Mike Wuest's Profile - Destructoid

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I've been playing video games for over 20 years. Starting with the old Sears Colecovision package and slowly working my way up through the various systems. Being married and having responsibilities is really starting to cost me precious time playing video games...what the hell, man?

Favorite Games
1. Fallout 3
2. Resident Evil 4
3. Beyond Good and Evil
4. ICO
5. Link's Awakening DX

Currently Playing
1. Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords (XBLA)
2. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Xbox360)
3. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker (Gamecube)

3. Bioshock Infinite
4. Halo 4

Bam! Twitter!
Double Bam! Facebook!
Triple Bam! Steam!
Following (11)  

Hey everyone. Figured the ol' dtoid blog was as good a place as any to post this little quandary I'm having.

So...I'm thinking about trying to break into the industry, and was wondering what resources or advice any of you may have.

For some history; I'm currently a 28 year old higher education professional working at Florida State University in Event Planning and Space Reservations (LOOK AT THOSE TRANSFERABLE SKILLS! I'm such a catch) My problem is that I don't really see myself doing this for the rest of my life, and my recent dissatisfaction with my career (a field I've been in since I was 18) has made it obvious that I should probably try and pursue one of my passions, namely, working in the video game industry. (Other passion? Sports. Which is why I'm also thinking about pursuing a career in event planning at a sports venue, we'll see which of these 2 is more reasonable).

My problems and issues are many, and I'll try and outline them for you (so that you may mock me mercilessly):

1. No programming experience whatever.
2. No professional writing experience (my master's was in history, so I wrote CONSTANTLY, but I'm not sure it's the same thing, eh? Also, I've got some blog posts here...but I have no idea if my writing is any good )
3. I'm hesitant about the whole 'starting over' thing, especially considering that since I do have a job, I may be looking a gift horse in the mouth as it were. Jobs ain't exactly falling from the sky in this economy.
4. I'm getting married next May (woot!) and my fiancee is firmly dedicated to the idea of a higher education career, so I have to respect her career desires as well.
5. I literally do not know where to begin. Which is why I'm hoping all of you wonderful people will have ideas for me to plunder.

In a perfect world I could see myself doing PR or Production, but it seems that to even get a foot in the door I need basic programming skills or the ability to write well. What do you folks think? Is there any hope for me? Any advice or thoughts on the matter would be greatly appreciated. Thankfully, since I do work at a university, the option to take courses related to the specific skill-set required in the industry is available to me. Thanks in advance people.

Tonight's post is going to be relatively short as I have to post by midnight (or I turn back into a pumpkin). The topic of tonight's post may not touch directly upon playing co-op/competitively, but I think it counts; hopefully I can convince you as well.

Last year for the 'Blog-a-Day in May' Competition, I began the month by touching upon my favorite video games of all time. The first game I discussed was Fallout 3, and one of the reasons that I picked it as my favorite was because of the shared connection I had with my best friend Justin while we were playing the game.

Fallout 3, as I'm sure you're aware, is a single-player only game. How then, could I have had anything remotely resembling a co-op experience while playing the game? Simple. By telephone.

Justin and I spent the first month playing Fallout 3 talking on the phone. He lives in Orlando, and I'm in Tallahassee, so phone-calls were the most expedient way for us to have conversations. (And yes, I'm aware of parties on xbox live...I really don't remember why we didn't use that more often). And let me tell you something, we called each other all the time. For a game like Fallout 3, it was fascinating to see just how different each of our adventure's could be. We would talk all the time, whether it was sharing tips, asking advice, or figuring out the best way to navigate the Capitol Wastelands, we always had something to talk about in regards to Fallout. I remember one Saturday where we literally spent three hours on the phone as each of us navigated different sections of the subway system under Washington, D.C.

Now I know we weren't technically playing the game together, but I think that our phone conversations definitely shaped the way we approached the game itself. Not only that, but it was an excellent chance for two friends who don't see each other that often to catch up on things in our respective lives. It was quite the unexpected side-effect, but I cherish the time we spent discussing Fallout.

Anyway, I think that's all I'm going to post tonight. I originally had this grand plan for this post, but the lateness of the hour, as well as the amount of beer inside me are conspiring against the chances of this resembling anything close to a quality post.



So it seems that I may actually be able to pull off the hat-trick of posts I have in mind for this month's 'Monthly Musings'. That in and of itself is something of a small miracle...I suppose I should mention that I never promised that these would be be quality posts...you've been warned.

Yesterday I spoke on the benefits that co-op/comp. gaming can have when you play with someone actually in the room with you. Couch gaming makes shared experiences for you to talk about, and can serve to strengthen relationships. Today I'm going to discuss online co-op/comp. gaming and it's benefits/downfalls.

For tonight's post I'd like to focus on one recent game that I think can bring out some of the best and worst in a person, or team of players; Halo: Reach.

This game is incredible...but multiplayer will make you want to MURDER THE WORLD

I love Halo: Reach probably as much as I love Halo 3: ODST, which I realize makes me a heretic and probably makes the rest of this post suspect; do what you will. I just finally finished soloing the campaign on Legendary today, and I can say that from beginning to end, it was an incredibly satisfying experience. Not to mention the incredible value you get from the various multiplayer options included with the game...which brings me to my main point; playing online in Reach is going to do one of two things to you (possibly both); it's going to make you value your teammates as you strive together for a common goal...or it's going to make you DESPAIR FOR HUMANITY AND WISH FOR THE INEVITABLE APOCALYPSE WHEN THE EARTH CRASHES INTO THE SUN. So yeah...not a lot of middle ground there.

On the one hand, it really is a fantastic experience to have your team come from behind and snatch victory from the jaws of defeat during a particularly intense round of Team Slayer. Also, having a four-man squad wreck shop during a campaign run on Legendary is equally exhilarating. The communication and general camaraderie among a group of friends, or even complete strangers is an experience that can be unique, to say the least. And when something works well during an online session, you generally remember it; whether it's someone else added to your friend's list, or just a new tactic that you can use in the future, when a team works on a fundamental level, it's an enjoyable experience for all.


When it doesn't work, or worse yet, when you're dealing with assholes online...well, at least for me personally...I want to burn down the world. That's...that's reasonable...I think. It's not a unique experience by any stretch, we've all dealt with assholes in online games.

It's 2011...I don't...I don't really have to explain this to anyone...do I? Grandma?

Now don't get me wrong, I can be an absolutely relentless shit-talker. However, I try and hold myself to a higher-standing of shit-talking; no racism, no homophobic slurs, no sexism. I just try and break a person down piece by piece, destroying everything they've ever loved, and ruining any chance they'll ever have at a normal, functioning relationship with other members of humanity. See? It's TOTALLY different. Much better my way. Those other guys are the jerks; I'm trying to create TEACHABLE MOMENTS for these people. (And some people just recognized my higher education background).

Anyway, nothing brings down the mood of an online match quicker than unrelenting douche-baggery on the part of your opponents (or even teammates). Getting tea-bagged in an online match drives me to the point of irrational fury, so much so that I will spend the remainder of my match forgoing whatever objective we're supposed to be pursuing for the sake of making that person's match as miserable as possible, by any means necessary. And yes, God knows I realize how childish that makes me sound, but what am I supposed to do? Ignore them? Pffftt...what am I, Gandhi? When someone insults me in real life, I try my hardest to destroy them...online is no different. FICTIONAL ACTIVITIES TAKING PLACE WITH FICTIONAL CHARACTERS IN A FICTIONAL SETTING COUNT TOO, DAMMIT! Actually typing out that sentence made me realize how incredibly ridiculous the whole thing is, which I'm sure my fiancee will also point out...voluntarily. The point is though, is that I think most of us who engage in online play are guilty of this to some degree, we may not be the douchebags, but when crossed, we become the douchebags, no matter how we try to rationalize it. Does retribution make it right? Maybe, maybe not, but it certainly does justify our actions a little more easily.

I suppose my main point can be summed up, like so many ideas, by an original thought that I got from myself and no where else because no one thought of this before me:

See? My idea. I did it first. Me. Wil is actually short for Mike. True story.

Round 3 commences tomorrow.

Photo Photo Photo

So I have this grand idea that I'm going to post three separate blogs about May's 'Monthly Musings', the chances of that actually happening though? MINIMAL AT BEST.

However, on the off chance that I do actually follow through on this, I think I'd like to start out by addressing what I feel is one of the most important aspects of co-op/competitive gaming; playing with someone else in the room.

I'm going to give you a little personal background; I've been engaged for just over 4 weeks now, and one of the reasons that my fiancee (remember fellas, unless you're marrying a dude, you're gonna need to drop that extra 'e' on there) work so well together, besides the fact that she can tolerate me being a six year-old (mentally), is that we both love playing video games.

I've been playing video games for over 20 years now, and for me, whenever I dated someone, it was important that that person not only tolerate my...ahem...addiction, but also that they genuinely participate as well. If they couldn't handle that, well then...so long. Which is why I'm so lucky with Kelly (among other, more obvious reasons, the first of which being my remarkable lack of common sense).

For me, I could sit on the couch playing a single-player game, or something online on my 360 for hours at a time, no questions asked. But part of being in a committed relationship means that you don't get to do everything you want at the expense of your partner, and the fact that Kelly loves video games as well...well...that means I'm probably luckier than I deserve. It also means that we (as of right now) play two very awesome, yet very different games together; Castle Crashers and Portal 2.

This. This is her favorite thing in the ENTIRE game. We both probably have issues.

I'm going to be honest with you; our relationship changes depending on which game we're currently playing. With Castle Crashers, we're both working together towards a common goal, and it's rare for either of us to become irate with the other. As long as she has pooping deer and the ability to smack someone with a fish, she's happy. I'm happy too, happy that we can share something like this. At least...with Castle Crashers that is...when it comes to Portal 2...well...um...things are a little bit more...complicated. And by complicated I mean she's usually 2 seconds away from murdering me where I stand (totally my fault).

The point is, whether we're fighting or working together...or fighting when we're supposed to be working together, we're at least doing it TOGETHER. I think that's the most important part of playing video games with someone else present (and it doesn't have to be your significant other), you're doing something with somebody else. Listen, I can sit down and play Fallout 3 for 7 hours straight, but has that really done anything for me outside of personal gratification? Probably not. However, by playing games with my fiancee, at the very least, I could argue that I'm strengthening our relationship (even when she seems exasperated with me). We're communicating, we're problem-solving, and most importantly, we're sharing an experience that is particular to us. By playing these games together, we're making an active commitment to share a little bit of ourselves with each other, and really, I think that's one of the most fascinating aspects of gaming today; the shared experiences that you create with someone else.

I think that wraps up Part One of my Monthly Musing piece. Tomorrow I'd like to talk about online co-op/competitive gaming, so tune in tomorrow night to see if I actually stick to my guns.


Well, well, well...I can't believe it's been a year already. First off, I'd like to thank anyone who read/voted for last year's competition. It was fun to compete, and more fun to crush my opponents. So thanks for that. Also, sorry for not posting at all over the past year...unless I'm being forced to do this, I get pretty lazy, so that's on me. However, I have the following month to win you back with my delightful writing skills, and by 'delightful writing skills' I mean 'dick jokes.' So....there's that. Anyway, since this is the first day of the competition, we have to post the rules, as well as the competitor list, so here they are:

• A post must be made each week day in May, meaning weekends are not required, but may be bonus points later...every post should be made after 12:01 am and before 11:59 pm each day.
• In general, vacations, days off during the week, travel, etc. are not exemptions to blogging. If extenuating circumstances arise, we can discuss on a case by case basis.
• Everyone should take the time to read everyone else in order to make the voting better in the end.
• While themes are not required, they may be helpful bonus points.
• No word minimum.
• Be creative, show your personality, and love blogging!
• Voting will take place at the end of the month for individual category winners as well as the overall winner of the challenge.

Based on last year, here are the blogs:
• Kelly: http://jk-droplets.blogspot.com/
• Regina: http://pressesckeytoquit.blogspot.com/
• Billy: http://utvolbillyd.blogspot.com/
• Amber:http://ambbitious.blogspot.com/
• Susan: http://pocketsusan.blogspot.com/
• Mike: This is me, you're reading my blog RIGHT NOW.
• Adam: Hasn't sent it in yet.
• Aaron: http://alovitzmovies.blogspot.com/

So...I've got some competition standing in my way of being back-to-back champion, but it should be a fun month regardless. Anyway, feel free to peruse my offerings from last year...looking back on them...yeah, that's probably not my best effort, and God knows, the further on the contest went, the less I cared about individual posts. This year will probably be about the same, just to forewarn you; lots of effort at the front-end, filler in the back. That's the kind of quality hand-made craftsmanship you can expect from Mike Wuest this year. As for topics...I assume that I'll be sticking with video games once again. I see that May's 'Monthly Musing' deals with playing with someone else, so I may begin my offerings with that post tomorrow...after that, it's going to be a wild-card; I'm not nearly as prepared as I was last year. That being said, this serves as my intro piece, so until tomorrow....STFUAJPG. (Does anyone say that anymore? God, I am so incredibly old.)


PS - I promise these will get more entertaining...maybe...probably.

Mike Wuest
3:02 PM on 10.08.2010

Ma$e and Halo, goes together like PB and...something that's not jelly

Well, well, well. What's the haps, Dtoid? Sweet fancy Moses, it has been a while, hasn't it? Glad to see the place hasn't gone to crap in the four months my lazy butt hasn't posted. That's my bad, I dropped the ball on that one.

I'm sure you're all wondering who won that little 'Blog-A-Day-in-May' competition I was in. You ready for this? IT WAS ME, BABY! WOOOO! Not only did I win Best Overall, but I won Best Individual Blog Post (for Fatal Frame II, Games as Art, AND Red Dead Redemption Preview). AWESOME.

So...what's been going on, peeps? I haven't really done much since May...beat RDR (great single-player, horrendous MP) I've really been enjoying Reach...if only I didn't suck so much at it. Eagerly anticipating New Vegas. That game is going to be so awesome. That's pretty much all I'm willing to share at this point, although there may be some more in-depth blog posts in the future.

Looking forward to posting some more...definitely not one-a-day, but one-a-week shouldn't be too difficult for me to do. I say that knowing full well that I will slack off SO HARD.

Later kids.