Poll Question 199 – For mod media, do you prefer screenshots or videos?

20th November 2010

For mod media, do you prefer screenshots or videos?

This type of question can be hard to answer because it depends on so many things: the type of mod, the video editing ability, the attention to detail of the screenshots etc etc.

Try to imagine that both the screenshots and videos are both perfectly created.

Personally, I prefer screenshots because if they are done properly then they can show a lot about the quality without giving too much away.

There’s no doubt that a great video can get me excited about a mod, but I see videos as perfect ways for introducing features and other things that can’t be shown easily in screenshots. Portal 2 is a good example. However, image how much more discussion there could have been if they only released screenshots for the first month. People would have been swapping ideas about the different possibilities. By releasing the videos they showed exactly what the new features were. Of course, Valve know what they are doing and this poll is about MODs not games, but it’s one way of looking at things.

Of course, you could then argue that a mod needs both and that could be true but if I had to only have one, it would be screenshots.

Here’s one way of looking at it. If you see a media update and there are thumbnails to HD screenshots and links to videos, which do you view first?

The Poll


  1. Heh, I’d view the screenshots first, cause they’re quicker/easier, but I simply prefer videos. It’s much easier to dress up a screenshot than it is to dress up a video. I’m not worried about seeing too much because the developer knows exactly how much he wants to show off. For mods, a lot (most?) videos are taken from dev textured boxes anyway, or simple testing maps anyway.

  2. Bramblepath

    Initial screenshots are great. Later in development, though, a trailer is much better for showing the finished product. Screenshots also allow the devs to show what they want to without ruining the fact that the game probably has little to no atmosphere currently.

  3. My initial thought was for screenshots but then I remembered Leon’s videos of Final Project Diary which were very good.
    In turn, I then recalled others.
    A well produced video of action beats screenshots.
    But screenshots are better than bad videos and are good for non-action scenes.
    Unfortunately, well produced videos are in the minority.

  4. i like both. though I don’t care for out of game rendered weapon pics.an AK47 is an AK47 no matter what 3d modeling package you use to render it in.

  5. I voted for both…

    I always click screenshots, as they heighten the appetit for the to be seen video… 🙂

    but everything needs to be HD…

    1. Whoops, you should have only been able to vote for one – fixed now.

  6. OGH

    I prefer screenshots. Videos can spoil the gameplay.

  7. I also prefer screenshots. It leaves much more to be surprised about when the actual finished product is released.

  8. Screenshots first. If it looks good or if I’m undecided then videos.

  9. I vote for the screens as so many videos ( in-game or promo ) have a quality that’s just awful to try to watch.

  10. Jgoodroad

    a little of column A and a little of Column B… If the video is done right it should not reveal much, if anything that spoils the game… I personally like Dev blogs, they show the making of but not the final version.

  11. If both were perfectly produced, I would go for the video. It would show me what the mod is about and how it plays but doesn’t give me quite enough to be satisfied.

    If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video would be worth 25000 words/second.

  12. Armageddon

    Is it to much to ask for both?

  13. I voted for videos, but to be honest, both would have been a better answer.
    A video of the game in action tells you a lot of information and lets you know that at least some of the game is ready! Hint, hint Black Mesa team!

    Still pics are great for showing the maps and scenery off.

  14. JohnnyMaverik

    Videos because too many times I have been taken in by beautiful looking screens, only to then sit down and play the mod after a couple of months of feeling exited only to realise that graphically, it’s still just Source, and those screens were filtered, tweaked and given a general make over.

  15. Wintersmith

    I would like to reference monty oum, if I may. instead of releasing trailers for his videos, he releases single frames. the amount of enjoyment and conversation spawned by a well chosen single image is, in my opinion, much more effective.

  16. Anon_233502

    Screenshots for me, thanks.

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