Five Years of GWJ

One of my favorite pleasures is getting to kick off each new year with a virtual birthday party of sorts. Launched on January 15, 2003, I am happy to announce that has just turned a rambunctious five years old.

It feels like one of the milestones birthdays, a threshold crossed where we can say with some confidence that the site has carved a niche into the gaming media landscape. Each year our voice grows stronger, and though we've been slow and methodical about growing the site, like an old man wearing a hat riding the brake in the fast lane, we are no longer exactly small anymore. The result is a site I'm proud of; one with excellent writers, a vibrant community, diverse content and a respected reputation.

Happy five, GWJ!

I say it every year, and this will be no exception. Any success we've enjoyed running and operating GWJ is a direct result of you. A community is irrelevant if it has no participating members, and to those that fill our forums each day with information, comedy, opinions and passion, you are the backbone of GWJ. To those who read the articles and participate in more passive ways, you are no less important; as theater requires an audience so too do we. To those who contribute their time, effort, money and sweat to our gaming media experiment, well our thanks for that are boundless. If there is one thing that still surprises me about running this site, it is how willing people have been to take time out of their busy lives to help us, including our writers, our tech shamans, those who donated to the site, down to the people who send in emails for the podcast. Your invaluable participation is too often unrewarded, but powerfully appreciated!

It's been a good year for GWJ. Kudos go to Julian "Rabbit" Murdoch for penning the most visited article in the history of the site with his tale of a Guitar Hero God performing at a big box electronics store. I don't normally like to give out any kinds of specifics on site stats, but I can tell you that the article in question has been viewed more than one-hundred thousand times. That's probably why professional gaming publications keep, and should keep, hiring him to write. He is the 2007 New England Patriots of gaming journalism; a compliment which I'm certain will make him happy despite my certainty that he still couldn't tell me who the running back for that team is.

One of our big plans for this past holiday season was the launch of the updated GWJ site, a surprise we'd been holding close to our vest for most of 2007. While the cat may be out of the bag, some technical bugaboos have cramped our style a bit, and like the games we cover we were forced to push back our launch date and extend the beta. Nonetheless the contributions of Jeff and Eric in getting that project rolling have been and continue to be huge, and we look forward to bringing the new GWJ up and online early this year.

Also this past year, I feel like the podcast has really begun to come into its own. Thanks need to go out to, among others, guests like Ken Levine, Jeff Green, Michael Zenke, Russ Pitts and Brian Reynolds for participating in the show and offering their perspectives on gaming. Also, thanks to for their sponsorship of the show during much of 2007. These are all people that help turn a show that might otherwise just be four guys talking about things on which they know very little, into a show that I think is informative, entertaining and, despite my best efforts, intelligent. Thanks need to go out here to Rob "Gaald" Borges, who spends a half-dozen hours every week editing the poorly recorded and largely incoherent sound files we send him into a solid show.

There's just not enough credit to be given to the writers who have contributed to this front page over the past half-decade, those still with us and those who have moved on: Lara "KaterinLHC" Crigger, Julian "Rabbit" Murdoch, Jeremy "Nyles" Greenfield, Adam "The Fly" LaMosca, Cory "Demiurge" Banks, Colleen "Momgamer" Hannon , Julian "Spunior" Dasgupta, Russ "Fletcher" Pitts, Stephen "Chiggie" Failey, Phillip "Lobo" Scuderi, Allen "Pyroman" Cook, Ian "Malacola" Irvine and probably someone who I am tragically forgetting and to whom I offer eternal apologies. Also, a special thanks needs to go to both Pyro and Matt "Baggachipz" Curtis for their tech support over the years.

Now, I've come to the part of this article that I'm going to like the least. As much as I am loathe to do it, I have to thank Shawn "Certis" Andrich, for "… well, God, where do I start. How about this: thanks for being a stubborn pain in the ass. No, seriously, when it comes right down to the guy who actually moves things forward, takes good ideas and turns them into actual action, who just buckles down to the hard work while I float in the stratosphere of concept and theory, this is the best partner you could hope for. You could try and enumerate all the hats Certis wears on this site, but you'd just end up needing to open a hat store to sell them back off. He's the guy that keeps the lights on, that herds the kittens and that manages to think of the little things that I'd entirely forget about. His knowledge of gaming is encyclopedic, he's got a good writing voice when he exercises it, he "… can I stop complimenting him yet?! Just suffice to say, if there was no Certis there would be no GWJ.

You probably already knew that.

Five years is an accomplishment of which I'm mighty proud, but I'm more confident than ever that it's just the beginning. I feel like we're on a roll, and the last thing I want to do is lose any of that momentum. We've got a lot of plans for 2008 and year six. Stay tuned.

[edit: I will burn in the special hell for not mentioning Sway. Not only did he create the fantastic Infinite Lives, and contribute articles for the site, and bravely open a box in his attic; he even came with us to our first E3. Sway is the man, and I'm going to go write his name 500 hundred times as penance.]



You forgot Sway for writing the comics!

SWAY! Dammit, I knew it.

I noticed that I had been active for 5 years and 2 days, so Happy birthday! (And I STILL don't have a tag. I suppose I am slow in posting)

You must post enough because I can instantly recognize your posts by your icon.

*me stupid. ignore this.*

While I rarely post, I've been reading ever since the site first launched. I recall following you two to this new site from EvAv. I was suspicious at first as I have seen many writers or groups "break away" from site to form their own, only to watch them crash and burn in a few months. It takes a lot of dedication, time, energy, and sacrifice to create and sustain a community like this, not to mention develop and produce content on top of that. You two, all the others writers (past and present), and the community should be commended for growing one of the best sites on the web for adult gamers.

Congratulations, and here's to five more!

I guess this is the appropriate time for a back-slapping, sentimental post?

I've only been a member of this site for a couple of those five years, but I've enjoyed every bit of it. Success couldn't have come to a nicer bunch of people. Really, with the quality of the content of this site, success shouldn't be a surprise, but unfortunately, innovators don't always get their proper recognition. So to see this site continue to grow while keeping its tight-knit community is heart-warming, to say the least. Congrats to everyone involved!

Happy Birthday GWJ's! Here is too another 5 years!

Congrats on 5 years! One of the gaming web sites I visit the most and the only forum where I regularly lurk and sometimes post. God.. that rhymed.

3 years and 41 weeks to be exact.

Edit: I do believe I began visiting the web site on a regular basis when Sway was attempting to open the box in his attic and (forgive me for not remembering because it's mentioned from time to time) someone talking about shaving their balls and the numerous tips that followed.

I'll just go ahead and second everything Elysium said. I also want to acknowledge that despite his own growing freelance career and business, Elysium has still managed to slam out fresh content every week and have enough juice to be an essential member of the podcast. As busy as I can be with doing all the other stuff, that kind of content output seems herculean to me. Kudos, sir. Kudos.

he's got a good writing voice when he exercises it, he "… can I stop complimenting him yet?! Just suffice to say, if there was no Certis there would be no GWJ.

If I'm going to have my salad tossed, I always prefer it when the chef is weeping. Thanks baby.

GWJ truly is a remarkable community. God bless us, every one.


No, no, Elysium and Certis. We love YOU more.

I wish have found this site earlier. I entered the working world fresh from grad school about 5 years ago, and I've struggled to find a mature gaming community before stumbling upon this podcast on iTunes. One of my first podcasts was GWJ Radio (I still miss the intro music) - once I heard the discussion was about the ridiculous poker sessions in Gun, I knew I was at home. Great job on the website and podcast!

Well done, fellas.

Now I can drink this weekend for a reason!

In this post-Gerstmann-gate world, we need each other more than ever. Keep up the great work!


I loved reading this place, I loved joining this place, I loved working for this place. I love this place. Here's to 5 more years of being The Balls.

I've only been actively following the site for half a year or so. The community seems so strong, I'm surprised that the site is "just" five years old... actually scratch that, five years is a great achievement for any hobbyist media, online especially, way to go guys!

Cheers to GWJ.

Like I first said 5 years ago....

Go banana!

Keep moving like the yellow fruit rolling downhill.

Huzzah! Five more years! Five more years!

I like you guys. I'd put it in all your poopers.

Mazel Tov! It's a...litter of Goodjers!

You guys are awesome, surprise butt pats all around.

Great job guys! Here's to Elysium, Certis, and the Gearheads that keep this place up and running. Not to mention all the great writers (who are also active community members, which I think is awesome.) And of course, the always kick ass GWJ Radio.

I came to GWJ in my twenties, I'm still here in my thirties, and I can only hope I'll still call this my internet home well into my forties.

/toasts fellow gaming nerds

Good Work, Jentlemen.

Oh well I tried.

shihonage wrote:

Good Work, Jentlemen.

Oh well I tried.

Mad props.
My response just looks silly now.

Thanks, guys. As I love to say, when I came here at the suggestion of Duffman (eternally grateful, amigo), it was like coming home; there was a website for my exact demographic, and better yet, the forums were moderated in such a way as to promote enjoyable discourse and prevent flaming? Where had GWJ been all my life?!?!

I remember attending my first online gaming night with the Goodjers with some trepidation; I was familiar with BF2, but certainly not one of the game's elite. Would I be called a noob, or otherwise subjected to the kinds of verbal harassment that one expects in internet games? Well, yes, but not for several more sessions; not untl I'd been accepted into the fold. If that's not the opposite of the way things tend to work on the internet, I don't know what is.

Thanks, Certis and Elysium. Thanks for building not just another website, but a uniquely friendly, fun-loving community. And thanks to all the users who make it what I assume those two dreamed it would be. You guys rock!

Would be a good idea. I plan to have Logan sit in for me when I am on my honeymoon.

- Legion, taking "keeping it in the family" to a whole new level.

Xbox Live: Fedaykin98

Certis wrote:

If I'm going to have my salad tossed, I always prefer it when the chef is weeping. Thanks baby.

I had to wipe the tears from laughter away before i could type:

Happy Birthday and thanks for being what you are.

Happy B-day, GWJ! Cheers!