Vikki Blake (Editor-in-Chief)
I was never really the kind of girl who played dollies or dress-up. While other girls were falling in love with soap stars and Bros, I was falling in love with gaming. I got lost in Hyrule. I kicked ass in Street Fighter. I had inappropriate dreams about Solid Snake, became obsessed with the gorgeously grim environments of Silent Hill and am still kind of addicted to Guitar Hero.
I’ve grown up with a particular penchant for survival horror, but I’ll turn my hand to pretty much anything. Does that mean I’m a 1337 pro gamer? Um, my kill:death ratio would suggest otherwise. But I firmly believe that you don’t have to have 1337 skills (or even know what 1337 means) to enjoy video games. To me, it’s my passion – or an obsession. Either word suffices.
Whilst I love music, video games, books and all things geek, other indulgences include Ben & Jerrys ice-cream (Cookie Dough or Dublin Mudslide, please), strong tea (made in a pot and not in the mug), gin (with tonic), chocolate (any way it’s given), doctors (naked), talking too much, complaining and swearing profusely.
In addition to running GGS.com I also write news for IGN, am a Contributing Editor at Destructoid, and write reviews for Bloody-Disgusting.com. I also run the biggest Silent Hill site/forum in the world, Silenthillheaven.com, and am an avid collector of video game tees and Silent Hill memorabilia.
Joseph Haygood (Deputy Editor)
I have always been a gamer, for as far back as I can remember (and that is a loooong way back). I remember when I begged and pleaded for an Atari 2600 with Space Invaders and found it under the Christmas tree. I was amazed at the idea that I could play arcade-style games without the need for quarters.
However, the Atari was just my entry point, as I soon found myself in a love affair with computers. I had devoured books on programming, and at one point, while in a Radio Shack, I decided on a whim to pick up Wizardry and Starflight. I was flabbergasted by the sheer amount of detail packed into the density of two floppy discs. Starflight packed in a universe of content that had me playing the game for a total of 400 hours (I was nerdy enough to track my time in a notebook before Raptr showed up). I continued forward, constantly upgrading my computer for the latest and greatest toys, to play the newest stuff, and even expanded back into consoles with the Xbox 360, PS3, Wii and a PSP.
As for some of my favorites, I would have to point back to Starflight, Mass Effect 1 and 2, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines, Space Quest I-IV, Leisure Suit Larry I-V, Duke Nukem 3D, DiRT 2 and Beyond Good and Evil. I have been an eclectic gamer by trade, and find myself dabbling with all the different genres that are out there.
As for my ventures outside of gaming, I can be found reading tons of science fiction novels, watching the worst movies on Netflix and spending time with my wife and son.
Steven Pilkington (Managing Editor (UK))
Video games have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. It began with a little blue hedgehog running through the hills and jumping on badniks. Where my love for gaming began to really blossom though was over a particular game that made a huge impact on me.
That game was Final Fantasy VII. It’s incredible story and characters had me hooked from the beginning and locked me in as a FF fan for life. The series also kindled my love for music within video games, beginning with performing FF music at exams, and continuing with attending concerts like Distant Worlds in London!
Since FF7, my tastes in video games developed to enjoy story-driven games. However, I also enjoy a wide variety of genres: from shooters like Gears of War to RTSs such as StarCraft 2, and I am always partial to anything that’s a wee bit wacky. One of the best example of that in recent times has probably been Catherine, but I blame the Metal Gear Solid series for starting that interest of mine. (I need Scissors! 61!)
Beyond the world of games, I’m a big sucker for figuring out how things work (comes with the day-job) and have a burgeoning interest in comics. I’ve been known to dabble in cosplay whenever an expo rolls into London and I’m also a massive advocate for craft beer. Mice may follow the scent trail of cheese, but the aroma of hops does exactly the same to me!
Dan Laframboise (Staff Writer)
Gaming since the tender age of eight, I’ve had my first taste of gaming through Nintendo’s N.E.S. and I’ve been loving every minute of it!
I’m a very open minded gamer and I’ll try any genre I can. One of my all time favorites is still PS2’s Amplitude. I can still see the game’s gems in my head when I close my eyes …
Love games from Lumines to Call of Duty, to the most niche games like Cross Edge to Gears of War – I’ll play anything once! Being a young Nintendo fan, meeting Shigeru Miyamoto back at E3 2004 is still my favorite memory of all time.
Ruth Wynne-Jones (Staff Writer)
So, the first game I ever really got invested in was Sierra Entertainment’s Pharoah. An isometric city builder based in Ancient Egypt.
Since then, my tastes have wildly diverged. I had a Runescape addiction for a while, a common malady for a British teenager at the time, then an obsession with World of Warcraft, which is probably even more predictable. Then I ventured outside of the realm of MMORPGs and found that there were far more experiences to be had gaming.
Nowadays, I like moral dilemmas. I like combat based in real time, with a pause function. I have infinite appreciation for well-built skill trees, world-building and conversation systems that offer plenty of options. I also like a good balance between story and game-play. I like games that attempt to delve into grand philosophical themes. Or just look very pretty.
My favourite series are as follows: Bioshock, Dragon Age, The Longest Journey/ Dreamfall, Borderlands and Portal.
Outside of video games, I am really into pop music. Think Foxes, Tove Lo, Kyla La Grange and Charli XCX.
Scott Webster (Staff Writer)
I’ve been a gamer since a young age. I’ve played games for as long as I can recall and rarely miss the opportunity to explore a new title, genre or play a new console. Gaming has always been a very social thing for me and sometimes more than just a hobby.
When I didn’t have an actual live band playing in my living room (true story), I would have my friends round to play Rock Band or Guitar Hero for a good gaming sesh to replicate the madness. Shamefully, I/we got that good that expert level on all instruments (and vocals) was a breeze and I/we even overcame the fabled ‘Through the Fire and Flames’ stuff…
I promise, after I made it to number two in the world on a Stone Sour song… I ventured out into the big world afterwards and realised that the sun was real…
Anyway, party games aside, you can often find me high on the leaderboards with an uncanny ability to come out on top in most shoot-em-up titles. Though I do have to admit that I absolutely love anything remotely related to survival horror; with Resident Evil and Silent Hill being some of the main likes.
I contribute to GGS when I can as I also host a radio show in my spare time, attend red carpet events (another true story), run a small business on the side, hold down a full time job and commit to my relationship now that I’m engaged. A bit of a jack of all trades really! Thankfully I have an understanding partner that gives me my gaming time!
Joe Fourhman (Contributor)
Although I played the heck out of the family Odyssey2 and my Game Boy, I distinctly remember deciding that video games were not for me once things went 16-bit. I suppose it had to do with the number of buttons on the controller. Also I had no money.
But when I got a job, one of the first things I did was buy a co-worker’s old Sega Genesis… and in no time I had caught back up with the modern gen: the N64 and PS1! That generation taught me to adore both Nintendo’s consistent, high-quality output and Sony’s refusal to let one style define their system. I love a good story, and I love arguing about what makes a good story, as most video games have the plotline equivalent of a seven year old’s summary of any given “Indiana Jones” movie. I love cutscenes, I love well-designed menus, I love immersive free-roaming environments. I’m a sucker for any and all peripherals, because I love experimenting with games that break outside of the screen. So yeah, I’ve got the Donkey Konga bongos, the Pokemon pedometer, the GBA eReader and several boxes worth of similarly bizarre and ultimately abandoned plastic gewgaws.
My favorite franchises include Kingdom Hearts, Katamari, Smash Bros, Animal Crossing, Deception, Rock Band, Metal Gear, GTA and Pokemon. My all-time A-number-one, however, is the Fatal Frame series. I made a card game about it.
You? (Wannabe GGSer)
We’re always looking for new contributors to join us here at GGS.com. If you are 18+, have a keen interest in gaming, great written skills and the time commitment to contribute regularly (we’re looking for at least five articles a week), we’d love to hear from you!
Whilst we’re not exclusively an all-female staff, we are particularly keen to recruit and promote female writers.
Working at GGS.com is currently unpaid – bummer, we know. That said, it’s not without its rewards; we have long-standing, established industry links in both the US and the UK and access many of the perks and privileges of the gaming press including snazzy event invites and review codes (free games, in other words). Not to mention your writing will be read by fellow gaming enthusiasts and industry insiders alike – not too shabby, eh?
Sounds like this might be the right place for you? Get in touch via our contact form explaining why you’d like to join us, coupled with a few examples of your writing. Who knows – you could soon be part of the GGS.com team!