Today, theXBLIG officially turns one year old! Pay no attention to the fact that the first post on this site was a review for Birth Order, on May 26th, 2012. Officially, the site went ‘public’ on the 19th of June last year, with the review of Apple Jack 2. Between then and today, there’s been 175 reviews / articles posted, totaling 75,000+ views, with 1,243 comments (438 of which are mine, as I really love to hear / see myself talk). The most popular review, by far, has been for the original White Noise. The least-read post is the review for Guppy: Collects! 2, which to me is surprising, given some of the clunkers I’ve reviewed since starting the site.
It’s been a hell of a run so far! Had you told me a year ago the site would be where it sits today, I’d have said you were in need of a medical evaluation. My thoughts then on the future of this site were as follows— 20 to 30 views a day, and maybe Alan (from The Indie Ocean) would stop by and comment on a review here and there. I am beyond pleased to say that those prophecies went unfulfilled, as I’m pretty sure Alan would have tired from humoring me by now.
More important than the numbers though, is You, the person reading this. All the words I can throw on a page mean nothing if no one’s around to read them. So thank you, You, for coming back to this corner of the web and continuing to peruse my completely-unqualified opinions and suffer my long-winded rants. The comments section of this site has usually transitioned into a lukewarm cauldron of pop culture, movie quotes, and the like, but it’s honestly been the best part of the job, just kicking back and talking about games and life in general. Thanks for making it fun.
And though it goes without saying, I need to thank the community of writers and fellow review sites around me, not just for their help they’ve given me in the past, but for being incredibly awesome people that I remain truly honored to know and have the chance to interact with. I started up with Gear-Fish, working with some incredibly gifted gentlemen (Nate, Jason, and Zach) that wanted to change the world, or just take a stab at Gaming Journalism. Sadly, the site has gone into a deep slumber, but I owe theXBLIG and everything else to them. I will never forget that. A heartfelt thanks to my friends who remain in the field, including Catherine and the crew at Indie Gamer Chick, Alan from The Indie Ocean, Brandon (and crew) from The Indie Mine, and last but most certainly not least, Tristan (and crew) from Clearance Bin Review. I may be the only idiot dedicated solely to XBLIGs, but we’re all in this one together.
Another set of ‘Thanks’, a much larger set, goes out to all of the Xbox Live Indie Game Developers that I’ve corresponded with and talked to, mostly about their games, yes, but especially those that have kept in touch beyond the game. There’s too many to name (this is a good thing), and I’m sure I’d forget some in the process, so I won’t even try. Just know that I’m grateful for the conversations, your advice / encouragement, and the friendship. You are a talented bunch that deserve all the respect and success that is possible. Regardless of how this whole XBLIG thing pans out, it’s been a real pleasure knowing you all. I thank you, sincerely.
Ah, yes, time to wrap this up. I did want to keep it short. To tell you the truth, I went back and forth on how to start this, where to take it, and how to end it, the culmination of theXBLIG’s first year of internet life. This article was originally a much darker, negative piece. I’m glad the optimist side of me won out. Sure, there’s plenty of cause for concern (XBLIG slowly dying, being neglected on the Xbox One, itself an unmitigated disaster coming out of E3), and sure, there’s a very good chance that theXBLIG doesn’t live to see a second birthday (long story short: I preordered a PS4, not an Xbox One), but what the hell— it’s my party, and I say we celebrate. Today, we put aside all the future trouble and unanswered questions, and we do exactly what it is we all love to do; play videogames.
So consider me your fairy godfather (Marlon Brando with a wand and pink wings, if you insist on an image), gifting you the gift of game. Old-ish games, to be exact, as these are all the leftover codes from previous reviews that I have in my possession. No guarantees on their condition, however, as some may have already be claimed. I did my best to sort the good from the bad. Feel free to take any and all that you’d like, just be kind enough to leave a comment below, letting everyone else know which games are still in play. Enjoy, and thank you again for reading.
(UPDATE: New codes for STRACO: Ep. 1; see below)
Monster King (RPG)
Star Wings (Shooter)
Star Wings 2 (Shooter)
Null Battles (FPS)
STRACO: Episode One (Shooter)