Sayonora: The Last Game Break Column
By Harold Goldberg
This is it, folks: the final Game Break blog item. During
the past few years, I've broken exclusive stories and given you exclusive
interviews with top
My favorite interview, though, was with completely cool and down-to-earth Rose McGowan who was starring in both Grindhouse films at the time. Rose told you how her dog became jealous when she was playing the old school game, House of the Dead 2 on the Sega Dreamcast. The dog became so annoyed at the lack of attention that he peed on the system and fried it. It all was a little sad since Rose never finished the game. But mainly, it was one hilarious anecdote.
I’ve given my share of roses to top notch journalists and game developers. And I’ve given my share of brickbats, too, with the Idiot of the Week. No one was immune to idiocy, not game companies, game executives, game analysts, game journalists and game publicists. It was never easy for me to write Idiot. While Idiot always was a popular item at Game Break, I knew that it had its effect, and that it angered and hurt those who received the dubious award. Yet, it had to be done. Very few writers have the temerity to call out the Idiots of our industry. So I popped a Prevacid and wrote away. I still believe in the corny, old adage that the pen, er, the keyboard is mightier then the sword.
If you’ve been a fan of Game Break, what do you do now? For daily news with a bit of snark, there’s nothing like Kotaku. Brian Crecente, Brian Ashcraft and the team there are changing the nature of gaming journalism. They began with tons of fanboy-like news. But they’ve evolved into a site that breaks news and does tough investigative journalism. Beyond Crecente, Noah Robischon is near the top of the food chain at Gawker Media. If something ever slips passed Crecente (which would be rare), Noah will be there to catch it. You’re in good hands at Kotaku.
For longer pieces, gaming exclusives and in-depth interviews, go to N’Gai Croal and the Level Up blog. Croal is a smart, agile, cross-cultural writer who gets the best out of his interview subjects. He’s been in the business as long as I have. With the power of Newsweek at his back, he’s one of the few persons in the industry who refuses to take any crap. He’s the one person in the industry that game companies go to regularly to break news. You’re in good hands with Level Up.
On video and TV, you can’t go wrong with Geoff Keighley at
Game Trailers. Keighley has learned to make his interviews entertaining and
newsworthy, and that’s hard to do. When you watch Keighley, you’ll always glean
some fine nugget, whether it’s an anecdote or good, hard gaming news. In
Where else? For MMOs, check out Action Trip, a Serbian site that will never let you down. For casual games, check out Jay Is Games: Jay loves casual games with all his heart. For adventure games done the old school way, try Just Adventure.
For some of the best game writing on the web, check out Crispy Gamer, a no b.s. zone that’s still in its infancy, just a few months old. Former GameSpy editor in chief John Keefer runs the site, and every freelance writer of note is participating in creating a site that is sure to be written about and talked about more and more in the coming months.
As for me, you can see my words on these Web sites: American
Movie Classics, Crispy Gamer and Radar. As for magazines, you can read articles
I want to give a shout out to legendary video game writer turned novelist Steve Kent. Steve, whose words have graced this blog, is not only a great writer. He’s a good, kind and giving friend who’s listened to me gripe over the years about what bugs me about gaming writers. And he’s listened to a lot of personal stuff as well. You couldn’t ask for a better pal then Steve. If you haven’t already, check out his “Clone” scifi fiction series along with his seminal history of the video game industry, “The Ultimate History of Video Games.”
I want to thank the team at VH1 Games for letting me say
things my way for over two years. They even let me write from my house so I
rarely had to go to the big offices at in
Finally, I want to thank you, the readers of Game Break. Especially during contests, your comments were wise, humorous, touching and even deep. I’ll definitely miss you guys. Thanks for stopping by.
So what to say now? I guess I’ll leave you by paraphrasing a quote from the underappreciated actor Peter Lorre from Stephen D. Youngkin’s biography, “The Lost One. ”Video game journalism is a ridiculous profession…unless it is part of your very soul.” Enjoy the Human Tetris video from YouTube that's below. And most of all, Game on.