My name is Dylan, I’m the Head Curator of the Retro Gaming Archive, and I’ve struggled with what I want the Archive to be. At first, I sought to construct an interactive museum, filled with information about literally all the games. Then I thought a video game blog similar to Stereogum might be interesting, a blog filled with one-of-a-kind features, news, and reviews. Then I wrote up a mission statement saying “All games are important, even the crappy ones, because they have stories to tell, etc.”
I do think an interactive museum would be a worthwhile endeavor. I do think a video game blog that’s set up like Stereogum would draw in millions of readers. I do think all games are important, to a greater or lesser degree. But at the end of the day, I just want to write about games. I want to write about them from my own point-of-view. I want to go on chronological gaming quests and explore entire gaming libraries. This is my wheelhouse. This is what I love to do, and have loved to do, since Questicle and Sega Does.
I know some people love exploring gaming history, all the details of why this developer made this game at that time, or how a game came to be behind-the-scenes. Gaming history is fascinating, so I understand why many content creators focus on it. But gaming history is secondary to the joy of writing for me. I’d rather construct an amusing paragraph that effectively conveys my wonder/frustration with the game, then regurgitate a historical fact that most readers already know. The latter anyone can do. The former only I can do.
So what is the Retro Gaming Archive now at this point? Right now, the Archive is my game writing outlet. I must play old games. I must review old games. I love chronological order, so I’m going in chronological order.
The two unfinished projects that I started a couple months ago – reviewing every version of Super Mario Bros. and reviewing every PS2 launch game – I’m placing on hold.
My focus now will be Nintendo is Great (reviewing every game ever released on a Nintendo system), Sega Does (reviewing every game ever released on a Sega system), and reworking the website. I’m aware that I’ve been super slacking on the Sega reviews, so I’ll be busting some of those out soon.
In 2021, we’ll hit the 35th anniversary of two beloved Nintendo franchises (The Legend of Zelda and Metroid) and the 30th anniversary of Sega’s one and only Sonic the Hedgehog. To celebrate, I may go ham and play/review all the games in these series. I don’t know, we’ll see.
I’m also open to having help. I know there are other writers/gamers out there who love exploring vast console libraries. If this sounds like you, shoot me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include a couple pieces that you have written. Serious inquiries only please.
I have no doubt that the Archive will expand its scope and reach in time. For now – for me – it’s time to play.