My Best / Most Important Articles of the Year

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WHO LIKES END-OF-YEAR ROUND-UPS?

WHO LIKES END-OF-YEAR ROUND-UPS SPECIFICALLY ABOUT ME??

Well, okay, nobody really. But this is my fucking blog and I’ll cry if I want to, so just back off and leave me alone, yeah?

No, wait, please come back. Somebody? Somebody wallow in my self-satisfaction with me, please? It’s no fun if you do it alone. You guys are mean.

NUMBER FIVE

‘Lone Survivor: The Director’s Cut’ Review – No Need for Light in your Dreams – The Indie Game Magazine Mobile

This was the best review I penned during my brief tenure as Editor-in-Chief of IGM Mobile. It seems to have been corrupted slightly by the website’s recent redesign, but the score is a whopping 90% for those who can’t see it. I loved this creepy bastard, and I like to think that my review did it justice.

“A haze of confusion shrouds Lone Survivor, with peculiar events occurring throughout — events which are inexplicable to the protagonist and the player in equal measure, but taken in the stride and accepted without a struggle. Just like the monsters, these events are just a part and parcel of life now. Life is strange, ever-shifting, and untrustworthy.”

Read it all here.

NUMBER FOUR

The 7 Most Criminally Underplayed Games on Android – Android AppStorm

My first piece of freelance work for the AppStorm network — I was, and still am, very excited to have worked with them. It also helps that I was happy with the piece itself. Admittedly it was a list feature, the bottom of the barrel in terms of gaming coverage, but I was pleased to shine a spotlight on some under-appreciated gems.

“There’s no question that smartphones and tablets have become by far the biggest gaming platform in the world, surpassing dedicated gaming devices with the sheer size of their user base and gaming software on offer. However, it is worth considering that the Google Play store is an environment which creates only a few gaming mega-hits per year, with many hopeful, worthy titles quickly fading into obscurity.

For an independent game developer, these struggles for exposure are often insurmountable. Google’s openness and transparency regarding app download figures provides a sobering — and often depressing — insight into these difficulties, with many games boasting a shocking lack of players. Here, we have collated 7 very worthwhile gaming experiences on Android that have most definitely flown under your — and almost everyone else’s — radar, but are well worth playing.”

Read it all here.

NUMBER THREE

I Haven’t Played Many of Gaming’s ‘Classics’, and I’m Fine with it – GameRanx

The people in the comments thought I was an awful hipster arsehole, but I still stand by this opinion piece I wrote for GameRanx. It’s also the first time I’ve managed to shoehorn Largo Winch and The Red Star — two of my all-time favourite games — into an article, so that was a good moment for me.

“I’m a funny sort of gamer, I suppose. Growing up, I always had a strange compulsion to seek out games that nobody else was playing – rummaging through bargain bins, pre-owned marketplaces of unknowns. Potential gems, probable muck.

This is an instinct that’s stuck with me since childhood and, as I get older, I see little changing. I still have an eye for the obscure and the under-appreciated, but the bargain bins are digital now. This is why I now spend much of my free time playing, and writing about, indie games. I still get that childhood thrill of discovery with them, and for me that’s half the fun. Sharing discoveries with others via my writing? Even better.”

Read it all here.

NUMBER TWO

Eleven pages of my work – The Indie Game Magazine Issue 35

Admittedly, these eleven pages actually contain four articles – An interview with Jonny Wick and Gary Goard of Odd Sock Games, an editorial piece: ‘Minimalism: The Truest Expression of a Video Game?’, and two reviews: Skies by Cuve Games (89%) and Velocity Ultra by FuturLab (80%).

However, to see them all published alongside one another in one beautifully-designed, printed magazine – the last ever issue, as it happens, due to a change in management and policy that also resulted in my departure – was a great moment, and that issue remains one of my most treasured possessions. Writing for print is lovely.

Buy the magazine here.

NUMBER ONE

Nice platform, shame about the marketplace: A PlayStation Mobile developer reveals all – Pocket Gamer Biz

While interning at Pocket Gamer, I was offered the opportunity to produce content for both .co.uk and .biz, and was afforded a great deal of creativity to pitch my own ideas and features. This, then, is the highest point of the internship so far, the article of which I’m most proud – a lengthy discussion with PSM developer Thomas Hopper on the current state of Sony’s ailing platform.

I’m very happy with how it turned out, and was especially thrilled to see it headline on such a big site. Big thanks, of course, go to Thom Hopper and Keith Andrew.

Read it here.

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