This week, we bring to you for our employee profile, one operative "Top Guns" McChuck, perhaps one of GWJ's most eligible bachelors. Ladies, do you want a man who really knows what to do with his hands? This show-choir aficionado didn't earn the nickname "Jazz Hands" for nothing.
McChuck can be seen on the right of this image, in which he induces his trademark blend of terror and mirth on an unsuspecting Sean "Elysium" Sands.
Or perhaps you're more into rippling muscles and down-home fun? Check out this hot video of the Chuckster in action.
Or maybe you just want a safe bet for the coming zombie apocalypse. In which case, you should know Chuck is pathologically prepared to leave you behind if you can't hold your own.
All this leads us to the real mystery: Why is this goodjer still single? Does he use his massive biceps to fend off potential mates? Is it just because he admits that he will leave you behind if you aren't an asset when the zombies come? You should know: There's no room for romance after Z Day.
1) Who the devil are you?
I’m an amalgam of different, often conflicting and confusing personality types sewn together into one functioning personality. Like a prom dress made from carpet samples.
2) What are you supposed to be doing when you're reading GWJ?
I’m a web programmer / server administrator for a small private university. However, I plan on leaving that field soon. Hopefully, I’ll be transitioning to my true calling: Batman.
3) When you're not working or gaming, what do you do with your time?
I run Chicago Loot Drop, a charity that supports Child’s Play, with wordsmythe and E Hunnie. I also run our church’s tutoring program for kids in Cabrini Green and occasionally build websites for local charities.
For fun, I can often be found at any number of local music venues catching a show. I’ve also been learning to play bass. Already being a drummer and, to a much lesser extent, pianist, I’ve started writing songs. I haven’t finished any yet. It’s kinda hard.
4) How about family? Kids? Pets? Particularly meaningful inanimate objects?
I’m the youngest, and therefore most awesome, of three kids. There’s a family dog that lives with my parents. I have a niece and two nephews who rank very high on my list of favorite things ever. I have a metal t-ball bat mounted on my wall for easy access in case of zombie attack.
5) When and/or how did you get into gaming?
Despite their recent dominance of the mobile games market, Apple still isn’t known for gaming. Which makes it kind of funny that they’re responsible for my first gaming memories. When I was 4 or so, a family friend had some iteration of the Apple II. To play a game, I had to boot it using the top 5.25” floppy drive, and load the game in the bottom one. Most were really simple, such as the one where you use a flashlight and mirror to shine light on objects behind obstacles. However, there was also Jordan Mechner’s pre-Prince of Persia effort Karateka (Screw that bird!). While the adults and older kids were doing other stuff, I’d sit in a dark room, staring at a monochrome screen, playing that game. I wear very thick glasses now.
Later, at the same family’s household, I would play Wolfenstein 3D for the first time. I was so amazed by it, that despite extreme motion sickness and an intense headache, I wouldn’t stop playing. I just planted my head on the desk, closed my eyes, breathed heavily until the pain subsided enough and the vomit went back down so I could play for another 30 seconds before repeating the process. I’ve never had an issue with 3D, or faux-3D in this case, ever since.
6) What is your fondest gaming memory?
In general, all the 4-player fun I had on the N64 back in high school. There was the time my friends challenged me to 3 vs 1 License To Kill pistols in the Temple in GoldenEye and I still won because they couldn’t grasp the concept of not killing your teammates. Putting on epic pay-per-view quality matches in Wrestlemania 2000. Using the projector in my church’s gym to play games all night on a massive screen. It was impossible to track the bottom bar in Mario Golf on that thing. That was my pre-cursor to Internet or LAN gaming and was some of the best side-by-side gaming ever.
7) Why do you play games? Why haven't you outgrown them?
I really hate this question. Mainly, the latter one. I look forward to the day when we no longer feel the need to justify our hobby and can retire this question.
I have no nerd shame. I regularly show up to parties filled with normals on a Saturday night after playing D&D all day. As people are discussing their days, I have no problem saying, “I killed an effing dragon this afternoon!” I refuse to accept that between me and the people that sat around on the couch that day, that I’m the loser.
I have huge gaps in my empathy and can’t fathom the point of view that thinks games aren’t awesome. To me, the more appropriate questions are, “Why don’t you play games? Why would you ever stop?”
8) What is your favorite game over the last year or so? Why?
Easily the game I sunk the most time into: Skyrim. I have the habit of turning any game that will let me turn it into a faux-Thief. While it’s stealth was really lacking, being a thief in a large open world made up for it. Thief 4 can’t come soon enough.
9) What is your favorite game that you’re playing right now? Why?
I only play one game at a time and I’m usually way behind what’s current. So, by default, my favorite game I’m playing right now is the only game I’m playing: Fallout 3. I think I liked Skyrim better as a game, but I’ve always been more sci-fi than fantasy, so I really enjoy the Fallout setting more than the Elder Scrolls one. Before that, I played and loved Psychonauts. I can finally listen to the Conference Call about that episode. Hooray!
10) Which upcoming game are you looking forward to most? Why?
Thief 4, because Thief is my favorite game. It plays to two of my strengths: patience and patterns. I even used the Hammerites’ font for their scriptures in part of a tattoo on my arm. (I also used a font reminiscent of BioShock.) After Thief 4, or maybe even tied with it, BioShock: Infinite is the game I’m most excited about. Other than that, I probably couldn’t name any other games coming out. I learn of games as friends play them then tweet about them.
11) What first brought you to GWJ? What keeps you coming back?
It was either when Penny Arcade linked to the Half-Life 2 story or when Bill Harris kept mentioning the site when he was still on GoneGold. Not sure which came first, but they got me to show up often enough that I started reading the front page articles. Eventually, I dove into the forums. Over the years I’ve made some great meat-space friends.
12) What is the story behind your handle?
When I first started playing HL2 DM with GWJ I was retiring my alias of days gone by. So, when I signed on I just went with what I'm called in real life, Mike Chuck. After a few ecounters with Gaald where I escaped victorious by a very slim margin of health, he was beside himself and as he is oft to do he cursed my name. "D*mmit! Die, McChuck!" Apparently, the anger pushed the words out faster than his tongue could express. I liked it and was in the market for a new name so I grabbed onto it and stopped lurking. (Source)
13) What is the story behind your tag?
No backstory. Just a random suggestion by Rubb Ed that still makes me giggle to this day.
14) Do you have any notable rivalries and/or friendships with someone on GWJ?
I have antagonistic relationships with most of my friends, so that they’re often my friends and rivals at the same time. Such as Grenn, wordsmythe, and Elysium. However, rabbit, Demiurge, and Hedgewizard show me only love. They are silly people.
15) Thanks for taking the time to answer our hard-hitting questions! Any last words?
There’s no other place like GWJ on the Internet. Well, maybe there is. I haven’t been to all of it. Yet. But it’s still very special to me. I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.