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About
Myself:

I am a Ph. D. chemist from the University of California, Berkeley. I have been playing videogames since as long as I can remember! My past favorite games include Secret of Mana, TMNT: Turtles in Time, the Resident Evil series (Jill is SUCH as master of unlocking), FFVII, Smash Bros Melee, and many others.

I've definitely gone through phases in my gaming "career". I used to LOVE fighting games in the time of Tekken Tag and Marvel vs Capcom II (my favorite fighting game), but now I find myself drawn to the more story driven games, and very recently, the music games....:)

But....fighting games are making a comeback! SFIV! MvC3! BlazBlue! Beware everyone, Tactix has put a quarter on the screen and is challenging you for battle!


It was mere chance that brought me to Destructoid back in early 2007, and through it all I've stayed because of the great writing staff, a community that cares, and lots of new internet and IRL friends. Destructoid has changed my life. True story.


If you live in the SF Bay Area, check out the DtoidSanFrancisco C-blog and join the Google Group!

DtoidSanFrancisco

Check out the past installments of my DTOID COMMUNITY DISCUSSES! Series:

Part 1: DLC
Part 2: Achievements
Part 3: Gaming Journalism
Part 4: Next Next-Gen Consoles
Part 5: Retro Renaissance
Part 6: Games That Suck
Part 7: Educational Games
Part 8: Evolution of Gaming Music
Part 9: Gaming Merchandise
Part 10: Iconic Games
Part 11: DESTRUCTOID!
Part 12: GDC
Part 13: Videogame Movies
Part 14: Competitive Gaming
Part 15: Level Design
Part 16: Emulation and Game Modding
E3 Edition: Microsoft
E3 Edition: Nintendo
E3 Edition: Sony
Part 17: Triple A Titles
Part 18: Fighting Games
Part 19: Digital Distribution



Card courtesy of TheGHost


Rock Band tag courtesy of CutieHoney

Thanks guys!


Last but not least, Chad Concelmo and I are the same person. Go ahead and ask him. :P

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Following (48)  



Super thanks to you guys!

Just thought I'd share something with you guys. As you probably have heard, I filed my thesis yesterday. Well, in the acknowledgements I made sure to give thanks where it is due:

"I must spend some time thanking the Destructoid community. This website has provided a number of very supportive friendships that I consider as family. There is not enough space to list the many people who have touched my life, but special thanks must be given to Ben PerLee, Chris Healy, Andrew Wooster, Niero Gonzalez, and my family at “South van Awesome”. The support of my friends, both online and offline, was unparalleled and I cannot thank them enough for believing in me."

So there you go. Destructoid is now immortalized inside the walls of the UC Berkeley library from now until the end of time (whenever that may be). Thank you to each and every one of you who has touched my life with your friendship and support. Dtoid is the best! <3 <3 <3
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I was going to forgo writing a birthday post, since there are so many other things I need to be working on the graduate, but I thought I'd type a quick one out before bed. :P

I'm sure this sentiment is shared by many people, but Destructoid has changed my life. My world would have been a totally different place if it werent for being a part of this community. I remember way back in the day when I first stumbled onto the site and really enjoyed the humor and personality of this new gaming blog. For the longest time I was just a reader of the front page, who would dabble in the forums every so often.

I remember reading a forum post saying that Dexter345 was going to be visiting Berkeley, so I made a point in meeting him. He was an awesome guy to talk to, and around GDC 2-3 years ago he invited me to Dyson's GDC party. This was the first foray into a real-life Destructoid event that I was going to make, and I was pretty nervous. I'd never gone to a party where I was going to be surrounded by all strangers. Not only that, I was an avid listener of Retroforce Go! and the thought of going to Dyson's place was sort of a "OMG internet celebrity" moment.


My first blog post....little did I know what the future would bring!

As soon as I walked in, I knew that I found a second family. I chatted with Dyson about Phantasy Star, played Turtles in Time on a modded Dreamcast, and just had a great time with complete strangers. I also met Chad and Rev Anthony for the first time there, which for me was AMAZING!

I left that party with a longing to stay in touch with the people I met there, like Ben Perlee, Ceark, and others. So I started getting more involved with the website and jumped at the opportunity to go to PAX. This was definitely an eye opening experience, cause suddenly my family grew from a couple of people to at a house party to an entire community. My first PAX was like the catalyst that made me obsessed with being a larger part of the site.

Dtoid Community Discusses, DtoidSF, and everything that I have done and continue to do for the site is done because I knew I found the perfect place on the internet to call home. It's been a crazy juggling act this past year as I try to graduate from my grad school program and take on these extra responsibilities on the community management side of things, but it has totally been worth it.


DtoidSF is the family that I've always wanted away from home. <3


I'm sure I could have been a much harder working grad student #withoutDtoid, but I would not have been as happy as I am now. It was always my dream to be somewhat involved in the gaming industry world, and Dtoid has given me the chance to do that. I probably would never had been able to live my dream of going to E3 if it werent for Dtoid, or work hand in hand with my favorite publisher as a kid, Capcom, in organizing community events.


That's me in that helmet...I'll never forget that experience!

Thanks to you guys, I'm #livingthedream. And I could not have asked for a better group of people to share this with. I love you guys!
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Hey guys!

Destructoid is by far the most amazing community of gamers on the internet (I'm sort of biased :P), and one thing that makes us amazing is our willingness to meet in real life at events such as MAGfest and PAX. In several places around the world, however, Dtoid community members have organized together to form our illustrious Dtoid Community Groups, where NARPs are planned!

We currently have many regional groups is areas such as San Francisco and New York, and are starting new groups in Chicago, and even rebuilding groups in places like Toronto. That where you Florida and NCers come in!

There has already been established a Dtoid Florida and North Carolina, but due to IRL issues, we need someone to step up and take the reigns in organizing events there! Being a community group leader can be as much work as you make of it, but its completely rewarding to organize your fellow dtoiders at fun NARPs and meet the faces behind the avatars! So if you think you would like to take over the reigns of either group, let me know at jesse@destructoid.com!

Along the same lines, if you live in an area that doesn't have a community group yet, and feel that there are enough Dtoiders in the area to have NARPs, let me know as well!
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Welcome to the latest installment of Dtoid Community Discusses...the blog series where YOU the community mouth off about topics in the gaming industry! For this installment, I decided to ask a few of you what you thought of the recently aired VGA's on Spike TV. Its pretty much a consensus that the majority of the community here looks down unfavorably on these awards, but I wanted to have the chance to voice our concerns with it.

And with that, here is the topic as given to our panel, consisting of ScottyG, Toneman, Zserv, and Joseph Leray!

"The Spike TV Video Game Awards, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris took place this past Saturday. Like it or not, these awards seem to be the most visual representation to the mainstream media of what were the best of the best in gaming the past year. How do you guys feel about the games that were nominated for this years awards?

Another aspect of the awards ceremony is the EXCLUSIVE reveals that happen. We saw a couple of trailers for upcoming games such as Resistance 3, Portal 2, and GOTY 2011 Uncharted 3 (yes, with little gameplay shown this has already been said). How do you feel about the games that were revealed? Are you hyped for them?

Read on to find out what they thought!

Scotty G

Well I think we should kick this off with the most important issue: Olivia Munn's, in her very boobalicious dress, accidentally confirming MGS4 for 360 when she was being a complete bitch to NPH.

Oh, award show banter...

Jesse Cortez

Haha...

I love NPH...tons. And he has shown his hosting chops in the past hosting the Oscars. But from what I hear, the hosting was pretty bad. Was it cause of the writing, or did it seem NPH was just cashing it in Both?

Anyway, starting the conversation about the GOTY...I'm a loser and haven't played Red Dead Redemption, but I was really hoping Mass Effect 2 would win. I loved my time with that game, and thought it had SO much awesome going for it. I fell in love with the story and universe that the game took place in, and such, I thought it deserved awesome recognition for it. However, besides the games nominated, I recognized what wasn't on the list....things like Super Mario Galaxy 2 or Super Meat Boy, two games that I feel REALLY deserved to be on there.

Toneman

I haven't seen the full show yet, so for now I'll just comment on the reveals and awards.

As far as GOTY goes, I too think it should have gone to Mass Effect 2. Now I'm not saying Red Dead Redemption isn't a good game, I just wasn't a fan of it. Which is odd because I loved GTA4. Too me, RDR seemed like a new take on GTA that didn't quite work. That said, I can appreciate what Rockstar did, and the game oozes the highest quality of talent. On the other side, Mass Effect 2 seemed like a huge step in the right direction for Mass Effect. BioWare took most of the complaints that many people, myself included, had from the first game and tweaked them. The only real complaint that I heard from number too was that it was too much of a shooter, and not enough RPG. Of course, something like %70 of all players played soldier so if they though it was too shootery, that's probably why I imagine. When it's all said and done Mass Effect 2 did everything right for me, while Red Dead Redemption left me feeling less than satisfied.

The only two reveals that I really gave a shit about were Mass Effect 3 and Uncharted 3. I've basically had a perma-boner for both since the VGAs. I know that a lot of people are calling for new IPs and less sequels but as far as I'm concerned, if it's a sequel to an awesome game, particularly if it's a game with a fantastic story that needs continuation, then I'm all for sequels. What we don't need is sequels to crap games (Prototype 2) that really have no need for a sequel. Mass Effect 3 and Uncharted 3 both, I feel, deserve sequels and I welcome them with open arms. Let's make a metaphor out of it! It's like if you have sex with somebody, and they totally rock your world (Mass Effect 2), then why would you not want more of it? Contrary, if somebody is terrible in the sack (Protoype), the last thing you want is another go with them. Basically, I would fuck Mass Effect 3 if the hole in the disk was big enough.

Everybody uncomfortable now? Good.

ZServ

In terms of awards, I was a bit shocked to not see Fallout: New Vegas competing for best RPG along-side Mass Effect 2, to say the least. I was surprised to see Red Dead Redemption take home GOTY, as well. I was almost positive Black Ops would win just on popularity. Not complaining in the slightest, actually quite happy to see something besides Call of Duty take home the award. Best soundtrack I honestly feel Mass Effect 2 should've gotten, but whatever. Haters gonna hate. However, like you guys, I as well expected Mass Effect 2 to take home GOTY (had Black Ops lost). Color me surprised by it.

Does ANYONE know why they had My Cancerous Romance play? Because when that started I literally left the room. That shit was appalling.


We all pretty much love Mass Effect 2

ScottyG

It's Spike TV, which means they cater to the absolute lowest common denominator.

I'm happy for the most part with the winners, but I'm definitely disappointed with the categories. Of course you're going to have one for each platform and genre, but they really didn't go beyond that.

It seems weird that they'd separate individual and team sports games, but not have things like "best new ip", "funniest game", "best single scene", or "best character". One that really pissed me off was best graphics, because depending on how you look at it Kirby's Epic Yarn (along with other stylized games that deserved a nomination) either didn't stand a chance or trounced the other nominees. Would it have killed them to have a "best art style" as well, and maybe split up the multiplayer category into "cooperative" and "competitive"?

Also, Viacom is cracking down on any clips of the show from Youtube...Really Viacom? Really?

Jesse Cortez

Kirby's Epic Yarn is the best graphics of the forever.

Well there seems to be a consensus that Mass Effect 2 was totally deserved of its nomination and probably should have won its category. Another thing that I thought was robbed was Super Meat Boy...Limbo, while a very interesting game with a neat aesthetic, did not even come close to the amount of awesome that Super Meat Boy had. Along those lines, having a PSP game beat out the DS games for best handheld just goes to show me that the flashiness of a game (or as Jonathan Holmes says, the more "hollywood" the game is), the more of a chance to nab this very coveted award (/cue sarcasm)

How do you guys feel about the best independent and best handheld categories? Any games you feel deserved it more?

Toneman

I only really played 2 handheld games this year, Pokemon Soul Silver and MGS: Peace Walker. As much as I Pokemon, Metal Gear just blew me the hell away. The only thing I didn't like about Peace Walker was the PSP. I've never wanted two analogue sticks more in my whole life. Although I didn't play Ghosts of Sparta, I'm pretty sure I have a pretty good idea of what it's like. I'm assuming it's more of the same, whereas Peace Walker tried new things to help expand what game play can be like in a Metal Gear Solid game. And they succeeded might I add. I mean co-op Solid Snaking, who the fuck didn't think that was awesome? Couple that with all of the gadgets and weapons you could only use with a friend, and it's almost a whole new game. A whole new badass game. That, again, I would fuck.

Zserv

Recettear shouldve taken independent. So freaking good. Handheld, I'd say Persona 3 Portable. Fantastic game, and the first decent jrpg I've played in years.

Jesse Cortez

It's been great hearing your guys picks for the games you thought should have won!

As mentioned on Dtoid, while the ratings for the 18 year old demographic has gone up this year, in general, the views of the VGAs has steadily decreased from year to year. So I wonder, what do you think should be changed?

Say you are on the planning committee for this....would you just look at increasing what made more young men tune in (since that seems to be the audience), but possibly running the show into the ground in the process, or would you try to class the show up a bit and try to appeal to the general crowd more to try to boost viewers? How do you think the VGA's should be changed for the better?

Joseph Leray

Splitting hairs over which game should've won which awards seems like an exercise in futility: that's just, like, your opinion, man.

But, really, I kind of have to wonder about how useful the VGAs or any awards show is. I don't think I speak for the majority of people, but I get absolutely nothing out the Grammys or the Oscars or even the Man Booker prize.

And the greater point here is, I think, that most gamers don't care about where their games come from. I'm not talking about us or any Destructoid readers -- if you're reading a gaming blog, then you're already in a higher class of fandom than the majority of people that buy games.

(And I'm not trying to turn this into a "Games need to be culturally accepted!" because they already are -- Seth Schiessel reviews games for the New York Times for Christ's sakes.)

But, despite gaming's cultural penetration, the people being penetrated (uhh...) simply don't know or care who makes them. Gaming doesn't have any superstars, and until it does, no one is going to care about trying to parade them around on TV once a year.


The VGA's demographic....OMG BEER PONG

Toneman

I think the VGAs are hitting their demographic. I mean, you've got a video game award show on a channel for men, so it should be aimed at the 18 and over male gamer. However, they should be making it more for the core gamers and less for the, "OMG CALL OF DUTY RULES" frat boy gamers. I like tits and ass as much as the next guy but it'd be nice to see presenters who actually have a purpose for being on stage. They did good with people like Nathan Fillion who's actually done voice work in games and is someone I could believe is a gamer. Did the cast of It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia need to be there? Probably not. But that's showbiz I suppose.

ScottyG

Yeah, there are very little gaming celebrities or household names, which is terrible. More terrible even than Lex Luthor taking 40 cakes.

I think for gaming to continue to grow as a respected medium we need those names that are recognized like directors or writers are, and I applaud the efforts some take to go down that path. Make gamers maybe not care, but at least be able to recognize more names. As is all there is to offer is no different than you can get on nearly any gaming site.

Spike as a channel are pretty much hitting their target demographic with the show, but I for one am sick and tired of seeing marketing towards 18-35 year old males and would love to see the show on another network... preferably one that will stream the show online for those of us without cable.

Zserv

Honestly, I wouldn't mind if say, Jimmy Fallon were to host. He's able to do stuff professionally, well, while also being relative to core gamers such as ourselves. He's the kinda guy we need presenting these shows, but NPH was definitely a step in the right direction compared to last year. If we keep improving every year, maybe it'll stop being a mess eventually.

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Hope you enjoyed reading what your community had to say! This is where you, the community, come in!

If this is at all interesting to you, get involved! You can join the list of people who are under consideration to be part of the discussion at this google group, or if you just want to make suggestions about topics you'd like to see staff and community discuss, let me know in the comments below!
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Long time no post!

Alot has happened since ErbilT so graciously took over the DCD column for me. DtoidSF has gotten bigger, I took a greater role in planning stuff for Destructoid at PAX this past year, and I organized the Extra Life gaming stream as well as helped set up the growing Dtoid Live stream on Justin.tv!

I think I'm a little crazy for wanting to take up this mantle again, but the whole reason that I started these blogs long ago was that I really did LOVE reading what the community had to say about certain topics....and I'm missing it again.

So here goes! As of this edition, I'm going to try to do my best to start DCD back up and spur some awesome discussion between community members and staff for your reading enjoyment! To get in the swing of things, this edition was fairly simple...I just asked our DCD google group (more on that later) about how Black Friday treated them. Below is the exact prompt as given:

"Every year, Americans give thanks for the things they have during Thanksgiving...and then right away, not content with what they DO have, they incite riots to buy even more stuff during Black Friday. The best deals can be found during this time, as people start planning ahead and buying the things that they want to give as gifts for the holidays. Are you guys planning on taking part in Black Friday? Are there any specific deals you took advantage of? If Black Friday came and went, do you have and trampling old lady stories?"

Read on to find out what the Dtoid Community had to say!



Gunsage

To be honest, I didn't even participate in this Black Friday. Really, there was only one game I wanted and it's in the mail a la Amazon (Z.H.P. Unlosing Ranger vs. Darkdeath Evilman). My wife and I did consider going out for it considering we have two children, but decided we just didn't have enough combo weapons to fend off the mindless masses, let alone ingredients for painkillers (yes I've played through the game 10 times now and so it often melds with my reality).

I know I'm going to be the lame one here as I didn't even bother checking Amazon or Steam's sales, but to be honest, I just didn't have anything I really, REALLY wanted. Seriously, my kids are at the age I can get them basic Fisher Price stuff and they will WUV it. It's NEXT year I'm going to have to worry about!

Joshhest

I'm "nutty-homeless-guy-under-a-bridge-cheap", so this time of year is always interesting for me. Like Jesse, I hate the thought of actually standing in a cold, damp line waiting for $10 off of a game that I could wait a couple of months to get cheaper on Amazon. And then came Steam.

Now I can stay at home (working / earning money?) browsing through insane deals like $5 for five indie games, or $10 for the GOTY version of Batman, all in the comfort of my warm, warming Mega Man Snuggie.

But now the rubber really meets the road: my laptop can only play games circa 2000, so eventually I should probably get a computer to actually--oh, you know--play some of the games I have so lovingly bought on impulse...

MuddBstrd

I'm a poor grad student, so I'm always looking for deals to keep my gaming cheap and under budget. However, in a bit a paradox, this means I almost never participate in Black Friday. I usually have a couple of games in my backlog, so I can afford to wait for a game I've had my eye on to suddenly go on sale and snatch it up. (Protip: slickdeals.net is GREAT for this, especially because they watch Amazon and Steam game sales like a hawk.) This usually means that I will have actually already bought one or two games at a great price in the week or so before Black Friday rolls around as online retailers try to preempt brick-and-mortar stores.

For example, this year I didn't spend any money on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, but I did get two new games at great prices on Amazon the week before Black Friday as part of their 'Prelude to Black Friday' sale. I was able to get "Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep" and "Final Fantasy: 4 Heroes of Light" together for $35 total (free shipping and no taxes). Had I gotten these games at their regular price, I probably would have spent $90 by the time all was said and done with taxes and shipping.at a Gamestop.

Daxelman

I've always just wanted to watch the mayhem during a Black Friday event. Can't wait until next year, when the 3DS's go on sale. It will be intense.

Anyways, when I participate in Black Friday depends on what's on sale. I usually just go out and snag a bunch of shirts from Stores, I rarely buy video games on Black Friday, at least in stores.

Like Josh said above, Steam is the ultimate thing. I got BIT.TRIP BEAT for 5 bucks, and I could have picked up DiRT 2 for 5 bucks as well. I also just randomly bought one of the Indie Packs, and low and behold, Puzzle Agent was on there, and I didn't even know. It's great how Steam can bundle games up for real cheap; makes me feel like 5 dollars was spent wisely.

Amazon does a nice job of covering all my console purchases, although I usually just save up for the after Christmas Sales when I get a huge influx of money. The only time I bought a game on Black Friday in a store was a copy of Pokemon Emerald back when it first came out. It was a quarter, boxed and new at a local store. Best quarter ever spent.

I did really want to buy that MadCatz SFIV Tournament Stick for 29.99 on Cyber Monday though....

Joshhest

UPDATE: I lied. Just bought Bioshock 2 from Gamefly this morning. It was only $10--what was I supposed to do??? Understand this is technically Wednesday, but isn't Cyber Week a thing (at least for Walmart)? [Ed. note. HAHAHA! I knew you'd cave and buy something <3]


Joshhest caved and bought Bioshock 2 for $10. Wouldn't you?

ErbilT

I considered taking part in Black Friday this year. I tried justifying in a sense that since I have to drop off my girlfriend at work that night, I might as well stay awake and attempt to get my hands on a good deal.

Only two deals really caught my attention, which was a 1080p 40 inch LCD TV at Target for $400, and a free copy of Dance Central if you bough $25 worth of stuff at Old Navy. After I dropped my girlfriend off at the mall at 9pm, I drove to the nearest Target and noticed that there were tents set up outside. I don't know how long they have been there, but if you have to prepare for a store's opening by setting up a tent and camping out just to save a few dollars, I think I'll pass. That just takes way too much of my time that I could be devoting to other things. I'm sure those mods bring the worst out in people as well.

Ali D

Black Monday isn't a thing here in the UK, so I've not got anything to add to this one.

Yoj1mbo

This year's Black Friday was officially the one where I nor my wife ventured out and partook in the retail madness. It wasn't because we are allergic to deals, though I could certainly do without the claustrophobia of being enclosed with a large sum of strangers, no it was because for the first time I did all of my shopping online. Online retailers like Amazon just kinda make Black Friday null and void. When I can get the same prices and the majority of the time even better, what the hell is the point in going out trying not to get trampled on by crazy people all vying for the same thing the other two-hundred people behind them want?

So what notable items did I purchase worth bringing up? Here are a few I thought were pretty good deals:

-Lost: The Complete Collection.[Blu-ray] The pyramid one with the snazzy stuff in it. Price? $140.

-Mad Men Seasons 1-3.[Blu-ray] Through Twitter promotion, Amazon yet again came through. Price? $.9.99 each.

-Madcatz Street Fighter IV TE Arcade Fightstick Round 2. Price? 149.99. Yeah that's regular price but Gameshark.com had a sale of Buy One Get One FREE. Hell, yes.

That's just a small sample of the shit ton of stuff I got, I'm not even mentioning the mess load of videogames I got. Amazon is like crack to me now. I'm constantly sifting through it like a frugal prospector sifting for golden deals. With most online retailers offering free shipping too, I believe future Black Fridays will no longer lull me to go out in the freezing cold, wait in a line whose length is from here to Zimbabwe, and try not to snap with people pushing and shoving. Instead I think from now on I'll sleep in late, drink a White Russian with my wife, and dive into Thanksgiving leftovers content that all my shopping was done with just a click of a mouse while others are still freezing their asses off fighting for that no-brand name HDTV doorbuster deal (which they only have one or two on hand) that is being offered to get them in. Somehow knowing others retail shenanigans were taking place at the exact moment I was chilling at home with the family at home made it even more enjoyable.

JT Murphy

So, I'm in love with the hype of Black Friday. The chaos, the doorbuster deals, the satisfaction of getting out of the store with everything I wanted in five minutes while everyone else waits in line. What's more, it's been good to me: last year, I got my new Xbox 360 for $100 ($200 with a $100 gift card rebate), and that's been my video game fix ever since.

But unless you were looking for a TV this year, there wasn't a whole lot worth freezing for this year, especially with the online deals. My brother was looking for a Wii this year, and I found it for him- online, at the same $170 price that was offered in-store at Best Buy. No early morning, no cold.

As more and more shopping happens online, it seems like there's less and less reason to actually brave the crowds and the cold. The single best deal I found on Black Friday was actually on Xbox Live: 12 Creedence Clearwater Revival songs on Rock Band for $5.

There were years where I'd go out on Black Friday for the sole experience, of fighting through shoppers, nabbing quick deals, and generally just being out and about at 7 AM on a winter morning. This year, in light of the deals I found online, I didn't even have reason to bother. I'm a little disappointed in myself, honestly, and a little concerned that this "growing up" deal is affecting me a lot more than I'd imagined.

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Well, thats all the replies I got for this topic! How about you? What did you end up buying over the Black Friday sales?

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed reading what some of your fellow community members got this past month! Now...this is where you come in, and where I talk about where this series is going.

Since I'm starting this series back up, I'd love some NEW community members to get involved! The way this works is that I have a google group set up that you can join so that I have your email addresses. From there, I come up with a topic and send out the prompt to the people who have been chosen to be on that installment of DCD. Usually discussion occurs for about a week, at which point I compile the responses together in a blog much like this one.

Now, here is where the blog series is going. Starting with the next installment, DCD is upgrading to become a front page feature! I plan to include a mix of Dtoid staff and community talking about a topic that either I come up with, or you decide on!

If this is at all interesting to you, get involved! You can join the list of people who are under consideration to be part of the discussion at this google group, or if you just want to make suggestions about topics you'd like to see staff and community discuss, let me know in the comments below!

Until next time!
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<p>Think back to the last time you played<i> Rock Band</i>. Didn't you wish you could rock out to "More than a Feeling" in front of hundreds of people, instead of just your cat? Well, this week on December 9 at the DNA Lounge in San Francisco, gamers will get a chance to do just that. You'll be able to win fabulous prizes in a raffle and silent action too, all for a generous cause! And if you live in the area, you should definitely come out! <br /> <br /><a target="_blank" href="http://umloud.org/">Umloud</a> is a charity event organized by various members of the gaming industry, with the hope of raising lots of money for <a target="_blank" href="http://www.childsplaycharity.org/">Child's Play Charity</a>. Many Ultimate Band packages have been sold, which gives people a chance to perform their favorite <i>Rock Band</i> song on the DNA Lounge main stage, along with all star treatment such as a photo shoot and gaming swag. This year, one "Headliner" package was auctioned off to a group that calls themselves "Broasis." You can learn about their (hilarious) bro-story as well as more brotastic details of this event below. </p>



Even if you aren't one of the people performing, you can help the cause by showing up to DNA Lounge on December 9. For a small $10 donation at the door, you can watch Broasis and other entertaining acts perform with a full light and sound show.

Throughout the night, there will be a chance to buy raffle tickets for prizes including games and other awesome gaming stuff. I saw a small portion of the prizes to be given out, and it included a Mad Catz Marvel vs Capcom 2 TE Fight Stick, multiple copies of DJ Hero 2, Halo: Reach Legendary Edition, and even a Sega Genesis and a Sega CD! Some prizes are "too good" for a raffle, and will be auctioned off at a silent auction that will go on all night. Throughout this week, more information about prizes will be released on the Umloud blog, so keep checking out all the cool stuff to win!

This event is shaping up to be an awesome way to spend a Thursday night, all for the benefit of children (which is always awesome.) Even if you aren't in San Francisco, you can help out by donating $10 dollars on the main site, and checking out the live stream on December 9 for all the performances, courtesy of Justin.TV!

Members of DtoidSF are making plans to attend, so if you are in the area you should let us know on the e-mailer and join us! In fact, yours truly will be on the main stage at some point in the night, and you definitely don't want to miss that!

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