I had a sleep study done at the beginning of February. Over the years I’d become less and less productive and felt more and more tired, and I needed to do something. Some of my family have sleep apnea, so it seemed like I should get tested.
The results were surprising. I didn’t have sleep apnea, but I did seem to have severe restless legs. So I was given a prescription, and long story short, I suddenly have a lot more focus and energy than I used to. And I’ve been using it to try to catch up on lost time.
The only downside is that I’ve been so busy working on projects that I forgot to send out any newsletters. So here’s the first newsletter of 2021, and it’s a lot.
ARTICLE: Box Art History #3: Fairchild Channel F
It seems like ages ago now, but I started off the new year with an article about the design of the boxes for the first cartridge-based console.
I nearly cleaned up the entire run of boxes in Photoshop, but I was just too tired. This was before the sleep study.
VIDEO: Wild Gunman ‘74 - The Forgotten First FMV Game
My first new video in quite awhile. This gained my tiny Youtube channel a fair number of followers, but I still haven’t reached my first 1K.
The most ridiculous thing I did while making this video was buy a physical copy of an old hard-to-find VHS, and then accidentally bypassed the ‘80s copy protection without realizing it. Multiple VHS digitizers were asking me how I did it.
VIDEO: Video Dames: The History Of Playable Female Characters
My second Youtube video, I’m on a role! This one was intended to only take a week, but instead took three weeks to complete when I created a bunch of extra work for myself.
Which is to say, the most ridiculous thing I did while making this video was decide I should recreate the sprites from all the un-MAME’d games, and manually animate them in After Effects. I’m waiting for someone to accuse me of hoarding un-MAME’d ROMs.
After tweeting about my and Kevin Bunch’s search for Wabbit developer Ban Tran (see Twitter Threads below), Polygon wrote an article about it. It gave an early plug to Video Dames before the first video was actually up.
Then I tweeted about the 20th anniversary of the “All Your Base” music video (see Twitter Threads below), figuring it’d get five “likes,” but then it blew up to the extent that I actually had to mute the tweet! I ended up being mentioned on the Giant Bombcast, the Talking To Women About Video Games podcast, and The Mary Sue, and possibly some other places.
Naturally, the Wild Gunman video didn’t get written about as much, but it did just get mentioned in the latest They Create Worlds podcast yesterday.
The pattern here is that it seems like it’s always the things that I want to gain traction the most that don’t, and the things I never expect to that blow up. Case in point: Good Games Writing nominated me for an award for “Best List” — and I won!
My Twitter Threads
DEC23: Cookin’ With Dr. Pepper
FEB02: Untangling Decade Nostalgia
FEB14: The Bowser Mystery
FEB16: The “All Your Base” Thread
FEB24: Etymology Of “Final Boss”
Around The Internet
Normally this is where I recommend other articles and videos, but I’ve been so busy working on these videos that I haven’t done a great job at keeping up. In the next edition I’ll do a super-sized version of this.
As always, you can support my research on Patreon. And if you can’t afford to donate, signal boosts are also appreciated! I’m currently unemployed and trying really hard to make this work.