With Your Host, Rob Remakes

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Bobbins’ Olde Tomb Of Videogames

Ok. I’ve been spending a few months now thinking I want to do something videogame-newsy but between the mess that is the internet in 2023 and my frankly shitty health, what can I do?

Over that time I’ve been playing about with different iterations and variations of what’s now become Bobbins’ Olde Tomb Of Videogames. It’s been a few different things as I try and wrestle out what’s achievable, hopefully useful and maybe sustainable.

After some fiddling and thinking about what I personally miss, I settled on an old web style news post that’s pretty much a quickfire series of links to things. It’s quick to read, quick to explore and quick to write. Folks can browse it through the web, via RSS or get the digest sent to their inbox, so it stays free and accessible. Kinda like the bottom half of someone’s newsletter but without the blurb and without having to negotiate someone else’s platform locking the posts away somewhere.

Crucially, it’s not super limiting on what can be in there. Games, videos, web toys, articles, they can all have a place. Don’t like that particular thing? You’re literally one sentence away from the next.

That last bit is important to me because what I’d like if I can keep this place going and get a tiny bit of pull to it (I’m honestly not after building a site and chasing numbers, I write here for about twenty people these days! The days of me doing numbers are behind me, but it’d be nice to be able to get a game under more folk’s eyeballs, you know?) then folks can just drop me a line, say “hey Rob, I’ve started working on this”‘ and providing it’s nothing egregious and I’m fine with showing it to other people, in it goes.

And, importantly, it doesn’t have to be a finished game. I mean, I’ve got no interest in becoming a press release recycling corner anyway and tbh, if someone sends me one then I probably won’t read it. But I want people to have their game seen in the early stages if that’s what they fancy. I want people to be able to start something, get some eyes on it and hey, if it doesn’t progress to the end, no biggy. There’s always another game. It’s also for people that don’t really have an avenue for that normally because doing anything in 2023 is swimming against the tide.

Obviously, for that to have any impact then I dunno, probably needs more than 5 readers or something. So whilst I’m happily popping contact details on there now, it’s one ideally for the future if things pick up any. But also, there’s no harm done if someone is happy with just a few extra eyeballs, you know?

Now, it’s me so I’m going to prioritise the stuff I like and get personally excited by, the tomb isn’t built to be a massive news engine, I don’t want it to be rote, I don’t want it as an avenue for people who already have plenty of avenues and I don’t want to be keeping up with schedules and stuff either. Got an embargo? No thanks, there’s other sites happy with that stuff, godspeed and good luck and all that. Got a jam entry you’re happy with and reckon someone might like? Yeah, go on then.

Basically, I’ve done my time in the news mines, this one’s personal.

Will this work out? I honestly don’t know! There’s a lot of unknowns here. It’s dependent on my health which is why I’m saying updates will be “regularly irregular” because I can’t promise a fixed schedule, doubly so given the stuff I’m forever dealing with in recent years. Doing anything and getting any traction isn’t much easier in writing than it is in games — this is hardly the golden age of blogging! Will not punting it on A Platform like Substack or whatever be the death knell? I don’t know. Maybe just nobody will care anyway! Is there even any breathing room for something short form where I want people to visit other sites, not stay on mine?

Nothing ventured though, right? If it works, I get a nice relaxing hobby doing something I like, some folk get some eyeballs on their work and that’s a nice result. If it doesn’t, well, no harm done.

So, let’s see how this one goes.

Bobbins’ Olde Tomb Of Videogames

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Jetboard Joust

Due to a bit of a distractingly nightmarish month or so, I completely forgot to mention I wrote a short piece for Epic about the joys of Jetboard Joust. I’m definitely out of practice at writing like a perfectly normal human being and not a Rob but I appreciated – and took – the chance to write about a game I adore that no doubt has been overlooked.

Having had pretty much the pick of the store for stuff to write about, of course I’m going to go for the arcade roguelike that’s a sequel to an old and largely forgotten (and fun) Speccy game. That’s what you get when you leave me unsupervised! In my defence, it’s a great game and nowhere near enough people have cast eyes on it. There’s console versions too, by the way. I’ve been playing the Switch version and it’s a corking little handheld game.

Usual getting excited about a game stuff aside, it’s nice to see Epic trying something people have been asking Valve to do for as long as indie games have been on their store – giving over store space to writing and recommendations about the games on the store. When it’s so difficult to get people to even be vaguely aware a game exists, it’s good to see steps being taken to try and surface the good stuff.

Having a cracking set of writers (and me) rummaging through the store isn’t a perfect solution in itself but it’s part of the solution. An eclectic bunch at it with tastes ranging from the usual to the esoteric is a necessity and for now, that’s something they’re trying over at Epic.

Given the neglected and messy curation on Steam which I’ve spent years wishing Valve would overhaul, I’ll take this. I doubt it’ll be a kingmaker when it comes to translating into sales but if it gets a few more people to buy a bloody great videogame and gives someone the chance to be visibly excited about it too, yeah that’s lovely.

Jetboard Joust | Deku Deals
Find the best prices for Jetboard Joust, see the full price history, and be the first to find out about its next big sale at Deku Deals

(usual reminder that I link to dekudeals for console stuff solely because it’s a nice, no fuss aggregator and there’s no affiliate links or hoodwinkery involved)

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The Banished Vault

Readers, I’m not going to lie to you here, I have no desire to play The Banished Vault in the slightest. It is, in just about every conceivable way, not my kind of videogame. Maybe I was bitten by a board game at an early age or something but this whole dice roll thing? Not my bag.

However, what an absolutely *astonishing* looking game. I can’t help but stare at it because it’s so, so beautiful. It almost makes me wish it was my kind of game but much like I am with Zachtronics stuff, I am content watching other people play a game that is just structurally very not for me but captivating visually. And I am very much looking forward to watching people play this when it launches in a few weeks, the trailer is gorgeous, the screenshots are gorgeous. It’s gorgeous.

The things people do with computers, I tells thee. Glorious!

The Banished Vault — Bithell Games

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