The future's so bright...
I lived in New York City for ten years. While there, I was a carpenter, an off Broadway stage manager, a playwright, a theatre producer, an office temp, an administrative assistant and one helluva husband. But through it all, I played games. A lot.
When I discovered The Escapist in 2005, I said to myself, "Holy crap, these guys are changing the world." Like many, I saw the publication as a beacon of hope amid the turbulent seas of what games journalism used to be. They were writing about how games felt and were experienced by players, not just how good they looked. I wanted to write for The Escapist because, to me, it was the way of the future.
So I pitched an article and landed my first gig, appearing in Issue #13 with the story of how I squandered an opportunity to impress the famous playwright Edward Albee by playing Alpha Centauri when I should have been writing a play.
Five years later, I was given a different opportunity to more formally join the staff of The Escapist. The only problem was that I had to leave behind the city that had been my home, ditch some lifelong friends, and convince my wife that moving below the Mason-Dixon Line was somehow a good idea. None of this was easy.
Through it all, I repeated the following mantra: Change is good. Nothing good ever comes from doing the same tasks because it's comfortable or repeating something incessantly simply because "It works." I saw the future, and I took the leap, because I knew that my best days were ahead of me.
Many of those lessons can be mapped onto the gaming industry. Games must continue to look forward and prove that the best days are yet to come. In issue 252 of The Escapist, "The Way of The Future," we see just how bright that future can be. Jason Della Rocca explains that gaming is becoming so much a part of lives that soon the term "gamer" will be irrelevant. Eschewing the metaphor that gaming is somehow "coming of age," Brendan Main argues that gaming is already grown up. Alice Bonasio shows us how gaming can finally get the cultural recognition it craves and Allen Varney profiles one of gaming's most promising visionaries, Jane McGonigal.
A bit of a warning before you delve in: These future-looking articles are so bright, you better wear shades.