If you’ve ever been involved with an Esports team or player, there’s a high likelihood that you’ve heard the term “VOD review” thrown around. But, what is a VOD review exactly? And why are they so important? This article breaks down some of the what/how/whys of the practice.
What is a VOD review?
VOD reviewing is the act of players or teams going into previously recorded games and going over the aspects of play that they observe. In either setting, the players conduct an analysis of their gameplay to see what they did well and what they can improve upon.
How do you do it?
Some games like League of Legends, Overwatch, and Fortnite pre-record games. Other games that don’t record for you may require third-party software like Quicktime or OBS. If that’s the case, it’s important to remember to hit the record button before hopping in!
From there, you can download and open the recordings to begin watching. Often, teams will bring in a third party, such as a coach, to help them evaluate the content that they are seeing.
Why is it important to have this extra set of eyes? It’s easy for a player to rationalize their in-game decisions, but a coach is able to explain why or why not the right choice was made given the situation. Similarly, it’s helpful to have someone with prior knowledge of the game to come and observe, as coaches offer valuable insights from their time playing the game, that you or your team may not have yet.
What are you looking for?
Though every game is different, there are a few commonalities across them to pay attention to while VOD reviewing.
Whether it’s Apex Legends, League of Legends, or Overwatch (and more), your character is on a map. It’s important to understand where to place yourself in the arena of play in relation to loot/enemies/objectives. Ask yourself, If the enemy team is across the map from an important objective, is it time to position yourself to take that objective? Should anyone be directly contesting the enemy?
The answers you arrive at may be different depending on the situation of the game as a whole, which is why it’s important to view more than one game so you are prepared for similar situations in the future.
With any team game, there is communication between players. It’s important to try and get a recording of your team talking to one another while playing, so you know what is said. If you notice the comms are overflowed with off-topic subjects, next practice work on staying focused (you can talk about what you’re having for dinner later).
Similarly, keep communication precise. Short commands are easier for players to absorb in the heat of the moment over long over-explanatory directions.
Watch your fails
Failure is a great teacher. How’d you get caught out and die? Why did the enemy team get the objective before you? It’s better to watch games you lost than ones you won because if you won, you already did the best you could for that situation. Or at least, good enough to win! Of course, watching yourself do poorly can be frustrating, so pointing out good plays to emulate the next game can also be useful and keep spirits up.
Ready to Review?
There are countless VOD reviews strategies that one can implement into their practices. These are just a few tips to get you started.
Want to learn more?
Gamerabble is home to Esports coaches who can help out during your next VOD review. Use our “Find a Game Coach” feature to start VOD reviewing and improving your gameplay!