon thousands of pages and scenes to get all the necessary information! This meant that in order to do this episode justice, we had to start working on Zoro VS Erza as early as possible. If I recall, I believe the team started working on research for this one five to six months in advance. That’s nearly half of year dedicated to a single episode!


    What’s more, this was Luis’ last animation of the season to lead, and I’d say it’s one of my favorite battles we’ve ever had. The incredible amount of improvement Luis had shown between his assigned Death Battles was incredible, and internally we were already trying to find a way to hire him full-time and in-house. Simply put, I really love this episode!


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. What’s another One Piece of Fairy Tail character you’d like to see in Death Battle?

  • #44: Coming Up Roses - Death Battle's Road to 100

    2 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 67 Ken VS Terry, 68 Amy VS Ramona


    Here’s a classic pairing of episodes! One which was based on an extremely high request, and another which most people never saw coming. I love this sort of thing about Death Battle… it really helps keep the show fresh!


    Ken VS Terry was yet another Street Fighter match-up, and unfortunately yet another Street Fighter loss. Suddenly, ScrewAttack was gaining a reputation of supposedly hating Street Fighter and purposefully killing the characters off. What’s hilarious about this is that anyone who paid any attention to ScrewAttack before this would tell you that the company is actually full of Street Fighter fanboys. We’ve had a Street Fighter Third Strike cabinet in the office for a decade that we’d play all the time. We still have it!


    But that’s one unfortunate side effect of a show like Death Battle. Public perception of us could do a full 180 in a snap, just because we deemed one character a better fighter than another.


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    This YouTube release had a little issue come up that’s entirely unique to this episode of the show. The copyright police showed up, this time because we used a few seconds from a King of Fighters movie. But instead of striking the video and taking it down, it was blocked in a couple specific countries. Most people had no idea there was a problem, and were pretty surprised when it was uploaded again a while later.


    Amy VS Ramona was actually bumped up from its original position in the series, switched with Hulk VS Doomsday to give Torrian some much needed extra time. (Recall yesterday’s blog!) That’s why both of these episodes were written by the team of Sam and Jessica. I knew Jessica was a big Scott Pilgrim fan, so it seemed like to perfect time to dive into a franchise which we had never explored in Death Battle up to that point.


    I love episodes which allow us to explore series that have never appeared in Death Battle at that point!


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. What’s a character you want to see in Death Battle whose franchise has yet to have any representative at all?

  • September - Feelin It

    2 months ago

    geoff

    These are songs so full of passion or love or pain, you can physically feel the emotion when sung.



    September - Feelin It


    Also, it's the first playlist I've created with the intent of it playing on repeat. Each song hopefully flows into the next both musically and narratively, with the idea that the last song flows right back into the first again, creating a perfect loop. Or not, whatever.

  • RT Community Stream for Extra Life! Nov 3-4, Submit Now!

    2 months ago

    Chelsea RT Community Manager

    Hey y'all!


    We’re back! For a third year in a row, Rooster Teeth will be hosting the RT Community Stream. We’re already gearing up with plans and shenanigans and ways that we can do mental (and some physical) harm to our co-workers in the name of, "For the Kids."


    The RT Community Stream will be happening on November 3 to November 4, 8 a.m. to 8 a.m. CST - a full 25 hours of bouncing around every hour to community groups all over the world. And yes, that's 25 hours, so 25 groups because Daylight Savings Time is happening again.

    We’ve done this the last two years, but some of you may be asking, WHAT IS THE EXTRA LIFE RT COMMUNITY STREAM? Let me tell you.


    The RT Community Stream is a 25-hour livestream where we, Rooster Teeth, will host a specific Community Group or Individual in hour long blocks. Jack, Caiti, myself and maybe some other randos will be hosting the stream at the top of every hour; covering Extra Life details, showing off the exclusive merchandise, and telling you about the new group we’re about to throw it to. The RT Community Stream is schedule on the same day as Extra Life’s massive GAME DAY. Where Extra Life unites thousands of gamers around the world to play games in support of their local Children's Miracle Network Hospital. Game Day is the day of play (the whole 25 hours of it) where gamers around the world marathon their favorite table top, PC and consoles games to raise money for sick and injured kids. It’s just like a walk-a-thon, only you’re participating alongside gamers who, just like you, are playing or streaming #forthekids!


    In the past we’ve been able to pull in groups located all over the US, Canada, the United Kingdom and more. There have been skits, gameplay, truly horrific stretch goals, and artistic streams - anything is game when it comes to raising money For the Kids.


    So, here’s the deal: we're looking for some amazing RT Community Extra Life teams that are looking to participate in our official RT Community Stream.


    If you're interested, please fill out the following form! Make sure to get with your fellow group members so there's no duplicates between y'all.


    SUPER COOL AWESOME FORM


    For those of you who participated last year, you'll have to fill out the form again. You have until September 28, 2018 to submit. 


    Now here's the cool part. By joining our Rooster Teeth Super Team on Extra Life, every dollar that you, or people in your sub team donate goes towards the total that Rooster Teeth is attempting to raise. Here is our team!


    If you have issues with the Rooster Teeth Super Team, or you want to create a sub-team to include in the Rooster Teeth Super Team, drop the support guys at Extra Life an email at support@extra-life.org and they'll hook you up.


    So, to sum up Extra Life and the streams...


    November 3 is the 25-hour RT Community Stream

    November 10 is the INSANE 24-hour Rooster Teeth Extra Life Stream.


    If y'all have questions, drop 'em below. @jack and I will do our best to answer!


    <3


    P.S. - A lot of people were asking about tech minimums and recommendations for streaming. HERE'S THAT INFO FOR YOU.

  • RT Community Stream 2018- Tech Updates

    2 months ago

    Chelsea RT Community Manager
    • Preferred 
      • Encoder: Xsplit/OBS/VMix - Keyframe interval set at 2
      • Resolution: 1080p 30/60 fps
      • Bitrate: 5000-8000 Kbps
      • Streaming Destination: Twitch / YouTube (Ads Disabled on both)
      • Sponsors: No sponsors during our time frame
      • Graphics/alerts: Turn off personal alerts during our time - We will have a bar at the bottom to display donations and total amount (Our graphics are still being worked out - details will come soon) We will aim to include their name and channel during their time for people to find. 
      • Upload Speeds: at least 10/Mbps
      • Equipment: A game feed and caster's audio. Group Audio should match output of Caster's and game audio should be lower (Unless game calls for certain game cues) - Webcam is Required- Audio/Video Sync needs to be checked.


    • Minimum
      • Encoder:: OBS - Audio/Video Sync 
      • Resolution: 720p 30fps
      • Bitrate: 2500 kbps
      • Streaming Destination: Twitch/Youtube
      • Sponsors: No Sponsors during our time
      • Graphic/Alerts: Turn off personal alerts unless they are Extra Life related - Our graphics will still cover certain areas of the screen. If they want to keep their name graphic on stream we can make this work. 
      • Upload Speeds: 5Mbps
      • Equipment: A game feed and caster's audio. Group Audio should match output of Caster's and game audio should be lower (Unless game calls for certain game cues) - Webcam is Required- Audio/Video Sync needs to be checked.
  • #43: Run, Scout, Run! - Death Battle's Road to 100

    2 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 65 Cammy VS Sonya, 66 Tracer VS Scout


    Sooooo funny thing about how the jobs changed around with Season 3. Because I was no longer in the trenches doing research for characters, I have a lot less memories about the little choices for each episode as opposed to the bigger picture. What’s funny about this is now I look back at some Death Battle episodes and as I’m watching them I’ll be blindsided by things I totally forgot were in the episode.


    Like Sonya’s “It’s kombat time!” Oh my god, that was hilarious.


    What’s really special about this episode is who animated the fight. Before he joined the ScrewAttack staff, Luis aka Jetz had been an avid member of the ScrewAttack g1 community for a long time, and was well known for his animations. However, most of his animations were humorous and skit-based in nature, not fight scenes. Still, we were curious how he’d do with one, so we asked him to make a DBX!


    And then he made Ronald McDonald VS Colonel Sanders.


    McDonald VS Sanders was so good, I wanted to give Luis a chance at a Death Battle. His flair for comedic effect and absurdism was actually something I felt Death Battle had moved too far away from. Given how utterly ridiculous the very concept of Death Battle truly is, this sort of tone seemed apt for the fights.


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    Long story short and full of spoilers, Luis is now a full-time member of ScrewAttack and our very own Lead Animator.(Psst, you should follow him on Twitter.)


    When Tracer VS Scout came out, the audience reactions seemed pretty positive about almost everything except one thing. One thing which was apparently a much bigger deal than I anticipated. The Scout didn’t run enough. Yeah, I’m not kidding, but it’s also understandable. One of the many, many reasons why Death Battle is an incredibly difficult project is that both characters in the arena need to be properly represented to a certain tee every time. Believe it or not, by not having Scout run around the whole fight, he was seen as misrepresented.


    There actually was a reason for this. You may have noticed that this is the only Death Battle season where, at least for the first half of it, there’s a 3D fight every other episode. Now that Death Battles were regularly coming out every 3 weeks, this meant a new 3D animation only had at max 6 weeks to be finished. This was a terrible strategy, and totally overworked Torrian. It became a running joke that Torrian just wouldn’t go home, but it really wasn’t much of a joke to me. It was having an effect on his health, and I was distinctly reminded of how my first year working on Death Battle negatively affected me.


    After Meta VS Carolina, I knew our schedule would have to change, and worked to accommodate Torrian into a better production timeline. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to change Tracer VS Scout’s placement in our schedule. Too much work had already been done with the express purpose of it airing after Cammy VS Sonya, so we had to get another 3D fight done in 6 weeks. Therefore, we purposefully simplified the fight to give Torrian a bit of a break, at least in comparison to his earlier projects that year. After this, 3D fights would occur every three episodes, increasing the time available for production.


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    The majority of our battle animations are structured in a way which allow for setpiece changes to help change the flow of battle. The most recent episode is a perfect example of that. Halfway through the battle between Optimus Prime and Gundam, the battle moves from outer space to the Earth’s surface. This sort of structuring allows the ability to change up the dynamics of the fight, altering stakes and expectations. However, creating multiple setpieces and adjusting the character models for each takes a lot of time, so narrowing the fight down to a single small set would help quicken the process quite a bit.


    This is why the fight takes place in a pretty small area that doesn’t give Scout a lot of room to run around in. Tracer doesn’t actually do a lot of running, either. She’s mostly just blinking around Scout throughout the animation, because the location simply wasn’t big enough for a decent chase to happen. I didn't think it was that big of a deal. I still don't, honestly, but I understand the complaints. It’s unfortunate that this, of all match-ups, was the one that had to be changed like so… but I’d rather focus on my fellow crew members’ health and well-being than whether or not the Scout gets to sprint somewhere. The fact is, animation takes a lot of time and effort. 


    (Though on the brighter side, I think our cast of Elsie Lovelock as Tracer and Octopimp as Scout was pretty darn perfect!)


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    And before I end this, I’ve seen a lot of people complain about this season because it has less episodes than Season One or Season Two, and I have to comment on that to set the record straight. Season Three was the first time we entered an annual season production cycle, and for good reason. Season one had 25 episodes across 2 years, an average of 12 per year. Season two had 32 episodes across 3 years, an average of 11 per year. Season three had 14 episodes in 1 year. It’s pretty simple math, right? With Season Three’s production methods, we could bust out more episodes in a single year, created a reliable consistency through the series release schedule, and improved upon that even more with 16 episodes in the next year’s season. That’s one of the reasons why I feel Season 3 was one of the best.


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. Is there another Overwatch character you'd like to see in a Death Battle?

  • Londooooooooooon!

    2 months ago

    kriss Community Manager

    I WILL BE ON A PLANE SOON THAT WILL TAKE ME OUT OF THE COUNTRY. FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER. 


    I am a nervous wreck right now, but I am really excited for the opportunity to not only see another country with my own eyes, but able to attend RTX London and give my personal thanks and love to Guardians and attendees throughout the weekend. I've only ever known the inner and outer workings of RTX Austin, so this will be a fantastic experience for me. I might even be tempted to throw on a Guardian shirt to help out =P 


    I'll be flying in with @Chelsea (thank GAWD) and I couldn't be more grateful. I don't travel very well, mostly because of my anxious nerves and I have zero directional skills. I am not even kidding. You can give me all the maps and landmarks known to man, and I will still get lost. Thankfully, the RTUK community will also be adopting me and I cannot wait to give them all the hugs. 


    Aside from RTX London proper, there are a TON of community events happening. I'll be attending as many as I can, and I hope you do too! 


    We should be taking off in about 7 hours or so. WHOOOOOOO! \o/  airplane


    Sound off in the comments if I get to see you this week! 

  • Movie Club: Stardust

    2 months ago

    Ashley The Know

    This week on Club Club we're watching Stardust! It's a 2007 movie based on the book by Neil Gaiman and we can't wait to talk about it. If you want to watch before this weekend, it's currently streaming on Netflix (in the US, at least... not sure about other regions. Sorry!), but it's also available to rent on YouTube/Google Play, Amazon, and iTunes.


    We want to include your thoughts in the show!


    You can suggest a "Movie Club" style question about the themes of the movie we should discuss.


    You can also leave us a comment about something in the movie that surprised you, a moment you particularly enjoyed, etc. and we'll shout out some of your thoughts in the episode. OR you can tweet us your thoughts using the hashtag #ClubClub.


    I CAN'T WAIT TO DISCUSS THIS MOVIE WITH EVERYONE!


    NEXT

    Book Club - The Lies of Locke Lamora

    Tabletop Club - Mansions of Madness

    Game Club - Little Nightmares


  • #42: Red Vs Blue - Death Battle's Road to 100

    2 months ago

    BenBSinger Ben B. Singer

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    Episode- 64 Meta VS Carolina


    When visiting conventions and hosting panels, Chad and I often get the question “What’s your favorite Death Battle you’ve worked on?” I often find myself not really able to pinpoint a single episode as my unchanging favorite, as a few always come to mind with entirely different reasons. This is one of them, and will always be, simply because of what it personally means to me.


    Meta VS Carolina isn’t just a Death Battle episode. It’s actually a Red Vs Blue episode first and foremost. The 14th season of this long running web series was an anthology show, with multiple episodes being written and created by creators outside of the normal RvB and Rooster Teeth staff. We were asked to create a crossover episode that would be a part of Red Vs Blue’s 14th season and Death Battle Season 3!


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    I’m sure plenty of people were a little mystified when this episode was announced. The last time Death Battle had pit two characters from the same franchise against each other Goomba VS Koopa, of all things. It just wasn’t something Death Battle was known to do, making this one a bit of an oddity. But from my end, this became one of the most important projects of the year. Red Vs Blue has had a massive influence on online entertainment, and on myself. It was a series I had been following since its second season over a decade before this. In fact, the day Craig had come to my high school video class looking for interns was the same day we were supposed to show some projects we had been working on, and mine included a long section of Halo machinima in the same vein as Red Vs Blue. This helped me get the very first paid employed position at ScrewAttack.


    And frankly, getting to work directly with the RvB team on what is essentially an official RvB episode which I got writing and directing credit on meant a lot to me.


    For me, the most fascinating part of this production had nothing to do with the analysis. It was the script. Specifically, writing for characters that aren’t Wiz or Boomstick. The years working on Death Battle had given me plenty of experience with writing characters that aren’t of my own creation, but there are a lot of restrictions there. I prefer to refrain from including very much dialogue or story structure in Death Battle because it’s not supposed to be fan-fiction. The interactions the combatant characters have in our animations are fairly limited and generally inspired by actions they’ve taken in their own stories. Even though including a narrative would be much more fun to write, it doesn’t feel right to structure an episode around a combatant character’s personality as opposed to their fighting ability alone. (Deadpool excluded, because that’s kinda Deadpool’s thing.)


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    But this was an entirely different case. We weren’t just making a Death Battle. It had to be a Red Vs Blue episode as well. So there I was, writing a script with Caboose, Grif, and Simmons arguing about who would win in a fight between Carolina and the Meta. Characters I had been watching for years, even before joining this industry. That was really special, and I’d be thrilled to do it again.


    There was also the matter of a little in-joke Chad and I had been tossing around for awhile. Chad based his Boomstick voice off the voice of Sarge, and we’ve previously laughed at the idea that maybe Sarge was Boomstick’s long-lost father he would mention every so often in Death Battle character rundowns. It was just a little inside joke we’d chuckle about every so often… but I just couldn’t help myself when writing this episode.


    Hope you all are enjoying this trip down memory lane! I won't be able to write an entry for tomorrow, but on Wednesday I'll be covering Cammy VS Sonya and Tracer VS Scout! Now that we’ve announced the match-up for Death Battle 99, I’m getting goosebumps just thinking about how close we are to wrapping up this epic journey down the Road to 100.


    -Ben B. Singer


    P.S. Are there two characters from the same franchise who you’d be interested to see in a Death Battle together?