Summer of '96

For my work experience placement in secondary school, I worked for Future Publishing, Bath. For two weeks I was involved in the release of three Video Game magazines: TOTAL! (a bit like Nintendo Power in the States), Games Master (very popular, multi-platform playground reading) and the now seminal Edge magazine.

When I embarked on this placement in mid 1996, I remember being most excited about working for the younger publications that I had read as a kid.

But it was the outfit down stairs – the comparatively new Edge magazine – that was fast becoming the apple of Future’s eye, and the envy of every employee in the offices above.

In subsequent years; Edge would redefine game journalism in the western world with its unique branding and close relationship with industry insiders. While imitators are finally starting to take their piece of the pie, I take some pride that – even in my unspectacular role as unpaid errand boy – I was in the right place at the right time to experience this important transition over a decade ago.

It is almost with an authority, then, that I present you my own growing catalogue of Video Game critiques – written in retort to the poor standard of journalism that still persists in mainstream gaming, and inspired by the seismic shift in audience maturity Edge helped to accommodate.

Mine are articles which – prior to the inception of Prawnstar Productions – were never marked for exposure to the outside world.

They were instead produced to help crystallize my thoughts, and develop concepts of good game design and implementation.

But I am pleased to finally get them out in the open, and invite you to explore some of the factors I take into account when creating my own games.