Why I Write Game Guides

Why I Write Game Guides

When I first began seriously playing computer and console games, I would try to get as far as I could on my own, then go out and buy the game guides put out by companies such as Prima. Even now, for certain games (primarily fighting games), I still buy the official commercially-released game guides, primarily because for these types of games, I find the official guides a bit easier to follow.

[Image of Sailor Hibiki][Image of Sailor Hibiki]After a while, I discovered GameFAQs, an excellent site which hosts a large number of game guides created by the gamers themselves. At first, I liked it because it's free. But I soon realized that the majority of those writing the guides on GameFAQs were essentially experts or specialists on the games about which they wrote the guides, and I came to truly value their insight.

Christmas Day 2000, I happened to come to a realization. By then, I had owned a PlayStation2 for two months, and I knew the "Capture the Flag" mode of Midnight Club: Street Racing really well, but I had yet to see a game guide which covered this mode of the game. So I decided to write a mode-specific guide myself; an hour later, the result was finished and submitted to GameFAQs, and posted a few days later. Thus was my initial contribution to the gaming community which had already helped me so much.

I was rather surprised when I started receiving e-mails from people who had read my "Capture the Flag" guide. Some were simply "Thank you" messages, while other messages had questions for me; one person simply wanted to start up a conversation about the game itself. After a week or so of fielding these questions and holding online conversations, and receiving e-mails from other gaming Web sites asking for permission to post my guide, I decided that since my (meager) effort on my initial guide was receiving some good attention, then I should more fully concentrate on a guide for the game I then knew best: F1 2000.

Several weeks of effort went into my guide for F1 2000, and it was finally ready for release January 21, 2001 and subsequently submitted to GameFAQs. For this guide, I went into tremendous detail on how to drive each of the seventeen F1 circuits included in the game. Again, I was quickly flooded with e-mails asking questions, requesting permission to post the guide on other gaming Web sites, and initiating conversations. Some of the questions and conversations evolved into new sections of the guide until the final version was posted April 3, 2001.

Based on the responses to my initial contributions to the gaming community, I continued to write game guides, focusing on the auto racing games I knew best. I continue to write game guides now, although I am branching out from strictly auto racing to include games such as Portal Runner and SSX Tricky. Some of the guides build upon each other; for example, my guide for F1 2001 includes information from the guide for F1 Championship Season 2000, which itself is largely based upon my guide for F1 2000. However, I seem to have created my own guide franchise for Gran Turismo 3, with about a dozen guides for this one game alone. Summer 2002, I added guides with general information for the racing/driving genre: World-famous Racing Circuits Guide and General Racing/Driving Guide (both available exclusively on FeatherGuides and at GameFAQs).

I will definitely continue to write and update game guides. New and updated guides will always be available first here at FeatherGuides.


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