I’ve been playing a lot of Aion lately

I’ve gotten back into MMOs in a big way…with Aion sucking in my PC gaming life almost completely. I’ve been playing it since it came out in September, and I’m enjoying it quite a bit!

With the way I like to play games, I actually don’t particularly enjoy MMOs and I especially don’t enjoy RPGs that much (Although I admit I haven’t given RPGs that much of a chance…I’m thinking I’ll check out Dragon Age: Origins or Fable 2, to get a taste of some RPG-type games). The reason I think I like Aion so much is that I’m playing it with a Legion (guild) that we formed from basically just a group of friends from my hometown in Ohio. It is great to play with a group of guys that I haven’t talked to very much in years, and I’m really looking forward to playing more and more with them in the months and weeks ahead.

I’ve also been using the time playing Aion to listen to podcasts…something I haven’t done since I moved a block from work, and something I really miss. I mostly listened to podcasts when I was commuting to work, so the 7 minute walk to work isn’t really conducive to listening to podcasts. Grinding mobs in Aion is the perfect task for listening to podcasts, and I’ve been getting back in to some of my favorites, as well as some new ones!

My favorite podcasts so far for grinding in Aion:
-The Abyss
-The Aion Fancast
-The Giant Bombcast
-This Week in Tech

I’m hoping to get back in to Geekbox.Net, along with the rest of the new and old video game podcasts from former 1up-ers. As a sort of tack on to my last post about Game Communities and Game Media, the video game podcast space is going to be growing a lot more as all these sites create new podcasts. I’m looking forward to checking out the new Game Informer Podcast, ShackNews podcast, 1up podcast, GeekBox, RebelFM, and the many others that I’m sure are going to crop up due to the shake up in the game journalism industry. Hopefully it results in a wealth of great content and great conversations about video games and the game industry.

I’m also thinking about getting into podcasting again. I’d like to join a video game podcast as a co-host, or a reoccurring guest host. I miss doing stuff like that, and I think I would enjoy having that sort of outlet again. If anyone out there reads this and is doing an awesome podcast, give me a shout!

Anyways…I kind of wrote this blog post to test my new Posterous blog, which should be hooked up to my blog at QforQ.com. I want to use this new tool to make it easier for me to blog and upload pictures on the go..which will result in more content on QforQ.com.

Thanks for reading guys, I hope to have more posts in the near future about social media and game communities :)

Here is my level 28 Gladiator in Aion:

Posted via email from samhouston’s posterous

Quick Summer Update

Once again…it has been way too long since I last updated my blog, and I apologize for that. Tons of stuff has happened since late June..so here is a bit of catch up:

  • I’m now gamerDNA’s Online Marketing Manager, a promotion from Community Manager.  I took this role the last week of June, and it consists of me taking care of all of Public Relations, Community Management (includes Social Media), and some marketing as well.
  • The Matrix Online closed down on July 31st…and it was quite sad.  MxO was my first MMO that I really loved, and the first online community that I really loved, so it was tough to see it go.  I hope to write a brief blog post about this, since the closure of a virtual world made me have to think about things in new ways.
  • Earlier this month I saw Blink 182 for my first time in about 5 years.  Last I saw them was in the summer of 2004, and unfortunately following that tour Blink broke up.  Well, now they’re back and they’re selling out shows like no one’s business.  The show was a great time, and I can’t wait to see them again next weekend in Hartford.  I’ve got pit tickets!
  • This coming week we’re launching a huge update at GamerDNA.com and I’m really excited to see it go live.  It’s something that we’ve been working on for a long time, and with it I’m going to try to do some new things in terms of community management and social media.  I’m planning to have some fun in September 😉
  • I’m speaking on a panel at PAX on Saturday Sept 5th in the Unicorn Theatre.  The panel is discussing Community Management and Twitter, and I’m really excited to speaking alongside Morgan from Frag Dolls, Jaap Tuinman from EA, Meghan Rodberg from Turbine, and Michelle from Yelp.com.  It should be an awesome time and a great panel, and if you’re at the show please say hello!  Message me on Twitter if you’d like to meet up!

That’s it for this update – You can catch me on twitter at http://www.Twitter.com/SamHouston for my daily updates.  I plan to blog more, hopefully including focusing on some topics in the gaming space and community management/social media.  Stay tuned!

Thanks,

Sam

-Sam

Facebook Vanity URL

I was so excited last weekend when I grabbed my Facebook Vanity URL. I was actually at a party with friends…and you know those friends are good people when they have a laptop up that has the Facebook Vanity URL countdown clock on it.

At about 12:02am last Saturday I grabbed my URL..and it’s one more step in my quest to get to the frontpage of Google for the search term “Sam Houston”.

You can find me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/SamHouston

What I did at E3: TweetMyGaming.com

Wow…I can’t believe it’s been a week since E3!  It feels like it was so long ago now, everything has been a bit of a blur and I’ve been pretty busy at work.  Lots of exciting stuff going on, and now I can finally talk about most of it!

First off, E3 was tons of fun!  It was a great chance for me to see some new friends (mostly people I met at GDC/on Twitter) and meet lots of new folks, as well as get an introduction to a different side of the industry.  There is a big difference between the attendance of GDC (students/developers and press) and E3 (markters/sales, press, and buyers), so it was really interesting to meet more folks on the marketing/sales side of things.

GamerDNA sent me to E3 to do all of our press interviews for a new project that we launched, called TweetMyGaming.com .  TweetMyGaming tracks all of the gaming conversations on Twitter in real-time, and shows you what the most popular games are right now.  It’s a project that I was involved with since day one, all the way from the conceptualization and finding a contractor, to the execution/product direction and then doing interviews with the press :).  It’s something that I’m very proud of, and I’m happy that I’ve been able to do yet another project around something I’m very passionate about:  Twitter and Social Media.

So far the project has been quite successful for us, with interviews going up on Kotaku , Joystiq , and Destructoid .  Destructoid’s article even features some quotes from me, as Samit Sarkar was kind enough to do an interview with me earlier this week.  It’s pretty good article, so I hope you check it out!

When I was actually at the E3 Convention Center, I did a number of interviews with Current.Tv and MTV Multiplayer.  These turned in to daily segments, and MTV Multiplayer has put up theirs:

MTV Multiplayer – TweetMyGaming Day 1 Wrap-Up

MTV Multiplayer – TweetMyGaming Day 2 Wrap-Up

MTV Multiplayer – TweetMyGaming Day 3 Wrap-Up

TweetMyGaming/E3 marks for the first project and event that I’ve had the opportunity to speak directly with the press and do interviews.  All the feedback internally has been positive, so I’m really excited and happy that I was able to do this for the company.  My hope is that I’ll get to do this more often, it was a lot of fun!

In the near future I may do a brief post about E3 and what I saw there, mainly with pictures from my iPhone.  So until then…see you around and thanks for reading my blog!

Little bit of Catch-Up

Turns out that I haven’t been that great on keeping up with the blog this year.  Maybe I’m not cut out to be a blogger…but I’m glad I have it.  I’ve got an idea for a post about Twitter that I’ve been meaning to do…and I imagine I’ll also have a lot of stuff to talk about this summer because of all the adventures at work.

First off, GDC was a great time and I’m really glad I got to go.  Being at a convention that was filled with Game Industry Professionals was a very cool experience/feeling – you could really feel the tight knit community that the Game Industry has become.  Everyone knows each other, helps each other, great discussions are had, and tons of fun is had as well :) .  I definitely want to go back next year!

Since GDC things have been pretty busy both at work and outside of work.  Earlier this month I was given the opportunity to speak on a panel with Scott Macmillan and Darius Kazemi at the Independent Game Conference (IGC) in Boston.  Scott and Darius are two local independent game developer guys, and I’ve came to know and become friends with them mostly because of Twitter…so it was very fitting that we did a panel about “Networking for Indies” that focused on leveraging Twitter.  Overall I think we did a pretty good job and I learned a decent amount about what I’d like to do in the future, if I get the chance to do a similar panel.  It was my first panel/time speaking at a conference, so I’ll strike it up as a WIN!

My last bit of news that I wanted to document was that I’m going to E3 next week!  When I look back at what all has happened over the past year..it’s pretty hard to believe that I’ve had the opportunity to go to PAX, GDC, and now E3.  I’m super greatful to GamerDNA for sending me to these events and letting me take part!  Right now I’m putting a few things together for E3 that I can’t really talk about, but I’m very excited about them.  This will be my first E3 and I’m expecting it to be an awesome experience, with lots of new things to done and lots of new people to meet either for the first time, or the first time outside of Twitter 😉

That wraps it up for this blog post, I hope to stop by after E3 and share some pictures/stories, as well as write a couple blog entries about Community Management and another on Twitter.

GDC 2009 – Coming Soon!

I’ve been long over due for another blog update..but I wanted to throw this up just in case I don’t update before GDC.

I’ll be at GDC representing gamerDNA next week and I’d love to meet up with as many people as possible. I’m not going to any panels(I have an expo pass, though), and I’ll be there Tuesday-Friday evening. If you want to meet up and talk, I’d love to, and while I’ll be in some meetings during the day I’m sure I’ll have time to meet up with folks, especially at night! :)

If you would like to meet up, please message me on Twitter via @reply or Direct Message at http://twitter.com/SamHouston

You can also email me (info is on my about page).

See you there!

(PS! Don’t forget about our GDC Tweetup on Wednesday! http://www.gdctweetup.com/ )

I can now legally drink AND gamble!

I am now 21, as of about week ago on January 2nd. In the US this means I can now legally drink alcohol and gamble. Yay!

I had a small celebration at work with some coworkers on my birthday..nothing too wild or crazy. I think later this month I’ll go out and visit some of the bars with some friends from work..they’ve promised that I’ll "get smashed"…which I’m not necessarily excited about, but I’m hoping I’ll have some fun along the way 😛

What I’m most excited about is that I’ll now be able to actually do stuff after dark after work, at conventions like PAX, or go to parties at events like GDC/PAX/etc. Working as a "professional" and going to industry events while underage over the past two years has kind of sucked when I couldn’t go to anything or had to sneak in. I *did* learn how much networking/schmoozing/professional events relied on alcohol, though 😛

So anyways, yay I’m 21! Time to have some good times in 2009! :)

What kind of gamer are you?

This week has already been a long week at work, mostly because monday we stayed until about 3am getting a brand new Quiz system implemented and up and running.  Along with the launch of a brand new quiz system we launched 3 new quizzes for players to take.  Now instead of just the Bartle Test (and the MMORPG and Guild quizzes that are no longer with us), we have a Gamer Decades of Influence quiz and an FPS multiplayer and RTS multiplayer playstyle quiz.

Check out our brand new quiz page here and take some tests!

See the bottom of the post for my results.

This is just the tip of the iceberg for what this system can do and we’re working right now on some new types of signatures for people to

use to show theirresults. We’re also kicking around ideas for new types of quizzes that we could put out there for people to take.

Maybe you guys could help out…why kind of quizzes would you like to take? Personally, I’m thinking of putting together a quiz for PVPers.

Lastly, I’ve gotta give a shout to Casualties of WAR , my new Warhammer Guild which is expanding to over 100 people! I’ll also give a shout to Rick over at /Random for being a nice guy and checking out my blog!

Thanks guys, until next time..happy gaming!

(PS. Since I’m being considered a blogger now I figure I should live up to that title and blog
more often now..like more than once every 2 months.  You can count on more entries as time goes on :))

Here are my results:

Continue reading

Moving into the office tomorrow

GuildCafe moves into our new office tomorrow, March 31st.  The office will be right smack dab in Central Square in Cambridge, just a stones throw from Harmonix which is the company who made Guitar Hero 1 and 2 as well as the awesomely fun Rock Band.  It’ll be my first time ever working in an office environment so it should be interesting and a lot of fun since everyone I’ve in the company has a good sense of humor and we enjoy video games.  It’s pretty cool to be able to talk about the upcoming WOW patch or what our favorite games, at work.

So far work hasn’t been too bad, though it’s starting to get a bit stressful because I need to read about two books for work and I’ve got a final exam in my Business Principles class in about two weeks.  I’m learning a lot because there is quite the learning curve jumping into a company with very experienced and professional people behind it..and you’re 20 years old.  I don’t mind it all, though, since it helps me become more knowledgeable about what we’re doing here and it’s also exciting to learn new cool and interesting stuff.

This month has been very exciting at work because we’ve almost doubled the size of our staff in just a few weeks time.  We’ve hired four new engineers along with myself (I work in Marketing) and my hope is that with this increase in staff there will be an increase in production.  There are so many cool and exciting features that we want to put in GuildCafe…just a matter of time until they get done.   Hopefully the increase from 3 engineers to 7 will help things along :)

I’m enjoying Boston, though it’s ridiculously expensive to live here.  I’m looking forward to using the public transportation system to get to work instead of driving every day.  Since the office is right off of the red line I’ll be able to get to work in just about 20-30 minutes, a lot quicker than the commutes I’ve had to make at my past jobs.

Overall the transition from small town Ohio to Boston is going well.  I’m excited about exploring the city and going to new places in April with my unlimited bus/subway pass and work is pretty kick ass.  Let’s hope April is even better than March and that it brings some great times to GuildCafe!