Ben There, Dan That developer Dan Marshall led the dual life of a game journalist and an indie developer - and he thinks that all other game journalists should be forced to make games of their own.
When Dan Marshall was developing his first game, Gibbage, he told Gamasutra, he "wound up doing a 10-part series" for gaming mag PCZone. This experience, says Marshall, gave him a better perspective on how being a developer worked:
[I suddenly had] to design gameplay elements, making sound effects, and balancing weapons and stuff... As a gamer, I always assumed that sort of thing was relatively simple, so it was a fairly harsh lesson.
Off the back of those articles, I wound up doing some reviews for PCZone. It's really interesting, because as a developer I think you're slightly more understanding of the process involved, but as a gamer you know whether or not you're having a good time.
That experience, says Marshall, is one that he thinks every other journalist in the biz should go through. "I think all games journos should be forced to make a game somehow, see how they get on. It gives you a more rounded perspective."
I'd like to make a game, Dan. I don't know if I'd be any good at it... but it'd be cool.