End of Freshman Year
I first stumbled upon Just Games Retro while screwing around in a 10th grade Computer Applications class. I had just finished a big spreadsheet project for Microsoft Excel, so I had some time to kill, and that afternoon, I was in the mood to read someone tear some terrible game apart, and lo and behold, after a quick Altavista search (that’s how I conducted business back then, don’t judge), there was a review for Bad Street Brawler, on this site I’d never heard of before. After plowing through that one, I figured I’d poke around to see what else they had lying around, and that afternoon, a JGR reader was born.
I’d always made a concerted effort to check in with JGR as often as possible, getting crazy excited to see a new game on the front page, like my own mini-Christmas every few weeks. I even remember the infamous “Turning in Our Badges” post, which was like a punch in the gut. I really liked what the guys were doing here, and seeing that it was ostensibly over was a bit of a downer. Yeah, I could find reviews on MobyGames, but it just wouldn’t be the same. Needless to say, I was more than a little excited when JGR made its triumphant return/conversion to WordPress.
Skip ahead a couple of years, to a late-night email asking if the site was looking for any new writers. After all, I liked classic games, I liked writing, and I’d always liked the site, so it seemed like it would’ve been a great fit, so I ended up sending in a review of Goldeneye, despite the fact there was no N64 section yet, nor were there any particular plans for one, and it was given the “thanks, but we’re not interested at the moment” treatment. A few months later, after what I’m sure were some intense discussions dragging into the wee hours of the night between J Man and Static, and some revisions on my end, the N64 section kicked off with the Goldeneye review on May 17th, 2013.
It’s now one year and a couple dozen reviews later, so I’d figure I’d take a quick timeout and thank everyone involved for making my first year at JGR such a tremendous experience. First off, obviously, I need to thank J Man and Static for giving me the opportunity and a little corner of the internet to sound off about the games we loved and hated, and for keeping the dream alive for over a decade despite never seeing one red cent for their troubles. Lesser hosts would’ve either sold out or packed it in by now.
Next, I have to give big ups to Rik and Stoo from Force For Good, our British partners in crime, for their insights and their opinions and for making sure that someone besides me actually read the cricket games’ reviews, and for not treating me like the annoying little brother who tags along that I am. Because of them, my ringtone is “Football” from PES 2008. Also have to slap hands with CarlMarksGuy for his neverending quest to find the ultimate 16-bit free roam experience, Mr. Creosote, VGJunk, ShadowAngel, and everyone else toiling away in the salt mines with us, hoping to pull out just a few nuggets of entertainment gold, as well as fellow JGR alumni Ubergeek and Cloudrulz for their contributions.
But most importantly, I need to thank you, the reader, for taking time out of your day to poke your head in and see what we’re up to. Every comment, every visit, every time you accidentally clicked our site in your browser history, that is the fuel it takes to keep the fires burning and the machine turning, and without you, none of us would be here today
It’s been an extremely fun first year for me here, getting to play all these old games, jotting my thoughts down, and especially seeing the feedback from you, the loyal (or even the occasional) reader, and I can only hope the next twelve months can match that. As a token of goodwill, then, I bring you a shamefully biased fanboy look at Super Metroid, and feel free to comment with any requests or other ideas you want to toss into the hopper, same retro time, same retro channel!