By jhevans51 73 Comments
While scrolling through my Twitter timeline this morning, I came across a post from former 1upper (and current Sonyman) Nick Suttner (@nsuttner) pointing out that today was the 4th anniversary of the meetings that essentially ended the brand's dominance.
Some might argue that the halcyon days of 1up were past anyway and they were already riding the downward slope. Most of the "big names" were gone, many by their own choice (John Davison, Luke Smith, Jeff Green, Shawn Elliot, Mark MacDonald, current Giant Bomber Patrick Klepek). But the site was still rolling along and the community, used to staff members "graduating" (for lack of a better term) into other gaming industry jobs, continued to thrive. Behind the scenes, some were already planning their exit (Shane Bettenhausen) and others were about to be caught in the storm (Andrew "Skip" Pfister, Philip Kollar and James Mielke, though Mielke would later return) but all felt the rumble of change coming. Although community favorites Garnett Lee (the heart of the podcasting empire), Jeremy Parish (Mr Retronauts himself), Ryan Scott and Dan "Shoe" Hsu would remain, the losses and wholesale changes were hurtful to the very tight-knit community and the site still has never fully seemed to find its voice and recover since.
Knowing that the end of the era had occurred, the classic cast of the 1up Network's flagship podcast 1up Yours (Lee, Davison, Smith, Pfister and Bettenhausen), reunited for one last mega-show dated January 22, 2009, 2 weeks after the big day. You can find that episode hereThe impact on the online video game news and entertainment community that 1up.com and the 1up Network had on the industry cannot be underestimated and anyone unfamiliar with 1up Yours should definitely check it out (This Year Collection has some great "Best of" episodes here, here and here), as the Bombcast is the only podcast that can be mentioned in the same air in terms of entertainment value and staff chemistry, in my opinion.
Personally, finding 1up Yours was huge in my life. There were some pretty rough times in my life in late 2006 into mid 2007. Having those podcasts to listen and look forward to made things a little better and I will be eternally grateful to everyone who was associated with that show. Thanks for those awesome memories.