The darkness to every light, the shadow to every shine, the dusk to every dawn, the Luna to every Sol.
And vice versa.
I'm a Dutch law student who loves to game. I'm a Nintendo-fanboy at heart, but I don't feel that I'm blinded by that, at least not very often. I am also currently on the Cblog Recaps team for Thursdays, so if for some voyeuristic reason you want to know more about me, check out my weekly Shadeisms.
I'm obsessed with the Monolith Soft RPGs Xenoblade Chronicles and the Baten Kaitos series. I will not pass up the opportunity to mention them, ever, and I consider myself Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean's biggest fan. Finally, as is to be expected I'm super excited for the new WiiU "Xeno-" game!
The Wii is one of my favorite systems of all time, and my favorite games on this system include, but are most certainly not limited to;
Xenoblade Chronicles (see also: Baten Kaitos - Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean for GC)
Zelda: Twilight Princess / Skyward Sword
Super Mario Galaxy 2
Muramasa - The Demon Blade
Wario Land: Shake it!
and Metroid Prime Trilogy.
I love my WiiU as well, and even though there aren't that many games out for it right now, I'm having tons of fun with:
New Super Mario Bros. U
Mighty Switch Force: Hyper Drive Edition
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate
Apart from Nintendo, I'm a huge indie game enthousiast. Give me a game like Trine, VVVVVV, Sequence or Recettear, and you've made me a happy camper for sure. You can keep your shooters to yourself.
Favorite indie game round-up:
Trine (+ Trine 2)
Super Meat Boy
The Binding of Isaac
Dungeons of Dredmor
Mark of the Ninja
Cthulhu Saves the World
Recettear - An Item Shop's Tale
To The Moon
Orcs Must Die! 2
The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom
and many, many more!
Besides gaming itself, I like reading up on gaming-related news on my favorite website in the whole wide world: Destructoid. I love all the people here, and I'm glad that I get to be a part of this. Wouldn't know what to do without you!
Dear members of the Destructoid community.
As you may or may not recall, about one year ago you purchased your very own ShadeOfLight. The introductory blog dated from the 21st of January 2011, but the ShadeOfLight had already been active for several weeks before that. It had escaped our custody just a while before you actually bought it, and we apologize for any damage it may have caused during this time.
We of SoLcorp believe, based on our continued surveillance of the creature, that you have taken the suggestions we gave back then to heart. It seems that you have done very well in raising it and that it has found it's place here on the site. The ShadeOfLight itself also seems more than content to be here, and since we always have it's best interest in mind, we could not be happier to hear this.
We hope that the feeling is at least partially mutual.
We would like to remind you that the one year warranty is over, so SoLcorp can no longer be held accountable for anything the ShadeOfLight does anyway. It's your problem now, suckers!
But before we go and leave the creature to you permanently, it seems that the ShadeOfLight itself also has some things to say, and we will let it speak below.
So then, enough of that sillyness (that you will only understand if you've read my introduction all the way back in January, and probably not even then).
It seems that just about a year ago, I started visiting this wonderful little site of ours. It doesn't feel as long, that's for sure. I still remember how I came here in the first place. I used to go to IGN to get my gaming news, but they were slowly but surely getting worse. My favorite Nintendo editors left, only to be replaced by people who were just not quite as good. At one point though, IGN decided that I was no longer allowed to visit the US website. It immediately linked me to the UK version (based on my location in Europe, I'd wager), which....sucked. It just sucked. It hardly ever updated, the podcasts were scarce and simply not as good and all in all it just didn't give me the gaming news that I wanted. Surely I shifted sites. I wandered around for a bit, until I noticed at one point that I was increasingly often being linked to Destructoid. I had known for a while that this site existed, but never quite tried to get into it. That was bound to change. I favorited the 'Toid after some time, and quickly came to the conclusion that this site told me everything that I wanted to know. Moreover, it had pretty good original content, a blog section, and a very solid community too boot!
The rest is history. (which is an odd phrase, because everything else I just mentioned is history too....)
Looking back after one year, it is really astounding how much I benefited from becoming a regular toider, in both the material and immaterial sense.
Let's look at the material first. After I had been on the site for just about a month, the Steam Holiday Sale went up. "Wait, what does this have to do with Destructoid?", you ask? Hush, ye impatient one, and let me tell you!
I must admit, I never had any real interest in Steam, so I had previously skipped all news relating to it. I never wanted to take the time to get into it, because I just didn't think it was worth the effort. But here on Destructoid, I saw the error of my ways. When a news article went up showing all of the incredible Holiday deals, I couldn't resist. Super Meat Boy for three bucks, you say? Count me in!
I was an instant convert.
We are now a year later (I'm already psyched for next week), and I now have a Steam account filled with over 50 games (mostly indie ones), all of which I love. I also dragged a friend of mine with me, and we had a tons and tons of fun playing Magicka and Portal 2 together. Seriously though, Steam kicks ass, and I've got the 'Toid to thank for showing me that.
Related to that: Since coming to this site, I've been much better able to keep track of all sorts of interesting games that I wouldn't even have known existed otherwise. This netted me some really cool stuff over time. Again, especially indie games. Let's just take a couple of examples here.
Just last week we saw content related to Dustforce, which seems like a game that was made specifically with me in mind. Nice art, fast platforming gameplay, cute little concept? Done. The same goes for Owlboy; I'm still keeping track of that too.
Finally, this is a game that I also saw just a little while ago: Of Orcs and Men. I don't know who you are, person who came up with this game, or how you've managed to get into my mind, but I want you to know that I love you. Best concept for a game I've seen in a long time, and I probably would never have heard about it if it wasn't for Destructoid.
And how else but through Destructoid would I have known that there was an RPG out there starring Cthulhu? And that it was coming to Steam (see above) for practically free?
Speaking of free, I can't talk about everything I've gained from Destructoid without mentioning bbain's awesome batches of freeware indie games, can I? From Octodad, which was surprisingly fun(ny), to suteF, which is just all-round amazing, and everything in between, I've downloaded a lot of cool stuff over the past year thanks to that blog series, not to mention those of others.
"Game face" is appropriate in more ways than one
But all of that are just material gains. Ridiculously awesome material gains, but still. I feel that there are other benefits too, which certainly warrant a mention.
I feel like I've become part of a community that, for the most part, is just like I am. Nowhere else have I found a place where the people have such similar interests to mine. For example, when I mention the Baten Kaitos games in any other place, I get blank stares. If I do it here, I'll find at least a couple of people who know and love it too. The same goes for many other titles. I still remember the news story that finally confirmed that I was going to be able to play Xenoblade, just as I remember all the times before it where I couldn't stop mentioning it anywhere I went (and as you can see, I still do).
It's just very nice to be able to be a part of that. Now, I realize that I don't have the name recognition of people like Elsa or Occam's, but that was never the goal. I've earned at least some semblance of a sort of a place among this site and that's just great.
Finding an editor (even though he's not even aware that I exist, story of my life :P) who is both the most likable person ever and often seems to think pretty similar to me (I claim no connection between the two), was a strange thing, but also very welcome.
Holmes is kind of like Kirby; nobody in their right mind could possible hate either one.
I mean, just look at the little guys :D
The community blogs were also a great addition and I frankly didn't really expect that when I first joined the site. There's simply a lot of people here who have interesting stuff to say. And while I don't always agree with everyone, they certainly provide some food for thought. As a law student, my studies encourage me to always form opinions on issues, but only after assessing all of the facts and really thinking carefully about it.Giving your gut feelings is one thing, but really forming your opinion on a matter is quite something else.
That is something that I've often found myself doing while browsing through the blogs, partially to my own surprise. I would sometimes just sit down and say to myself: "Well, what do I think about this?" This could range from simple things like whether or not the FPS is too prevalent nowadays, to much more complex issues like female characterization in games.
I could sit for a long time, staring into nothingness, trying to from my opinion as best I could.
Spoilers: the results of this were mixed. :P
But there are two sides to the Cblogs, the reading part and the writing part. Now, I haven't written all that many blogs here, mostly due to time reasons, but it was nice to see that people seemed to like them when I did write one. They never went frontpage, but I would like to think that that is not the standard by which these things are judged.
What was nice is that several of my blog got topsauced (even the very first one, before I even knew what a 'topsauce' was), and while not the biggest achievement it was nice to see people appreciating what I wrote. It was particularly unexpected that a sappy story about an old strategy guide would resonate with multiple people. Finally, what was very nice was that one of my blogs caught the attention of a 'toider who had just started his own gaming website. He asked me to write original articles (/shameless plug) for his, admittedly new and relatively unknown, site and I've been enjoying that as well.
All in all though, it's amazing what can happen in one year if you find the right place to go, and it seems like Destructoid really is the right place for me. Between a new-found love for Steam, better game-coverage than I ever had and a pretty nice community to boot, 2011 has been pretty alright for me here.
That leaves only this left to say:
Good job and thank you, Destructoid, and I'll be happy to be here for another year (that is, if you'll have me :P).