Originally Posted by western_seraph
These are the first recipes that I have even attempted so please be gentle.
OK, here are a few general comments. Both recipes seem over the top in terms of dark grains and extracts. Bear in mind that the color of Guinness Stout is achieved with 10% roasted barley. Including the dark extracts those recipes are in the area of 50% dark ingredients. Consider using light malt extract and get your color solely from dark roasted grains. It will still be plenty dark enough and your brew will have a larger portion of fermentables resulting in a more attenuated and better tasting beer. Flaked oats require mashing. Reduce the extract by a pound and replace with a couple pounds of pale malt then mini-mash the flaked oats with the pale malt.