Story Mode Audio Sessions On Soundcloud

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All past and future Story Mode episodes will now be available on Soundcloud! Click here to give a listen.

I’m already recording a slew of new episodes! Please stay tuned for more stories from gamers and folks inside the games industry.

Hip Hop Gamer & the Woman Who Introduced Him to Games

Over the last year, we’ve seen a lot of talk (and controversy) around women and video games, as though their presence in the industry or even as consumers is something new and notable. It’s hopefully no surprise that women have been playing – and making – games for about as long as they’ve been commercially available, introducing many of today’s current gamers to what has become their lifelong passion. One such gamer is games journalist Gerard “HipHopGamer” Williams, whose grandmother played a pivotal role in creating the man, the gamer, and the brand that Gerard is today.

HipHopGamer was kind enough to chat with me about his grandmother, her influence, and his advice to anyone interested in finding and pursuing their passions.

I’ve heard you talk about your grandmother a bit before – how passionate she was about games, how influential she was to your own passion for games – could you give a little background on her? What kind of woman was she?

My grandmother was an amazing woman, man. She was very talented. She played the piano. She sang. And, obviously, she played video games. I’m basically a product of that. You know what I’m saying?

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Road Not Taken, Part 2: An Interview with Spry Fox’s Daniel Cook


Last week, I spoke with Spry Fox CEO David Edery about his twisty, turn-y, 7-year journey to his first job in the games industry. This week, I have the good fortune to chat with David’s colleague and Spry Fox CCO Daniel Cook about his own path into games. I have to say, these guys give fantastic interviews. The advice they give for those hoping to break into the games industry (or take another road less travelled) is pretty terrific. Bonus: behind the cut there is a gif of a goat pooping. – Marie

Howdy, Danc! For those who don’t know you, could you provide a little background?

I’m Daniel Cook. I’m a game designer. I’ve been doing this for 18 or 19 years now. I’ve worked on games like Triple Town and Realm of the Mad God and SteamBirds. I got my start way back in the day on a game called Tyrian with a company called Epic MegaGames (which is no longer mega, apparently). I focus a lot on systems design, efficient design.  I run a website called Lost Garden that has all sorts of game design essays. That’s the basics of who I am.

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Road Not Taken, Part 1: An Interview with Spry Fox’s David Edery


Robert Frost’s The Road Not Taken is one of America’s most beloved (i.e., most frequently assigned in high-school) and most misunderstood poems (i.e., guess we didn’t read hard enough). Nearly a century after its first publication, the poem is now lending its name and themes to an upcoming game release by indie-dev darling Spry Fox. I thought it would be super interesting to chat with the folks at Spry Fox about their own paths, choices, and roads less traveled by. In the first of this two-part series, I interview Spry Fox CEO David Edery about his own twisty, turn-y path to the games industry, and ask what advice he might have for those looking to follow in his footsteps. Next week, we’ll talk to Spry Fox CCO Daniel Cook. – Marie

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Talking to a Cactus (Q&A with Jonatan Söderström)

Experimental game developer, co-creator of Hotline Miami, and all-around really cool guy Jonatan “Cactus” Söderström was kind enough to let me ask him a bunch of questions. Here are his awesome responses.


Hi, Cactus! Could you say a little bit about yourself for those who don’t know you?

My name is Jonatan Söderström, I’m 28 and have been making games for ten years. At first I focused on short freeware projects, and managed to create around fifty games. Now I’m mostly working on bigger projects together with Dennis Wedin via our “studio” Dennaton.

What’s your earliest memory of video games? 

My earliest memory of games is my dad suggesting that he’d buy us a NES for christmas. I was around four-five I think and I had no idea what a video game was, I thought it was something like a flipper game and found it very uninteresting until I actually got it. At first we only had Super Mario and I really liked it. I started drawing my own games on pieces of paper and cut out characters that could move around on the worlds I had drawn.

What’s the most fun you’ve ever had playing a game?

That’s a hard one. I was really absorbed by Half-Life the first time I played it. I remember buying it because it had all these press quotes on the box saying it was a great game, but I wasn’t really very excited about it. I usually played darker (and a lot more mindless) games like Blood 2 and Requiem Avenging Angel. Long story short, I was blown away by the seamless storytelling, the AI and generally the mature handling of it all. So, either that or playing the old Lucas Arts adventure games with my friends and family.

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