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VGLN.com Features >> article

The Lighthouse View issue #1: Opinions are like...
by Jolex Del Pilar

Friday, September 12 2003

The game industry isn't all glitz and glamour. Full of failure, plagerism, and outright redundancy, there's a whole lot of ugly. Luckily we're here to point it out each and everytime.

11:17pm, Thursday night, after a brisk 15 minute jog, it finally dawned on me. My opinion on the gaming industry is worth a couple of beans. Okay, maybe not earth shattering, but it's true. Maybe you've been to a random message board on the net, and read a frighteningly irrelevant post by 14 year old Alex Bishop who believes Halo is the best game ever and "ownz" every other shooter in existance. That's okay, because his opinion is worthless, at least when compared to my own, as are the opinions of most fan boys.

I looked at the site stats this morning, in the month of August, the site broke 600,000 page views and 70,000 uniques (goal is still 1,000,000). That might not seem like a lot compared to the older, larger sites, but it's quite an accomplishment for me and my staff. I remember starting the site at the tail-end of my freshman year in college, and it looked like utter crap. So much so that I have erased every single shred of evidence that I ever created such a mis-aligned mess of html code and scripting. Now days, the site actually means something to the industry, even if it's just a tinge. People actually appreciate what I and my staff write, and I enjoy that. The site's editorial content is featured on numerous company sites, and it's still a shock that my opinion is worth those proverbial beans I was speaking of earlier.

It is with the above in mind that I decided I'd add an opinion feature to the site, aptly named The Lighthouse View. Basically I intend to scan through what's happening in the industry during any given period and then give my "professional"(hehe) opinion on the ins and outs, happenings, etc, of the industry. I think of it as a way for myself and my staff to get out what we really think without having to sugar-editorial it like we do with most news and review items. Note: This will not become a BLOG. I despise blogs. How certain individuals can spout about their personal lives online for the enjoyment and mocking of others is beyond me. Okay, I admit it, I read them occasionally, but only for my personal amusement. I love reading about people having relationship problems, or how they woke up in the house of a random stranger, half-clothed, and sticky. It's especially more entertaining when it's someone you know, like an old high school or college chum. Thank you Xanga.

That being said, I've gotten many e-mails (three, one from mom...) asking about my personal credentials (and when I'll finally get a real job). I guess I owe the readers (and mom) that. In short, I'm a soon to be exiting senior from UC Berkeley, and was recently accepted to the Arts Institute of California, at San Francisco. I will be pursuing my second B.S at the "Institute" in Visual and Game Design/Programming at the #5 ranked program in the country (eat that Digipen!). I dearly love game design and want to make a career out of it, hence I've delayed my entry into the real world by a few more years to pursue more specialized education. I also enjoy talking to others about their theories and ideas on game design and its many inate, and sometimes not so obvious, intricacies.

That last paragraph has blog written all over it...

Now that that's done, I have to admit that this issue of The Lighthouse View won't have any actual gaming industry commentary from myself or staff. Instead I'd like to reserve this issue to thank certain individuals for their help and support in making the site what it is today.

Bender/Helper Impact - The best PR firm in the industry. When I first started the site, not many companies would even approach my site, or in most cases, respond to my inquiries on possibly working on coverage plans. Bender Helper and its staff were the only ones who would send me their widely circulated press releases. Sure, the stuff was posted on a few hundred other sites, but it was 90% of the site's content at the time and I appreciated it.

Sean Kauppinen - I've worked with Sean since he was a PR person over at 3DFX, the now defunct 3D hardware company that was sucked up by Nvidia. I've even known him pre-marriage/kid, and seen him go through a slight weight fluctuation between E3 shows (just kidding Sean!). Now that he's with Sony Online Entertainment, talk about major hook-ups. I can't say anything bad about the guy, a stand up act all-around. Here's hoping a position opens up at SCEA for him.

Shigeru Miyamoto - Okay, I've only met and talked with Shigeru one time in my life, for a brief moment at that. But let me make a few parallels. How many living physicist can claim to have talked to Albert Einstein or Isaac Newton? How many Economist have spoken to Adam Smith? I think my point is clearly given. Shigeru Miyamoto has redefined, and shaped what the gaming industry is. He is the cornerstone of console gaming, and was its primary creative fire for the past 2 decades. I rubbed shoulders with the guy at least one time in my life, and when I'm old and worn out in the industry, it'll still reverberate with me even then. A modern day Da Vinci, and I've actually spoken with him.




Above: Meeting the man himself.

God - Had to thank the big guy. In fact, I never got an opportunity to thank him on the website, until now. Big ups God, thanks for everything!

I promise to keep everything more on topic and focused next week, and believe me I have a lot to comment on that I've been itching to publicize. However, that's for another time and another day. Until next time, good day, and have a pleasant tommorow! (Origin = SNL)

--- Jolex Del Pilar

Jolex doesn't hate bloggers, he just despises their medium of choice. Tattoos are much cooler. E-mail him for a touch of friendly correspondence.
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