Unlimited Hyperbole #2

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This week Unlimited Hyperbole explores the  topic of “My Favourite Game” from a new angle as Gaming Daily Editor Craig Lager talks about Morrowind, Skyrim and the long process of admitting you’ve got a new favourite after years of being dedicated to a single title.

Along the way Craig talks about how the Elder Scrolls series has changed over time, why he refused to review The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and how he intensively curates his experience of the world using mods such as Frostfall. What’s Craig’s favourite experience from within Skyrim and why is he oddly embarrassed to have such a new game as his favourite? Listen to Episode Two of Unlimited Hyperbole to find out!

Unlimited Hyperbole is a weekly podcast about videogames and the stories we tell about them. The show is divided into seasons of five episodes, each of which has a topic that’s used as a prompt when interviewing special guests. This season we’re talking about “My Favourite Game” – but for more information about the podcast itself, read after the jump.

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The Money Problem…

“I used to carry so much in paper money, I had spare to blow my nose”

I’ve had a lot of money troubles already as a freelancer, though those have been to do with jumping through tax hoops and actually sorting out accounts and such. I’m not someone who is usually financially minded, so learning the process of keeping well-accounted books has been difficult for me – though ultimately rewarding. I finally know how to balance a chequebook.

Recently though, I ran into another type of money trouble – someone asking me to work for free on a new project. My response to this is going to be pretty uniform, so I thought I’d redact out the details and post my reply here.

The original question was whether I’d be interested in writing news and articles for a new site (Yes!) that couldn’t pay me for my time (Um…) on the proviso that they promised they would pay me as soon as they got money further down the line, from such sources as Google Ads and Sponsorship (No, for a whole host of extra reasons).

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Just A Blogger…

I went to GamesCom in Cologne this year and was pleased to see it turn out better than my last two visits. This time I knew people, my way around and where all the good parties were. I had bookings back to back and they were all interesting. Best of all, I didn’t end up stranded in the same industrial wasteland I got stuck in two years ago – the one populated only by vodka and prostitutes.

One thing I did notice though was an abundance of unusually young people with press badges, often moving in groups of three as they nervously navigated the business centre. At first I thought I was just being getting old and judgemental; then I got chatting to one group and discovered that they were bloggers.

Bloggers was how they described themselves (in fractured English) and it was immediately clear before they explained further that they weren’t from Kotaku or Joystiq or anything of that scale. To be honest, I was a little stunned that they’d even been able to get themselves press passes, as they had the impression of not knowing what to do with what they had.

I’ll admit that a part of me bristled at the situation – I’ve been doing this job professionally for five years and yet this group had greater presence at the show than Dennis Publishing (or Future, by the looks of it) and were being taken with matching seriousness. I’ve tried to shove this bitterness aside however, as it’s unfair to judge without knowing more.

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Christmas and Kindles…

Christmas’ are always a difficult time for the friends of boring people in my line of work. I only really have two hobbies – writing and playing computer games – and both of them are sated on a daily basis. I play computer games, write about them and people give me money for that. Sometimes I don’t even bother to write about them because I’m too busy playing. Other times, vice versa.

The other potential gift that would work would be films, naturally…but I can get those when I want them too, for free. My occupation really does make it difficult on my friends and family. Mostly they get me sci-fi books, which are great.

Now, I’m expecting something in the post that will completely ruin that avenue of giftage too. I’ve ordered an Amazon Kindle. I opted for the 3G version, just so I can always read about comics on Wikipedia if the whim takes me, and it’s set to arrive in a day or two. I expect to be instantly struck by buyers remorse when I get it, because it’s hugely expensive compared to my current tactic of buying books from charity shops or waiting for birthdays, but I figured it’s been a while since I last treated myself. God knows I could use cheering up at the moment anyway – or he would if he existed.

Bit-Gamer’s steady growth continues at the moment. In line with Dennis’ new Social Media Strategy, which I read over the Christmas break, I’ve created and optimised a Facebook page to complement our Twitter account. I’ve also been contacting new freelancers and designing advertisements to feature across other Dennis publications. Fun!

We put some content up over Christmas, as usual, and I’m going to link to it below. Before I do though, here’s a link to Craig’s latest piece – a short one-page feature about Trackmania, why it’s awesome and why I’m an idiot. The article is really good, even though it gets some fact wrong. I love Trackmania. Anyway, the article is called Trackmaniac.

Links!

Out, Joe