November 25, 2009

A Day of Thanks

Erik Kubik Says To some, Thanksgiving is about the turkey and the pie. To others, Thanksgiving is all about football and gathering with the family. Thanksgiving is the time of year to give thanks to whoever or whatever. Besides stuffing my face with turkey and pie I think it’s time to reflect back on the year’s releases and happenings and to give thanks to the Video Game industry.

There are several things I am thankful for this year. Item number one is last spring’s Resident Evil 5. I have been waiting for a sequel to Resident Evil 4 for over 4 long years. In regards to Resident Evil 5, Capcom and the evolution of the series, the games have moved further and further away from head scratching puzzle solving games toward a more action-oriented feel. The in-depth story, the mission variety, the upgrades and the return of several favorite characters made the game a great addition to the franchise. The added co-op and multiplayer elements were icing on the cake to hardcore fans like myself. Who knows what Resident evil 6 will bring?

Secondly, Microsoft’s continued support of broken 360s. Although I no longer own an Xbox 360, I have to say for a company to man up and to continue to pay for the mistake they made is something gamers can be thankful for. Now if they would only admit the failure rate of their consoles is closer to 70% vs. their quoted 15%, I am sure everyone would sleep much better at night. Nevertheless, gamers can still get their e74 or RROD consoled fixed for free.

The third thing I am thankful for this year are the console price drops. Microsoft dropped the price on the 120 GB Elite to $299. And then Sony presents the PS3 slim with 120 GB Hard drive for $299. Nintendo finally dropped the price on the Wii down to $199. Out of the three, it seems the price drop benefitted the 360 and the PS3 the most; especially the ps3. The new edition of the console saw some record sales numbers. The price cut means more people can afford to go out and buy the consoles and therefore buy more games and ultimately keep developers in business.

In a non-gaming sense, I am thankful for the support of my family and friends in all that I do. I am thankful everyday that I have a wonderful wife that supports me and my hobbies. I am especially thankful for Goozex which has given me the opportunity to play tons of games for cheap. Where else can one receive new games and movies for next to nothing?

Last but not least, a big thank you to my fellow writers and friends at The Goozex Report who share my love of video games and Goozex. But the biggest thanks goes out to Mike Rohde for putting together the site and the crew, putting up with me, and letting me continue to write about video games for The Goozex Report.

Chris Nitz Says
Personal Front:
I am thankful to be newly married. I could not have asked for a more loving, understanding, and supportive wife. She has been by my side as I finally follow some life-long dreams. I couldn't have asked for such great support. I still believe I am one lucky SOB.

I am thankful to still be employed. No matter how much I might not like dealing with printers and phones on a daily basis, I am lucky to still be pulling a paycheck. The company I work at was on the verge of bankruptcy and has pulled back from the land of the red. There were times I had no idea if I would get to work and find the gates to be locked.

Gaming Front:
I am thankful that my 360 has not red ringed yet! I am thankful that I have been granted two awesome writing opportunities for two awesome gaming sites. Mike Rohde, thank you for allowing me to be part of the great people at The Goozex Report. Thanks to the guys at Games Are Evil for allowing me to be part of their site as well. I have gotten to play through a lot of awesome games and share my experience with a lot of people. I never imagined I would be on this path in my life.

This Thanksgiving, rock some awesome games over whatever your favorite Thanksgiving treat might be! I know I'll be playing some Dragon Age and Disgaea 2 while stuffing myself with Pumpkin Pie!

Dale Culp Says It would be pretty easy for me to be cynical and say that I don't have a lot to be thankful for this year. The last few years, in particular, have been somewhat of an uphill battle. Most recently, I got the bad news that I was going to be laid off for a while. I won't lie, I was happy. They'd done me a favor. They forced me to go out and seek employment a little closer to my passion rather than to continue in a job that was going nowhere. I'm thankful for the wake-up call.

Even though I have yet to break even and I don't know how the bills are going to be paid, I'm thankful. I'm thankful because, as cliche as it may sound, I really do live in a country where opportunities exist if you're willing to go out and get them. I'm thankful for the strong network of support I've built over the years, and I'm thankful that I was able to do that by merit, not mere words. I'm thankful for the opportunities I've been given and the rewards they've reaped. My friends, my colleagues at The Goozex Report - I couldn't have asked for more. I'm thankful to know these people exist.

I'm thankful that I can pretend to be a warrior on a virtual battlefield without ever risking my actual life. I'm thankful because I'm not out there, that I don't have to be. I'm thankful because they've made this life of convenience and pleasure possible, even though they enjoy very little of it. I'm thankful because I know how quickly it can all go away. I'm thankful because, even though I don't believe in a God, I understand the sentiment in the words, "There but for the grace of God go I." I'm thankful because I can do and say these things about who I am and what I believe freely, without fear, even though I know of many who cannot, and I'm thankful for the people who are fighting for them, as well, so that some day they can afford to play video games and exercise their freedom of speech.

In the end, I find that I actually have a lot to be thankful for. I'm thankful for that, as well.

Troy Benedict Says There is a lot that I am thankful for in 2009. First off, I would not be where I am today if it weren’t for my lovely wife, who has supported me and believed in me (and put up with all of the quirks with my gaming hobby). Secondly, I am thankful for my family. I have three beautiful children, and am especially thankful for my youngest who was born in September. I am also thankful that we were finally able to purchase our first family home back in July, and am looking forward to making the changes and improvements WE want to make to it (including a future upgrade to our family/entertainment room!)!

In the video game department, I am thankful for the opportunity to write for a publication like The Goozex Report, as well as being asked to review a couple of titles during my tenure. Many thanks to Mike Rohde for allowing me to write for his site, as well as the good friends I’ve made because of it! Also, during this economically troubled time, I’ve been able to save a lot of money, and still get some really awesome games through Goozex trading. Each trade only cost me a few dollars ($1 per trade credit and cost of shipping). I know this sounds like a commercial, but it’s an excellent service, and to me, Goozex really offers the best value for used games.

I have had a tremendously awesome time playing games like Disgaea for the DS and Disgaea 2 on the PSP, both of which were scored through Goozex trade. It is very rare that I can dedicate a lot of time with any one game, but both of those have had me investing countless hours into them. I understand that they’re not games for everybody, as they tend to be a bit too quirky, but the sheer depth has had be hooked for a long time!

This Thanksgiving, we’ll be out of town at my folks’ place and I’ll be doing something that I haven’t done in a long time – taking a break from the games well, at least from the consoles – to spend time with my wife and kids, my parents, and my brother and his family.

But I still have my PSP and my copy of Disgaea 2 to keep me busy, when I need some time to get away.

Mike Rohde Says This is a special Thanksgiving, as it is the first real Thanksgiving post The Goozex Report has published. In many ways, reading everyone’s entries confirms something that I already knew: this is truly the best team of writers anyone could hope for. Not only do I consider you guys talent, but I also consider you my virtual friends; if you were my neighbor, you’d be my real life friend as well. It’s been an absolute pleasure getting to know everyone through their writing, their tweeting, and from Xbox Live.

In addition to the writers here at The Goozex Report, I am thankful for the opportunities to virtually meet folks from other sites, such as Games Are Evil, The Portable Gamer, and Gaming Angels. The people behind the scenes of those gaming sites are the best and I truly appreciate the collaboration work we have done over the past year.

It goes without saying that I am especially thankful for the fine folks at Goozex. Without them, The Goozex Report would not exist, and in turn I would not have met so many great people. Plus, the Goozex service has allowed me to play thousands of dollars worth of games at a very little cost. These are games I would normally not have played, and so I am grateful to have the opportunity to use Goozex.

I also want to give thanks to my brother, for if it weren’t for him, I probably would never have bought an Xbox 360. Plus, it was him that once said, “Wouldn’t it be great if there were a way we could trade games with other people without having to spend so much money all the time?” That question prompted me to get on Google and figure out what was available. I checked a few sites out, seriously considered GameFly, and then ultimately choose Goozex. Yes, I have to admit that in the first few months of using Goozex I considered dropping the service and trying GameFly. But I have to say, in hindsight, that doing so would have been a foolish move. I truly believe Goozex is probably the best choice I’ve made in a long, long time.

Of course, THE best choice I’ve ever made in my life was to marry my wife, who supported and inspired the creation of The Goozex Report; she thought it would be something fun and creative for me to do. That was in August of 2008. We never guessed that the blog would grow to what it is today: a vibrant collaboration effort with passionate and dedicated gamers. And I can honestly say, this is only the beginning, which leads me to one more thing I am thankful for…

And that is you, the reader of The Goozex Report. In the past year, The Goozex Report has been read by 74,144 people who have viewed 84,341 pages. This blog continues to exist not only because of the special team of people behind it, but because YOU continue to read it. If you didn’t read this site, we wouldn’t be publishing this site. So, Thank You, dear reader and may you enjoy this very special Thanksgiving.