“Leaving The Country” Message #2

May 6th, 2010

Despite sitting on a pile of completed, polished articles, I haven’t posted anything new here, aside from the previous post, for 2 weeks and that does kinda cut me up. This is all tied to my working overseas and because of it there’s going to be a major shake-up here, so allow me to explain.

Come the 11th, I will be leaving Australia to work in China, which means that I will have less time to spend on games and writing, particularly as I spend the first 2 months settling back in. I have therefore prepared a healthy stash of content which will be automatically uploaded to the site for as long as I can maintain it (I’m still writing and editing before I go). However, the majority of this content probably won’t be about games, but instead other media which I’ve been trying to clear off before my departure.

You see, DanielPrimed has been “harmonised” by the Chinese Communist Party’s firewall, which means that for some ungodly reason I will not be able to easily access my blog in mainland China. There are measures around this which I will try to capitalise on, however, it’s by no means a sure chance that I’ll be able to overcome the flaming wall. Because of the potential limitations in accessing my blog, I applied for—and was subsequently accepted into—an editorialist position at Kombo.com which will likely house the majority of my games writing in the near future, at least. I decided to chase up this position not just because of the firewall, but because I feel that the position will suit my new life overseas and my overall attitude towards games writing and the distribution of information.

I’ll be frank and say that I feel at ends with most of the intelligent weblog discussion on video games. Contemporary and falsely-defined “games criticism”, which avoids discussion of game design itself in lieu of surface-level commentary on issues surrounding—but rarely a part of—game design, is involuntarily asserting games as objects of low culture and that really irks me. I spend a decent amount of time and energy thinking about the ways games are constructed and I figure that it’s better to use this energy to contribute to the current state of wider video game conversation than a niche of people who I don’t always feel best represent analytical games writing. I don’t intend to condemn these people because the majority are great writers who dig up interesting subject matter and articulate themselves well; it’s just that we have different views on how to write about games and I don’t feel comfortable being a part of that space.

Writing for Kombo will allow me to reach a larger audience of people who are generally unaware of alternative forms of games writing and that’s pretty important. Of course, if you’ve read this website for some time, then you’ll know how I feel about the enthusiast press, and much of this stands true of Kombo. Fortunately, I’ve been familiar with this site for many years (since it was formerly Gamecube-Advanced) and I understand their continual desire to improve their editorial work which I admire and would like to contribute to. The writing load is also much less intense than my 2-day regime here and, of course, I avoid the firewall and still get maintain my way of writing.

I’m not sure what exactly this will mean for DanielPrimed, but I don’t think that there’s much need to worry. I will continue to post updates here on the articles I write for other sources, so really, nothing much will change bar the necessary slowing of content. I’m not exactly sure when my articles will go up on Kombo—they’ve been taking ages to set me up, maybe it won’t even happen at this rate!—but I will likely begin with a slew of Heavy Rain material which I am very pleased with. In anycase, I’ve set everything up for DanielPrimed to automatically update while I settle in overseas (going to visit friends before I move into an apartment), so—if I can jump to firewall to access it—follow Twitter and I’ll try to keep you updated on my new life overseas.