To say that 2016 has been an eventful year would be an understatement. Looking back, I realised that I’d published much more work than I thought I had. But isn’t that always the case? We always diminish our own achievements.
Of course, 2016 marked a huge transition for me–moving from Australia to the United States to accept a new job offer I received. I’ll talk more about that in a separate post. For now, please enjoy a look back on the year through my eyes.
I hope you all enjoy reading or watching these. A lot of hard work went into them! And most of all, thank you to all the people out there who support me. Without you folks, I could not do what I do. From the bottom of my heart, I wish you all a happy new year and all the best for 2017!
Warcraft Movie Review
First published on June 8, 2016
This press trip was exciting to me for a multitude of reasons. Firstly, it took me to the Warcraft film premiere in Hollywood. Secondly, I was among the first to watch the Warcraft film. As a longtime fan of Warcraft lore and its games, excited did not even begin to describe it. The event itself was a lot of fun too. I saw a lot of interesting cosplay, met Leeroy Jenkins himself, saw a bunch of actors and actresses. After the event concluded, I wrote the review on the plane ride back to San Francisco, in the taxi ride, and finally finished it in my hotel room at 2AM. This feature also marked my first ever movie review.
How Pokemon Go Nearly Destroyed a Quiet Suburb
First published August 1, 2016
At its peak popularity the Pokemon Go phenomenon brought my friends and I together. However, it also brought out the ugly parts of people and the mob mentality, as this feature highlights. I investigated, photographed, and interviewed several folks in one particularl suburb in Sydney which had been negatively impacted by the effects of the game. I had hoped that shining a spotlight on the issues would prompt developer Niantic into taking some action. It eventually did.
Xbox Head Phil Spencer Talks Scorpio, PS4 Pro, 4K Resolution, and More
First published on October 5, 2016
This was the last major feature I published on GameSpot before I left. I’d interviewed quite a few high-profile people before, but head of Xbox Phil Spencer defied expectations. He was friendly. He liked to laugh. He would turn questions back on me and ask for my opinion on certain matters, which was unexpected. Most folks I interviewed tended to answer questions systematically, then wait for me to continue. Phil made the whole ordeal flow like a candid conversation and he did so while being very down to Earth. I really enjoyed this interview and I feel like the tone, and Phil’s love for the games industry, really shows in the feature.
Why World of Tanks Is Wildly Popular and No One Seems to Know Why
First published October 1, 2016
In my entire career as a writer, this feature was the longest and most researched I’d ever published. It was the product of travelling far to South Korea and Poland, 14 interviews, and a lot of writing and editing. The topic was fascinating to me to begin with, but I knew when I took on this assignment that it would be a challenging sell. However, I could not be happier with the result. Unearthing the mystery of how the World of Tanks came to be one of the most successful games in the world right under our noses without the majority of us noticing was great fun. Super interesting and insightful interviews, too.
MonteCristo on casting Overwatch: ‘Blizzard paid me more in two weeks than Riot has in five…’
First published November 10, 2016
This interview was shot at my very first BlizzCon, and my first event to cover with Yahoo Esports, whom at this point in time was a publication I had worked at for 2 weeks. I wasn’t sure what to expect from MonteCristo but prepared for the interview as I would any other. Thank you to Rod Breslau who answered my many questions beforehand. MonteCristo’s frank honesty and ability to articulate made this interview a very interesting one. I lost track of time throughout and our poor cameraman was apparently struggling towards the end! Still, I’m very proud of the end result. I hope you find it as interesting to watch as I did to conduct it.