Still, what you appreciate most when you move on are the people you’ve met along the way. This is an amazing industry filled with incredibly passionate people who truly love what they do. I love working in an environment where you can pop your head up and ask “What was the name of the inn in Bree where Frodo and his pals met Strider?” and at least a dozen people shout out “The Prancing Pony!” I love being part of an industry where outside of normal professional competition people are usually fans of each other’s work. I’ve sat at a table with a couple of Blizzard employees who worked on World of Warcraft and discussed how much fun The Lord of the Rings Online is. I’ve been to dinner with the guys from Relic where the conversation was all about Gears of War. I’ve argued politics at a Mongolian BBQ with the staff of G4, mocked IGN’s lack of StarCraft skills, and been mocked in return when I and my team of ringers lost a game of World in Conflict to a team of RTS noobs.
Most of all, I appreciate all the people involved with GameSpy editorial, both past and present. This was a crew that helped me channel my “loose cannon” energy into becoming a better writer and never once kept me from pursuing my passions. Indeed, my proudest moment at GameSpy was doing a week-long series on the history of Dungeons & Dragons that could never have happened had the entire editorial staff not pitched in and given me almost unlimited support. I had an idea that became a labor of love and a crew of people who love games as much as I do pitched in and helped me realize a dream. There are too many to name, but I can’t thank you enough.
So this is it. This is when I get on the helicopter like Hawkeye Pierce at the end of “MASH” and chopper off to a new gig. The irony, of course, is that I’m not actually going very far. As of Monday, May 4th, I’ll be part of the FilePlanet and Direct2Drive team helping to run the beta testing programs (I’ve seen the schedule of upcoming titles, you’re gonna want to get in on some of these). I’m nervous about the change and excited by the opportunity and grateful that this company still thinks I can contribute to building something great (see? I’ve still got them fooled!). I’ve also written up four new Angry Bear columns that will be running for the next month, so you haven’t quite gotten rid of me yet. What I’m not nervous about is the future of GameSpy. The site is moving in a bold new direction and while it’s still finding its sea legs, I think it’s off to a great start. I have unlimited confidence in the current editorial staff and I believe they will equal and eventually surpass whatever was done on this site in the past.
For me, this is so long, farewell and Amen. Thanks to all of you for reading me, arguing with me, sending me praise and criticism when it was warranted (and even when it wasn’t!) and welcoming me into your gaming world. It’s been a blast.