The Silver Series – 25 Years of “Games Journalism”

While I was sitting here finishing update #5 of The Galarian Chronicles, my mind started to drift about. I’ve been pretty reflective with others, and to myself, of a myriad of things lately. Thinking on how it’s been about fifteen years now that The Galarian Chronicles has been a work in progress, eleven years since my first E3, almost nine years since I helped on an LG/IGN collaboration, a little over twenty years since I wrote for GameSages, an IGN affiliated site (which turned to sages.ign.com, now codes.ign.com, if that even exists at this point). Hell, Galarian Gaming has been live for five years now! A lot of landmark milestones have been coming and going.

Then I started to ponder the earliest days of my “games journalism” experience, and how it was for a high school booklet that was made for the entire school. In it, I wrote about the ongoing console war between the Sega Saturn, Sony PlayStation and the Nintendo 64. I wish I still had access to that, as it’s basically the origins of my journey through this games journalism world. It’s been twenty-five years since then, and I consider that the beginning of this games journalism journey that I have been on.

Time sure does fly by in an instant. While this sometimes cold, occasionally abrasive, though mostly personally gratifying journey didn’t take me to the places that I felt I should have reached, I’m still going at it. There’s been a tremendous amount of frustrations over the years in doing this, mainly from the quality of work that I produce (not something I am hyping – I’ve been told many times over that I do what I do in ways that connects with people) not getting the exposure I tried my best to obtain, all while seeing people that can make pretty videos with no writing experience, given the chance and turning out to be serial plagiarists. I shouldn’t be a bitter Betty over that, or really anything throughout this whole experience, as I’ve had my time in the sun in tons of other ways. Nonetheless, while my ultimate destination was never reached, the ride to where I am now is still filled with more gratification and positivity, than sour grapes.

Actually, you can say I did fulfill my dreams to write for a major games journalism outlet when IGN purchases GameSages, the largest video game code database on the internet, and a site I had been both a forum moderator and a writer for (and looking back at it now, a very rough writer who was limited with my vocabulary, although the passion was always there). It’s almost surreal – fighting for the longest time to have my work on the big sites and, although incredibly crude and at a low level of talent, I actually achieved the goal 20+ years ago.

“I had always wanted to attend an E3, not as a spectator, but as a writer.”

It’s been an expedition of extreme high’s and low’s. As someone who never went to college (even though I was accepted for an unrelated to writing veterinary major, and perhaps foolishly passed on), I didn’t have those “credentials” that even to this day, I feel are secondary to passion, maybe tertiary to connecting with your readers. In time, you can broaden your horizons and be more eloquent with how you tackle your written pieces, and still sound like yourself. I’ve always felt like I was a very relatable writer – someone that spoke to and with people, and not through, down on or any other way. Even today, as much of a grumpy cat as I might be lately, I feel like even if someone doesn’t agree with a viewpoint I have in gaming, I’ll at the very least provide enough of my perspective so that folks can understand where I’m coming from.

For sure, my most cherished memories and moments during this run I’ve had, have to do with E3. I had always wanted to attend an E3, not as a spectator, but as a writer. I had that opportunity first in 2010 with Chocolate Lemon. I remember working on previews up until midnight at the earliest each night the show was on, of games I had played on the show floor or was a part of closed door showings of. I wrote close to two dozen articles from that Tuesday evening, up to and including my flight home days after the event ended.

The next time I had an opportunity to go to E3 was in 2017, and while I didn’t have a chance to play as many games as I had in 2010, it was one of my most favorite and memorable times I’ve ever had within this games journalism world. I also just love the Los Angeles area in general as well, maybe because I’m getting out of New York City for stretches of time, but I digress. It was also a very special and important trip for me, as it rekindled my love for writing once again. Maybe if the world stops decaying and my paranoia over these new covid variants subsides (I’m fully vaccinated, but it’s still difficult to think about outdoor functions for now), I’ll go to another E3. That’s if it ever returns to the convention it’s been for the years before the plague.

I was also fortunate enough to attend and cover the Nintendo Wii U Pre-Launch in New York City. Sadly I can’t bring up any old articles I wrote about that, but the event was another one of my memorable moments doing all of this. Back then, I felt that the Wii U would be something special, with a unique controller and a fresh take on how certain games and genres could be played. To this day I still swear by the Wii U, and how we didn’t deserve such a unique piece of hardware. I think that was the last major event that I had attended until E3 in 2017. Stuff happened between then, a lot of it I’d be glad to never think about again, and I kinda stopped writing overall for that span of time. Even with that time away, I still count it as years “in the business”.

“To this day I still swear by the Wii U, and how we didn’t deserve such a unique piece of hardware.”

Twenty-five years of writing about video games. That’s the silver anniversary. I should do something with a bit of grandeur to it, because I enjoy giving myself more stuff to do than I have time to do it! Enter The Silver Series!

One thing I’ve always been a sucker for, whether it’s to read someone else, or to create my own, are lists. A few years ago I did a series called Get To Know, which game some insight to who I am as a gamer, my all-time favorite games, and so on. I did a Top 25 Games of All-Time list that canvased all consoles and handhelds, so I can’t exactly do that again. My idea(s) reach a bit towards the same concept – I was thinking of doing numerous top 25 lists for a myriad of consoles, perhaps culminating in something that will supersede and update my Top 25 Games of All-Time list (it is a bit outdated now tbh) – a Top 100 Games of All-Time! I’m sure I’ll do Top 25 lists of the more egregious aspects of gaming as well – can’t have the good without the bad, right? I’m sure I’ll also do some things unrelated to lists, perhaps repost some of my older and recently recovered pieces of writing from over the years.

I’m going to consider this a year long venture. Throughout the next 365 days I’ll have a plethora of Top 25 Games lists covering a number of consoles. The end goal is to try and dabble with something that I have wanted to try to get into for a long time now – having the Top 100 Games of All-Time done as a video project, with the other lists being text based. With the uncertainty of how much I’ll be streaming again even when the weather cools down, I need to get some more use out of this Blue Yeti and my video editing software. At the very least it’ll be a text based list, but if I am able to, we’ll explore the foreign realm of video making together!

These last twenty-five years writing about gaming has been quite the ride, and even with all of the more unsavory moments and memories from that quarter of a century, I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. I’ve met some fantastic people on this journey, and wrote countless articles that I’ve always been so proud of, been to places I never thought I’d be, and so much more. I hope you are all able to join me in what is more of a celebration of the gaming world, than a celebration of my time writing about it. I know I’ll have a blast piecing together all these lists for The Silver Series. Check back here with Galarian Gaming to see what the next celebratory Top 25 List I put together!

Here’s to another twenty-five years of sharing my passion with everyone!

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