The Fondest of Farewells

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Kevin-V

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Edited By Kevin-V
Member since 2006 • 5418 Posts

It was 2002. I browsed GameSpot every day, reading every review and posting religiously in the forums. The first time I ever took a day off of work to play a video game was after I read Greg Kasavin's review of Neverwinter Nights, a game I was hooked on for months afterwards. PC Gamer was the magazine that originally sparked my love of games writing, but Greg was writing on a different level. When I read his reviews, I understood what it was like to play the game without needing to experience it for myself.

And thus, my passion for GameSpot only grew. Eventually, I would become a volunteer moderator in its forums, under the tutelage of Bethany Massimilla and Jody Robinson. I wrote scores of reader reviews for GameSpot, and soon began to write for a now-defunct site called Inside Gamer Online, along with Carolyn Petit, who would later join the GameSpot editorial team. Then, under the guidance of Sterling McGarvey and Will Tuttle, GameSpy brought me on as a freelancer; my first paid review was for a game called Crime Life: Gang Wars, starring hip-hop group D12. I gave it one star.

All the while, I continued my volunteer duties in the GS forums until the fateful day in 2006 when I got a call from Jody Robinson. A position for tournament coordinator had opened up, and GameSpot wanted me to apply for it. So I flew from Baltimore to San Francisco, interviewed with Jody, Hank van Niekerk, and a number of other people, and then took the red-eye back to Baltimore that night. A few days later, I received a job offer, which I accepted. Then, with equal parts terror and excitement, I packed up my car with everything that could fit in it and I drove 2300 miles across the country to start a new life.

Tournaments weren't long to last. Fortunately, I had already begun to transition to the editorial team by the time they were dropped entirely. Alex Navarro was my champion: he liked my work, and trusted me with some big games early on. It was surreal to sit in a room with all these people I admired so much: Jeff Gerstmann, Ryan Davis, Brad Shoemaker, and other great writers and personalities. I was the awkward newbie. I couldn't even walk through the video studio without tripping over equipment, and I cowered in the presence of video game giants during my first appearance on The HotSpot, the GameSpot podcast.

A lot has changed over the (almost) nine years I have been with GameSpot. You've probably heard some of those stories, so I won't recount them here; suffice it to say, I've seen things. I have also come to know a huge number of excellent people. I hesitate to try writing a comprehensive list of those that have become dear to me, and were instrumental to my growth, both personally and professionally. This essay is already too long, and I'd be horrified if I overlooked someone. But those people know who they are, and they gave me confidence, guided me through sticky circumstances, and believed in me and my work.

You know where a post like this must be headed. The time has come to pursue a new course. It's never an easy choice, but I think it is the right one. Soon, I will be joining MMOG developer/publisher Trion Worlds as a writer. I'll still be available to write elsewhere for the time being (if you need an author, keep me in mind!), but day in and day out, instead of writing about games for a living, I will be writing for them.

And so I move ahead once more with both terror and excitement. I won't have to pack up a car this time, but it feels no less a momentous occasion. I hope you'll stick with me as I begin this new journey. Soon, critics will be reviewing my work...a scary proposition indeed! Through it all, however, I will continue to play games and write about them; how could I not? It is through games that I have met thousands and thousands of wonderful people, and besides: an author is made by his audience. Thank you to everyone who read me, believed in me, complained about me, and supported me. I couldn't have done it without you.

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solidruss

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#1 solidruss
Member since 2002 • 24082 Posts

Kevin, I wish you the very best of luck in your endeavors! You will be missed for sure!

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garfield360uk

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#2 garfield360uk
Member since 2006 • 20381 Posts

Good luck Mr VanOrd, I have enjoyed and trusted reading the content you provided here and you will be missed. All the best with your future work and I look forward to seeing the content you are able to bring to us.

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Garbage943

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#3 Garbage943
Member since 2003 • 70 Posts

I'll miss your work here! I always looked forward to reading it.

Best of luck! I know someone of your talent will no doubt do great.

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Desmonic

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#5 Desmonic  Moderator
Member since 2007 • 19990 Posts

You were one of better reviewers in my humble opinion. Always consistent and informative, what I look most for in the reviewers and the reviews themselves.

Best of luck in all future endeavours!

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blue_hazy_basic

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#6 blue_hazy_basic  Moderator
Member since 2002 • 30852 Posts

Ah, we'll miss you and your reviews so much, you've become an institution here! Good luck in the future with everything Kevin!

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freedom01

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#7 freedom01  Moderator
Member since 2004 • 3627 Posts

good luck Kevin, we will miss you

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deactivated-5c79c3cfce222

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#8  Edited By deactivated-5c79c3cfce222
Member since 2009 • 4715 Posts

Godspeed.

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deactivated-5b19214ec908b

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#9 deactivated-5b19214ec908b
Member since 2007 • 25072 Posts

That's a bit disappointing, you were my favourite reviewer on this site.

Good luck with your new career.

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loudloudnoise

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#10 loudloudnoise
Member since 2009 • 32 Posts

Congratulations, Kevin! Good luck on your new endeavor!

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RetroHelix85

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#11 RetroHelix85
Member since 2002 • 28 Posts

Congrats! You'll be missed. Best of luck in your new venture.

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Frozone007

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#12 Frozone007
Member since 2007 • 35 Posts

My favourite reviewer here! For all the petty complaints you received on reviews for fanboy games, you were for me, how Greg Kasavin was for you; I didn't need to play a game when you could describe it beautifully in detail. All the very best wishes for all your future endeavors, as I KNOW, that Trion Worlds will be getting popularity because of your writing! I'll be keeping a lookout for your name in their games' credits :D

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dannyodwyer

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#13 dannyodwyer
Member since 2005 • 2179 Posts

GameSpot is forever a better site thanks to your tenure Kevin.

Thank you - and all the best on your new adventure.

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hastati4

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#14 hastati4
Member since 2007 • 315 Posts

My favorite reviewer on this site for a very long time. Won't be the same without you, but I wish you the best! Good luck at Trion Worlds!

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deactivated-579f651eab962

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#15 deactivated-579f651eab962
Member since 2003 • 5404 Posts

You were the "Game" in Gamespot. Now it's just Spot :(

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joeslack

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#16 joeslack
Member since 2013 • 47 Posts

Good luck Kevin! Stay in touch.

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deactivated-5e0e425ee91d8

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#17 deactivated-5e0e425ee91d8
Member since 2007 • 22399 Posts

Thank you, Kevin. In much the way Greg inspired you, my work has been inspired by you and your coworkers in much the same way. I hope I'm lucky enough to one day break into this crazy business as you have.

Best of luck to you, sir.

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BboyMrMaestro

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#18 BboyMrMaestro
Member since 2014 • 47 Posts

I was just about to email you about a pitch, too. Good luck man!

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augustoheadshot

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#19 augustoheadshot
Member since 2004 • 211 Posts

don't go! :(

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Byshop

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#20 Byshop  Moderator
Member since 2002 • 20398 Posts

Best of luck to you, sir!

-Byshop

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Blabadon

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#21 Blabadon
Member since 2008 • 33030 Posts

Good luck in the future!

I only wish reviewers interacted with the community beyond this.

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Shunten

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#22  Edited By Shunten
Member since 2003 • 162 Posts

I hope your new adventure is awesome but I am still sad to see you go. Thank you for your many years of hard work and quality writing.

Lovely shoutout to the one and only Greg Kasavin and the former GS/current GB crew as well.

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Kalmaru

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#23 Kalmaru
Member since 2005 • 263 Posts

Congrats sir! I shall follow you in your endeavors to come, and I look forward to seeing your potential work as it comes. Many great years you spent on GameSpot, and you shaped the views and the way I critically analyze games. Thank you. Good luck!

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wrestlemaniaw

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#24 wrestlemaniaw
Member since 2007 • 1563 Posts

Good luck Kev, much respect from me.

you will always be the best at this field.

Thanks for making gamespot a better place , you will be missed!

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Archangel3371

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#25  Edited By Archangel3371
Member since 2004 • 38274 Posts

I always enjoyed your reviews and will truly miss them. Congratulations and I wish you the best on your new adventure.

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xantufrog

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#26 xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 17764 Posts

Best of luck Kevin. I can't tell you how much your honest reviews of games, both good and bad (the games, I mean), have meant to me as a potential buyer. This sounds like such an exciting opportunity, though - I imagine most of us gamers have dreamed of being involved in their development as well. Farewell!

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freedomfreak

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#27 freedomfreak  Online
Member since 2004 • 52232 Posts

Always enjoyed your reviews, and I wish you nothing but the best in you future endeavors. Take care, fiddlecub!

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anotherlarktest

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#28 anotherlarktest
Member since 2014 • 2147483646 Posts

Best of luck, Kevin!

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GregK

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#29  Edited By GregK
Member since 2002 • 5332 Posts

Hey Kevin, all the best to you in what comes next and thank you both for the kind words here and especially for all your years of service at this site. Your reviews have helped guid some of my better game-purchasing decisions since I left, so I'll certainly miss them. I hope what you do next proves at least as fulfilling, interesting, and rewarding.

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deactivated-584419ec3a052

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#30 deactivated-584419ec3a052
Member since 2012 • 333 Posts

Good luck with where your future takes you, Kevin!

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Catalli

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#31  Edited By Catalli  Moderator
Member since 2014 • 3453 Posts

I wish you the best of luck, Kevin! Thank you for all that you've contributed to video game journalism, and for all that you will contribute to the gaming industry from now on!

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Netherscourge

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#32 Netherscourge
Member since 2003 • 16364 Posts

[img]http://www.nooooooooooooooo.com/vader.jpg[/img]

Best of wishes! 90% of my game purchases over the past 5+ years we're based on your reviews and they all lived up to your observations and opinions.

You will be missed!

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JohnyMyko

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#33 JohnyMyko
Member since 2009 • 206 Posts

It was interesting to watch how your writing and reviews evolved during your time on Gamespot, I feel like you're leaving on your prime and that's probably for the best, leave on a high note. Both your reviews and amusing appearances on The Lobby will be missed. I hope your new job has some connections to RPG worlds, I always felt like they were your alley. Good luck on your next adventures!

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zanelli

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#34 zanelli  Moderator
Member since 2006 • 1203 Posts

Kevin, you have been a great inspiration to me over the years and I am saddened to hear that you'll be leaving us here at GameSpot; but it also bring me a lot of joy to hear that you'll be moving forwards with such a good opportunity.

Farewell and good luck my friend.

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adsparky

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#35 adsparky
Member since 2006 • 2353 Posts

Farewell; I will miss your reviews and the polemic they always cause; Good luck .

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deactivated-5a7fcf5e55c95

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#36 deactivated-5a7fcf5e55c95
Member since 2011 • 2103 Posts

Farewell Kevin, you were always a great writer and reviewer and really helped us gamers understand the positives and shortcomings of all the games we would soon be able to play and were already playing. You've worked relentlessly and were very dedicated to what you did. I wish you the best of luck in any place the future takes you! Thank you again for all you've done for this site!

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JusticeCovert

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#37 JusticeCovert
Member since 2002 • 1819 Posts

Congratulations Kevin! With your passion and work ethic I have no doubt that you'll excel at Trion Worlds and anywhere else canny enough to throw money at you.

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A-new-Guardian

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#38 A-new-Guardian
Member since 2015 • 2458 Posts

You're writing for games? this is excellent. I love reading your reviews and blogs. very happy for you man.

I hope you have a successful career and I look forward to play the games you write. Congratulations.

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HoodedFawn

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#39 HoodedFawn
Member since 2011 • 33 Posts

Thank you

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BobRossPerm

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#40 BobRossPerm
Member since 2015 • 2886 Posts

Best of luck Kevin, one of the best reviewers in the industry.

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King9999

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#41 King9999
Member since 2002 • 11837 Posts

Congrats on the new role! It seems almost natural for games writers to transition to game dev. Many of the writers I liked have all gone on to work on games in some form.

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DaVillain

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#42 DaVillain  Moderator
Member since 2014 • 50760 Posts

@adsparky said:

Farewell; I will miss your reviews and the polemic they always cause; Good luck .

Indeed. Kevin will truly be miss. To Kevin, I salute you on your new Journey and Godspeed.

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spectral

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#43 spectral
Member since 2004 • 76 Posts

Good luck Kevin. Gamespot just wont be the same without you.

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megagene

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#44  Edited By megagene
Member since 2005 • 23156 Posts

All the best to you, Kevin. I have enjoyed all of your reviews over the years. Even the ones I didn't necessarily agree with I still appreciated and respected your opinion. May your future be bright and your new job bring you satisfaction. You will be missed 'round these parts for sure.

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Jacanuk

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#45 Jacanuk
Member since 2011 • 20281 Posts

Even tho the review lately have been a bit more on the cranky side, you were one of the best Gamespot have/had

So i wish you the absolute best and i hope you well in your new job and may it bring you tons of joy and pleasure and make you a household name among the developing stars :D

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jazilla

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#46 jazilla
Member since 2005 • 2320 Posts

/salute holmes!

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SuppaPHly42

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#47 SuppaPHly42
Member since 2014 • 1223 Posts

OMG that both some of the saddest and awe inspiring news, i wish you all the best in your new station.

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DaVillain

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#48 DaVillain  Moderator
Member since 2014 • 50760 Posts

Kevin I wanted to say that I always enjoy your reviews and for what it's worth, you will be miss. Good luck on your new adventures.

BTW has to be said. Please take no insult "Can I have your stuff?

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MarcRecon

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#49 MarcRecon
Member since 2009 • 8186 Posts

I Enjoyed your work here, good luck on your new venture!! :)

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harry_james_pot

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#50  Edited By harry_james_pot  Moderator
Member since 2006 • 11414 Posts

Good luck, and thank you for all the amazing work that you've done here. GS definitely won't be the same without you.