Last week our humble site of the week award went to Death By Robots, a site that digs deep into what gamers want and places as much emphasis on indie games as it does triple A games.
This week we're giving props to Nukezilla, a gaming site that aims to better the industry through a combination of healthy cynicism, a dash of humor and some good old insightful writing.
We spoke to Nukezilla's editor-in-chief John "Wardrox" Kershaw about the site, what it does best, and what the future holds.
What sets Nukezilla apart from other sites?
Our general ethos and approach to the industry (a blend of disdain, cynicism and nonchalance) is, I would guess, what people find differentiates us most from the crowd. We write about gaming, and there's only so far we can diverge from the tropes of blogging, but our approach of ignoring the popular and focusing on what we find interesting seems to win people over.
I think when Modern Warfare 2 came out we ended up with maybe two or three articles mentioning it; nobody on staff was that excited, so we didn't cover it all that much.
We also have a pretty damn diverse collective of writers and editors working for the site. We've got students living off instant noodles, parents dealing with kids, indie developers making awesome games and one of our editors is a games industry lawyer, a U.S. diplomat and a former game designer who still gets asked to speak at shows like GDC and PAX.
All of this creates a really nice, hidden community of staff who bounce ideas around until something pops up on the site. Add to that our more public community of readers and friends and you get just a really nice space.
It's not for everyone, and that's fine. We would choose to have a handful of rewarding and interesting relationships with cool people over a million meaningless visits from people looking for porn.
What would you say you specialise in?
We probably hate the games industry more than any other games website out there. That's a specialism right?
That approach of actively trying to break out of the rules comes partly from our heritage (before being called Nukeilla we were Negative Gamer, a site described by the great Kieron Gillen as one which should be "ignored on principle"), and partly because I get fed up really easily.
It's why we are always playing around with new formats (like our Player Select), or having a day where we only publish in the form of interpretive dance, or writing about monster trucks or baking Manhunt 2 into scones.
We specialise in doing what we want and not pandering to any kind of demographic or PR company I suppose.
What do you have planned for the future?
We've always got a million plans bubbling away, but the biggest one is probably a project currently named Nukezilla Prime. It'll be a pay-what-you-want subscription service which gives you a slightly customisable (and optionally ad-free) space to blog. You have to pay to blog on a site like Nukezilla, it's not free.
Madness; possibly. It's an experiment of sorts. If you have a space where the only people who can blog have supported the site with even a tiny, token amount of money given, does that create a better space? I think it will; gone will be the lowest-common-denominator crap, gone is the drive to get as many people blogging as possible. In its place will hopefully be a small, self-sufficient and incredibly rewarding community.
Also, we're building a giant mechanical dinosaur/godzilla-type thing which we will use to destroy the gaming industry once and for all, but that's a way off yet so we're not really talking about it.