Meet Josh: He’s playing a different game everyday for one year

14 Feb

the noyse my year of gaming

The title sounds weird? Yup, for us too. So when we heard about Josh and his unusual project we reached him for a little interview. We are not going to tell you more, because everything you want to know is writter below.

1) Please introduce yourself (include as many details about you as you want/can)
My name is Josh Brown, aka The Noyse. While it is my website’s name, it has become more of a nickname for me over the years. I even have it tattooed on me, as weird as that sounds. I’ve even started contributing my middle initial in my name, “N”, to standing for “Noyse.” I live in Vancouver, Washington. I am a father of three amazing kids and happily married. I work full time, and not in any kind of job that involves the gaming industry or writing at all. I have a background in journalism, but it never panned out for me as I rebelled against the mainstream industry of journalism in college and never finished my degree. I have many hobbies, such as being a huge sports nerd and making custom cakes (like on the TV show), but more importantly to this interview, I am a gamer. I have been playing games since I was 4 or 5 years old with the original NES. Here I am now, and I still love video games, and hope I always do.

2) What “My Year Of Gaming” project is about?
My Year of Gaming project is my attempt to play a new, different game each day, every day, for an entire year, and then to blog about each game I play. I’m not doing full reviews, but rather impressions, feelings, memories and sometimes reviews – basically, trying to utilize many different journalistic styles of writing to keep each blog post fresh and different. If every post consisted of “I played this game, this is what I thought, blah blah blah…”, no one would read more than a week. So I try to do something different with each game. Also, I am not FINISHING every game I play, although I have finished a few (mainly the old-school retro games). Another thing to note is that these games that I write about aren’t the ONLY games I am playing, as I tend to play several games a day, especially new games I get that I am trying to beat.

3) We know you don’t have a particular reason for doing this, but how it started?
Well, a couple of years ago I tossed the idea around of doing this, but couldn’t pull the trigger then. Going back to November last year, I thought about the idea some more. I looked ahead at 2013 and it struck me for how awesome this year might be for the gaming industry, and if I was going to do this project, 2013 was going to be the year. With TONS of amazing, triple-A titles scheduled to be released, along with the Wii U gaining steam (hopefully!), and possibly new Playstation and Xbox consoles coming out this Fall, what better year than this one? Also, I finally was able to admit to myself that I have probably have ADD, especially when it comes to games, as I jump back and forth between games constantly, usually having several games going at once. So instead of trying to “cure” the ADD, I decided to glorify it, for the sake of doing something really interesting, really fun and something I hadn’t heard of or seen anyone else doing. I’ve always wanted to find my niche doing something unique, and this was my chance.

4) The project sounds pretty insane, how much strong is your commitment to this?
Honestly, at first, I was skeptical it was going to last more than a week. I get bored easily (ADD!), and this kind of commitment screamed “failure due to boredom.” But with my format that I established early, boredom wasn’t going to be an issue. I have had several different online projects over the years, with a successful online magazine (also called The Noyse) lasting almost four years before I got totally burnt out. I feared burn-out with this project not only because of having to write every night, but having to play a different game every day. Also, my initial fear and a main reason why I didn’t do it a couple years ago is my fear of failure. I didn’t want to do something like this for an entire year for only myself to read. But I jumped that hurdle before I pulled the trigger on this project, convincing myself that even if I didn’t get a single person to read this crazy thing, just accomplishing my goal would make it success. Now, over a month and a half in, I am hitting my stride, trying to do cool things with it like “Halo Week,” and shamelessly promoting it. I am getting tremendous feedback all of a sudden, so now I don’t feel like I am doing it for myself, but for my readers, and that’s a really cool feeling. I am in it for the long run, my friends.

5) Is this gonna steal time to spend with your family or maybe the other way round as you got 3 kids? What about your wife, is she supporting you?
I work full time, and my wife works two jobs, so she is gone in the evenings as well. I get home from work each day and do the dad thing: serving up dinner, making sure the little kids get showered and in pajamas, helping with homework nightly and getting them in bed by their bed times. I don’t take my job as a dad for granted, and would never sacrifice time with the kids for something like this. If I say I play a game for an hour, that doesn’t mean it is an hour straight, as it might be spread out over a couple hours of real-time, because of my fatherly duties. Also, I have included my kids in the project a little bit so far, as my two boys play games, and my little girl has no problem sitting on my lap with me while I play. Family first, no matter what. Also, my wife supports me, only because it doesn’t effect her too much. Everything I am doing is while she is gone for the most part, and even when she gets home at 10, I’ve wrapped up playing whatever it is I’m playing for the day. She doesn’t get my gaming addiction, and doesn’t care about video games at all, but she doesn’t make me feel bad for being a gamer or try to take them out of my life. She has always been supportive of anything I get into, and I can’t thank her enough for that.

6) How you choose the game to play day-by-day?
It all depends. Sometimes it coincides with a major release of a game, sometimes it relates to a big news story for the day, or sometimes it is planned out for a reason, like this Halo Week I am in the middle of. Also, sometimes it is just completely random, sometimes just on a particular mood, or quite frankly, just a game of convenience (handhelds, anyone?). I have several games planned out for certain days, but I enjoy the surprise of each day for the blog audience.

7) How many systems do you own? What’s your favourite one (of all times)?
Currently hooked up and played on a regular basis, I have a Wii U, PS3, Xbox 360 (two actually), PS Vita and Nintendo 3DS. In my museum of retired consoles, that just need a couple of plugs plugged in to be functional, I have an NES, SNES, GameCube, Dreamcast, Wii, Atari 7800, DS and Gameboy Advance. The other older consoles I am slowly working my way towards acquiring, especially the N64. My favorite console of all time? Probably the SNES, but I have had so much fun with this generation of consoles, it’s hard to say convincingly.

8) Do you just buy brand new games or maybe some of them are pre-owned and/or rented/borrowed
I buy a lot of brand new games, and have a very intense collective personality. I don’t buy used games except for a just a handful, only because I fully believe that consumers should support the developers that make these awesome games, not the resale retail stores that profit from them. As far as buying old, retro games, obviously you can’t buy them new, so that doesn’t count. I also don’t trade in any games, but I have done it twice, and I have regretted it both times. I enjoy keeping them, having them in my library and being able to go back and play them any time I want. Also, it has been great for my kids as they are able to experience older games that they weren’t interested in years ago. Also, this project would be impossible with a very limited library. As far as rented games, Gamefly has been a great outlet to play some games that I wouldn’t have normally played.

9) Which gamer-type would you use to describe yourself?
I could be described as an overall, all-around gamer. I’m casual when I feel like being casual, hardcore when compared to other gamers, I suppose. I’m not a big online gamer, but don’t mind playing multiplayer when invited. I just go with the flow, am willing to play all types of games and genres and just try to enjoy all the positives that come with the video game industry. I’m not that guy who screams profanities and insults in multiplayer games, or the type to put gaming above legit real-world responsibilities.

10) You literally jump from one game to another, isn’t that messy for your mind?
My mind is already a mess. I’ve always been like a sponge, where I just absorb and soak in new information all the time, and I actively look for mental stimulation. I’m a big reader and try to know everything about everything. So with my job, my family, my other hobbies and my gaming, my mind is literally going non-stop, all the time. Bouncing from one game to another constantly actually keeps me sane and free of potential boredom.

11) You’ve been carrying on this project for a while now, can you just tell us the best and the worst game since you started?
Worst game, hands down, was “NRA Practice Range.” I played that game to make a political statement about how hypocritical it was for the NRA to denounce and degrade violent video games, citing them for tragedies such as the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre and saying all violent video games should be banned, and then they turned around and released this horrible game on the iOS – that’s a shooting game!
Best game has been Far Cry 3. I had more fun with that game than I have with a big, open-world game like that in a long time. A close second would be the original Mega Man, as I played that game in a new light, and enjoyed the hell out of it.

12) Do you got something else to say? Feel free to share 😉
I think I’ve said enough, don’t you? I would like to thank That Damn Pixel for your support, along with everyone else I have connected with recently for their support as well. I honestly didn’t expect such positive feedback from everyone, and it is a bit overwhelming already. It is inspiring to see what an awesome community the indie-game journalism really is, and all I want to do now is not disappoint everyone, help out everyone who is supporting me, and give back however possible. Also, I am looking into some tie-in projects for this wild ride, so we will see where that takes me. Lastly, i just hope everyone understands video games are a form of art, and they are also entertainment. Don’t take them too seriously, don’t allow them to control your life and certainly don’t take them so damn seriously all the time.

Uh, that was a long one! Josh seems to be a very good guy, and we support his ambitious project!

If you’re interested on him, or have any other question you’d like to ask, check his site and follow him on Twitter.

We would like to thanks The Noyse again for his time, but mostly to be a very passionate player! Keep it up!

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