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User guide

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This isn’t the most exciting page on the blog and you’d probably much rather be checking out video games. But it’s worth taking some time to check out the following policies to find out more about the guidelines followed here at Later Levels.


  • Code of conduct
  • Full disclosure statement
  • Review policy
  • Contributions and collaborations policy
  • Copyright policy
  • Privacy policy



  • Code of conduct

    The gaming world is made up of many different people and all of them should be considered equal. Everybody’s views are worthwhile and deserve to be heard (unless it’s that Fable 3 was a worthy entry in the series), so discussion on all aspects of our hobby from every member of the community is invited.

    Understanding and tolerance are therefore key, and the audience is respectfully asked to bear in mind the following points before posting a comment on the Later Levels blog, social media channels or Twitch chat room.

    Be respectful Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and is welcome to comment if they don’t agree with the views expressed in a post. But please be respectful, and don’t post anything you wouldn’t want your parents to see – they’ll ground you.
    Negative comments won’t be deleted. Instead I’ll take a deep breath before responding in a constructive manner if I feel it’s appropriate to do so.
    Format and audience Clear comments are very much appreciated. We’re too old around here to be down-with-the-kids so capitals and text-speak really aren’t our thing.
    Remember that the Later Levels blog and associated social media channels are public forms so if you wish to talk to me privately, please drop me an email.
    Community and collaboration Community and collaboration will do more for your own blog than a dodgy SEO company ever could. I extremely appreciate your support but please don’t follow only in the hope of a follow-back: it won’t happen.
    Out-of-context comments left only for promotional purposes will be laughed at and then edited. Leave a link back to your site and if it isn’t appropriate, it will be changed – and you don’t want to find out where I’ll point it to.
    Inappropriate behaviour Show aggression or intimidation towards anyone within the community and I’ll go all invisible-wall on you. I reserve the right to block anyone displaying such behaviour from access to Later Levels.
    Comments containing racist, sexist or homophobic remarks, personal abuse, libel, copyrighted material, excessive swearing, references to illegal activities, requests for pirated software or slurs against The Secret of Monkey Island will be removed.


    Full disclosure statement

    Later Levels is a project of love, video games, cats and ice-cream. I don’t get paid for what I do here and while I’d love to get rich, I don’t accept any form of cash advertising, sponsorship or paid topic insertions.

    Sourcing video games Digital codes for video games are sent to me by developers and publishers for reviews or previews of their projects. However, the manner in which I receive software will never influence my opinions or content, and I’ll disclose the source if I haven’t bought the game myself.
    Saying that though, I’ll only accept a free code if a title looks like it will be something I’ll likely enjoy playing. Life is too short to spend time on video games which aren’t your cup of tea and blog posts you don’t enjoy writing.
    Crowdfunding campaigns I may choose to back campaigns on crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter, if the promotional video happens to feature pixel art or mention that the project is inspired by Myst, the works of Ron Gilbert or Twin Peaks.
    This is done using my own money and my decision to back a campaign is a personal one. If I choose to publish a review of a video game obtained via this method, I’ll always reveal this is the case within the post.
    Press events To gather content and develop relationships with people within the gaming industry, I sometimes attend meetings and events. I’ll always fund the cost of travel, accommodation and tickets myself – although if someone wouldn’t mind upgrading me to a five-star hotel, it would be much appreciated.
    Affiliations and independence I don’t receive any kind of revenue when hyperlinks within content are clicked so Later Levels can maintain its independence. I simply provide this information to be helpful because I’m nice like that.
    Donations to charity Donations made during charity events and marathon streams are taken online via platforms such as JustGiving. It all goes directly to the organisation we’re supporting so I don’t see any of the money – and nor would I want to. Playing video games, meeting new people and making a positive impact on the world is all the benefit I need.
    Competitions and giveaways When I hold a giveaway, a winner is drawn at random based on the entry rules specified in the content. This is usually done by tallying the number of entries and using the random number generator at random.org.
    You’re only able to enter once unless the rules specify otherwise; and if you violate those rules, I’ll disqualify you (and your 40 aliases). I’m not responsible if an item gets lost in the post or is delivered to a wrong address, and once in a while it may be necessary to substitute a prize of comparable value.


    Review policy

    I write about the video games I’ve played, although I wouldn’t necessarily call them ‘reviews’. There are plenty of professional gaming websites where you can find that kind of content if that’s what you’re looking for. If I do choose to critique a release however, here’s what you can expect:

  • There is no set format for reviews. But whether I choose to assign a score out of ten, provide a list of positives and negatives, or give my final opinion in the form of interpretive dance, one thing you can be sure of is that I’ve been honest. I won’t be persuaded to take a particular line.
  • I’ll only review games which are available in full to the general public; doing it any other way just wouldn’t be fair and there’s always the possibility a title could change significantly prior to release.
  • In addition, I won’t change a review after publication. But if I believe a title has changed significantly over time, I might choose to re-review it at a later date and will link to the previous post for transparency.
  • Regardless of how I score (or doesn’t score) a review, this shouldn’t be the end of the discussion. Everyone is welcome to leave their thoughts and opinions after each post and to chat to me via social media channels.

  • Contributions and collaborations policy

    While I love being a member of the community, I don’t accept contributions or paid topic insertions, or take part in article swaps. But don’t think that makes me as grumpy as Wario though because I love getting involved with other blogs!

    Got an idea for a collaboration project or a question you’d like me to answer in a post? Then send me an email with the details and I’ll reply as quickly as possible. I can’t guarantee we’ll be able to participate in everything but will definitely consider all submissions – and if it’s not something I can take part in, I’ll help you spread the word among other bloggers.

    Copyright policy

    The sad fact is that there are some out there who want to copy the great content produced by others and claim it for their own. They don’t care how awful the authors must feel when they see their work on another site without permission, and they certainly aren’t concerned that benefitting from somebody else’s effort is just plain wrong.

    Let’s get one thing straight: this is theft. It’s the unsolicited taking of someone’s effort and creativity; awareness for their subject and potential readers; and the positivity they receive from blogging and being a member of the community.

    You’re welcome to quote sections of my work providing appropriate and specific credit is given, along with a link back to the original content. I do not consent to full or extension sections of articles being copied and posted on your own site without my approval, whether you claim credit for the work or otherwise.

    If I become aware of something I’ve not given permission for above, I’ll contact you to request that the offending content is removed. If you don’t comply, my next step will be to submit a takedown request under DCMA – and I may even send my stepson round to tell you everything he knows about Minecraft (trust me, you don’t want that).

    In return, I offer the same rights to others. If you become aware of something I’ve done which you don’t consent to, please get in touch in the first instance as I’m a nice girl: it’s highly likely I won’t have done it on purpose and I’ll agree to immediately removing the content in question.

    Privacy policy

    Later Levels committed to providing readers with a blog that respects their privacy. I therefore don’t rend, lease or sell your personal information to third-parties and will only disclose details if I’m required to do so by law.

    All data is managed in accordance with our obligations under the UK’s data protection regulations. It should be noted however that Google may transfer your information to third-parties if you’ve been naughty, of if those third-parties process the details on their behalf.

    To make any comments, ask questions or raise concerns about our privacy policy, please get in touch. I may update this statement to reflect feedback received or any new legal obligations.

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