“Well, why don’t we do it? We have years of experience in communicating with gamers, connections all over the world and, between us all, more gaming paraphernalia than your average game store.”
The Bar Napkin Moment came at the end of yet another lively office discussion about gamers and gamer culture. You know, that conversation that inevitably offends one person, sends another two into tirades about the simultaneous injustice and importance of it all, and ends with “well, I know them when I see them.” This particular exchange was the “Who are gamers? Why is this culture not represented by media?” one.
Now, please allow me to answer the question that just popped into your heads. What about all the other gaming magazines and websites out there? Yes, there is a veritable smorgasbord of gaming news and game information and developer diaries out there. Some sites and magazines even do an absolutely fantastic job of providing these bits to the gaming masses. Providing this type of information is not what we seek to do with The Escapist.
The Escapist is an ambitious magazine, written, edited and styled with a fresh approach to communicating with gamers. We are the complement to the current gaming journalistic efforts. While the others give you up-to-the-second news coverage, we give you broad looks at news over time, discussing trends and proffering glimpses into the future. While the others provide previews and reviews of the next big thing, we give you a taste of the Cinderella game that might just steal the spotlight, plus a look at why. And while others ask developers about their latest projects, we delve into the masterminds’ thoughts and histories to find out what makes them tick.
The content covered in The Escapist is centered on a weekly theme. Both Tuesday’s main publish and the weekend extra, Casual Friday, will revolve around an issue or event important to gamers. Through a lot of questions and research, we’ve determined topics in the forefront of gamers’ minds. You will find these topics, and others you never knew you were interested in, somewhere on our editorial calendar. Planned topics range from player created content to social politics in and around games to one-hit wonders and the people behind them.
In order to achieve this level of coverage on a weekly basis, we have amassed an amazing group of writers, editors and thinkers with decades of collective experience in journalism and gaming. We’ve tapped everyone from game designers to prolific gaming journalists and well-known digerati to jump on board with us. I have been proud to work with this cast of players over the last several months, from the inception of The Escapist, and look forward to continued camaraderie over time.
Seeing The Escapist come to fruition has been rewarding, not just professionally, but personally, as a gamer. Gamers’ numbers have been quietly growing over the last few decades. As our ranks have grown, our relevance as a population segment has grown. Our culture has become a recognizable force in shaping our society. And yet, there is no medium through which our matured culture is represented… until now.
To celebrate our new validation as a distinct culture, we have created the first issue of The Escapist, centered around the impact gaming has had, and continues to have, on our society. In his piece, Kieron Gillen examines games as both art and simulation, showing how gaming is poised to be the most exciting entertainment medium of the 21st century. Tycho Brahe treats us to a few snapshots into his past, highlighting moments of realization that games are not just the small, secret pastime we shared in yesteryear. A word of caution for plunging headlong into the mainstream is offered by John Tynes in his monthly column “The Contrarian.” These features and more are the substance of the next few pages of The Escapist, Issue 1: Gaming Uber Alles.
Welcome to The Escapist! Enjoy!