So 2018 is winding down and I have procrastinated on making my first blog post for nearly six months now. I would like to blame it on being productive in other areas of my life and having so many others things to do but in the end it just comes down to sheer laziness. When I setup this account I didn’t know what I wanted to write about (and quite frankly I still don’t!) so I will just give you some highlights of my 2018.
My 2018 started out on a roll, I was living in my parents basement! Now that might be a surprise to some but I had a good reason for living there as a mid-30 year old. I had just sold my house and was in the process of finding a new one! I was really excited because I had been trying to move for over two years but due to issues with my home sale falling through in 2016 I wasn’t able to get out as quickly as I wanted. It was a big relief when I was able to get through closing and finally finish that chapter in my life. The reason I bring this story up is important, as I was living in my parents basement literally all of my games and systems were boxed up. I had little to do for entertainment during the week so after work I would just surf the web and watch others play games on twitch. One night I was in a Pete Dorr stream and he mentioned how he had hosted a relatively new streamer the night or two previous. I went back through the VOD and found that it was a streamer named WhatAboutBrunch. I went to his channel to check out what was going on and coincidentally he was streaming! I watched a stream or two without really participating in his chat and he played a lot of retro games that I had enjoyed during my childhood. I decided after just a few streams that I would subscribe to his channel (I am pretty sure I never even typed in his chat before I subbed so he was probably surprised by that). Thus started a sequence of events that would really shape the rest of my 2018.
I wasn’t new to the retro community and for the better part of a decade had some involvement with the largest PC Engine/Turbografx-16 forum. Around the same time that I discovered Brunch this forum that I participated in imploded because of infighting and negativity. The community splintered and it got really bad, so bad that I decided it was no longer fun or healthy for me to be there. I cut ties and left it behind. It is kind of sad because there are some great members there that I miss dearly but for my overall health and psyche it was for the best. It was tough at first but watching Brunch streams helped to heal the wounds that this community created. It was eye opening to see such positivity and fun being had with video games again! I started interacting with chat and organically networking with people who stopped by his streams and shared similar interests with my own. I met people like weeblespleen, themodgeek, BovineDevine, squeeeb, similarian and most importantly hungrygoriya.
If you are reading this you probably already know who hungryogriya is but if not she is an excellent retro streamer, youtuber, blogger, collector and overall wonderful human being. I wish I could remember my first interaction with hungrygoriya but for the first few months I was in Brunch’s stream I didn’t realize who she was or that she was a streamer herself (quite honestly I thought she was a guy up until I stumbled upon a link to her stream!). I still remember the first game she was playing on stream when I found her quite vividly too, it was Ultima IV on the Sega Master System. Normally I wouldn’t have stuck around since it was a RPG but she was playing the game on an actual Sega Master System! When I realized this I immediately got excited and we discussed the SMS a few times on and off during subsequent streams. If you didn’t know the Sega Master System has always held a special place in my gaming heart since it was the first console I ever owned as a kid. Not many people play or talk about the system so to find someone who loved and appreciated it as much as myself was so great!
I stuck around hungry’s streams and found out that we had some much in gaming common. I eventually joined her discord where I met some great people like Wally, matirirwin, Vobard and as time passed her community has exploded and even more awesome people have joined. The hungrygoriya community has been great, everyone is always so positive and helpful when it comes to games and just life in general. I wish I could name everyone there but it would just be silly! If I have ever interacted with you then you know who you are and thank you for being so awesome to me! I feel so comfortable hanging out with all of you that I even decided to share my own game collection and do some streaming of my own!
I am very shy by nature so for me to stream is not really in my comfort zone. After doing about a months worth of streams without a microphone I finally got up the courage to turn it on and talk back to the people who would stop by to chat with me. I have gotten more and more comfortable with it and it has helped a lot with my social anxieties. I now look forward to streaming and interacting with people instead of just hiding behind a keyboard with my words. I have been able to get back into gaming in a big way and keep myself accountable to playing my collection so it has been such a blast!
In closing I just want to give an extra special thanks to PeteDorr, WhatAboutBrunch and hungrygoriya. Without the chain of events between these three people I probably wouldn’t be in such a great place right now so thank you from the bottom of my heart! Being able to find a new home in real life and on the internet has made 2018 such a great year for me! Thank you for being a part of it and making it so memorable and I hope 2019 is even better!