Gaming forums and the small internet village

So, TurinTur’s comment and someone mentioning had me thinking of how strange this world of internet gaming forums and its inhabitants really is.

Personally, I started out on various small forums, and I seem to remember someone over at either jowood forums or nordicgames forums pointed me to My fascination with that site ended quickly though, since it closed, which lead me to octopus overlords, a refuge of Gonegold. From there it was a small step to go to gamingtrend forums, and finally here.

The interesting thing about it, that these forums all have some overlap in members. I also remember a lot of names here and on the other sites from way back, and not only names, but people posting on various other gaming related forums that I’ve seen a few times again on the same sites I frequent.

This leads me to think, that while there is a large culture of gamers out there, its a VERY small subset of them that actually frequents and posts on gaming fora for an extended period of time.

How long have you been around?

I’ve been posting as “BleedTheFreak” or “sdlufkin” if that’s taken for a REALLY long time now. Generally I used to post mostly on game forums specific to a given title, but I much prefer a general site to that … “experience” these days.

The first really active community I was part of that I can recall was likely Dungeon Keeper 2 - I did a lot of maps and was on that forum kind of a lot. I don’t remember under what handle though, but whenever that came out is when I was really into gaming forums, I believe.

I posted as TheDarkCaller on Blizzard fan-forums (especially the horribly mismanaged but at-one-time massive /.net) as early as 1999; I was too new to the net to be a dedicated member of any communities prior to that except maybe Excite chat.

The ArmandoPenblade name came about in 2005 and has been pretty consistent since then across a wide variety of properties, although I go with TheWordspinner on writerly activities. One or more of the three shows up pretty consistently on a number of forums related to gaming, writing, music, and nerdiness, as well as most of the big nerd sites (digg, reddit, google+), social networks (twitter, myspace, AIM), and hobby specific blogs and newssites (kotaku, 1up, nanowrimo). Obviously in games as well, from XBox Live to Steam to 2.0.

Aside from offshoot communities (like BF from here or a couple of splinter communities that briefly formed from Infoceptor’s slow death like Blizzlinks), I don’t actually recall recognizing anyone from one major community sub-group to another aside from seeing SolInvictus’ name all over reddit’s /r/gaming community before he got banned for spamming that anti-Diablo website of his ;)

My main forum for a lot of years (2000 to 2008?) was the one from (biggest gaming site in Spain). I think I got 15K posts in there.

In fact, I think i have two occasions where someone from a totally unrelated site knew from my nickname (Turin Turambar) and asked “the one from Meri?” and I could said “yes”. It made me think I was a bit famous :). I also had a third occasion, where someone from manga site A knew me from another manga site B.

After that, well, I think I discovered Space Rangers 2, and searching for info / help, I discovered QT3 or Octopus Overlords, and one of the two linked to th other one. The rest is history, as it’s usually said.

In broad strokes: dabbled in BBSs in late 80s -> Usenet in early90s -> GoneGold in late 90s / early00s -> Qt3 from 2004 to now, with various hiatuses throughout based on school / workload etc. I’ve also been a fairly regular poster to the DDO forums for the last 3 years, which actually surprises me; I rarely delve into game-specific forums and I’ve never stuck with an MMORPG for so long.

Various Quake oriented sites when that game came out. I think it was from there I went to Gone Gold, mostly for the cop story of the day, then I started posting there. Then to GT, then OO, then here.

I think it goes without saying that ALL the cultures out there have a very small subset who actually post in online forums. I bet even cultures built on a common online only interest still just have a very small subset posting online.

The first gaming forums I joined were probably Planet Quake and Planet Team Fortress around 1999 but I stopped posting there a couple years later. In early 2001 I joined Madonion/Futuremark and have been posting there since. At some point I joined and participated in the PC Gamer US forum, which somehow led me to joining here in 2003 (I think I got the tip from either Cartman_316 or Norman Chan). I joined Octopus Overlords and Gaming Trend a few years later. Besides those, the only “general” gaming forum I’m really active in now is the Widescreen Gaming Forum.

As the ‘someone’ that mentioned GoneGold on that thread, I agree that at times it seems like a small world of persistant forum posters. I myself have been a lurker on various gaming websites since mid 90’s, including here, Gamers with Jobs, GoneGold, Octopus Overlords for a brief time, some flight sim forums like SimHQ, evilavatar/bluesnews/ve3d news comments, planetfortress and some others that I cannot recall - I’ve never been a big poster anywhere though, as I’ve never been that confident in my expressive skills or my ideas and opinions tbh; yet since I first discovered QT3 my time reading message boards has been mostly spent here, and I guess I might even hit a hundred posts here before I die.

Gaming forum-wise, not very long. Although I’m active on a bunch of other internet forums/blogs, the only gaming ones I post on with any frequency are this one and RPS. The odd post on Touch Arcade. And I only started posting here a year or so ago. I used to comment a bit on Flash of Steel, but it was a pretty small community.

Unless you count the ST Format BBS back in the early 90s, of course. I was crazy into BBSes back then.

Been active on game sites since Doom II, but the real boom was Quake be it Blues, Redwood, Evil Avatar and the shack.I have no idea how I found Qt3…but it is the only gaming forum I still visit.

Since GEnie’s heyday.

I’ve … been around. I suppose the last “big” presence I had on a general gaming site other than this (not that I am terribly big compared to many) was on Octopus Overlords. Rich said some things that he wouldn’t apologize for, I realized I didn’t need to be there supporting his site, so I started primarily posting here about gaming stuff and other randomness.

I joined Qt3 before the date listed on my tag now, but under my real name, when I was an editor at Computer Games Magazine. When the forum switched, I went with this name, but I’d been around before that.

Earlier, though, I was an assistant sysop on CompuServe in the games forums, and was active there in the early/mid nineties. Was on Genie and AOL back in the day briefly too, and any number of crappy BBSs.

Started posting as Moggraider on the Nintendo BBS in late 1997. Continued onto Final Fantasy message boards, primarily, ending up lurking here since 2004.

I go far enough back that my first online experiences were local BBS systems and dial-up company boards. After experimenting with Genie and the like (yes, you used to have to pay by the hour to use those services) I spent a few years at AOL, which was actually pretty cool when it first took off. That meant that I migrated to the wider web a bit later then a lot of others.

I occasionally posted on GoneGold but wasn’t super active because the old usenet newsgroup system seemed the most active gaming discussion part of the internet. After that I found my way to a variety of different boards. I went to ConsoleGold (now GamingTrend) first after GG went down and then shortly after discovered this place. I later joined Octopus Overlords as well and still post at all of them. I’ve used Sarkus pretty much from the beginning.

I was really late to ‘game forums’. Apolyton in about 2002 was my first as i had bought Call To Power II to run some Lan sessions, and well the game was a bit borked and Apolyton at the time was the site doing the most work on that game. This culminated in the source code release for CTP2 and ultimately much of what made Civ IV (as we discussed many of the topics in depth that later went into Civ IV via it’s expansions), as a number of the forum members went on to work on that game and it’s expansions.

I got to QT3 via that link somehow, someone pointed this site out to me as the place where serious gamers and game people hung out.

Wow. Wooooow. I’m Cartman_316 (although I certainly wish I was Norman Chan, making all that Tested money and all those Gary Whitta friendships). I started going by a different handle in 2010 cause I realized a name combining a character from South Park and late 90s professional wrestling was apparently distracting people from the content of my posts. Who were you on the PCG forums? It’s been a while, but I still recognize some of the old nicks.

I posted a lot on the PC Gamer US forums from like 2001-2003 (and was even a mod in their IRC channel!), when my buddy Tromik showed me qt3. My interest in PCG the magazine had been dwindling, so qt3 became my “main” forum (which I apparently loudly and - no doubt - annoyingly proclaimed on the PCG forums). I still check here regularly pretty much every day. Tom was even kind enough to put up some stuff I wrote on the front page! (have you guys read Farming Vader yet? You should totally read it. And be sure to make a comment that my brother is a psycho on the final entry!)

My first internet gaming forum for which I was a regular, was the one associated with the rantings of Lum the Mad. Then Lum left (he joined Mythic) and the forum started to change in a way I did not like. I then found QT3, I am not sure how I found out about it, probably some post in the Lum forums.

Even though I was a registered user, QT3 was small and not much was going on. I also was a user of a forum that became Corp News, but I think they are gone now. Eventually Lum’s forum became Slow News Day and it just became kind of lame and I switch it QT3 as my “main” gaming forum and I have been here ever since. It has been a long time so I might have some of the details a bit wrong.

I started in 1984 on single line C64 BBS’s. I had to setup the auto dialer to be able to login and post messages arguing about games. I was active in the BBS community all the way until I went into college in 1993, and even ran a FidoNet BBS for a couple of years (1:2210/654).

When I got to college in 1993, this ‘internet’ thing was taking off with Mosaic and then Netscape, but I still was frequenting BBS’s - at this time multi line ones with teleconference as well as message boards. Still, I got into reading and posting on Usenet for many years. Much later (can’t remember when exactly), I switched to Gonegold a primary message forum. When that blew up (damn you, LaPorte), I went to Gamingtrend & Octopus Overlords, and then ended up here.

True story.

I’m afraid that’s a secret. Let’s just say that I was also an IRC mod and did stuff with the developer chats, and I’m not trom.

Gah! I’ve said too much!