Now this post is mainly going to be a telling of how my first 100 reviews have shaped the website and how things changed so it is going to be a long story. This is not a post that will have any free items or giveaways so this is purely for anyone interested in knowing how the journey has been. With that out of the way let’s begin!
When I first started, I was only posting on the Nintendo Switch Subreddit and started with my 100 hour reviews which lately has been too time consuming to work on. I’ve been just working on them more naturally instead of sitting with a game for 5-10 hours on a Saturday and Sunday to get 40+ hours in a month. Sadly those have been put on hold for the last few months. I believe the next one will be XoNIC because it is a little over 80 hours so within the month or two a review should be out for it.
Reviewing is a lot of time dedication which is a wonderful thing to get games to review and share my experiences with the world. Sadly it is also a curse because behind the scenes I send out dozens of emails a day. These could be anything from talking with developers or publishers on receiving a review copy or following up with one of them. This to me is the hardest part, when I was teaching Pedro how to do it, he picked up on it quickly which was great! The only issue is we weren’t hearing anything back so I told him, I would work on it again.
It is a bit rough since I would say starting out, 9 out of 10 I wouldn’t even get a reply back. This to me was the hardest pill to swallow, to put it into perceptive, I have sent out 119 emails from my work email. This was after I started using the official email after being told by a developer I should be sending emails from it. I would say about 1/4 of them I never receive a reply back. Typically this is from the bigger publishers which is understandable since they likely get thousands of emails. 1/2 of them I get a “Sorry we can’t provide one for you” and the other 1/4 are review copies. Most of those 1/4 are publishers I already have a relationship with due to previous reviews. There is also that magically one percent that give me multiple copies to giveaway. I’m also part of several key mailing sites and typically after requesting dozens I will get maybe 5. Currently one site I’ve requested 38, confirmed denied 3, and received 5. Out of those 5, all of them I have previous connections with so no publisher wants to take a chance with me on that website.
Cool now you know about the process I do behind the scenes… The story of my first few emails to developers is a pretty interesting one. The first developer I emailed was for Piczle Lines DX and the second was NeuroVoider. Both of these games are excellent games but both of these developers gave me a chance that I didn’t think I would get. To be honest my email was pretty terrible since originally I thought that referencing my Reddit posts were good ways of showing what I do. Looking back at those emails it is no question why I got no replies back. They were pretty terrible! Anyway Piczle Lines was a game that I had already played a bit on my tablet so I knew a lot about it before I got the review copy. I was super excited about receiving one and emailed the developer several times asking questions. NeuroVoider was a special game since I didn’t know anything about it outside of the trailer and only asked questions in the AMA which I included in the review. This review was special mainly because it was what put me on the map early on. The post for it exploded landing me thousands of hits within the week. This was also when my website was being developed and everything was getting moved over to it. It was a great experience and grateful to Flying Oak for giving me that success!
It would be a while before I got a big break though with my 11th review on the website. If you don’t know it is my review of SteamWorld Dig 2. My first big title in my opinion… and the only one I would think of as a big title for a long time. I would say about once a month I get a generally big title that I am highly interested in with a dozen of so small titles the rest of the month. SteamWorld Dig 2 would give me an even bigger presence in my opinion since that is when I started my twitter account. Having a connection with SteamWorld eventually allowed me to receive review copies of all their Switch releases which has been amazing. Then my big Youtube and Twitter push wouldn’t come until my 44th review with Ginger: Beyond the Crystal which would mark the first time I received extra review copies to giveaway. This was an amazing feeling since I had reviewed a game previously by the same team so I guess they decided it was a great review that they would give me extras.
When it comes to the reviewing process originally I had a few points that I wanted to talk about and that was it. When I ended up getting a capture device I wanted to create a draft paper that I could just fill out overtime. This saves me much more time since simple things like story I can do right away while gameplay, videos, and short review. Most times if the game has a serious story mode or adventure mode I spend at least 10 hours or I try to beat the game. Any game that is puzzle based game or game that may take longer than that such as the Physical Contact games. I’ll spread the time out over a few weeks if I get them early enough and if games are really short. Currently I’ve been playing a interactive game that is fairly short that I plan on running a few times.
I guess that about wraps it up to be honest… If you want to know anymore or ask me any questions you can always DM me on Twitter so here goes for another 100!