Alasdair Duncan is that bearded, bespectacled Scotsman that covers PC gaming that is not Fraser Brown. A long time Destructoid community member and forum moderator, he covers adventure, puzzle, FPS and all kinds of games on the PC. Watch, as he adds more games to his Steam library with only the vaguest hope of ever playing most of his games.
Alasdair has been gaming since his mother bought a Commodore 64 back in the early 1980's. He adores Deus Ex, GTA Vice City, Team Fortress 2, Borderlands, Super Mario Brothers 3 and all those weird indie titles on Steam.
You can meet Alasdair at places like PAX where he tries to convince people he isn't a) drunk or b) Irish.
So now that Iíve gotten a couple of posts under my belt, I thought Iíd re-introduce myself, as of course youíre all wondering who that handsome, monochrome man is that scowling at you from the top of some PC news on the frontpage. In my past life I was known as Ali D, a nickname Iíve had since I was very young. In Scotland, almost everyone with the name Alasdair is called Ally, but since Internet communication is now more commonplace, most people would pronounce my nickname as ďthe people that aid you in a battleĒ D. At the start of Summer, I put myself forward for the PC internship, working under the steady gaze of Jordan Devore. Got a couple stories under my belt which feels good (one of which was linked to on Twitter by Ken Levine!!) and hopefully plenty more over the Summer.
Iíve been a community member since late 2007 when I first started doing some cblogs. After that I started getting stuck into the craziness that is the forums, to the point where Iím now one of the moderators serving under Uncle Mxy and MOM. Iím hoping to carry on cblogging after my internship is up and Iíve got a good idea for an ongoing series which Iíll have to get started on soon. Other Dtoid fun stuff has led me to PAX Prime 2010 and PAX East 2011 (where my official duty was being Hamzaís bag bitch) and hopefully PAX Prime 2011 (once I get some stuff sorted out).
I'm the guy with the beard.
So going back to the start, I first played videogames on my motherís Commodore 64.... I say ďplayedĒ but I was still fairly young and the only thing I could actually play was Paperboy. Getting to the end of the street and playing the obstacle course was one of gamingís early thrills. After that, my brother and I got an NES at Christmas to share between us. We both pooled all our money that weíd received and ended up with £40 to buy Super Mario Bros. 3 which has remained a firm favourite. I would play NES games round at my cousinís house every Friday night, when my parents went round to see my Aunt and Uncle. He had games like Mega Man and Castlevania which I tried my hardest to get into, but my gaming skills were still well below par.
Papa Burch is gonna smack Ikarus one!
After that, I never had a new console for almost ten years. My parents werenít happy for me or my brother to be playing videogames often, so we got sent out to play in the streets or go round to friendsí houses, where their parents would send us outside as well. In my later teenage years, parents were happier to have us in the house as it meant we werenít drinking alcohol or smoking, not realising that all me and my friends wanted to do was play videogames. So my experiences of the 16 and 32-bit eras were playing (usually mulitplayer) videogames at my friendsí houses and usually having my ass handed to me at Street Fighter 2, Goldeneye, Tekken or Super Mario Kart. So Iíve had this weird upbringing in which I can remember back to the 8-bit era and beyond, yet Iíve got very little hands on experience or connection to that time.
Me and the boss. I can confirm he has amazing hair. And is also one of the nicest people I've ever met.
Eventually, I left school and worked so I could earn some cash and get a Dreamcast, followed by an X-box and then a 360. At the same time, I was studying so I needed a computer, so I got my first desktop PC back in 1998, just in time for Half Life, MDK and Grim Fandango. I stuck with PC gaming as I always found games that I was enjoying on the PC, especially Deus Ex my all time favourite. Iím no PC-elitist, Iíve got a 360 so I can play some console exclusive titles and some multiplayer fun.
Mr Destructoid (aka Mikey) endorses Stevil. I'll get those pics posted one day buddy.
So if I was to list off my favourite games, they would be a rag-tag bunch. Deus Ex is the game thatís most defined how I look at gaming, especially freedom and open endedness in videogames. The Mass Effect franchise is pushing my sci-fi fan buttons every time I play it. GTA: Vice City does a great job of creating a specific time and place, with added Gary Numan. Team Fortress 2 has been my favourite multiplayer game, so much so Iíve had to kick the habit so I can actually complete some other games. Aside from those core titles, Super Mario Bros 3, Jet Set Radio, Fallout 3, Batman Arkham Asylum, Grim Fandango, Plants vs Zombies, Far Cry.... thereís plenty to mention. My taste in games is shockingly mainstream, but I do love the great wealth of indie titles on Steam.
In addition to being "bag bitch", I am to help Pico dish out massages to senior staff.
Outside of gaming Iíve been going to gigs for years (my first gig was R.E.M. at Stirling castle) seeing so many of my favourite bands. I love all types of music, but Iím drawn to down-tempo electronic stuff, Scottish indie rock, instrumental and post-rock, sample based hip hop and 80ís post punk. Check out my Last Fm profile on the right hand side to see if weíre compatible. I spend a fair amount of time reading both novels and comic books; my favourite authors are Grant Morrison, Warren Ellis, Simon Reynolds and William Gibson. Some of my other favourite things are Mongolian beef, watching Rangers FC, Addidas clothing, vodka, sleeping in and cultivating my facial hair.