There is nothing quite like reading your blog’s name as a nominee in a great author’s award post. I am flattered to have been nominated twice recently for the Liebster award by benez256 of I Heart Old Games and Mr. Teatime of Critical Teatime, as well as for the Blogger Recognition Award by Mr. Panda of Mr. Panda’s Video Game Reviews!
The Liebster Award
I Heart Old Games is one of the first blogs I came across after joining this site and I was thrilled to find it. The reviews there are insightful and numerous, so there’s a little something for everyone. The entries on Critical Teatime combine two of my personal favourite things: tea and gaming. As a bit of a side note, with this having been one of the hottest summers on record, I’m addicted to making and drinking copious amounts of iced tea these days. I also have at least one cup of hot tea day to help me get through the cold Canadian winters here. The author of Critical Teatime also creates excellent content, reviewing all types and kinds of games with a fresh perspective. Thank you both for thinking of my blog and putting it out there for others to find. I’m very grateful!
The Liebster award demands that I respond to questions posed by those that have nominated me. I will start with the questions from I Heart Old Games since I was nominated there first.
- Question out of the blue: 3*2+6(5*7)/4=?
The answer is 58.5. The BEDMAS rules are strong with this one.
- PC or Consolle? Why?
I will admit starting out gaming on PC, but over the years I’ve gravitated toward console gaming more and more. Truthfully, we had an awful family PC growing up which was a pain when trying to run games like Curse of Monkey Island and King’s Quest VI, so I depended on my more reliable consoles to get me my gaming fix. My boyfriend built me a PC last Christmas, so I finally have a PC that’ll run modern games. Hooray!
- What is the last game you played?
The last game I played was Neo Turf Masters. I’m a little addicted. Other than that, I’ve been playing through Earthbound for the first time.
- Coca-Cola or Pepsi-Cola
I’m definitely a Pepsi fan. I find Coke too sweet.
- Which is you favourte video games character?
Vivi from FFIX. I always found him to be incredibly relatable and deep. He also emanates a lot of my inner fears outwardly, so I felt a connection with him.
- Which is the brand name of your smartphone?
I have a Samsung Galaxy.
- In which historical age would you like to live? Maybe only for a couple of days…
I think I’d like to live in a time period with good hygiene. Nothing grosses me out more than looking at old paintings and photographs of people from the past few centuries and thinking about how they rarely bathed.
- I reeeeally love sauces, dips and dressings. What is your favourite?
Ohhhhh this one is a hard one. I’m a huge fan of these things as well, but I have to say that there’s definitely a place in my heart for olive tapenade. The first time I made it was with green/kalamata olives, feta cheese and some capers for good measure. My heart really wants to say a seven-layer dip so that I don’t have to choose just one, though.
- Which X-Men you think you could be?
I think Beast. I’m a huge fan of the sciences and really admire people that contribute to the field on a regular basis.
- Favourite song of the Eighties?
I don’t know that I could narrow it down! I will have to be a bit broad here and choose 80s ballads. Some of my fondest memories of 80s music comes from (don’t laugh!) a Chipmunks and Chipettes album called Born to Rock from my childhood. Always on My Mind was one of my favourites (I am currently rediscovering that version as I write)!
- Where you will spend your next holidays?
I’m really interested in travelling within Canada. There’s so, so much to see here, and I feel like I’ve barely seen any of it. I’m hoping to get out to the Maritimes at some time in the near future.
And now the questions from Mr. Teatime! I take up your call as a combatant!
- What game melts your cold critic heart? Meaning a game you know is flawed and has issues, but you cannot dislike it and will defend it until the end of time.
The Lion King for the Sega Genesis. People seem to have a strong hatred for this game because of its controls and perceived difficulty. I feel that with practice, any game can be mastered. I’ve had this one since youth and loved the movie/soundtrack, so the game was a natural extension for me. I didn’t see or feel the flaws until I read other people’s thoughts about them. I can get through the game even now without much trouble. I honestly don’t know what all the fuss is about!
- What was, in your opinion, the greatest invention in the video game market? This can be hardware, mechanics, and engines, anything that revolutionized gaming for you.
Definitely the Game Boy Player/Super Game Boy. I love the idea of compatibility between consoles, and especially love the option of putting handheld games onto a big screen. As I get older, I can’t handle staring down at my lap for hours on end and much prefer being relaxed on my couch staring at a television or monitor. I actually owned a Game Boy Player before I owned a GameCube! That’s how excited I was when I found out about it!
- What game was your first addiction? Not just a game you would play, but a game that stuck with you and you could not wait to get back to, and you put hours upon hours into it.
The first game I got completely immersed in was Final Fantasy X. For my 16th birthday, I got a PS2 and FFX. It was my first RPG experience. After hearing the intro music and getting sucked into the story and the gameplay, I was hooked. I put over 100 hours into that game, maxed out everything I could, and did my best to complete the entire game without a guide or consulting online (with the exception of the ultimate weapons, of course.) I still put it back on sometimes and beat the final boss just to cry at that ending again. Sigh.
- Did a game ever punch you in the guts (metaphorically of course, although I’d love to hear any literal cases)? Meaning a moment (can also be an ending) that made you feel sick/bad/sad/lifeless.
The character of Vivi from Final Fantasy IX was one that really resonated with me. In his character, I saw a lot of my own personal fears about mortality and how we live our lives. Because I connected strongly with Vivi, the ending of FFIX shoved me to the ground and kicked me in the stomach repeatedly (metaphorically, unfortunately… sorry Mr. Teatime… I wish I could give an example of a physical assault-by-game here, but alas…). I won’t spoil it for anyone who hasn’t played the game, but if you’ve finished it, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. I couldn’t stop crying for an hour after I finished it.
- What abstract concept needs a playable version to better understand it? Can we make people understand what depression is like by letting them play it, for instance?
I think there’s a lot of well-intentioned possibilities here for general public education on topics like mental illnesses, but I feel that there are limitations in this because everyone experiences mental illness uniquely. There might be some merit in playing through someone’s individual experience, though. I’ve been seeing more and more videos online lately that try to depict what it’s like to have some form of physical/mental illness or limitation like being autistic, being visually impaired or suffering from anxiety, and they’re quite effective for an educational campaign. It’d be nice to see that type of awareness-boosting being done using video games as a medium.
- What was the best soundtrack-visual-gameplay combination moment in a game for you? A moment where music, gameplay, and visuals amplified each other to new heights.
I’d have to say the final boss fight of Final Fantasy IV did this for me. There is no song that gets me more pumped up than the one played during that final fight. The cutscenes leading up to it are also very moving, and the way that the game forces you to really work to win is an excellent challenge for the end of an excellent game.
- Which sequence would you have loved to play, but sadly it was only a cutscene? Keep in mind that the sequence should also be playable, theoretically at least, within the boundaries of the game.
I was a little disappointed at lots of the quick time events in Final Fantasy IX. I loved lots of the characters in that game and though lots of the QTEs kept me up to speed on what the peripheral characters were up to at times that they were separated from the main party, it would’ve been nice to get to take over various characters at certain points.
- What was the best and worst line of dialogue in a video game for you? Can also be a piece of a conversation.
This is a hard one to answer since I don’t really seem to retain quotes very well from any medium. I’m constantly misquoting shows and movies. I found a lot of the banter in Undertale to be very charming, especially some of the cell phone calls that you can have with different characters in the game. I won’t spoil any more in case anyone hasn’t played it, but a lot of it is great at developing each character. One of my favourite songs from a game that is technically a piece of conversation is “A Pirate I was Meant to Be” in The Curse of Monkey Island. So funny!
The worst dialogue in a video game would probably have to come from Parasite Eve. I really didn’t enjoy the game as a whole, and the science in the game was just awful. I couldn’t get into it at all.
- A game you would force upon every person to finish, because it would change their life?
Definitely Undertale. I had some serious moments of reflection while playing various runs of the game, and it caused me to call a lot of things into question that I hadn’t previously contemplated. It has definitely affected the way I look at certain aspects of video games.
- Who is one of the best voice actors in video games for you, plus the performance that sold you on his/her talent?
I really, really love Dominic Armato. He does Guybrush Threepwood in the Monkey Island series, and his delivery is always spot on. If they ever did a Monkey Island game without him, I wouldn’t play it. It just wouldn’t be the same. I suppose the performance that sold me on him was in Curse since that was the first Monkey Island game I played. I fell in love with the humour.
- Are video games art for you and why / why not?
Video games are definitely art. It doesn’t seem to matter what medium they’re on, they’re always beautiful to me (awwww!). I know that oozes with cheese more than an exploded microwaved pizza pocket, but I do truly feel that way. I’m not talented at all in the visual arts, so whether it’s 8-bit or high definition graphics, I’m always in awe of what people have created. I especially have an appreciation for the music in games. Game music is what gets stuck in my head the most often, and rightfully so!
I am being lazy tonight and have been trying to think up new questions for a while. None are coming to me, so I will just be lazy and recycle the questions from my last nomination. I don’t follow many blogs yet and don’t want to re-nominate anyone I nominated last time or below for the Blogger Recognition Award, so I will play it safe and mention three blogs here I’ve been spending a lot of time perusing these days. You are now my nominees!
- Kuribo of NintendoFigures.com – An excellent blog that focuses on video game figures. I’ve actually been eyeballing Amiibo for the first time since starting to read this blog!
- Peachybaws of Peachy Plays – A nice place for thoughts and insights into games, as well as some solid reviews.
- Van Rockingham of Games Revisited – A recent follow on my part with a huge archive of reviews to check out. I’m looking forward to it!
Here are your questions!
- What fictional character have you related to most?
- Do you think human life is possible on Mars? Why or why not?
- Do you keep indoor plants? If so, what kind?
- What’s your favourite campfire food?
- What new or old animated television show was/is your favourite?
- What’s the most exciting thing you’ve ever found at a flea market or thrift store?
- What food dish do you consider to be your best work?
- Do you have any interesting or funny stories about online gaming with strangers?
- What’s the first console you personally bought new?
- If you could acquire a skill with no effort, what would it be?
- What is your favourite Arnold Schwarzenegger movie?
Blogger Recognition Award
A huge thank you is due to here to Mr. Panda at Mr. Panda’s Video Game Reviews. I don’t have enough words to express how genuinely insightful and interesting the content is on Mr. Panda’s blog. I’ve never felt more welcome on an internet page than I do there. I cannot thank him enough for his comments and support over the last few months as I’ve gotten my blog rolling. For anyone that does not follow Mr. Panda’s site, it’s definitely worth a look-see! You will not be disappointed!
Now for the rules of the award:
- Thank the blogger that nominated you.
- Attach the award to the post.
- Give a brief story of how your blog started.
- Give a piece of advice or two to new bloggers.
- Select 5 other bloggers you want to give the award to.
The Beginnings of hungrygoriya
I’ve only been at this blogging thing since April of this year. It still all feels very new to me, and thankfully it hasn’t started to feel like work at all! I think in part it’s the lovely community here that makes writing things down feel more purposeful than just keeping a journal of sorts for myself. There were a few motivating factors for me when starting up the blog. The first was something I think many people experience when they start getting older: isolation. I moved away from my family and friends five years ago and started to feel very disconnected from many people that I had had lifelong friendships with. The people I have gotten to know in this new city are all older than me, have families, and generally have very different priorities and hobbies than I do. Other than my lovely boyfriend, much of my love and passion for video games and collecting them seemed to fall on deaf ears. I was desperately looking to connect with other people that shared a love of video games and gaming. I love reading reviews of games, but there seemed to be a gap on the topic of retro game hunting. I love the thrill of finding games in the wild and really wanted to share that experience with others. My first really amazing find was in April, and sure enough, that’s when the blog was born!
Advice for New Blogger Folks
I don’t know that I’m seasoned enough at this to be doling out advice, but I guess I have made a couple of observations in my short time on this site and in my years on the internet to share the following tidbits.
- I would say that to have a good blog, you don’t need to update on a regimented schedule for people to like your content. I have read/watched many different online personalities that pump out as much as they can, and sometimes it starts to feel tired. Whether it’s videos or blog entries, having fewer quality pieces to me is far better than having many that are slapped together on short notice. I can only update as often as I find something good enough to write about. I sometimes feel like I should be posting more often, but I like filling that small niche and focusing on that. If I wanted to review games, I’d likely start a second blog altogether!
- Another thing I think is important is to stay focused. For people wanting to make a living doing this, I think there’s a lot of expectation to constantly be reaching out to a new audience by expanding and diversifying the blog content. It’s fine to diversify, but only if you want to and not because you feel you have to. Growing as you write over time may see you go in a different direction than you’re going now, but that doesn’t mean that you have to be in any rush to get there.
Nominations for the Award
As much as I’d love to bounce back the nomination to Mr. Panda, I will try to follow the rules for this award and nominate new people! Also, because I was being a bit of a pain about following the rules for the Liebster Award above, I will make a 6th nomination here!
- Shelby Steiner of Falcon Reviews – This site is packed with great entries from opinions to critical reviews of games.
- Mr. Teatime of Critical Teatime – Tea and games are my favourite things, and I’m sure you’ll love it over here as much as I do.
- VeryVery Gaming – There are some very insightful thoughts on some excellent games on this particular blog that are a great read!
- pine717 of The Maximum Utmost – This was the first blog I followed, and it has some of the best essay-style reviews I’ve ever read.
- I Played the Game – There’s a sense of humour in the reviews and thoughts on this site that are right up my alley!
- Astro Adam of Video Games Nebula – This is a blog not quite like any other I’ve chanced upon with a story-like approach to the world of gaming.
And there you all have it! A nice long read to get to know me a little more, and for me to pass the love along to some other great blogs. If you want to see all the blogs I follow though, there’s a growing list on my blog page. Click away… you never know what you might stumble upon!
Again, thank you so, so very much to my nominators and to all of you that continue to read my thoughts and experiences while hunting for retro games. It’s truly a pleasure sharing this hobby with all of you!