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Interview with Strider

Sozzals

Hi folks

Today I’m joined by Strider aka Strides aka Blaze. Strides is from the Rift era of Pyran. Thanks for joining me today mate, and I have to say – it’s really good to be chatting to you today!! It’s been too long!!!

Strider
Haha, ok this seems really formal now! Yea, we haven’t talked in a while and I’ve been in a really Pyran mood the last few days, so it’s perfect timing really.

Sozzals
Well I’m glad we’re always in the back of your mind – even if we’re not playing the same games.

Strider
I’ve been wanting to talk more with the Pyran guys, I just disappear sometimes, but always come back and want to get more involved since I love you guys a ton!
I really feel Pyran is like a second home, always there for me.

Sozzals
We’ve known each other a long time now. Tell everyone who doesn’t know you a bit about Strides – where you live, what you do, favourite position?

Strider
Hm, a bit about me is a tough question to answer, as you know I like to ramble so I could go on forever really.

I’m 29 yrs old (too old now), from a little place called Gibraltar.
Things about me; I love gaming like most of the guys in Pyran. If I’m not playing games, I’m constantly watching gaming stuff on YouTube, Twitch, or even watching those while playing a game at the same time.
I love music. I used to play a few instruments, but stopped really because lack of time and just being into gaming a lot more. Making more time for that really  I still love listening to music and I am very picky with my tastes.
I do like sport, I’m a fan of football in particular, proud Arsenal fan, even used to play it a bit. I wish I still did though, really enjoyed it.

I’m very talkative and descriptive, people might think I’m bit of a cunt sometimes, but I’m also super friendly if you get to know me a bit!
Currently unemployed, and been unemployed for too long. Having bit of a hard time irl, I’m finding it very difficult to find something new, sometimes I just want to pursue the things I really love,
which one of them is obviously video games, but it’s extremely tough, especially since I’m 29 now, and because of where I live, so I’ve never considered it a viable option as a profession at this point.
If I knew this when I was younger, I would’ve tried to pursue it harder.

My favourite position is tough to answer. Although I may not talk about it often, I’m a hyper-sexual kind of person. I have many favourite positions, but if I had to choose, something that shows me dat ass, like doggy style!
If I had to describe my personality, I would say I’m extremely strong minded, a bit of a perfectionist honestly, and quite talkative once I get going. I could say I’m bipolar, but I don’t think I really am. What I am is both introvert and extrovert, which doesn’t make sense, but I’ll try to explain.
Since I was a young boy I was quite a shy, very quiet. I have a lot of siblings, one being a twin brother, so that probably contributed to it. When I was a toddler I wasn’t shy at all, since I always had my twin brother to rely on. Once we got separated in school, everything changed I think.
The older I got, the louder I became, but still had that shy tendency, it didn’t fully go away.

Sometimes I just cba so I act very introvert, like when going to family events or around people I don’t know but once I’m comfortable with a person, I can talk and talk and talk and talk.
I’m sure many people are like that, maybe not to the same extent though.
I can go from extreme to extreme.

I’m usually a very good judge of character, and good at analysing so I can tell if I’m going to like someone almost right away. I can feel at ease with someone very soon after I meet them, or the complete opposite and know that I will never be able to hold a proper conversation with that person
so I can become the extrovert or introvert based on the person.
My brain goes a million miles an hour and sometimes it’s a real nuisance, thinking about the different possibilities of a conversation, how people will react, I put wayyyyy too much effort into things that most people might think don’t matter or are meaningless, sometimes it’s a detriment… sometimes I feel like I want to not give a shit about all these tiny things like it seems mostly everyone else does.
It honestly really is a huge detriment to myself.

Just a few of the things that goes on in my mind all the time, that’s just a small morsel, and it’s constant.
I think it may come across as narcissistic , and you don’t need to tell me that.
The fact I even felt I had to make that comment is an example of me thinking about all these possibilities of what people are thinking of me, or what I say, etc. In that sense I’m a bit similar to Michaka. What he said in his interview about mental issues, maybe not as much as him, but tbh I felt what he said really hit home with me.

Moving on from that… the last thing I want to say about myself is… that I really love drinking tea!!

Sozzals
I think, like a lot of us, you might have a tendency to over think things a bit Strides, but I wouldn’t describe you as narcissistic. You might be cautious about opening up to someone before you know them, but once you do, I feel like you talk very passionately and from the heart. You’ve been part of this community for a long time now – do you remember your joining ritual?

Strider
It has been a long time, like 7 or 8 years. I haven’t been on the Pyran Discord much lately, just been doing my own thing as I do from time to time. I just find it’s healthy for me to take a step back occasionally and not solely focus on Pyran all the time. I do feel like I want to get more involved again and talk with everyone more though.
When I first joined was when Pyran decided to venture into Rift. It was the same time as Jim, though not related at all with his joining.
As for ritual, I don’t really remember if I had a ritual… what I do remember is the interview!
I had met and befriended Niel, aka Axm, a few months before from playing retail Wrath of the Lich King.
He told me about Rift, and how he was looking for a decent guild for it’s launch, and found you guys, so we applied and you gave us an interview at the same time.
I usually get very nervous with things like this, but once I muster up the courage, I’m usually pretty good at them, so as you can imagine, I ended up doing most of the talking in that interview 🙂
I guess it made a good impression

Sozzals
What do you remember about the atmosphere in the community back then? What made you want to stay and keep playing games with us and hanging around like part of the furniture?

Strider
Well I think it’s because it was the first guild I joined that did most of it’s bonding through voice chat. I’d been with guilds before in WoW, but either I was oblivious or I didn’t want to voice chat most of the time, I didn’t really feel like I had a lot of friends in those guilds, I usually made friends on my own and kept to those.
Being kind of forced into those social interactions made me see how fun it could be.

Obviously the people in Pyran helped a lot since everyone was very chill and I had a lot of fun and funny moments with them.
A lot of people made an impression on me, like you, Jim, Pidge, Farske, Dave and Chris etc, the oldies! I’ll always remember doing PvP with you guys, Farske being a Cleric I think, and mentioning how he loved following me around as I just destroyed everything on my Warrior haha! I felt really appreciated then 

Sozzals
Except C0vertz XD

Strider
Yea, Axm liked C0vertz but I think Axm likes nearly everyone :joy: Although I tried to tolerate him, I did think he was a cunt too, and sounded way too young, imo.
Btw, cunt is a great word, love it.

Sozzals
Awww Axm. I miss him. Just a TLDR on Axm for people who don’t know – he joined us, played with us loads, got ripped, got a GF, was never seen again ;(
Idk, cunt for me is like… sloppy or moist – its just not a word i can get on board with

Strider
Yeeeeea, real life pulled him away from us, he was a great guy. Well, is. He’s still with us in the land of the living :p
You’re missing out, maybe not the meaning behind the word, but the emphasis of those consonants, just hits you hard when it’s thrown at you!
CUNT
So satisfying.

Sozzals
True true, there’s no denying it is a big impact word
Can we talk a bit about your gaming career? Always something I find interesting. How did you start gaming? Why Strider? What games have you played over the years? What are you playing these days?

Strider
Wow, well, my gaming career is so long and so varied, I’d have to talk a lot about it to really give the full picture if you don’t mind!

I started extremely early, I would say maybe when I was 2 or 3.
My Dad was always a bit of a tech nerd. I don’t remember him actually playing much, but he always liked messing around with technology on the side of his true love, Music (which he also messed around with that stuff in music too).
Since I live and grew up in Gibraltar, we’d go camping in Spain on the weekends and had a couple Caravans, so we could still watch TV, had electricity, and all that good stuff.
The first games console we had was a ZX Spectrum. I remember playing (or watching a sibling play) a specific game and being really enthralled with it. It was a dungeon crawler type game but can’t remember the name.
What really kicked off my gaming was when my Dad brought home a Sega Megadrive!
Sonic 1 was our first game, and it left a huge impression on me.
From then on always been obsessed with games, went through all the Megadrive classics like all the Sonics, Streets of Rage, Golden Axe and tons more.
I think games like this also left an impression with me in terms of it’s music, because I still love those soundtracks to this day, as well as games like Golden Axe being one of my first introductions to medieval fantasy type games, and so I’ve loved that genre ever since.

Sozzals
We’ll come back to music later!

Strider
Over the years I’ve played tons of old school PC games like Doom, Civilization, Master of Orion, all the Warcrafts, through to getting a Playstation 1 and playing Final Fantasy 7 and falling absolutely in love, further cementing my adoration for the fantasy genre and RPG’s. Played other classics like Metal Gear Solid, Gran Turismo, Tekken 3. My eldest brother got a Playstation 2 with his own money, and as we were quite a bit younger, we couldn’t afford one ourselves, but he wouldn’t share his with us at all! (We even got the PS1 late and played the Megadrive for way too long, not that I had any complaints)
Sometimes though when he’d be away for the weekend, we’d sneak into his room and have a super PS2 gaming marathon! Playing his games and demos, like Dead or Alive 2 which I remember vividly.
Little tidbit from me about that game; I developed a huge crush on a character called Kasumi during that time, like man did I have it bad! :p
As well as Tifa from FF7!

Later we also got a Gamecube since it was cheaper than the other consoles at the time and also played great games on it like Metroid Prime (fucking love that game, such a great atmosphere) Super Mario Sunshine, Super Smash Bros Melee, Eternal Darkness (another game with fantastic atmosphere), and a bunch of others.
Anyway, from then on not much happened, I moved on eventually to the big one: WoW.
I was like 18 I think and was working as a waiter in a restaurant at the time.
I got so obsessed with it, I heard about it from a friend of mine, and I was like “Oh shit, I love Warcraft and I heard about this game ages ago but totally forgot about it!”.
I started playing WoW around halfway through Vanilla.
One of my managers at the restaurant even played it, so it was fun to talk to him about it during work!

Sozzals
What was your first character?

Strider
My first character was actually a Male Night Elf Rogue 
I rolled on the same server as my friend, he was already high level and raiding so he never had time for me.
But that was fine since I had the wonder of discovering everything on my own and it was an experience like nothing else. It felt so magical.
Especially since I started in the Night Elf area, and I used to think the Nelfs were awesome in Warcraft 3, that’s why I rolled it.
The Night Elf starting area definitely had that magic.

Sozzals
It was one of the more immersive starting areas – but male night elf???? :O :D:D

Strider
Like I said, I liked the Nelfs because of WC3. I got to level 10, and quickly found out I fucking hated Male Nelfs!

Sozzals
I’m glad you saw the error of your ways, I hope you quickly rolled a male orc after that

Strider
Sadly I didn’t 😛 I stuck with Alliance since I had an affinity with them from back in the Warcraft 1 days (I used to think Lothar was such a badass in that game).
Especially since it forced down my throat the idea that the Orcs were bad and Humans were good!
I wanted to be good!
After that Night Elf fiasco, I re-rolled a Human Male Warrior.
Back in the days where I only ever played male characters! Oh how times have changed 😛

Sozzals
I was gonna say!!!…
I’ve only ever seen you play as a lady.

Strider
His name was Ryuun, a name that I just randomly came up with when I played a game on the Gamecube, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles, I wanted something sounding fantasy-like and cool.
So I stuck with it especially since everything else was taken by then.
I could go on about my WoW “career” but l already talk too much as it is.

Honestly I regret not starting WoW earlier, I was always jealous and enamoured when I opened my friends list and saw my irl friend in a place called “Molten Core”. I only imagined how magical that place could have been.
I got ridiculously into WoW, in both PvP and raiding.
I wanted to raid Naxxramas. I can’t even express the yearning I had to be able to do that.
I only got to Blackwing Lair back then because I was very loyal and stuck with my shitty guild for way too long.
And in PvP, I also went super hardcore with it. I got to rank 11 playing solo, not even in a pre-made, and not knowing about weekly honour caps.
I probably played more PvP in a week than I should have because of this.

Sozzals
I only got to rank 10 and that was in a pre-made XD

Strider
I got burned out and quit for a while when I was so close to hitting rank 12, narrowly missing out when they changed the honour system later in the patch just before Burning Crusade released.
As well as dreams of Naxx, I had huge aspirations to reach rank 14. I would day dream about it all the time, It basically took over my mind and my life.
Like honestly, WoW was so engrained into me, these were such huge goals for me in my life, even to this day I wish I could have accomplished them.

Sozzals
Me too, wet ones, where I’d be rank 14 and bathing in wanton naked Orcs who just wanted to be close to me

Strider
Haha, same goal, but for different reasons I guess :p
I made tons of friends in WoW too, it sure was a huge experience, but also it really was detrimental to my personal life I have to admit, though I won’t go into that.

Sozzals
What expansion did you stop?

Strider
I stopped just before Cata came out.
When I found out they were changing my beloved Azeroth, I was done.

Sozzals
That’s when most of us stopped I think. Life after WoW?

Strider
As I mentioned earlier, I befriended Axm during Wrath, so it wasn’t long after that I found Pyran and started in Rift.
This was also shortly after a break up with my long time girlfriend at the time, which hit me very hard, so finding Axm and Pyran helped a ton!
I remember when we played on Feenix, I went on a huge angry rant about personal stuff to do with my ex on voice chat… Tbh I regret doing that actually because I probably pissed off a lot of people.
But yea, since WoW, I’ve played way too many games.
I’ve always loved MMO’s and RPG’s, every time Pyran starts an MMO I’ll be there most likely!

I guess I should explain why I got to the name Strider. It’s nothing special really!
We were already playing on Feenix by then, I went through a few names already.
I think I named my alt Rogue in Rift Strider as well just before, come to think of it.
I got the inspiration from Strider Hryu, a character from the Strider franchise by Capcom, as well as featuring in Marvel vs Capcom.
He was a super cool Ninja, so obviously his name was also badass.

Sozzals
Not LOTR!

Strider
Nope!
Many people might think that, especially with my love for fantasy. That would be way too typical anyway! :stuck_out_tongue:
But yea, I then named my Rogue on Feenix Strider too, and just stuck with it, because hey, it’s a cool name so why not, and since we played a lot on Feenix, just got used to it.
My other alias is now Blaze, since I played that character mainly on Excalibur and people got used to that too. That one is inspired by Blaze Fielding from Streets of Rage, the Megadrive game! An awesome, ass kicking female character, imo.

Moving on to what I’m doing these days, I just switch between games a lot.
I still raid on FFXIV every week with my other group of online friends, ever since the latest expansion hit a few months ago. We’ve always played FFXIV together since the release of the reboot; A Realm Reborn a few years ago, but we never raided together as a full group.
Other than that, I’ve played a few single player RPG’s lately like Divinity: Original Sin, and gone back to games I’ve played before, like Diablo 3, Divinity 2, Kingdoms of Amalur (I was really desperate to play an RPG). I want to make a comment here that I rarely actually finish games 😛 Has to really grab me to do that and even then I might not.
Played a bit of Sims 4 since I got the itch to play some sort of management game, and didn’t want to spend money on a new one, so fell back on that since I already owned it. Modded the fuck out of it since I tend to always nitpick games, and mod them if possible so I can get a more personalized experience out of them.
Then for my online and PvP fix, I’ve gotten back into Overwatch as my go-to competitive game.
Since I’m an extremely competitive person, I always want to be the best, and if I’m not the best, then I’m just not enjoying myself as much, and I might start taking a backseat and not play as often.
I’ve not played OW as much lately, but I don’t plan to stop at least like I have in the past.
Aside from that, I do play on the PS4 as well occasionally. I play it with my brother and a friend. We play stuff like Fifa, Destiny, and The Division in the past, but not much right now other than a bit of Fifa. He only has a console and doesn’t really play PC games. That’s the friend, not my brother. Trust me, I’ve tried to convince my brother to play WoW and with Pyran before!

Sozzals
You should play HOTS with us – it has a lot of the Overwatch characters in it – and our team needs a hard carry 😀

Strider
I’ve considered it, but I’ve never been big into MOBA type games. I’d be a total noob so I don’t think I fit the criteria for hard carry :p

Sozzals
Me too, I’d never played a MOBA before HOTS…. but it really is very easy to pick up since you already know a lot of the characters

Strider
Maybe one day. I just feel like in terms of gaming, I have a lot going on right now, and at all times really :p
Speaking of that, I forgot to mention that I’ve actually started on a Vanilla WoW server the last few days as well, since I heard some of the Pyran guys were playing on it, so I jumped on it and will see how it goes.

Sozzals
Ah, which one’s that?

Strider
It’s a progressive server from Elysium (the ones who merged with Nostalrius), but it’s their other server and it’s relatively new, called Nighthaven. Currently on the Zul’Gurub patch.
I’m only under level 10 so I don’t know much about it yet!

Sozzals
Hope you guys don’t get burned out before retail vanilla comes out!

Strider
Yea, I did say I don’t know how serious I’d take it, but we don’t actually know when Classic is coming out :p

Sozzals
So other than gaming, which is obviously a really big part of your life, do you have any other hobbies? I know you mentioned music – so I’d like to hear a bit about your musical tastes.

Strider
I mentioned Music and Football in particular. I used to play the Bass when I was a teenager, with a friend, with dreams of starting a band. I soon fell out of favour with that friend for silly reasons (he was a very petty kind of guy), made some other friends, and pursued the guitar instead. I got quite good rather quickly, and even joined a local band for a very brief time. I was still a total noob compared to them, so I was flattered that they even approached me since they were all like 30+ and very experienced!
I only played one gig with them, but I’ll never forget it, it was an awesome night. I played the lead guitar part for “I Bet You Look Good On The Dance Floor” by the Arctic Monkeys, and even had my mates cheering me on in the small crowd.
I got a lot more into metal and stuff after that, and that was really fun to play on guitar, but I stopped playing because I just got way into gaming and WoW a lot more, sadly.
Genres of music that I really love, are a few kinds of Metal, such as Metalcore, Melodic Death Metal, Melodic Metalcore, a bit of Prog Metal, and lately a thing called Trancecore or Electronicore. It’s a fusion of Electronic music and Metal. Sounds real good imo. I think the influence of old video game music has something to do with that.
I also like various other music, but one relatively new genre that I’ve gotten really into for the past 2 or 3 years is something called Retrowave. Again, it’s Electronic music inspired by the sounds of the 80s, but modernized. It sounds great, and again, it must have to do with the inspiration of old video game music, and why it sounds so good to me.
I’ve always been rather creative, so making my own songs is still something I would like to do one day, even if I’m just making them through synthesized sounds on a PC, it’s still a very enjoyable process. Since I’m also a bossy and bit of a controlling kind of guy, it would be perfect for me to have the freedom to do what I want :p 
The problem is I lack motivation to do a lot of things, something I want to go into more detail later in the interview, since I feel like it’s a subject I really want to get off my chest.

My other “hobby” I would say, was Football. I started playing Football rather late, like when I was a teenager. I wish I started earlier so I could have fulfilled my real potential.
As I’m a really competitive guy, I always want to be the best I can be.
I played 5 a side with my brother and some friends, and honestly it was always really enjoyable, and one of the few things I always looked forward to in the week.
I’d get up really early, even having an all night session of WoW, on like 2 hrs of sleep, just so I could travel across town to play an hour or 2 of footie.
That group sort of just stopped playing a couple years ago.
I had a really bad ankle injury, which took over a year to fully recover. By then I was so used to not playing, and then shortly after, the group sort of just disbanded. It’s a shame, I wish I could still play. But again, lack of motivation.
It’s the same story with the gym. My twin brother has been going to the gym since he was like 18. I can see the results he’s gotten, and since we’re twins, I know I can be like that too, but every time I start going to the gym, I eventually stop and give an excuse such as my shitty work hours, and just stop.
One day I want to stick with it and get super buff!

Another thing I also want to talk about, which isn’t necessarily a hobby, but an interest of mine, is Anime.

I wouldn’t call myself a super huge Anime fan, but I do enjoy it from time to time.
Shows like Dragon Ball Z, Neon Genesis Evangelion, and a few random Anime movies such as Ninja Scroll and Metropolis, really shaped my childhood and some of those had a huge impact on me emotionally. It was something that I had never felt before with other cartoons or movies or anything like that. It resonated with me, and that’s why I enjoy Anime to this day.
I wouldn’t call myself a weeb :stuck_out_tongue: and I’m a lot more critical and picky with Anime these days. I don’t tend to watch much, mainly because I’d always rather be playing a game instead. But when I do feel like sitting down and watching something, it’s Anime first and foremost on the list of things to watch, because I’ve missed a lot and there’s a lot of good stuff out there.
I don’t really watch much normal TV series’ or movies at all, but a good Anime always makes me feel good inside. I like all sorts of genres from it and not just the popular Anime, it depends on my mood, but I feel like I’ve always appreciate them a lot. Maybe it came from back in my early WoW days, where I would stay up, marathoning Anime all through the night. Brings back good, care free feelings from then. It’s feels comforting.
Just felt like throwing that in there about Anime because it does hold a special place in my heart when it comes to entertainment purposes.

Sozzals
I watched Dragonball Z religiously, I loved that show. I understand and appreciate your love of Anime.
As for football – I think it’s good to have a sport or activity that involves getting up and out away from the PC for a bit.
I’ve never been much of a gym buff myself – we have a treadmill in the house which is mostly used for hanging damp clothes on….
Do you have a bucket list of things you want to achieve? If so, what’s on it?

Strider
Hm, I wouldn’t say I have a list of things I definitely want to do before I die. More like, I just have things in the back of my mind that I’ve been meaning to do but haven’t yet, and it’s not overly specific or big things, just things that might be nice to get sorted, or cool to experience.
Such as; going to the gym and finally getting the body I desire, like I mentioned earlier. Not that I’m particularly unfit, but I want to reach the potential I know I can in terms of that, and like in a lot of things, that is my mentality: to want to reach the potential I know I have.
Then there’s small things, just things I’ve been meaning to do that I haven’t. But those are more like things I want to do before I’m 40 or something :sweat_smile: Like getting braces to finally fix my teeth that I stupidly refused when I was younger. Getting a driver’s license which I also stupidly refused. I have a few regrets in my teenage years it seems :p
As for broader things; I’d love to visit a few places in the world. I don’t go out much but I actually do like outdoors, as long as I’m feeling carefree about it, so basically anywhere that isn’t my home town, or Spain :stuck_out_tongue:
As I mentioned earlier it’s just lacking the motivation to do these things.
I really want to visit Japan, seems like such a cool place. Maybe also a place in the Caribbean because the sun, beaches, and water just seems like it’d be heaven. Definitely want to go to America some time too. There’s a few others but those are the big ones for me. Oh, obviously also going to mainland UK or other parts in Europe and meet a few of the friends I made online, like the guys in Pyran! Definitely would like to do that some time.
Maybe also go to some live concerts to bands of musicians I really enjoy, I feel I’d get really into that.
But yea, just simple things like that, not anything crazy. I also have general gaming aspirations but I’m not going to mention those since my life revolves around video games 24/7!
I’ve had dreams of maybe becoming a big streamer or something, but I wouldn’t call it an aspiration since I don’t think it’s realistic and I’m not particularly pursuing it.
Something to do with video games as a career, would be nice. Which leads to the whole lack of motivation thing in terms of careers in other areas. I lack motivation in practically every aspect of my life if it isn’t something I’m really passionate about. In my mind, I only have time for things I actually really want to do. It’s a shit mentality but I’ve been like this forever and it’s really hard sometimes.
I wish I was different. Many people are like this I’m sure to some extent, but I feel like it’s not normal the way I just can’t push myself to get normal things done that other people would, and would find easy.

Sozzals
Some people find that making a career out of something they love diminishes their love for it. You’ve mentioned motivation a few times now – how does it affect you on a daily basis?

Strider
That’s a good point, but I’m sure as hell would say if I had a career in video games, I’d still enjoy it, and there’s so many aspects to video games, that it would never truly diminish it entirely.

Well, some cynical and sceptical people would just call me lazy even after I explain this, people like my family for instance. Or that I have no drive or ambition. But that couldn’t be further from the truth, because anyone that has played games with me can clearly see I put in a heck of a lot of effort, as well as wanting to be the best I can be.
I never thought of it deeply in the past, but after hearing from other people, and just there being more general awareness for mental health issues recently, especially in men, I feel like maybe there is something ingrained in me psychologically that isn’t quite right. Well, I say isn’t right, that’s a bit of a harsh way to look at it, but that most people probably don’t suffer from.

Sozzals
I always had you pegged as one of the tryhards, like Theory and Michaka – you always give 100% maximum effort to your games
I think you’re right, I think there’s a lot of men who have real issues talking about it because of the whole “masculinity” bullshit

Strider
Hell yea I try hard :p But yea, not just that. Some men do hold things back because it feels “weak” to show their true feelings, I am also definitely like that. I internalize a lot of sadness, but am quick to show emotions like anger, because that’s more “manly”.
But there’s the other aspect to it, where you don’t even realize something might be wrong with you, because people, and also yourself, will wave it off as something else entirely and just feel like you’re just not trying hard enough.
Like I mentioned, it’s something I’ve not really thought of until recently.
Even minor mental health issues, are issues worth addressing, and that we shouldn’t criticize, but rather try to help people with them.

Sozzals
With increasing suicide rates in young men, it’s really something that society is failing to address
I feel like a lot of dudes struggle to open up because they’re programmed to think that’s weak

Strider
To go into detail about myself; I will honestly put off nearly everything, just so I can go back to my routine of just playing games and being comfortable in my home. A lot of the time when I have to get something, I groan and think it seems like a hassle and that I’d rather avoid it. Things at home not so much, depends what it is, it’s mostly to do with going outside, travelling a bit, or dealing with people.
Even things that some people might find enjoyable such as family gatherings, I dread going to them. I force myself to do it because, well firstly I can’t exactly say no, but also I feel like I owe it to my family to see it to them. But to me it takes tons of effort just to attend events like these and act like a sociable person.
But then, there’s similar situations like attending social gatherings, only with close friends, and I love and look forward to those a lot more, purely because I’m much more comfortable in their company.
And then there’s another side to that, in that even though I enjoy spending time with those friends, if we plan to go out and do something at a certain date, I’m really enthusiastic about it when we are actually arranging it, but when the date comes closer, I do a complete 180 and my mind decides that it’s too much hassle and that I don’t feel like it any more, and I find any excuse to cancel…
Again, these sound like minor things that many people do, and it could come across as just being lazy, but it happens much too often with me, and I don’t think it’s normal at all. I kick myself constantly about these things.
I think to myself why am I being like this? Then weeks or months down the line, I regret not going through with whatever thing it was.
It’s hard for me to get going, but once I’m actually outside doing things, I can get shit done. I have no problems with it, it’s getting there that’s the hardest, and trust me it’s especially hard for me to get going at all. I always think “I could be at home comfortable as can be on my computer instead.” and that thought basically takes over uncontrollably over any other kind of thought.

Speaking of friends, I also want to mention that I think my past experience with friends definitely doesn’t help my current situation.
I was abandoned in the most important part of school, during GCSEs and A Levels. Then when I met and made new friends, everything seemed amazing and it was really a lot of fun.
Then WoW kinda took over my life, and made me push them back because I got obsessed with that.
Later on, when me and my ex broke up, she carried on hanging out with them, and I was in such pain I couldn’t handle being around them any more, since she was always there. I felt like I was forced to stop seeing them.
The reason I say they abandoned me is, they could have made much more effort to hang out with me without her being there, but they didn’t at all, even though they clearly saw I was hurting.
One of them even ended up going out with my ex, which I’ve told you about in the past, and hurt me even more.
But because of that divide, I’ve had none of them to really fall back on or rely on irl.
We’re still “friends” but it’s been so long that it feels weird, or they feel weird about hanging out again, so I barely see them if at all any more.
I feel pretty alone, other than my online friends and my twin brother and stuff, but since he has kids, I can’t really see him often, if at all as well.
I’m not lonely, but yea, it’s that feeling of being alone irl. Although I do see my family often, but they are just another huge hassle for the most part rather than being supportive.
Back to my lack of motivation; I’ve been unemployed for a long time, but I won’t lie to myself, I know I could have made much more of an effort to find a job. I do still try, and I apply to places quite a bit, just maybe not often enough, and I know I could be doing a lot more, but I just don’t because of that lack of motivation.
Even if I get an interview, sometimes I even skip it when the day comes because I feel anxiety and that I just rather be home without the worry or hassle!

Sozzals
I think you’ll find that a lot of us can relate to that. This is quite an interesting article.

It talks a bit about the various chemicals our brain produces while we play games. It could have a lot to do with your lack of motivation in other areas? That your body knows it won’t get these chemicals, therefore, it becomes a hassle.

Strider
I’ll have to look at that article, it sounds like an interesting idea.
Mentioning Michaka; he talked about that anxiety and lack of motivation too, and as I commented, it really hit home with me. I wouldn’t say my anxiety is that bad, I don’t think I have really bad anxiety, but there’s definitely some there, that dread I feel when I need to be doing something, and when my mind is always thinking about all the different possibilities instead of just relaxing and going through with it.
About chemicals – I’ve also heard that a lack of dopamine in my every day life could be a cause of lack of motivation.
Since I’m not really achieving anything in that every day life, I don’t get that dopamine fix, so I don’t push myself more to get more things done, and get even more dopamine out of it.
On the flip side, it could be I get so much dopamine from games, that things in every day life can’t compare, so it’s like going on a low from lack of dopamine? Who knows, it’s interesting stuff. Doesn’t really explain why it doesn’t affect most other people who game, or maybe it does, just not to the same extent :shrug:

Sozzals
It can indeed. People don’t realise how much of an effect chemicals have on us. It’s like any other drug, I guess, after a while – our body forms a habit for it.

Strider
Yea, definitely. And speaking of drugs, sometimes I feel so restless because since I tend to ignore most things in my life, I end up overly focusing in tiny stupid things online and in games, and overreact. I have a friend who I spend a lot of time with who unfortunately has to deal with my stupidity, where I get mad and won’t let go over small things.
So on occasion, I end up taking vast doses of Co-codamol, because as I’ve told you before, drugs and chemicals don’t affect me much, so I need to take huge doses of them for them to take effect.
I take Co-codamol to help me relax and it makes me feel good. It’s really bad because I don’t need them at all…
Thankfully I don’t do it all the time. I just do it occasionally and not very often, just in bursts of a few days.

Sozzals
You recognise that though – as something you can work on personally. That’s a good thing. I have friends who flip out over silly stuff but they don’t see that they’re being a crazy!

Strider
Yea I definitely know I’m a difficult person, it’s just I feel that I can’t really help myself with it.
Having said that, now I tend to reflect on it, I see that I was being silly and apologize, but in the heat of the moment, it’s still hard to stop myself entirely. But I think it’s a little better at least.
Though that’s a whole other story in terms of psychology :stuck_out_tongue: We’re focusing on Motivation here!
Speaking about it, just gave me another thought; I wonder if drugs and chemicals having a hard time affecting me might be part of it too.
Maybe I need more dopamine than the regular person to be able to function and I simply don’t get that in every day life.
Maybe it’s nothing to do with dopamine, rather other chemicals in the brain.
I’m not an expert on this so I don’t know!

Sozzals
That’s definitely something that you can talk to your doctor about.

Strider
If I ever get the motivation to go to the doctor for that :p Damn vicious cycle!

Sozzals
What can your friends do to help out?

Strider
I honestly don’t know. I feel like it’s something only I can do. Or maybe it’s just my personality and pride in feeling like I need to take all the burden myself and refuse the help of others, but I’m quick to try to help others on the flip side :shrug:
I’m sure if friends tried to help me and start addressing it and talking about it, I’d wave it away because again, I wouldn’t want the hassle of dealing with and just want to carry on doing whatever it is I’m doing and want to relax.

Sozzals
Friends are there to listen and help out – you need to learn to accept help as much as you give!

Strider
I know it really sounds like I’m making a lot of excuses, it really hurts me emotionally because I know people feel like that, but it’s just a thing that happens over and over again and I can’t stop it. It tears me up inside
But I think I’ve talked about it enough for now!

Sozzals
Well, I’m always here for you, any time you want to talk – day or night. You’ve always been a good friend to me, helped me through some shitty times. So I’d like to be there for you too – and I know there are other Pyrans that feel that way.

Strider
I appreciate it. As I said, I don’t know if there is anything that can directly help me other than myself, or a miracle of suddenly getting into the mentality of getting shit done :p Which btw actually does happen to me sometimes, just not often enough.

Sozzals
Will you be joining us in the Pyran Retirement Home when we’re all old and crippled? There we’ll grow our own weed, get high, play age of empires 2 over LAN, party all night!

Strider
Hell, yea I’ll be joining! In fact, I’d join right now if I could! I don’t really have anything else going on now do I :stuck_out_tongue: It’s be an improvement over my current life!

Sozzals
Well thanks for agreeing to this intensive examination into the life of Strides. I thoroughly enjoyed our chat. I have three more questions before we wrap this up:

1. If you were to be trapped on a dessert island for the rest of your life with someone in Pyran. Who would it be, and why?

2. What colour is your underwear?

3. Who would you like to see get interviewed next?

Strider
Yea this chat has been good, but also a bit emotional because as much as I want to vent my feelings and thoughts, I also feel like regressing back to the me I mentioned that just wants to get rid of all hassle and just relax.
That first question is tough. Can I just build the Pyran retirement home on that island instead?

Sozzals
The question stands.

Strider
If I had to answer I think I would choose between You, Jim, Haggis, and Ravnos. But I can’t choose which honestly. That’s my answer!

Sozzals
Ok ok I’ll accept that, answer the other two!

Strider
My underwear right now is “The Avengers” coloured. Take that how you will :p

Sozzals
Hahaha you got comic book pants?

Strider
I do, even though I’ve not actually watched the movies!
Usually I’m actually really boring and just have black, white, or grey underwear!

Sozzals
Oh they’re terrible, apart from Phil Coulson, who is a legend and hero to humanity in every possible way.

Strider
Like I mentioned, if I’m gonna watch something, it’s going to be Anime firstly :stuck_out_tongue: Don’t got no time for Comic Book Movies!
And for the next interview, you already did Haggis right? Then definitely gotta be Ravnos! Or some of the older generation that were around when I first joined, like Pidge, Farske, Dave or Chris.


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Interview with Haggis

Sozzals
Hi folks today I’m joined by Haggis aka Haggs aka MLgenie aka Loketar. Haggis is from the Feenix era of Pyran.

Thanks for agreeing to have a wee yarn with me today!

Haggis performing his sexy striptease to passing onlookers.

 

Haggis
I joined on Feenix when Pyran was just clearing ZG/Starting MC. I remember you put an advert in Org general advertising Pyran, whom an old flatmate of mine at the time (Ravnos) had been a member of on retail, so I messaged you to ask about them and one thing lead to another i joined the old TS server and you’ve struggled to get rid me of since!

Sozzals
I don’t think we’d ever want rid of you Haggs.

Tell us about life as a Haggis then. Where you’re from. What you do. What turns you on. What makes you tick?

Haggis
Life as a Haggis is pretty good, contrary to popular belief we don’t spend our days running around hills! I’m currently working with a couple of family members in Dunbar in the south of Scotland but I’m Originally from up North in Inverness. Mexican food is arguably my biggest turn on, I’ll do pretty much anything for a good burrito. Other than that I just spend my time gaming and watching television so I can’t complain really!

Sozzals
I thought Scottish people enjoined complaining! Isn’t it a popular past time?
Tell us about your gaming career. How you started out. What you’ve played over the years. What you’re playing now.
How come we haven’t heard you on voice chat in fucking ages man?

Haggis
Nah, we just complain so others think our country is crap and don’t try and steal it. We’re actually a very jovial bunch!
When did my gaming career start? Damn, uhm, about 27 years ago or thereabouts? I remember playing on the NES, the original Mario Bros but my first true love was probably Zelda: A link to the past on the SNES, since then I’ve kept up to date with every generation, FFVII, Ocarina of time and Tony Hawks 2 being probably my all time favourites, I’ve also spent a lot of time on WoW – Which was my first MMO, then moved on to Dota which I put far too much time into!

I’m not playing too much these days if I’m honest, I’m a bit between games trying to find something that I really enjoy (It doesn’t help that my cat decided coffee would make my GPU go faster so I’m running an old HD4650)

It has been far too long since I’ve been on voice chat! I tried to resurrect Excalibur a while back but there weren’t many takers so hopefully I can find something to play soon, any recommendations?

Sozzals
Heroes of the Storm. It’s free. Jim and I run a group for it most evenings – no pressure, no toxic, fun PVP!
If your computer can run wow, it should run HOTS. If you’re not a big PVPer, Theory, Albi and I are also playing Diablo 2 reliving the good ol days if that’s of any interest!! 😀
What kind of TV do you watch? What have you been watching lately? Any good recommendations?

Haggis
I’ve tried a few times to get into HotS but it just lacks some of the tryhard elements of MOBAs that make them exciting for me sadly. I’ve yet to play Diablo miltiplayer if I’m honest, i always played it solo back in the day (Dial up was a bitch)
I watch a lot of different genres to be honest, i have some older guilty pleasures that I’ll not divulge but recently I’ve been watching and Enjoying Sneaky Pete on Amazon Prime whilst I await American Gods season 2

Sozzals
Sozzals doesn’t like undivulged information!!!! I saw that Sneaky Pete advertised – will check it out.
Do you have a bucket list of things you want to do before you die? Top 5 things?

Haggis
I’ve always wanted to go skydiving for one, but I’m not sure I’d have the guts for it as I think that very last step might stop me. Other than that I’m not sure, I’d like to visit Japan and Canada but really that’s about it, nothing terribly exciting I’m afraid

Sozzals
What kind of music are you into? You look like a bit of a rocker dude

Haggis
I have a very strange taste in music, obviously the best track ever written is Turning Japanese by Kirsten Dunst, but aside from that I have playlists that go from 90s hip hop to 70s rock, to electro swing so i dabble as much as I can, my 3 favourite acts are probably Soundgarden>Jimi Hendrix>Black Sabbath so maybe I lean to rock/metal slightly more than the others

Sozzals
Fairly ecclectic then. I shall withdraw future judgement based on appearances!
Where did you lose your virginity?

Haggis
Just in a bed, it wasn’t all that exciting although the timing worked out such that people were firing fireworks off (It was new year) so I like to think everybody was celebrating it

Sozzals
Were you amazeballs or a fumbling mess?

Haggis
Well seeing as I’m the only one who can give an opinion. I was absolutely amazeballs, hence the fireworks

Sozzals
That’s the correct answer!!
Do you own a kilt?

Haggis
I do yes! It’s the Mackenzie clan tartan, it’s not my traditional tartan but it was a family members regiment tartan in the forces and it looks 10x better than mine

Sozzals
We need photographic evidence of same.

AND an answer to the question….. What’s under that kilt?

Haggis
You know this, I don’t think I have any, I should probably sort that.
Well there’s never any underwear under the kilt that’s for sure

Sozzals
Dangling then. Wild and free.
What was your favourite subject at school and why?

Haggis
It’s the best way.
I’m not sure, i wasn’t a big fan of school I always lost concentration too quickly. I did enjoy chemistry and physical education though so probably one of them two

Sozzals
Who’s your hero?

Haggis
That’s quite a tough question, I’m not sure I have a singular person I’d consider a hero

Sozzals
It can be a fictional character, like Jean Luc Picard. I find real humans are too flawed to make heroes of.

Haggis
I would probably pick Gordon Ramsey actually, might seem a bit strange but he had his eyes on being a professional footballer and was close but had an accident so put his energy elsewhere and is now probably the most successful person in his area of expertise.
Plus he doesn’t take any crap, an admirable quality.
Maybe not hero, but certainly someone whom I would look up to for general character and suchlike

Sozzals
lol fair enough, a strange hero
i don’t like how he treats people though and talks to them like an army platoon leader
it would be unacceptable in any other workplace to talk to your colleagues in such a manner

Haggis
Plus his actual cooking videos on YouTube (Not the T.V show stuff) is really therapeutic, it’s Bob Ross levels

Sozzals
i think a lot of that was “for show” though, like, no one can be THAT angry all the time

Haggis
I think that’s 99% for the television, when you see him outside of Hells kitchen and kitchen nightmares he’s a totally different person
Yeah for sure

Sozzals
yeah, i guess you find that in a lot of different entertainment medians from chefs to professional wrestlers heh
i notice you frequent #petting-corner often. have you got any furballs of your own?

check out haggis’ super cute kitteh!!!

Haggis

I do! I have a kitty and 2 dogs, one dog is a mobile dustbin for food, the other is a Collie who is scarily obsessed with reflective surfaces, I’ve always had animals around me i would probably find my house quite quiet without them

Sozzals
In most cases, animals are better than humans!
Except monkeys. Monkeys are dicks.

Haggis
Monkeys are dicks, i heard an anecdote (possibly just an urban legend) about a friend who knew someone with a pet Capuchin, long story short he left a cup of tea in the living room and came back in to find it squatting over his cup.

 

Sozzals
fucking

Haggis
I don’t fancy having a monkey after reading that whether it’s true or not

Sozzals
Are you from a big family? Only child? First born? The youngest?

Haggis 
I’m one of 4, the oldest by about 8 years, so aside from the cat and dogs there were always plenty animals in my house

Sozzals
I’m almost afraid to ask this – but did you set a good example to your younger siblings?

Haggis
Next question

Sozzals
I’m not asking this just cos your Scottish, k? But, have you ever been so wasted that you’ve woken up in unfamiliar surroundings?

Haggis
Yes
More times than I’d care to count, I woke up in a Wendy house when I was about 17
I’d been at a party and made it outside to wake up 4 or 5 hours later with no clue where I was
I woke up about 2 hours late on a bus last year after a particularly heavy weekend [a lot of cannabis]

 

Sozzals
Haggis, will you, in the later years of your life, joining us in the Pyran Retirement Home where we intend to LAN party all day and smoke cannabis and talk shit all night?

Haggis
I’d be honoured, just make sure there are no bus journeys involved

Sozzals
A look into the mind of a Haggis. Who in Pyran would you like to see interviewed haggs?

Haggis
Ben!
Failing that Grouse or Pidge

Sozzals
<3<3
ty sir
pidge too shy
grouse’s will be up tmrw

Haggis
Spoilsport, and not at all thanks for asking

Seeing as Grouse has one incoming and Pidge refused I nominate Stompy or Blaze, hopefully one of them says yes.


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Interview with Michaka

Sozzals
Hi folks

Today I’m joined by Michaka, aka Michakalakalaka. Michaka is from the Excalibur era of Pyran where he joined our ranks as a sexy orc warlock.  Thank you for agreeing to chat to me today.

Michaka
No problem at all

Sozzals
Tell us about Michaka then. If you were to describe yourself in three words. What would those words be?

Michaka
I don’t really believe a person can be described in 3 words, doesn’t make for much of a 3 dimensional character if you can be.

But in a nutshell I suppose I might be able to be described as very genuine, if anything really.

Sozzals
I was expecting a much more rude answer than that. #disappointed

Tell us about all the places you’ve been so far, where you’re from, where you’ve lived where you are now.

Michaka
What can I say, I’ve been humbled as of late!

Well, I’m from Sweden, even though I haven’t spent an awful lot of time there in the past couple years. Spent a year living in Southend, UK. The year after living in Valencia, Spain.
Now I’ve “settled down” with another Pyran-eer in Rotterdam.

Sozzals
That other Pyran member we know and love as Hertog. Omg you guys make such a sexy couple. Tell us how it came to be.
Start at the beginning – tell us how you ended up in Pyran.

Michaka
I was living in Spain, mostly playing League of Legends at the time, but as most of you know, if you’ve even as much as touched that game, it’s a toxic piece of gnome-poo. So I decided to look for something else to spend my time on. Never played any other WoW private servers at that time, didn’t even really know of their existence, but I made some research and came across Excalibur. Started leveling and just about before I hit 70 or slightly after I saw someone, no idea who, advertising for Pyran in general chat. I checked the website up and applied. Had a chat with Yourself and Jim, we had a few laughs over my “slightly” formal application of being a “very adept gamer” cough cough, and after that I was put on my trial period – Which was supposed to last 2 weeks at the time if I remember correctly, but I didn’t sleep for 48 hours after that and had drunken gaming fun with everyone, so after 2 days it was pretty clear already that I fit right in lol.

Anyway, months later I remember I was playing with Onetroll, Hirexika (think that was her name), and Hertog. We ended up having a damn interesting conversation about homophobia and different personal interpretations of its meaning. Either way, that’s how Hertog and I first met. I at one point made a joke that I was freezing my bum off because it was winter and temperatures had dropped significantly even in Spain, and I didn’t have any proper blankets or duvets. But Hertog didn’t appreciate the humor and instead took it upon herself to force a proper duvet on me. We now internally refer to that event as the “blanket rape” because of how many times I told her no before I finally accepted her help.

Fast forward couple months ahead and we decided to meet up, she was living in Rotterdam already, with her husband I should add (spoiler alert, I think you know how this ends). She was feeling generous and offered to pay for a hotel room, I accepted, bought flight tickets and came over.

We obviously hit it off really well and we’re now paying the last bill of the divorce together.

We’ve lived together for 8 months now, it’s been a damn financial and emotional struggle but it’s amazing, she’s amazing.

Sozzals
You’re a very lucky man. And she’s a very lucky lady. You guys are so cute together. 
Not everyone knows this, but Michaka and Hertog actually came and paid a visit to IRL Jim & Sozz at Pyran HQ in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
They stayed with us for a few days, we hung out together, chatted, I fed Michaka a lot of sozzages and we had a really good time. They were very noisy in bed.

Michaka
Wasn’t my fault airport security took my ballgag!

Sozzals
Tell everyone how good my sozzages are.

Michaka
Let’s just say I stopped having wet dreams about Hertog and started dreaming about those juicy Sozzages of yours
I give them 15/10 naked orcs.

Sozzals
😀 thank you sir
What’s it like living as an actual gaming couple then? Do you play a lot of games together?

Michaka
Truth be told I think Jim and Yourself would set a better example for it.

Unfortunately as Tog and I have recently discovered, we’re not the best match when it comes to games.

Expressing solely my own interpretation of why would be because the games we’ve played together so far (league of legends, Diablo 3, WoW, Terraria) we play them with very different goals and perspectives, and she seems to have quite the issue with feeling inferior in games.

While I enjoy end-game content, she more so enjoys exploration and achievements. Which is obviously fine, yet makes it harder to enjoy the same games together.

Sozzals
Still, it must be nice having someone who understands the passion for games! Even if you have different objectives.

Do you share any other hobbies together? We know Hertog is a big cosplayer. Will we be seeing you in an orc warlock costume any time soon?! 😀

Michaka
Yeah of course it’s super to have someone who isn’t breathing down your neck the moment you sit down for a bit of gaming, no complaints there.

About half a year ago we actually picked up bouldering, and DAAMN it’s so much fun! Unfortunately, she broke her ankle falling 2-3 weeks ago which is quite a setback, but she’s a trooper and I’m willing to bet she’ll be right back up there in a month or three kicking my ass again!

As for cosplaying and LARPing, I’m not really sure it’s my thing but I think there’ll definitely be a time where I’ll try it out.
I mean, we are going to Castlefest this year, so I’ll probably rock some kind of costume there! (shoutout if anyone else will also be attending)

Sozzals
Man if you don’t rock up in an orc warlock costume, I’ll be so disappointed in you.

Bouldering is a lot of fun, something I used to do when I was younger. Wishing Hertog a fast recovery for her injury, I’m sure you’ll take good care of her.
Do you have a bucket list? Things you want to do/achieve before you die? If so, what’s on it?

Michaka
Nah, ain’t really got a bucket list, like most people I suppose I just got some stuff that I would like to do, but I’m not a particularly ambitious person I’m afraid.

But off the top of my head, I’d like to go to Rio de Janeiro one day, properly experience it from a non-touristy perspective.

But also, I’m usually the kind of person who is rather good at everything, but not great at anything, and I’d like to break that someday. To actually be one of the best at something. Sounds corny I bet but perhaps some people can relate.

Sozzals
I can get that. You want to be the very best, like no one ever was.
I’m only good at a few select things – and none of those things are particularly good at making money 😀
I think you’ve already proved that you’re the sexiest orc warlock. That’s something to be proud of.

If you’ve ever talked to Michaka on voicechat, people, he comes across as very confident and jolly. What a lot of people don’t know though, is that Michaka is one of many people in Pyran that suffers from anxiety.

Mental health is so often stigmatised in our society that I really feel like it’s something worth talking about. Michaka has agreed to chat a bit to us a bit about his anxiety. Tell us, Michaka, about how your anxiety affects you on a daily basis?

Michaka
I could probably blabber on for a week about all the aspects of how it affects me, and me specifically.

But the not so very long version is that it mostly makes me think of, and consider, every single possible outcome of every single possible conversation that I have had, could have had, will have, might have, or can imagine. It makes me stress over such simple things like using a synonym of a word rather than the word itself, and then contemplating the impact that this mishap could even potentially have had for weeks, months, even years sometimes. It’s a little bit like having multiple personalities, because while one personality is working more than full-time overthinking all this stuff, another one is constantly working against it and making me simultaneously think things like “god what is wrong with me, it’s been 4 months since I met that friend of my girlfriend and I laughed a little bit louder than I intended cause I was nervous, why can’t I let that go!?”

It makes all the enjoyable things in life, even meeting good friends, going out for dinner, travelling – SO much more difficult.

I hadn’t even recognized this behaviour in myself as anxiety before little than a year ago, it just sort of felt normal and that everybody was battling it to a similar extent.

It’s so weird because I’m not even sure where it comes from, and yet I can do very little for my own betterment. I try to force myself out of my comfort-zone pretty often, but it always take a toll, and it always requires so much more energy than I want to spend.

You know those days where you can barely force yourself out of bed, or at least not even out of the house to do groceries, or go to school, or to work, because you just feel so sucked dry of motivation, energy and will? Well imagine if you felt like that every.. single.. day..

I mean it might sound like I’m depressed, and don’t get me wrong, I also have been for quite some years, and I’m sure that’s not a helpful factor in this case. But it makes it so that even if I wake up, sprouting with energy, a simple phonecall from a salesman or a delivery at the door can take it all away in an instant.

Fortunately I have a very supportive partner who tries her best to understand and make life easier for me, she’s the best thing that ever happened to me, period.

And if anyone else out there reading this also struggles with similar issues, just know that there aren’t necessarily always ways to rid yourself of your problem(s), but there always will be ways to make it better or easier.

Sozzals

I know a lot of people in Pyran struggle with anxiety and I think they might be relieved to know that they aren’t the only ones. What advice would you give to a friend of someone with anxiety? What can we do to help?

Michaka
Honestly, it’s a subject I’m hesitant to address, because the only advice I can give is super subjective to myself and what works for me. And I’d hate to give bad advice on this.

But something I think I can safely say is, don’t ever think that you can “fix” someone with anxiety, or take it away from them, it’s rarely, if ever, that simple. I reckon the best thing you can do as a friend of someone with anxiety, is to target their very current focus in the anxious moment. If an anxious person is about to enter a situation where his/her anxiety will “arise”. Learn to recognize his/her signs and offer a distraction, help get the focus in that specific moment away from the source of what makes the person anxious.

I’m sure there are a million different kinds of anxiety, some which are presented with more physical symptoms and some and completely introverted. Those with physical symptoms such as sweating, heart palpitations or panic attacks, you can obviously help by doing certain exercises such as breathing exercises or counting 5 things you can see, 4 things you can smell, 3 things you can feel, 2 things you can taste etc. Whereas those (like myself) where it’s mostly internally, it’s much easier to get by in stressful situations if someone I’m comfortable with (important to note, comfortable with) strikes up a very interactive conversation, forcing your focus away from becoming introverted and away from the anxiety.

Sozzals
I guess it can often be really difficult to recognise it too. And if you’re a sufferer, difficult to accept.

One particular phrase springs to mind when I think of – how to explain anxiety to someone who’s unfamiliar with the concept, and it’s a beautiful phrase, but it can also be interpreted as daunting.

“A different version of you exists in the minds of everyone that you know”

Michaka
To me personally, that phrase is as philosophical as it is obvious.

Of course, to others, you are only the sum of what they think they know about you. Which in its essence does create a different version of you, but only as an idea. The phrase itself, by just knowing that, doesn’t really offer any real implications on how to wrap your head around how to deal better with your anxiety I’m afraid.

But once again, strictly just my personal opinion.

Sozzals
Fair enough. Well here’s hoping that was a glimpse for people into what it might be like to live with anxiety. As always folks, there’s always someone around in Pyran if you ever want to chat or play a game to take your mind off it.

I see you’ve been playing a lot of Diablo 3 lately. What’s your highest rift level so far?

Michaka
That I certainly have been, playing a little bit too much even perhaps. (But unfortunately, could definitely do with some more people to play with, so by all means, feel free to hit me up!)

So far this season I’ve managed to do greater rift 109, still have the capacity to go quite a lot higher, but the 2 people I play with doesn’t have that much time to play, so progression is slow but steady I’m afraid.

Sozzals
That’s pretty badass. What class are you playing as main? Have you rolled any alts?

Michaka
I started playing Demon Hunter this season, and by the time I had great gear and enchanted every piece, I realized the class was utter garbage in terms of progression. So I made some research and now I’m mainly focusing on my Crusader for solo, and my Wizard for groups. But I’ve already geared up every single class except for Witch Doctor.

Sozzals
Crusader is just a fancy word for paladin.
Great, you can take over as paladin class leader. Your first job is to make Batilidan and Crashie get along.
Tell us about more of your likes. Are you into music at all? Favourite band/artist?

Michaka
Well, I don’t practise that many of my hobbies right now but they range everywhere in between Snowboarding, playing guitar/drums, gaming but mostly right now it’s just bouldering.

As for music I’m also all over the place, I like me some good ol’ Ryan Adams sometimes, and sometimes Flogging Molly hits just the right spot. But there’s also a special place in my heart for all the metal bands such as Avenged Sevenfold, Parkway Drive, System of a Down and a thousand more.

Sozzals
Introduce us to your furries. We never see any pics in #petting-corner.

Michaka
Gladly!

Well, we have 4 cute ferrets. Izzy, Banthar, Ezio and Nala

Sozzals
omg<3 >< ahhhhhhhhhhhhh

Michaka
They’re the most silly, awesome and fluffy kids anyone could ever ask for and we bring them with us as often as we can!

Sozzals
look at that fur belly just WANTING to be tickled

Michaka 
And then we got our 2 furry kitty kids, both stray cats, just wondered in to our lives one day. Very likely brother and sister. Their names are Kingpin and Lara

 

 

 

 

They all are really our kids and they brighten up our lives so much <3

Sozzals
Omg I agree. I don’t know where I’d be without my fur baby.
Have you always been a big animal lover?

Michaka
Yeah, always loved animals with all my being

Sozzals
In so many ways, they’re just better than people.
Tell us about life in the Netherlands in comparison to life in Sweland. Are there many big differences? Can you speak dutch yet?

Michaka
Other than the fact that traffic is really shit here, there’s not an awful big difference. People are people, culturally there are small differences but nothing I run into in daily life. As for speaking dutch, I am not and probably never will be fluent in it. It’s a hard language to start off with, and everyone here speaks English to a decent degree anyway. Plus the language also really doesn’t interest me so it’s even harder to get the motivation to study it.
I suspect I will learn over the years, but it’s not a necessity for life here, fortunately.

Sozzals

Oh I know, my ex was Dutch and all I ever learned to say was “sex in the kitchen”. When you do attempt Dutch, they laugh at you for your bad pronunciation! XD
That said, the Dutch are some of the kindest peoples I’ve met although I was freaked out by how flat everything is there
How much longer you growing that beard? Going for a viking beard like Jim?

Michaka
Haven’t learned sex in the kitchen yet, you’ll have to teach me that one!

And I would never dare compete in the same legendary beard league as Jim, but apparently my facial fluff is currently appreciated so I’m gonna see where that goes, perhaps put in a few beads and braids if it gets long enough!

Sozzals
Well there you have it folks, a bearded angel from sweden. Before we finish – let us know who you’d like to see being interviewed next, and why? :3

Michaka
Well, I miss a lot of people from Pyran that I haven’t talked to in quite some time so I’d love to hear what Ravnos and Blaze are up to!


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Interview With Jim

An intoxicated vocal rendition of this interview is being prepared.

culacant:
As OFFICIAL PYRAN JIM INTERROGATION OFFICER, it is my honor to introduce to you the one and only JIM/TZYX, our glorious leader here in Pyran and owner of a magnificent beard.
Take us back to the beginning Jim, how/what/why possessed you to create our beloved Pyran?

Tzyx:
i didnt actually create pyran 🙂 i actually just joined up to play RIFT with pidg back in the day (pidg is like the one person iv known for my whole life). i remember filling out my app form and making some terrible michael jackson jokes and soz approved me. pyran on rift was fun but there was this edgelord called covertz who pissed me off an incredible amount. prime memories include pretending to be swedish women to ensnare random people behind buildings in the town. good times. pyran was atually created by soz and avatis and some other guys for warhammer online, they were called ripspawn at the start. i came back to play vanilla wow and have pretty much been here ever since 🙂

culacant:
Well I learned something new today.
Has Pyran changed at all over the course of the years?

Tzyx:
when i joined pyran it was like ten people and an oldschool smf bulletin board. they were pretty much a pvp group that soz and some mates had put together out of her old gaming group from ireland i think. so from that.. we’ve grown alot i think. we have a core of people that have been hanging around here for 10+ years now, so we’re more of a community thang now. we have a bunch of different groups of people doing a bunch of different things and its really cool seeing people use pyran as the central place to hang out and do stuff together. i think since the people that have stuck around for a while are a bit older and more chill, we;ve ended up with a pretty friendly place. i like that we don’t have the usual twitch chat dickishness everywhere that the internet is full of these days. also people seem to talk about food and cats alot more
the place is alot more diverse these days too i think. i really like that we have people from all over the world, it makes the place interesting with all the weird people all thinking theyre the normal one in the asylum haha

culacant:
Being a guild leader can be quite a challenge, even if you pretend Pyran is member-run. Tell us a little about the ups and downs of being the boss and how you keep everyone happy.

Tzyx:
haha believe it or not i dont always get my way 😛  i think people enjoy the member run focus of pyran for sure. soz prolly does the most ‘work’ in terms of keeping pyran stuff up and running and interestin, although some weeks take more time than others for sure 😛 mostly warcraft stuff is what takes up the bulk of my evenings when we have that running, so its been nice to spend my evenings doing other stuff for a bit this year.. we been running versions of pyran wow on and off for a long ass time and its nice to have a bit of a break. news on the grapevine is that classic wow servers are closer than we think tho, so that might change soon haha. the ups.. obvs i met soz in pyran so thats number one on the list 😛 i enjoy helping out and hanging out with the people here, most of my besties are in pyran so i guess iv become one of those dudes thats always hanging around somewhere 😛 gaming is my biggest hobby so its awesome having a nice environment to do that it. i play alot of weird shit with soz, theory, barry, chris, nick, i enjoy the weird tabletop stuff we play, so the ups are good 😛 the downs.. would prolly be the flak i gotta deal with sometimes for handling drama, and sometimes the sheer amount of hours required on a weekly basis when 
warcraft is up and running haha, but given the amount of fun we had down the years running those guilds, totes worth in the end really. i met most of the people who i would consider my closest friends in pyran.

culacant:
There you have it folks, everything you want to know about the origins of Pyran. If you wanted to know more you should’ve asked me to ask Jim.

Tzyx:
haha
this is much more formal than i thought it would be

culacant:
we’re not done yet boi
Now we know the ins and outs of pyran, we need to go deeper and find out what makes JIM tick
The question that has been bugging everyone since the dawn of time: How did someone with such a manly beard come to play nerdy video games?

Tzyx:
lol i have a nerdy uncle who got me an atari back in the day. been playing games ever since 🙂
the first games i had werre yars revenge, and indy 500 racing

culacant:
What are you playing currently/do you want to be playing/will you be playing? I still think you should go lumberjacking in Canada or something. It’s a waste of beard.

Tzyx:
its far too cold in canada, ireland is bad enough
also lumberjacking sounds physically intense
atm im playing heroes of the storm.. the eternal attempt to make a non salty 5 man team is my dream. iv been playing through the paperclips game barry sent out in general chat (the game is a crap clicker, but it has a cool strategic modelling minigame, and i enjoy a good end of the universe theory). im playing a few things alongside it atm. im playing AI WAR, surviving mars, and a bit of league of legends as my solo games. i have a game of 7 days to die running with soz and theory that we need to get back to, i got a frostgrave campaign im hoping to run soon for the tabletop guys, im playing through nethack as a tourist, althou thats going badly atm, and thats about it right now. theres a bit of a lack of multiplater rpgs and mmos that look itneresting that we havnt played already so.. kinda waiting for something fun to drop that we can hench through as a group really
i normally have a cards game on atm but arkham didnt really take off and i havnt found the next enjoyable thang yet. we tried l5r but meh
im looking forward to playing a shit ton more heroes, trying to get to masters rank as a personal achievement
also surviving mars is super fun so prolly win play that a ton in the evenings when im stoned
as far as shit to look forward to… the warcraft 3 remake is gonna be intense, im totally making a pyran on Northrend when that comes out
im tentativly thinking about getting mcv3, and northgard and tooth and tail are both games im gonna buy when they drop in price

culacant:
I was hoping for WC 4, but I guess that’s gonna turn out to be a second Half-Life 3

Tzyx:
omg yes
war4 would be amazing but i dunno if theyll do the weird bliz “your ui is a void of information” thing that they’ve done with hots and diablo so… its like, would it actually be good
i love hots but its shitty out of game interface makes me rage
making an api is not exactly rocket science
why they dont do shit like that makes me think theyd prolly fuck up war 4, but it would be fucking amazing if they did it nciely

culacant:
So what about real life, anything interesting going on in the Jimiverse?

Tzyx:
im getting married 🙂 thats pretty much the major event coming up in my life. we got a new cat this year which has been awesome, i dont do an aweful lot else other than work, come home and hang with soz/chill out in pyran/play some games. im a big film fan so looking forward to seeing how tacky infinity wars is so we’ll prolly go see that as the next thing to do somewhere outside of my house lol
i gotta fly back to england and visit my fam soon, so thats always.. interesting
i need to make some time offa work to go visit some more people soon, since summers coming up
i dunno what else you would consider interesting lol
oh, i quit smoking tobacco
thats a fact right there
i had a bit of a nightmare 2 weeks but was fine after that i think lol

culacant:
Another soul lost to the evil anti-tobacco companies.

Tzyx:
yeah im one of those dickheads vaping outside work now lol

culacant:
Talking about marriage, when is the big day, will there be free snacks and will Pyran be invited?  You dont have to answer the snacks thing if we’re not invited.

Tzyx:
we havnt orgd a day yet really, it wont be for a while. but not mega far away cos i really want my super old nan to be there
there will be free snacks
and pyran can come yes
alot of pyran will be there already cos theory and barry will hopefully be my besties and pidg and usk are going too 😛

culacant:
Congratulations are in order I believe.
But enough about boring weddings and happy ever afters, back to the nerd stuff.
Where did the nickname TZYX come from?

Tzyx:
i used to play wow back in vanilla on stormreaver, i had a holy priest called Txu. stormreaver was shit so bliz offered my guild a free transfer to mazrigos and we took it for better raiding (less lag). we had a rivalry with a guild there and they were dicks and made a character with my name so i had to rename it. i was going for something that wasnt already a name of a thing and that i liked the look of and that was kinda like txu so thats what i ended up with. easy to type to cos i was a wow guildleader so, made it easier for people, kinda failed tho cos theres a chinese engineering company or something that make pipe bits called TZYX 😐

culacant:
Damn those Chinese, always stealing weird names and doing maths.
I have noticed a distinct lack of beards in this interview, while I have heard rumours of a glorious example sitting under your mouth. Can you tell us anything about said beard?

Tzyx:
tis glorious
soz likes beards
so i kept it

culacant:
(Don’t stop reading here there will be more beard questions later)
Before we get to the shitshow that is the community questions, do you have any wisdom to impart on current, future and maybe even past Pyranese?

Tzyx:
wtf is pyranese lol
do you mean the pyrans?
🙂
haha sorry im spazzing here lol
like is it a language
it should be
warlbli warbli grousegrouse NOOOOOOooooo

culacant:
Yeah get on that Pyran, if we can kill Illidan we can make languages too
I have asked several key members of Pyran to submit questions for this interview, what with you being the boss and all I figured everyone important should be involved.

Tzyx:
totes fair
but i bet you just got dicks in response

culacant:
Well it was nothing to write home about.

Tzyx:
classic

culacant:
For starters, Barry wants to know why Grouse hates fun. This may have already been glanced over in the Grouse interview, but he really wants to know what your take on the matter is.

Tzyx:
haha grouse just likes to pretend hes a grumpy old man he doesnt hate fun he just hates things you and i would consider to be fun
start talking in matporr and youll have a different opinion of grouse

culacant:
That would ruin the magic imho.
Unclesausage asks “What does Anti Aliasing even do?”

Tzyx:
it reduces the jaggies you get on 3d objects
well on everything really lol
i associate grouse with the word “object” for coding discussion reasons so i think my stoned brain just added that in there

culacant:
Talking about Grouse again, he wanted to know why the rum was gone.

Tzyx:
it was an elaborate ruse but if i reveal what happened then the ruse is blown

culacant:
The only right answer right there folks, Fixel asks “How do you say it if my name is Haggis?”

Tzyx:
take more drugs fixel

culacant:
Mutant wanted to know if you have any more information. I can only assume they’re talking about the same thing.

Tzyx:
lol
are they asking me about haggis?
haggis is a fine specimin of a man

culacant:
Oh I thought he was Scottish.
Either way Pidge needed to make gifs of ben but wasn’t sure how, can you shed any light on that?

Tzyx:
Upload your images to Photoshop.
Open up the Timeline window.
In the Timeline window, click “Create Frame Animation.”
Create a new layer for each new frame.
Open the same menu icon on the right, and choose “Make Frames From Layers.”
Under each frame, select how long it should appear for before switching to the next frame.
At the bottom of the toolbar, select how many times you’d like it to loop.
Preview your GIF by pressing the play icon.
Save and Export Your GIF.

may or may not be copy pasted from somewhere

culacant:
I almost forgot he had one, but Haggis’s question was “what conditioner do you use? Both beard and top.”

Tzyx:
herbal essences if we can get it cheap for my hair. i dont use products in my beard.

culacant:
Keeping the beard pure, as any man worth his salt should.
Everian asks “If you were a prostitute, how much would you charge by the hour?”

Tzyx:
yeah beard oil is a sin
£400
450 euros for you

culacant:
My oh my, that’s pretty steep. I’m sure hes gonna be dissapointed.
We’re almost there you hang on.
I figured I would put in a question myself, seeing as I’m the official pyran Jim inquisitional officer.
If you could steal a smooch from anyone in Pyran, who would you pick and why?

Tzyx:
that seems almost fair
obviously the only person allowed into the beard is soz
soz says if im forced
i pick gaston, the manliest of menfolk

culacant:
Finally, Sozzals asks “How long do you plan on growing your beard?”

Tzyx:
as long as it takes

culacant:
There you have it Pyrans, The Myth, The Legend, our Lord and Saviour, the one and only Jim himself, thank you for your time and Jim on Jimming on.

Tzyx:
lol thanks crash :heart:


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Interview with Grouse

Sozzals
Hi folks

Today I’m joined by Grouse, a Swefriend who is from the Feenix era of Pyran. Grouse is most famous in Pyran for being one of the nerdy coder dudes, his marriage in 2014 and his dislike of almost everything – it became such a running joke that, in 2017, we set up a Tumblr site called “Things that Grouse Likes” . We update it when we find things Grouse deems worthy of his attention!

Grouse, it’s a pleasure to have you here, and thanks for agreeing to chat to me today!

grouse
Haha I completely forgot about that wedding! As I recall Glurfu’s dress was made by someone called Pukefest. Good times! Anyway, happy to be here, and these interviews definitely qualify for being added to that tumblr!

Sozzals
I will update the tumblr accordingly

Every online name has a story – tell us how you chose “Grouse” – was it earlier or later in your gaming career?

grouse
I’d say definitely on the later end of my gaming career. Before Grouse a lot of the MP gaming I did were things like counter-strike and dota where, and I imagine every early teen who played these games can relate, nicknames were usually pretty short-lived, juvenile jokes and puns and taunts. Grouse originated from one of those sessions, and it’s pretty much what you would guess. We were playing CS, I was drinking some famous grouse whisky, and I think a bunch of us were playing around changing names, bored waiting for someone to get a pizza or something out of the oven. It’s mostly stuck with me since cause I’m terrible with choosing names, and turns out actual ruffed grouse are seriously cool – look them up on youtube, they’re the drummers of the forest!

Sozzals
Wow they are actually really incredible!! Check them out! We need more of these in #petting-corner. I feel kinda bad for actually eating grouse eggs now, but they were fucking delicious.
Tell us what you remember of your introduction into Pyran and the early days of raiding with us.

grouse
Oh wow, I hadn’t even considered grouse eggs as something you could eat! What are they like? I imagine they’re a bit like quail eggs, I guess?

Ouff I’m not sure what I really remember from the proper introduction to Pyran. I think I first joined you after a scholomance group, I think you, tzyx, and pidge were in it? I want to remember a hunter as well, but maybe not. I don’t remember much from that run except it taking forever cause we were doing every boss, but I guess it was a good enough time for me to apply afterwards shrug

I’d say one of my most vivid memories though were in MC, somehow turning the rogue channel into some kind of not so secret second guild chat with more shamans, warriors, and hunters than rogues, and bribing Zebratazi, Glurfu and Shamcor into spam-healing me on Golemagg to see how many stacking fire dots we could hit (34, if I recall, which would have been around 1700 damage every 3 second on my rogue which I guess had something like 4-5k max HP? It was fun. For me.) Oh and very much encouraging the same shaman group to chain-lightning as much as possible 😉

The other thing I remember fondly, if not so vividly, are the guild challenges, but those started a bit later, and I hope almost everyone has some good memories from those by now  🙂 

Sozzals
Man, Jim still has mental issues around those shamans and their chain lightening shenanigans! I think we’ve all grown a lot since then though.
What games are you into atm?

grouse
Oh boy, where to start? I play almost exclusively single player games these days. I finished the Shadow of the Colossus remaster on PS4 a couple of weeks ago, right now I’m playing Uncharted 4, spending some time mastering leaf sweeping in Dustforce, and a really cool stealth assassination puzzle ish game called Aragami. Ravnos bought me the first 9 Tomb Raider games on steam for christmas, so slowly getting through those as well.

I think the recent highlight is definitely Life is Strange though. That game took over every aspect of my life for a couple of weeks, and I still think about it quite often. It’s a dialog focused adventure game with a lot of choices that affect the characters and overall story, mostly in small ways but sometimes the changes can be quite drastic. The sort of special mechanic is a time reversal allowing you to go back in time and change your choices with some limitations. It’s a hella wonderful game. Shout-out to Pidge for putting up with my manic obsession with it

Every now and again I’ll get together with Zebra, Harshfuzz and Nogall to play some co-op multiplayer. Zebra and I played A Way Out a few weeks ago, before that we all played Gauntlet, Human Fall Flat, and Helldivers together. Human Fall Flat had us all wheezing with laughter for hours, highly recommend to play that with some good friends.

Sozzals
It’s nice to have a period of Singleplayer Games for a while, something to really immerse yourself in. We should get Fuzz to organise another one of his crazy tabletop extravaganza nights again!
Tell us a bit about the Grousealouse irl. We know you recently moved back from London to Sweden to take up a swanky job at a very well respected video game publisher that we all know and love. Tell us a bit about that, about life in Sweland and about any other secret hobbies that you might partake.

grouse
Definitely, and it’s amazing how many different types of games you get to explore when you don’t spend every free hour in the same game farming for the next raid 😉

So the London thing just sort of happened. I was burned out on university after studying for almost 4 years and I was fully committed to getting into the games industry, so I started looking around and happened to see Feral Interactive were looking for programmers. So I applied, interviewed, and off I went. All of that happened pretty much in the span of 1 or 2 months.

Living in London was super cool. So many great museums, street markets, wonderful pubs, and some very entertaining crazies. And I got to port some amazing AAA games to Linux, so yknow, that was kind of cool 😉 Having moved back to Sweden again, what I miss most is the cheese, museums, and tea. Oh, and some of the parks in London are incredible.

Moving back to Sweden was a decision of opportunity more than anything. The smog of London and brexit definitely helped things along, but when it comes to the EU games industry, Stockholm is pretty hot shit right now, which is kind of weird considering how tiny our precious country is.

So, yeah. Now I’m working as an Engine Programmer on the Clausewitz team at Paradox in Stockholm, and that takes up a ton of my time. I love cooking, hence #matporr. I try to get a fair amount of reading in, hence #bookclub. I managed 8000 pages in 2017, hoping to hit 10k this year. And I’m committing to do a bunch of hiking this year, first around Abisko in northern Sweden and hopefully Iceland around winter for the northern lights and just glorious Iceland. Who knows, maybe I’ll find the perfect spot for our Pyran retirement home 😉 Aaaand when all that is said and done, I try to play as many games as possible, work on my own games, and explore Stockholm.

Sozzals
I love that you miss british tea 😀 I’ll have to post you some. What kind of games are you working on for your personal projects? Anything we should be excited about?

grouse
Heh, yeah. I wasn’t actually much of a tea drinker until I moved to the UK, but it completely replaced coffee for me. In part because I was having trouble sleeping, and other… bodily complications. Zebra brought over two massive boxes of yorkshire tea when he was over though, I’ve still got around 300 tea bags, so I’ll be alright for now 😉

The main thing I’m exploring in my spare time is a kind of 3D parkour platformer idea that I have, but it’s crazy ambitious and it’ll be years before I really have anything to show or talk about, if ever. There are a few other smaller ideas I want to explore as well, so we’ll see where that goes. Making games is a pretty popular idea, as you might imagine. Even programmers are fairly saturated, relatively speaking, so mostly I’m just exploring different ideas and learning as much as I can in my spare time to stay competitive.

Sozzals
Having lived with a software engineer for a few years now, i’ve been witness to the graveyard of unfinished game ideas…. 😀 I’m sure lots of Pyrans would be interested in testing your platformer when you get it to that stage!

What’s top 5 on your bucket list of things to do before you die?

grouse
Heh, yeah, there definitely isn’t a shortage of ideas to explore spread out over years of notebooks and pub discussions 😉

Now that’s a tough one. I feel like this list changes pretty often for me; the world is so full of genuine wonder and things to do it feels I discover something new to add to the list every other month. But I think right now, and what it most often settles back to, in no particular order:
* Visit the new 7 Wonders of the World
* Release a (hopefully very) successful game of my own production
* Experience the Northern Lights
* Visit every continent on Earth
* Find someone to share all of it with 😉

Sozzals
That’s a lot to get through.
Kudos for wanting to travel and experience the world and all it’s wonderful cultures and people.
We all know you’re a very opinionated person and you love to play devil’s advocate. Are you hopeful for the future of Planet Earth or do you think we’ll end up consuming ourselves? What kind of dystopian future does your mind conjure?

He sent me this first…….

grouse
Sturgeon’s Law states “ninety percent of everything is crap”. 90% of all games, all design, all software, all hardware, all research, all products. Everything. The world is full if crap everywhere we look, we just have to open our eyes.

I believe in this pretty strongly, and if you’ve known me for any length of time that should be no surprise at all. In particular, I’m super critical against software and UX design. I deal with buggy, slow, unresponsive, and just poorly designed software every hour of every day. Tools and software made by and for software engineers are not magically better.

However, that doesn’t mean I don’t like anything or that things aren’t better these days. Infact, when it comes to the Planet Earth as a whole, there are so many things to be optimistic about that it’s hard to know where to begin. Solar energy is finally reaching a critical mass where it’s not only the green and ethical thing to do, it’s the financially viable thing to do. The space race is being rekindled and we’ll have humans sent to Mars sooner rather than later. HIV patients are living relatively normal lives, and with the amount of awareness and research surrounding cancer it’s only a matter of time before that becomes a thing of the past.

But climate change is a bitch so we’re all gonna burn to a crisp, drown in tsunamis, or be blown away in tornadoes. If that doesn’t happen there’s always death by thermo-nuclear war to look forward to. And if that doesn’t kill us we’ve always got the galactic empire’s stagnation of progress and fall into barbarism to look forward to. But all that’s OK, because we’re probably in a simulation anyway, so none of this matters and we’re just waiting for someone to hit the reset switch.

As far as enjoying being the devil’s advocate goes… Some people like to watch the world burn. I like to throw sticks into the spokes and watch what happens.

Sozzals

So there you have it folks. We’re all going to die.
Thanks for this lovely chat Grouse. Who’s interview would you like to read next and why?

grouse
No problem, thanks for the chat!

Yours! And Jim’s! You two should interview each other, I’d love to read about you crazy love-birds, how much it took to convince Jim to move to Northern Ireland, and how on earth this crazy community got started.

Sozzals
You’d need several large buckets and a bottle of vodka to get through that one.

grouse
Bring it on


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Interview with Batilidan

Sozzals Hi folks

Today I’m joined by Batilidan aka Batman aka King of the Danes. 

Quick story before we start the interview, folks: As you all know, my obsession for orcs knows no bounds.  I regularly encourage people to make orcs, roll orcs, reroll orcs because, I think we can all agree that the world is a much better place with more orcs.  On one occasion, I actually managed to convince Batilidan to race change his shaman from troll to an orc for the meager price of 52 snowballs and 30 silver.  

Don’t believe me? Here’s the chatlog (Lidtfortyk is Batilidan).  

The result?  Here’s me and my boys Haggis (Loketar) and Lidtfortyk (Batilidan).

Batilidan is from the Excalibur era of Pyran. Thanks for agreeing to this very invasive look into the life of a Danish King.

Batiladin
My pleasure! Been Loving these interviews, so Why not try it out for myself !

Sozzals
So tell us about your affinity with Batman. Why batman? What do you have in common with him?

Batiladin
Well he’s the hero of Gotham, im the hero of Denmark!
Other than that i dont really know !
I actually Think that the nickname batman was created by you, so…
I might have to ask you!

Sozzals
See the RIGHT answer would have been something like “Well, we’re both strong, attractive, capable men” !!!!
How did you get your name though, Batilidan?

Batiladin
Well… I dont wanna Lie.. Batman aint that attractive

Ohh shit… Everyone has magic stories.. Mines not

When i started to play diablo 2 back in the days i was into wrestling and loved Batista! So i named character batistaiv Cause wrestler and 4 in latin
Then tbc came out in wow and had to name my new paladin and i mashed batista and paladin into batiladin

Sozzals
So is that where you started out as a gamer? Diablo 2?

Batiladin
Think i started playing heroes might and magic 2 and warcraft back then !
Diablo was my first online game thou!
Paladin even back then!

Sozzals
What attracts you to the paladin class? Do you see yourself as a warrior of the light, fighting against evil?!
(much like batman)

Batiladin
Ohh nono! If u ask people who plays wow with me, they Will describe me as the evil that needs to be fought!

But what is it about paladins that i love.. I dont even know to be honest:thinking: the pink Colour maybe?

Sozzals
Most of us, who’ve added you as a friend on Facebook, have seen you in your underwear at some point or another. What colour is your underwear right now?

Batiladin
Want a picture or an explanation?

Sozzals
Just give us a visual description, since I haven’t marked this part of the website as 18+ and I don’t want to get sued.

Batiladin
Haha! Dark Blue with light Blue dots on em! And as sozzals says! Dont add me on facebook if u dont wanna see me in my underwear!

Sozzals
Do folks, I highly recommend it. Tell us, Batilidan, what is your most prized possession?

Batiladin
I wanna say something stupid, but imma go with a picture ive gotten from my grandpa once he passed away!
Ive wanted it since i saw him paint it but he wanted it for himself so my grandmother gave it to me once he passed!

Sozzals
That’s really adorable and heart-warming. Your grandpa was an artist then? Did you inherit any of his skills?

Batiladin
An amateur artist really! He loved to paint and my mom is a great painter aswell..
But me? Im not creative at all! Nor do i have the patience for it!
Check it out!

 

Sozzals 
That’s awesome, I love the perspective on it. Other than gaming, what does a King of the Danes get up to on his daily rounds?

Batiladin
Not much to be honest with ya! Working alot, looking at houses with the misses, hanging out with friends… Who Also games

my life aint what people Call interesting yet i love it

Sozzals
Life doesn’t have to be exciting to be happy and fulfilling! What games are you playing at the moment Batman and who are you playing them with?

Batiladin
It absolutely does not!

Well mostly dalaran wow with most of the old dalaran Crew like kwana, uzumati, moomeister what what not!

Other than that warcraft 3, and some overcooked with the misses!

Sozzals
If you had to nominate someone else in Pyran to be interviewed – properly grilled – who would it be and why?

Batiladin
Anyone at all?
Hmm depends on the reasoning really…
I would love for it be kwana or qummy just for the reason of Them Being grilled!

At the same time thou i would like to know some more about people like haggis, Jim or zahur (Chris ye?)

Sozzals
Well no one’s safe…. anyone could be next! I think what everyone wants to know, especially in #willies channel, is – if you were to seduce Jim – how would you go about it?

Batiladin
I mean i respect you and all but!!!
He made me a song! Has he done that for you? So in all honesty! Mission accomplished

Sozzals
He makes me a new song every day which makes me think you were just a passing fling.

Batiladin
That broke my heart!
I might just have to come to northern ireland and proove to him that he needs both a fiance and a boytoy!

Sozzals
You can’t dude. I can’t compete with that underwear.

Batilidan, thank you for your participation and cooperation. It was a pleasure and a really fun glimpse into the life of a Danish King who we all know and love as Batman.
I hope we see you at future Pyran Challenges and events.

Batiladin
My pleasure really! Whenever its time for part 2 im ready!
And remember! Theres only 1 dane in This community who matters!
1 King, 1 hero, 1 batman!


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Interview with Theory

Sozzals
Hi folks

Today I’m joined by Theory. Some of you know him as Swefriend, Potatolover or another potato related name.  Theory is from the Feenix era of Pyran and is known for making the most awful jokes in Pyran, the kind of jokes that are so bad that you end up laughing anyway.

How are you today Theory?

Theory
Im good thank you, and you?

Sozzals
Grand grand. So tell us Theory, what was the very first video game you ever played that got you into gaming?

Theory
It started out mainly with Red Alert and Heroes of Might and Magic 3, but my interest for video games back that was not that high. Finally I got into Runescape Classic, which a friend of mine introduced me to.

Sozzals
Is that where you met your girlfriend?

Theory
Yes, I played runescape since 2002 and I got to know her in 2005 when I was 15, but it was not until I turned 23 that we decided to see eachother.

Sozzals
That’s super cute. I love it when gaming couples get together! Tell us more about your gaming career. After Runescape – did you move onto other MMOs?

Theory
In 2004 me and Matched started playing World of Warcraft togheter, which I played frequently for many years, even to this day I enjoy it but the last expansions have not peaked my interest. After the second expansion I moved on to other MMOs, a few which I remember are FFXIV and Planetside 2.

Sozzals
Tell us what you’re playing these days and who you’re playing with!

Theory
Oh, it varies a lot these days and I quite quickly move on as there are too many interesting games out there these days. I’m still stuck playing World of Warcraft on the private server Excalibur with a swedish guild. On my non raid days I tend to enjoy Diablo 2 with Sozzals, Nogall, and Albeans currently.

I’ve also been playing some Heroes of the Storm, with Tzyx (Jim), Sozzals and Barry (& other members of Pyran), but it is one of those games I dont seem to improve much on these days. On and off I’m also enjoying games such as grim dawn/titanquest and Planetside 2 / Overwatch but those games to tend to only be for a couple of days before I’m back in the same cycle.

Sozzals
It’s been really fun and nostalgic playing Diablo 2 with you guys. I hope more people join in (we’re on europe ladder) !! Tell us about Doctor Theory then and your work at university.

Theory
I’m not quite a doctor yet. I’m about to finish my masters degree in Applied Biotechnology this year, which is the study of microorganisms (bacteria, yeast, moulds etc) for development and discovery of medicines, food additives, genetic diseases and antibiotics to name a few.

Currently, I’m working on a protein that was discovered in pigs when they checked for why some pigs have more muscle and less fat in their bodies, this same protein in humans is known to address a lot of scenarios such as wound healing and is also a trigger for certain diseases.

Sozzals
That’s pretty exciting stuff. Are you a “save the world and all mankind” kinda scientist or one of those evil scientists we see in movies? If Hydra offered you a job, would you take it?

Theory
Haha that is an interesting question, what pays the best? In all seriousness though, I think what is important to me is to know that I’ve made a difference. This can be a broad spectrum of things, but saving the world is obviously something many, if not most scientists would like to do. The problem does not only lie with the science, but with the basic behaviour of all of us humans, how we take care of our garbage or other choices we make in our lives. There are a lot of problems that the general public is less aware of that is of great concern.

But it is not all hopeless, just this week i read an interesting article about micro- and nanoplastics (very small plastic particles) in the ocean and how some bacteria have started to eat these. One interesting read that actually made me want to start biological studies over chemistry studies came down to a project I made in high school about ocean acidification (basically how carbon dioxide which is more talked about as a greenhouse gas is causing or oceans to become acidic which is a major concern especially for coral reefs). Some days do seem more hopeless than others when it comes to this though.

I obviously have some more cruel hydra-like ideas too, but they are more interesting thought experiments than anything else -evil grin-

Sozzals
I agree, there’s a lot more we can all do – things we can change in our own attitude to our environment, like the simple act of recycling or choosing public transport over owning a car.

Doctor Theory, thank you for taking the time to chat to us today and I’ll see you on Diablo 2 later, I HEAR ITS WHAT ALL THE COOL KIDS ARE PLAYING!


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Interview with Albi

Sozzals
Hi everyone

I’m joined here today by Albi aka Judge Albeans aka Albeans aka Warlbi. He’s a man of many names.  Albi lives in Germany and is from the Excalibur era of Pyran.
Thank you for agreeing to this interview.

Tell us Mr Beans, what was the very first game you remember playing?

Albi
Hi Sozz :3
Well that’s an easy one to answer: Nintendo World Cup for the Nes. One of the first memories I had was playing this game with my brothers. I think that makes it safe to say I’ve been a gamer for as long as I can remember.

Sozzals
What country’s team did you like to play the most?

Albi
Uff, no idea to be honest.
Since I lacked the ability to read.. and well… the ability to comprehend what was happening on the screen I now think I never actually played with my brothers.. they probably just handed me an unplugged controller and told me I was playing with them.. A technique my they used quite frequently to shut me up. (Can’t blame them tbh)
Have you ever played Star Fox Lylat Wars for the N64? During the single player you got NPC followers who fly through the screen every once in a while. I always “played” one of these NPCs and had the time of my life doing it 🙂

 

Sozzals
omg lol what is that even?

Albi
It’s like.. a scrolling shooter game.. it’s where that “do a barrel roll” thing comes from… has aged quite well for a 21 year old game

Sozzals
How has your taste in games evolved through the ages?

Albi
As a kid I pretty much played everything I could get my hands on. It’s not like a kid from a remote village had much of a choice back then.
My purchases were usually decided by which games cover art looked the coolest. Edgy guys with swords? That’s a buy!
Nowadays information, reviews and opinions about any potential game I might buy are countless.. you got Steam with it’s thousands of games, online stores with crazy sales… and yet.. now that I think about it..
I still mostly buy games with edgy guys holding swords.

I think the biggest difference is in how much time I want to invest in any given game. I got no interest in playing games like League of Legends, CS:go or Street Fighter as those are games that I either want to tryhard and get really good in.. or not play at all. Whereas when I was younger I just kinda played whatever was fun for me.

Sozzals
So what games are you currently playing? Where is Albi’s time being invested?!

Albi
Right now I’m in between games if you will. Finished Fire Emblem Echoes a few days ago, so now I’m itching for something with more action to it. ( I’m also very open for suggestions! )
At the moment the only games I’m playing regularly would be Diablo 2 and Smash Bros Melee – I’m practicing quite a lot, since next week I’ll go to my first tournament in almost two years .

Also pretty excited for Classic Wow… I’m planning to nolife the hell out of it once it releases – hopefully with Pyran and my trusty crimson sneek at my side 

Sozzals
Crimson snake means you must have won a Pyran Challenge at some point?

Albi
Yep, it was during one of the Excalibur-Wow challenges. Some might say I barely contributed to the team as I spent the better half of one challenge being trapped whilst “swimming” through the Nether. ( Fun fact – that’s what you can see in the :Warlbi: Emote on Discord )
By the time a GM freed my I was already too drunk to even remember the last couple challenges. But hey, no one said Pyran Challenges are fair, right?

What I do remember though, is the celebration party we held in Shattrath afterwards – I assume you know which one I’m talking about, Sozz? 🙂

Sozzals
A Feast of Giants.  This is when the GM’s came online and turned you into a gigantic gnome.
Pretty sure I still have the screenshots somewhere in one of the Pyran albums

What was your own initiation into Pyran like? What do you remember?

 

Albi
I started leveling an orc warrior on Excalibur, felt pretty alone and was just looking for company. I wasn’t actively looking for a guild, but after talking to Jim who was advertising at the time, I decided to give it a shot. Shortly after I found out that Excalibur wow features crossfactions, and due to a distinct lack of gnomes I knew I just had to reroll to a gnome – Warlbi was born. And with that began my descent to becoming the Excalibur-Pyran’s mascot / butt of many jokes / supreme gnome leader…. a position I enjoyed very much!

Sozzals
Tell us a little bit about IRL Albi.  Are you working or a student? Do you have any pets? Any other hobbies besides games? What colour underwear are you wearing right now?

Albi
I’m trying to figure out what I want to do with my life so I’m working as a teacher’s assistant in an elementary school, kids always liked me, so that’s quite fun. Not sure for how long I want to do this, not sure what I want to do afterwards.

I think normal – functional people should have quite the easy time talking about their Reallife.. I’m struggling a lot with it. I’m a boring, passionate nerd, there isn’t much to say :P.
Not even my underwear is worth mentioning. It’s grey, with stripes on it.. grey stripes. Just grey.. like a weird metaphor for my life or something…

Does that sound depressing?
It really isn’t, I’m actually quite the peachy guy who doesn’t take himself too seriously.
Got a small but close circle of friends, living happily with my girlfriend, got a job I enjoy, I’m young, healthy… no reason to be grumpy!

Sozzals
I LIKE YOUR ATTITUDE SON


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Interview with Crashie

Sozzals
Today I’m here with Crashie, one of our younger members – and perhaps one of our biggest enigmas. Crashie is one of the few people who spams discord so much, we had to end up giving him his own channel. I plan on finding out what makes Crashie tick and what kind of shit he likes.

So Crashie, tell us how you first became involved in video games. Whats your earliest memory of playing games?

culacant
In middle school, before we had computers at home we sometimes went to pick up my dad from work
and he had internet there so we played flash games on his computers
i remember something about conways game of life being somewhere and me thinking i could control the blips but idk where or when that was

Sozzals
So you eventually got a PC at home. Assuming you took control of it immediately?

culacant
My dad actually bought one of the first mini macs that came out
the trouble with macs is that there are very few games for it and it is total shit
eventually i got the original star wars battlefront for it, but never figured out how to play online
my very first own pc was a piece of shit from 1999, with a pentium 3 in it
this was followed by a string of dissapointments when i put in games from 2004+ in

Sozzals
What was your first MMORPG then?

culacant
Runescape ofcourse
we didnt have internet for the longest time though, so I had to go to the library to play it
until the lady at the library found out everyone went there to play runescape and she put a stop to it

Sozzals
Must have been hard maintaining online relationships when playing from a library – assuming you couldn’t join voicechat or anything?

culacant
at that time everyone on runescape was 12 yrs old so i doubt anyone had voicechat
i know i hung out with some friends from school and my nephew, who was a total nerd and gave me mithril armor

Sozzals
Was your very first online name “Culacant”? or something else? How did you choose this name and tell everyone who doesn’t know you how you ended up being called Crashie?

culacant
Culacant comes from Coelacanth, which is a fish that hasnt evolved for a couple million years
i think i misspelled it the first time and it stuck
now crashadin comes from wow, when I decided tto make a paladin
i spent 10 minutes picking the right beard for this guy, and i was thinking of a name when wow crashed and i had to start all over
so i stuck with crashadin

Sozzals
haha 😀 also +1 for misspelled unevolved fish
How did you end up joining Pyran? What do you remember about your initiation?

culacant
I remember coming back to excalibur to a guild that was dead as doornails
so i start looking around for a new guild
enter pyran, however between me making my application and you reading it, i decided i wanted to go on vacation for 6 months, so i was like “can yall carry me through T5 so i can afk for half a year”
and somehow you said yes
i have still not forgiven yall for breaking the excal guild while i was gone

Sozzals
I think guilds on private servers have a limited lifespan before everyone gets bored or pissed off at doing the same content week after week

culacant
pugs come and go, but pyran lasts forever

Sozzals
Exactly. We’ve been here probably as long as you’ve been alive.
Some people don’t know this – but Crashie ended up being Pyran’s longest trial. Do you remember how this happened?

culacant
i think i got to member but then someone got mad and jim demoted me
right?

Sozzals
yeah you got put in the naughty corner for a while

culacant
good times

Sozzals
What is it, about you, that pisses some people off?

culacant
im not rightly sure
I tried being pissed off once but i didnt like it so i decided i wouldnt do it again

Sozzals
So you’re just misunderstood?

culacant
if i had to guess tho, it is a culmination of jealousy of my devilish good looks, happy go lucky attitude even when theres nothing to go happy be lucky about and a level of humor so far above everyone elses head that they think im serious
i would say that i am misunderstood yes

Sozzals
Are you REALLY a Trump fan or is this just an act to piss off the lefties?

culacant
i wouldnt say im fan, but i do really support some of his policies

Sozzals
fair enough, everyone is entitled to their opinions!
Tell us about your relationship with Texas. How does someone from Belgium end up with a Texan accent?

culacant
all aboard the crazy train
so i dropped out of college once
and i didnt know what to do, so i got drunk one night and decided to go to texas
i packed a backpack full of camping stuff and got a plane, and i ended up staying there for 6 months

Sozzals
Did you know anyone there before you went over?

culacant
there was one guy that i played wow with, i hung out with him for a week and helped him move.

Sozzals 
What did you do for six months in Texas? What happened to you over there?

culacant
i just travelled around
i got involved in a baptist church for a while, went camping for a couple months on end and took a canoe downriver for another month
and i shot guns and rode horses ofc

Sozzals
Did the experience change you in any way?

culacant
well as you said before i now have a completely unintelligible accent

Sozzals
You’re studying now right? Tell us how that’s going and what you want to be when you grow up.

culacant
Yes I am in college studying IT, apart from the horrible mess that is web design i am really enjoying it
my current goal in life is to get that degree so I can make tons of money and marry a rich texan lady

Sozzals
That’s good goal. Tell us what games you’re playing at the moment.

culacant
right now I am on and off on the dalaran wow server, although more off than on
other than that I have been playing in the necromunda campaign on tabletop sim with pyran
I have been looking for a good coop game to play, but i havent found something suitable yet
ARE WE DONE

Sozzals
Didn’t you just buy Nine Parchments yesterday?!
And yes, thanks for your time Mr. Crashie. Any last words?

culacant
play nine parchments with me?
or failing that, the disney pirate game i gave you like 5 years ago


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Interview with Barry

Sozzals
I thought about where we are, at the moment – Pyran as a community – and we have lots of different little groups of people playing loads of different genres of games. You might see someone you don’t know or know well, playing a game that you also play – and think “hey, we could play that game TOGETHER” but then think to yourself “fuck i dont know that person/know that person very well”. Perhaps if you knew something about them, it might make initial contact easier.

Over the next few months, I’d like to go around and chat to different people in Pyran, those people you see online on discord all the time, and find out a little bit more about them, so that you don’t have to! Today I’m here chatting with Barry. Thanks for agreeing to the interview, Barry. Hopefully it won’t be too painful! Tee hee.

Tell us Barry, what was your first experience with videogames?

Barry
Oh christ, I think there are a few I can remember but I can’t really remember which the first was. One was Mario on a random game station at a store while my mum was in the bank and I played that till I got dragged off. It was amazing, I was terrible.
Actually no, sorry, my first memory was playing galactica on a commodore 64 plugged into my parents TV.

Sozzals
Was that the one where you had to wait an hour to load up an external tape drive and your game only loaded 40% of the time?
That was my experience of the C64 – pretty sure mine’s still in my mum’s attic! 

Barry
Oh, the tape drive was the best bit. I was fascinated as a kid in how something you usually got music from could make pictures on my TV screen. I think my parents had the 5.25″ floppy disc drive too, I was a lot less interested in that. Mine’s still in my old bedroom at my parents in a walk in wardrobe.

Sozzals
That’s awesome, does it still work? You have to laugh at how annoyed some people get when they’ve to wait longer than 2 minutes for a game of HOTS when a C64 game took about 45 minutes+!
What were your first experiences with online games and meeting the internet for the first time?

Barry
If I remember right, it was playing one of those oldschool browser games on a school computer. I can’t remember the exact name of it but you had to build a space empire by mining asteroids. I think you had a planet and you could attack other peoples. But I spent a LOT of time on IRC. I once accidently banned Australia from a channel permanently. People were super nice when they weren’t trying to get me onto their private IRC servers to cyber with them.

Sozzals
Why did you ban Australians? :O!
Didn’t you spend some time down under, yourself?

Barry
I had been modded for the first time ever, I cant’ even remember the channel and there was someone that was messing about so I threw the +b down on *.co.au and then I couldn’t undo it.
We had to get the superadmins involved.

Sozzals
Haha, oops, other Pyrans will be delighted to know that Barry is indeed a discord admin here too.

Barry
I did spend some time down under, I lived there for 10 years until I was 12.
Hey, just don’t be Australian with a rolling IP address and piss me off. You’ll be fine.

Sozzals
The question on everyone’s lips is: Did you have regular cybering partners or were you a “wham, bam, thank you ma’am” kinda guy?

Barry
Oh god, I was about 12 at the time, I was SO not ready for that sort of attention, I was like really polite too so I kinda went along with it until I realised entirely what was going on and then bailed the fuck out.

Later on I did have regular cyber partners though

Sozzals
How and when did you get involved with Pyran then? What do you remember about your joining procedure?

Barry
I was playing Warhammer Online with a group of guys who decided they didn’t want to play anymore but I still did. So I went looking for a group, I saw Pyran being advertised on some forums and thought, fuck it, why not. Sozzals decided she liked my voice so much that I got renamed to Barry. Commissar Barry the Marauder was a sight to behold, I know there’s video out there about him. I actually had a blog at the time as well.

Sozzals
You joined as Skippy or Skips? Were you resistant to the new name at first, or did you just accept it like a new adornment?

Barry
Not really, Skippy was my RL nickname at the time, still used by some people but I’ve never been overly picky about what people call me.

Here’s a link to that epic video. 

The blog is still available, I think it has some softcore orc porn on it though.

Sozzals
I do like your voice, Barry. I remember telling you years ago, you should be a radio presenter or make podcasts or something.
Give me a link to that blog immediately.

Barry
What’s A Little Orc Porn Between Friends?
 

Sozzals
Omg I remember this 😀 This was in my Collection for a while.

Barry
There’s actually a comment from you on that post.

Sozzals
Excellent. That is one juicy orc.

Other than Warhammer Online, what other games have you played ? and…. Over the years, has your taste in games changed in any way?

Barry
Man, I’ve played:

WoW
CoD (various)
Borderlands 2
Puzzle Pirates
WC3 I used to play a LOT of tower defences on but there doesn’t seem to be any amazing TDs anymore.
Hero of the Kingdom

And many many more.
I’ve also played:
DotA
DotA2
League of Legends
Smite
Heroes of the Storm

I like the odd platformer but who doesn’t?
I dunno I just play stuff that looks fun and will run on my computer.

Sozzals
+1 for Hero of the Kingdom.
What’s on your current playlist?

Barry
Heroes of the Storm, Slay the Spire, Into the Breach, Pit People, Northgard, Skirmish Tabletop Games (Think Necromunda) and D&D

Sozzals
D&D! Tell us a bit more about the Pyran D&D group? That was something that you started?

Barry
Yeah, I think it started with something like 9 people, which was an absolute nightmare to DM. We played some standard D&D for a bit and then I think Uska took over and ran a campaign. A while later we played a terrible cyberpunk Apocalypse World hack for a bit which I never really got my head around but it did have some memorable moments. Switched to Deadlands which is a Savage World setting of horror in a classic Western setting. horses and horror. Currently one of the players we picked up during Deadlands is DMing a classic D&D story for us at the monent using 5e rules. I get to be a player for a bit and my Paladin is bringing righteous justice to goblin heads.

Sozzals
Sometimes it’s nice to take a back seat after the pressure of being the person who runs things, for a while. Does the group still call itself Dungeons & Dragqueens?

Barry
Haha, I had forgotten about that entirely. I don’t think it really has a name we just say D&D group. Even if we are playing different systems.

Sozzals
Well I know that the Pyran HOTS group, that you’re also involved in, DOES have a name!

Barry
Team Fabulous. Obviously.
Because we are always Fabulous and sometimes a team.

Sozzals
😀 #sometimes

Have you ever won a Pyran challenge?

Barry
I tend to end up unavailable and offer my services in preparation instead. I think I’ve only actually ever taken part in one of them, we spent a lot of time drawing penises if I remember right.

Sozzals
That sounds about right.

Other than games Barry, what else do you like to do for fun?

Barry
Hard drugs and hookers.
No, not really, I play guitar and harmonica, spend time just hanging out with friends, eat, occasionally larp if I get time. Listen to music, the usual.

Sozzals
Sometimes folks, if you join Barry’s channel – you might actually hear him play guitar, sometimes singing… other times when you join Barry’s channel – and what he’s most famous for – you’ll hear him snoring!

Barry, you’ve been a big part of Pyran for 10 years now.
Where do you see yourself in another ten?

Barry
Probably half-way through a horrible midlife crisis. Big motorbike, girlfriend 10 years too young (not legally, just you know, enough to make people go, wait, you’re not his daughter?) and a job I hate. I’ll be spending too much time doing something that I shouldn’t be. At least I hope that’s the case.

Sozzals
Still a drama queen too, I hope, and still part of Pyran.

Barry
Well of course, Pyrans can dance and I need friends.

 

Special thanks to Barry for taking part.  Stay tuned for more hard-hitting Pyran interviews over the next few months!