Flash artists, I need your help!

2008-05-28 03:49:41 by Rina-chan

Lately, some of my Newgrounds buddies and I have noticed an interesting and slightly disturbing trend within the Flash community: a fierce division between two types of artists and their fans.

On one hand, we have Flash artists who produce random, often quickly animated shorts that are a parody of a videogame or movie. Such videos often end up becoming viral, getting hordes of 5s, portal awards, and plenty of fans for the artists, who may or may not have expected their projects to be so well received. Some may write specifically to target the Newgrounds audience while others just make whatever they find funny.

On the other hand, we have artists who spend several months to a year (or more) working on a project, often original, and find that while it may be featured on the front page for as long as the first type of submissions, their work tends to get overlooked. As a result, they may become resentful of artists who churn something out in less than a month and get portal awards and/or lots more views. They believe that the Newgrounds system should award quality and originality and that the average viewer is too focused on whatever is familiar or makes them laugh. However, they may have a hard time marketing their work to another crowd (such as YouTube, where because there are so many videos, it can be much harder to get one's work recognized).

Lately, a sort of rivalry has sprung between the two sides, with fans of each type of artist attacking each other through forums, review spaces, blogs, and even other Flash movies.

Newgrounds community, I want YOUR take on this for a special episode of the podcast. From both "sides" or those who believe that there are no sides at all. From a variety of artists, both well known and not as well known. It is important to note that I am going to do my absolute best to make this podcast episode a non-biased, documentary-style look at this phenomenon, which is why I want input from a variety of artists.

So if you consider yourself to be currently active in the Newgrounds community (preferrably as an animator, but exceptions will be made for community members who contribute in other ways), I want to hear your take on this. You must send in an audio file (mp3 preferred) as this is an audio podcast. Do NOT post your responses/opinions here; they will not be included. Please use the following questions as a guide for your response:

+ Start off with your name and/or NG username along with a VERY BRIEF summary of your involvement in the community (example: name of a couple of your most recognized movies). This is just a short introduction so everyone listening will know who you are.

+ When viewing submissions by other artists, how essential is the quality of the art/animation to your enjoyment of the flash? How about the humor? Do you think that in general, a flash needs to be funny in order to gain a large following?

+ Do you think that, in general, the voting system is a fair assessment of the quality of a Flash? (For instance, if a flash is based off a game or movie, the people who automatically vote zero tend to even out the amount of fans who will five it?)

+ What are the factors that influence the popularity of a Flash artist? Is it important to you that your work and/or you as an artist are well received in the Flash community? Why or why not?

+ Do you find you receive a large amount of criticism from a certain type of viewers in general? What is the biggest criticism they tend to give you?

+ What is your take on the rivalry mentioned above? Discuss your opinions and the reasons behind them. Please feel free to draw on your own experiences to support your views.

+ How involved are you in the critiquing aspect of the community? For instance, are you involved in Flash-related forums where discussion or debate on this subject tends to occur? Have you ever been involved in a "flame war" over your work or that of another artist you appreciate?

+ What do you think is the best solution to the current problem? Or do you think Newgrounds should stay the way it is and become "survival of the fittest"?

RULES. Read before you send!
+ You may reference specific Flash artists for examples but no abusive talk or insults aimed at specific Flash artists will be allowed. For example, you may say "I personally don't enjoy RandomNewgrounder's work because it seems to lack effort yet gets plenty of awards" but NOT something like "RandomNewgrounder is an unoriginal faggot". If the main point of your submission seems to be to take jabs at other artists (regardless of which "side" they seem to be on), your submission will probably not be used.
+ NO trolling/joke entries... it's simply a waste of both your time and mine.
+ In general, the time limit is pretty open...I will cut and paste quite a bit to fit the format of this edition of the show. But as a general rule, keep it under ten minutes total.
+ Please record in mp3 format in as clear, high quality audio as possible. If you absolutely cannot do mp3, I will accept wavs.

Email your file(s) to midori.ninja@gmail.com no later than Sunday, June 8.


You must be logged in to comment on this post.


2008-05-28 04:16:08

Newgrounds really is getting enough traffic for a new view on artist's work.
The first step to solving this problem would be to have a heavier moderation, of course.
However, I believe a lot of the rivalry can be shoved off to the side by a new type of moderation: Moderator's Categorization
Flashes could be categorized by meek moderators, where the flash would be rated normally by the Latest Submissions list, but later rated amongst it's own genre. This would keep the serious animations flowing in the system, while the others could go "unclassified" and be rated amongst each-other.

Rina-chan responds:

Please feel free to submit an audio file of your opinions if you would like them included on the show~


2008-05-28 04:24:55



2008-05-28 05:05:07

i think i will send something, i am not an artist, but i am pretty much active on the newgrounds community and have seen many of these so called 'awsome' styled flash movies, as well as original good looking flash.


2008-05-28 07:01:58

I might do something but probably not because most people on NG probably hate me.

Rina-chan responds:

Controversy makes it all the more interesting!


2008-05-28 12:53:46

Uhh, I might do something!


2008-05-28 14:20:28

These problems have always existed, mainly back in the days of foamy and illwillpress, but then it got to a point where the "I hate overrated artists" movies were becoming more overrated than the people they flamed, thus destroying the entire purpose.

Because NGs is an open community, whatever appeals to the mass viewer will always win, a while ago groups such as the NG army, Lock Legion and Star Syndicate used their massive voting powers to balance this flaw. But there is no real way to fix it. Overrated crappy VG reference movies will always be overrated, and not that theres anything bad with them, I find some are pretty funny. Its just the way it is with NGs being an open community, and taking that away would ruin the site.

The solution?

Join a club and get everyone to mass 5 your movies if you want them to win awards.


2008-05-28 18:58:25

Psssshhh whatever, no one cares about the game artists D:


2008-05-28 19:30:40

Oh man, this episode is gonna be awesome, I cant wait. I'd totally do something if I actually had some real flashes on Newgrounds, and wasn't so busy at the moment. Oh well, this is sure to be a good episode, I love this podcast. When is the episode going to be up? Also, while i'm here, why isn't the podcast on iTunes? I'd really like to be able to subscribe to it so it's with all my other podcasts.

Rina-chan responds:

Check the post before this; it explains how to subscribe on iTunes ^^


2008-05-28 19:33:52

I always thought that Newgrounds needed some kind of documentary but I didn't think I had what it takes so I always hoped for someone to make one. First interviews and now this? Thumbs up.

About the post, I would send something, but, as you probably noticed from my name, I'm not known so what's the point.

Looking forward to this.


2008-05-28 21:40:59

brilliant idea


2008-05-29 02:24:47

TheSwain has definetely fell victim to this. I feel the same way you do, but however. I'm not currently in possession of a microphone so I cannot submit. So as a strong supporter of this i'll "jot" down my thoughts. Somehow I feel this will never shine light in this discussion.

To be honest, whenever I get the nightly Newgrounds email I quickly skim through the top 5 and see if the title will catch my attention. (TOM IF YOU EVER READ THIS) I suggest you put the small 56x56 picture teaser of the movies into the email as you do on the front page. I'm being straight up with you here, I never come here to watch a movie called "Mastermind 3" since I dont have a clue what it is. (I've watched the first 2 beforehand but that was just as an example). However, if there's a cartoon called "Nin10Doh", I'm strung right into it since it's related to video games. Now the title gave it away didn't it? If there was a preview picture in the nightly emails you send a lot of people will be driven into other flash movies. All i'm saying to you is to sort of...step it up on the advertising.

Now, Rina. I was shocked that Brawl Taunts was even put on the front page. But yeah, it was submitted by Chris. Now I don't know if you agree with me on this point but that was made within 3 days of work. Yeah, it was incredibly funny. (Oh shit, i'm being hypocritical here) but the animation closed the case on the fast paced work you guys put into it.

Even though this probably wont matter to you since this isn't an .mp3 but bear with me here. These words may be valuable.


2008-05-29 12:21:30

I Would like to add my two cents but I'm more or less just a viewer not really doing anything to help out newgrounds. BUt hell why not said what I think... maybe someone read it.

When it comes to this little "pissing match" as I call it there will always be people bitching about some one get awards when there is almost no work placed in to the flash. NO matter what happens to will happen here or in the real world. Human just can't accept that other maybe better then their are and the most often want to wine about to call it garbage or trash or it looks like a two year old drew it. By better I mean in drawing style or comdey style. Hell I come to this site to see something funny. But there are a few flashes I had seen that I loved due to the art style. Valhalla Knights was done well and was purely made by the user Jerry ,more commonly known was Granfaloon. The art was breath taking and it left me wanting more of that great art. The you have the well know Metal Gear Awesome 1 and 2 done by none other then Egoraptor. I watch the flash and base them off what I think of the flash... then vote. I never let what the flash is based off because most things I like have crap for flashes. If only if other did this then this pissing match would never had happened.

Sorry but I had to get that out there to see if any one reads and starts to think different. Odd are they will not but hey.... can't hurt can it?


2008-05-29 14:05:31

This issue isn't something you 'noticed' lately. It's been a quite strong issue for a very long time. It just so happens you experienced the negative backlash of it when you released Brawl Taunts and are feeling butthurt. Now your fanning it's flame and making it an even bigger issue. Make what you want to make, and accept that people have freedom of speech on this site and they can critise it however they like within reasonable extremes. I'm sure critics come off alot stronger amid so many reviews of 'LOL funny but Sonic is cool ohwell 10!'.

Rina-chan responds:

Please don't accuse me of things like that.
What sparked this idea has actually nothing to do with anything I'm involved in, it was inspired by a certain issue that arose over at another forum regarding things on Newgrounds.
Believe it or not, this project is not going to take any "sides", it's just going to show what's going on.
I don't know why you feel this need to constantly flame me but I'm getting rather tired of it.


2008-05-29 14:31:58

i agree

(some generic metal gear awesome quote)


2008-05-29 14:59:37

I find this whole situation, for lack of a better use of words, a load of bollocks. Newgrounds is a conjoined community, where everyone is free to upload their works and if they get blammed, it's not an excuse to be negative, it just means that you'll have to work harder on that project. Keep at it until it gets accepted. I can't seem to think why our community can be serperated over something as stupid as this.

I may not have any submissions, but I would really like to take part in this. Would that be possible?

Rina-chan responds:

Sure, send something in.


2008-05-29 15:16:48

I know I would be fucking pissed if I worked on something for a year, and it has only a small number of views compared to something that was done in two days with a higher score and a million views.


2008-05-30 04:47:32

why do people even care anymore? its never going to change. you can hope and hope and hope. but it will never change. nothing ever changes around here.


2008-05-30 05:11:03

You get a lot of shitty comments

I guess this isn't helping matters at all really


2008-05-30 07:11:14

Who cares...? You're trying to change what people like and find interesting. Let me take the absurdity of what you said and let me magnify it so the flaw in what you're trying to do is more easily seen.

Let's say you think Sex shouldn't sell as well as it does. People shouldn't buy products on it because it has a cute scantily clad woman on the box cover. You want to try to change the way people think so Sex no longer sells. The intent is identical with using a different bigger more blatant example but the intent is the exact same. It's c-r-a-z-y. The world isn't fair with people liking Metal Gear spoofs that become viral over people that take massive amount of time to create an all original frame by frame 1 year animation. People will always have that tendancy...

I'll admit to only reading about 50 or 60% of your blog before posting this because it's 4:11 AM and I need some sleep but yeah...

Rina-chan responds:

I'm not taking a side here. I'm asking people to send in their opinions.

Heck, I just helped make a video game parody that got absurdly popular XD


2008-05-30 08:59:21

hehehe this should end up interesting can't wait to see how it comes out


2008-05-30 15:40:23

nobody wins in this city ;_;


2008-05-30 18:15:00

this is a great idea, i would like to send in some thoughts but i'm too shy...damn


2008-05-30 22:44:20

you are amazing...
your page is amazing...
http://behindtheflash.blogspot.com/ is amazing


2008-06-01 00:19:12

okay i'll agree to all that


2008-06-01 00:50:16

I'll think about it. Sounds really cool. No freaking way! You like FLCL(pronounced fooly cooly) too? wow, I thought I was one in a billion!

Rina-chan responds:

Yes, it's my all-time favorite anime :)


2008-06-01 01:27:15

I work a lot on my flashes, and I'm fairly satisfied with the amount of attention I get from them (I'm not out there to produce some sort of fan base)

Of course, the issue of "Popular demand" vs "Fine taste" is going to be everpresent in any community setting. I personally support the better animated/more meticulously drawn animations above the fanservice.



2008-06-01 01:56:08

I think I may just do this. My mic isn't that great, but I'll be able to get it to you in MP3 form for sure.


2008-06-01 03:19:25

Hoho ill totally listen to this podcast episode when it comes out, so much controversy.


2008-06-01 03:42:27

I'll be sending an MP3 your way.


2008-06-01 04:16:35

so ur assigning people a task??? now thats interesting


2008-06-01 05:06:15

Haha, this all started because of
<a href="http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view /411982">Awesome Grounds</a> and <a href="http://rtil.newgrounds.com/news/post/
">rtil's post</a>. It's got way out of hand.

I'm not on either side of the arguement, though I do prefere well done flashes. Alot of video game parodies have really weak humour, and just make obvious observations on the game. I think the Sonic Shorts volumes are a main culprit. They make crude observations of the game, with alot of them having shite animation/graphics. It was exactly what <a href="http://biffthetimid.newgrounds.com/">Simone</a> was talking about with his flash <a href="http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view /411068">How 2 Succeed on NG</a>. The ironic thing is, how to Succeed on NG, a flash he took a few days to make, did better than a flash he put lots of effort into, <a href="http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view /429572">Outlaw pt.1</a>. He also made a <a href="http://biffthetimid.newgrounds.com/ne ws/post/105937">news post</a> about it.

It is kind of sad that flashes that have obviously had alot of care put get thousans of reviews and top stops in the top #50 list. It's a sad state of affairs, put I think this has gone way too far, and people need to stop taking this matter so seriously!


2008-06-01 06:31:39

Actually I do apologise. ;) It's no excuse, but I was definetly in a bad mood on that post, although I am still not a fan of Brawl taunts. Part of my point stands about how people can critsice freely, but I aimmed it at you a little, which was wrong and out of line, I think I was a little peeved the way critics were decribed in the post as resentful. But still, I am a fan of behind the flash and like much of your voice acting, I was being an asshole really, so sorry.

Rina-chan responds:

Oh, I don't mind if you're not a fan of Brawl Taunts, I myself agree that it gets higher scores than it should, but that's up to the people doing the voting. (Again, the incident that got me thinking about this had nothing to do with Brawl Taunts).

Thank you for taking the time to apologize; I sincerely do appreciate it.


2008-06-01 09:42:43

People come to Newgrounds either to troll or watch Flashes...99% of the users are under 15 and all of them probably give their real age as a few years older. No big deal, I was doing that all the time when I was 12. At the same time, most the people who do that have a shitty sense of humor and don't get bothered by crap animation.

I like MGA2, I like Brawl Taunts (and the sequel). However, I don't like it THAT much. It's like watching a movie with great punchlines but a shitty camera. Low quality. It's funny, but I'd rate RTil, Super Flash Bros (especially with the Decline series), Jazza and such way above that. Decline didn't have much FBF in it, but it looked professional and was funny. That's all I look for. I know that in Egoraptor movies he doesn't aim for animation quality but rather jokes, and I don't hate him for it, but I do dislike the credit that OTHER people grant him.

Some Flashes which fall off the top 50 are way better than the other shit that's on there -- that lame ass Flash, "The Pen is Mightier..." or something, who the hell enjoys that? It's something that was voted high on because it's "art" but really it's a fucking bullet flying. Fuck that. That just pisses me off, because that tricks all the 12 year olds into thinking that it's good and they feel super smart because it's "art".

I made a fucking Flash about squirrels, and I know exactly how much respect it deserves, and it got the right amount of attention, and if I won an award for something as shit as that I'd feel like a cheat. But I don't think that it is any worse than MGA or something, I really don't. I could've drawn the things crapily, but what I did is just as suitable. But still, MGA was funny and it gets points for that, but humor isn't the only thing to look for. That's how I see it.


2008-06-01 18:54:43

I just think people aren't voting fairly nowadays. The Top 50 used to be a list of the genuinely best submissions on newgrounds, nowadays its changing all the time due to people voting stupidly high for movies that IMO don't really deserve it.

Anyone who makes original stuff but whines about it not being popular are also sort of missing the point. If they wanted popularity they may as well make Random Internet Meme Stealing Video Game Sprite Flash 950765790579067. For those people who just keep at their original stuff instead of crying like babies, I salute you.

After all, once a series gets established then these days you're guaranteed popularity and high votes - look at The Swain, who was virtually unknown 3 years ago but thanks to a combination of sticking to his guns (Blockhead) and trying new things (Mastermind), he's become one of the most popular 'original flash' artists on the site. Same goes for James Farr (Xombie), Adam Philips, Rtil, Yotam (nameless), etc etc


2008-06-01 22:45:29

the joke on more brawl taunts at the end about youtube i noticed that a lot of
ppl were posting brawl taunts without crediting u guys u know u can have those videos pulled off of youtube right?


2008-06-02 00:35:38

Do you want us to send you just the answers to the questions?

Rina-chan responds:

Yes please.


2008-06-02 01:13:00

The attention span of the internet is about the equivalent of a braindead monkey with a wrench trying to fix a leaky faucet.

That's why movies with a lot of effort put into it is overlooked.

In fact, the same goes for anything nowadays.


2008-06-02 01:25:16

Glad to someone sane out there, I made Flash for years now, and I didn't get much reconizion around in these parts, until I released PF RPG (which made front page) and while my skills as improved, and one flash I'm actually am Embrassed to have public, I do personally wish people would look at my work, not as the name, but a attempt to make a story, after almost a year on one project, I did get 4th place, but I didn't get much views and reviews as a result.

I'll might record a MP3, because I do want to express my point of view from the issue


2008-06-02 10:52:40

Well Done On More Brawl Taunts!
What About a RANDOM member/non-submitting Memeber thats popular who can still give a GOOD Interview?
Just A Suggestion



2008-06-02 13:36:57

So it`s a shorts collab?


2008-06-02 14:01:00

nice user name, weeaboo. no seriously, I like Inuyasha, but the internet ruined it.

Rina-chan responds:



2008-06-02 14:39:23

Hi, i´m the black knight nice to meet you kagome, i like your flash, good luck for the next, bye


2008-06-02 16:56:23

I try 2 mayk PARODY COLLAB but thet locked it!!

http://www.newgrounds.com/bbs/topic/9 15756

It is 1 rule for them and another for us!!!
We must fight back!!

Rina-chan responds:



2008-06-03 16:08:40

I do not want to send in an audio file and apparently not a flash animator. Here a short (as if) opinion of mines...

Let's face it. Newgrounds was created by a normal guy, and flashes that show flaws of people, movies, games and television show truly makes people laugh. And sometimes if something serious, freaky, creepy, sentimental and or emotional comes to Newgrounds, there's a chance that it will be recognized or not.

The voting system is clearly unfair for some reasons and fair for some. Some people can simply vote zero or five for no reasons just for the sake of voting or experience points. And the fairness in it is that it's the viewers opinion and we cannot control the decision in any way.

And about the quality of the flash. It doesn't really matter (much) to me, The quality can go for aroun the scale of 2-10... Because we look at flow of the flash, the design, the everything. All that is important is that he doesn't draw weird drawings. Humor is not really much needed, though it is seen in most flashes because flashes can get a viewer by the storyline, the music, the etc. or whatever else i missed... We really know that laughter is a good emotion for big scores but its not all that... It is more, its not what the flash is, its not who made it, the important thing is that you made it for the viewer with all your heart and determination to be great.

Though all that heart and determination may be useless...

What really matters, is the viewer..

Thanks for reading...



2008-06-04 07:00:42

I'll send you something.


2008-06-04 13:00:40

so can we send multiple files to go with each of the questions?


2008-06-06 19:35:32

I apologize for that last comment. meh. Inuyasha was decent, your a good voice actor, but I regret confusing you with Suzy....Egoraptor's wife?


2008-06-14 11:03:20

god i love these things you've done. So inspiring. I would love to do one...but so far the only popular thing I've made is Music Bot :S...so not good enough...though plz do keep em coming


2008-07-02 09:01:42

I know this is an old thing et cetera et cetera, BUT:
If somebody's reading this anymore - I just want to comment on this subject quickly, as it's been on my mind heavily for a long time. I believe one big reason is the "professional productions" are so professional people don't think of them as special. "It's natural for a talented group or individual to make quality stuff". When you have guys like EgoRaptor, they get attention of the normal viewer more because they are so down to earth and not trying to be anything more than just plain funny. "I did this just because I thought it was a funny idea."