I don’t know anyone close to me that is into gaming as much as I am or who knows who Ryan was or what Giantbomb is, so I decided to write about it here, to the community that I've almost certain its feeling what I’m feeling right now. I don’t expect many people to read or comment this, but I need to talk about it and just let it out.
English is not my native language, so I apologize for any errors you'll surely find.
I’m a 29 years old dude that lives in Portugal, a tiny country from the other side of the world, that many of you don’t even know where it is. Six years ago I watched for the first time a show about videogames on the internet that grabbed me instantly – On the Spot. I know, I arrived late to the party, but still I was hooked. Mainly because of the guys behind it, Jeff and the easy laughing guy Ryan. When they left Gamespot I thought “what now?. After some time, rumors of Jeff creating a new videogames website began to surface and, on 2008 Giantbomb launched and it was everything I wanted.
Games, video content, shananigans, you name it. From then to now I listened to every bombcast they produced and watched every video they made, even the ones for games that I don’t like or for platforms I don’t own. I listen to the podcast on a daily basis as I go to work on the train, from its day of release (Wednesday morning here) to the next Monday or Tuesday. So, as you understand, there are many days in which the guys are one of the first things I listen and, as I watch the video content before I go to sleep, the last thing I hear.
I know that this may look obsessive, but I’m not some lonely guy with nothing to do. I’m a married man with an active social life and everyday I find some time to play some games. The thing is Giantbomb started to make part of my life as something natural as watching movies or reading a book. Instead of watching tv, I watched Giantbomb. Simple.
Yesterday, July 8th, I arrived from work and was just visiting the site as usual, expecting to see a I love Mondays video or something, when I saw the news. It punched me in the stomach. I thought it as a joke, a bad joke because of a post someone created about the plane crash on San Francisco and if the GB crew was all right. As the hours go by and I read the comments, the tweeter feed, the other websites publishing the same news, I realize this was no joke. I sat in front of my computer for an hour not knowing what to feel. Surprise, sadness, anger. I’m still fighting the idea that the next bombcast I’m gonna listen doesn’t have the cheerful “It’s Tuuuuuesday”, or that the quicklooks and the live shows will not have that great and wonderful laught caused by something the other guys said or by some dumb shit that happened in the game someone is playing.
As you’re reading this, you probably already realized I’ve never met Ryan or anyone of the team personally. Today, at work, my thoughts where with Ryan, his family and friends and I asked a friend of mine if it is possible to be sad with the death of someone you don’t know personally, only from the internet. I explained to her how frequent I visit the site and listen to the podcast, expecting a laugh or “you’re crazy”. She said to me: “It is only natural you feel this way. You’ve been listening and watching this men for 5 years. You probably knew more about him that about someone you call friend”.
She’s right. I can’t say Ryan was a friend. But I can say he was someone I admired, respected and liked a lot.
In my almost 30 years of existence, I lost some people very dear and close to me, including my sister, victim of leukemia at the age of 9, when I was 16 years old. I have an idea what the guys are going through right now and how difficult it is to surpass it. But I firmly believe they will continue the wonderful and great work they developed until now. I wish them all the luck of the world.
Wherever you are, I hope you continue your existence as you were here with us, joyful, playful, laughing your ass out, playing all the games you want and watching some bad movie based on a videogame.
Thank you for everything..