My 2018 Thanksgiving ‘state of the Simon’.

It’s been a little while, and it’s roughly turkey time in the U.S., so I thought it might be good to give some thanks – while going over some of the many projects I’m currently working on, circa November 2018.

(Actually, I just updated the ‘You Might Know Me From’ page with two of them, which shows I’m making a difference, right? Or just flitting from one to the other, I guess! In all seriousness, I’m trying to concentrate on doing things that add value. So this rundown should be a good test. And it has arbitrary ratings!) Continue reading

The MIDI Tiki Show: a new YouTube channel for your pleasure

So here’s an announcement – I’ve started a new YouTube channel, called ‘The MIDI Tiki Show’, that showcases high quality hardware-played MIDI files in a tiki room setting. Uh… wha? Why? Maybe I’d better explain…

The Inspiration

This all started when I checked out the excellent YouTube channel Techmoan‘s video on ‘the floppy disk boombox’, which showcased the Roland MT-80s music tutor.

This device is designed for piano/instrument tutoring & karaoke, and plays back MIDI music files on floppy 3.5 inch disks, including files that use Roland’s GS standard. Which actually sounds pretty darn good, if you can find the correct MIDI files. (More on this later!)  Continue reading

Longread: The ‘lost’ Alan Moore interview (The Telegraph Wire, 1985)

[Poking around at a Bay Area antiques fair, I came across a copy of local comic book store zine Telegraph Wire. And in it, there’s a great longform Wendi Lee interview from SDCC 1985 with Alan Moore, who was known for his Swamp Thing work & V For Vendetta at the time, and in the process of writing the seminal Watchmen!

Turns out that the Internet Archive has a copy of the zine, but nobody had cleaned up the OCR & fully republished online – so here we go! It’s a great early-ish piece on both Moore’s working style & motivation, and also his reasons for creating Watchmen.]

There’s very little need to introduce a writer like Alan Moore – already his name has become familiar to SWAMP THING fans as well as collectors of Britain’s WARRIOR, which has featured MARVELMAN (reprinted by Eclipse as MIRACLEMAN) and V FOR VENDETTA.

Alan Moore has not only proved his writing is prolific and profound, but also versatile. Since his inception of SWAMP THING, Alan has written for AMERICAN FLAGG!, MR. MONSTER and has many projects in the offing.

I was fortunate to catch Mr. Moore at the San Diego Comic-Con last August and he talked about his work on SWAMP THING as well as a very exciting project he’s working on with Dave Gibbons called WATCHMEN. Although there’s no set date, keep watching DC for more information.

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Retro Wonders Game Bundle – a bunch more great eBooks!

[Here’s the latest eBook bundle I compiled for the Storybundle crew – and it’s a particular favorite of mine because of the amount of exclusives we commissioned, and the depth of some of the writing – so much good/rare/overlooked stuff here, dig in!]

The Retro Wonders Game Bundle – Curated by Simon Carless

The first Video Game StoryBundle of 2018 is a massive one, since we have three brand new game history/analysis ebooks you can’t get anywhere else, as well as some amazing overlooked & sought-after tomes based around retro video game goodness. Continue reading

New things from me – early 2018 edition!

Since it’s definitely 2018 already (for quite a long time!), and I haven’t actually managed to update this website since 2017, thought it might be good to ACTUALLY DO SO with some notes on what I’ve been up to:

Game Developers Conference 2018 totally happened, a couple of weeks ago! We had 28,000 attendees – an all-time high – and there’s lot of pictures of them on GDC’s Flickr account. (IGF ceremony above!)

We also made hundreds of videos & slide decks free on GDC Vault, if you want to check out top talks from the show. It was the first GDC without Meggan Scavio (aw), who now runs the AIAS, but the first with my former colleague Katie Stern (whee!) here as GM, and am excited to see how we build on the experience, with her at the helm. Continue reading

The Winter Wonderland Game Storybundle is here…

[The final Storybundle of the year is here, and this one is particularly choice, I think. Really have fun compiling these eBook bundles, and with both the charity and curator cut going to Prisoners Literature Project this time around, you’ll be doing some good by picking i up, too!]

We only do 3 of these Video Game StoryBundles per year because we care about quality. Why? Have you noticed these weekly bundles on one particular subject get same-y so quickly? We don’t do that and won’t do that. We vary things up – while still bringing you books from a few regular sources that we enjoy.

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Neat things that I’m currently working on!

Just so every darn post on this blog isn’t a Game Storybundle announce (there’s another one coming up in a few weeks, haha!), here’s a few things that I’m up to and excited about, recently:

– Yep, Game Developers Conference is booting up for another cycle, and it’s taking place from March 19-23, 2018. In addition to overseeing the folks who run the event, I’m helping out with the Indie Summit, Advocacy track, and the second year of the Board Game Design Day I help to organize with Soren Johnson. Plus there’s the return of GDC Retro Play, the IGF, and one or two (cool!) new things we’ll reveal in due course!

– The whole No More Robots thing (an indie publisher I’m helping back & advising) is still going great. Our first product we’re publishing, procedural mountain bike game Descenders, has a limited public Beta coming up on October 27th. Plus, we have two other games signed that we’re excited to talk about soon. The work, naturally, is 99% Mike Rose’s, but happy to be along for the ride.

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Summer Smash Game eBook Storybundle smashes into town!

[Well, the Game eBook Storybundle series, which I very much enjoy curating, returns – again benefiting the Video Game History Foundation as optional charity – & this one is special since it has a bunch of ‘first time in eBook’ or even ‘first time published anywhere’ books in it! Hope you enjoy…]

Picture, if you will, a secret bookshelf. Three times a year, behind a special oak panel, it’s refreshed with a ton of fascinating books about video games, as if by magic. Those books span gamuts, from fascinating anthologies to wonderful cultural histories, all the way to single-book drill downs on some of the best video games in history. But how – you may ask – would you get access to this wonderful magic bookshelf?

Well, it turns out that if you just log on to the Internet and go to the StoryBundle website, these so-called ‘Video Game StoryBundles’ run thrice in a calendar year, and the latest one, available at a ‘pay what you want’ prices and including exclusive tomes on Undertale & ROM hacking, & the first-ever eBook version of the acclaimed Indie By Design interview/profile book, is available… when? When? Right now, good Sir!

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Why (and how!) I’m backing No More Robots

By now, you may have noticed that Mike Rose – former IndieGames & Gamasutra editor, more recently at indie publisher Tinybuild where he worked with rather good games like Punch Club, Party Hard and Clustertruck – has announced a brand new independent video game publisher, No More Robots.

I’m delighted to say that I’m an initial investor in No More Robots, and also am advising Mike & team (which also includes supersmart UK lawyer/biz guy Jas Purewal as another advisor/investor) on strategy/A&R. Continue reading

‘Video Game Deep Cuts’ – weekly newsletter goodness!

Just because I never actually blogged about it here, wanted to alert y’all to Video Game Deep Cuts, the weekly newsletter I started up a few months ago.

As described in the overview, it’s “the best longread & standout articles about video games, every weekend”, and it started because, as I noted in the inaugural newsletter, “Inspired by REDEF in particular, & other recommendation newsletters like Level Up Report in general, I’ve found there’s a lot of value in compiling good/interesting content in one focused place.”

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