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INTERVIEW: Behind the Writer baron

Hello, again readers. Had a break last week but I am back with a new interviewee. This week we talk to cybae, the newest of our writers here at the Buzz. Without further ado, here's the interview! (Did that just rhythm?!)

Right, first things first. Name? Age? And a favourite fast food chain?

My name is Alex, I am 26 years old and I absolutely adore Taco Bell to the degree of travelling over an hour to visit England's crappy version for a rare treat.

Wow, I barely travel an hour to see family, let alone for a Taco Bell. That is love. Anyway, when did you first log in to BL and can you remember your first account name?

I cannot remember my first account name but I remember being pretty young at the time, I saw someone playing the game in our school's computer lab and decided to join. My most activity was around that period and would've been under names long since forgotten however I do remember being decently active for a period using the name Cyber or CyberJunki3.

I have yet to meet someone with a different startup story! So did you first play with friends in real life at school or did you make friends with other players?

Unfortunately, none of my friends liked text-based games at the time or the nostalgia that comes with playing them now. However I made some good long term friends through Bootleggers from the good days of IRC being around, some of those friends I even met in person and continue to have strong friendships with to this day. The closest of which being like a sister to me is a former moderator of Bootleggers who is married to a former administrator of Bootleggers, I hope some people know enough game history to know those names.

That is incredible. I know another example of that within BL, it's mad. From when you first logged in, in your school's computer lab, have you played non stop or have you had a break?

I have had some very large breaks from the game, notably because of my career starting and the love I grew for video games. I feel like I have missed out on a lot of Bootleggers history which is hopefully something I will no longer miss.

Do you mind me asking, what is your career? Is it to do with your love of games?

I love talking about my career as it is a passion of mine, the career not the talking. Ironically Bootleggers is a part of what started my career, I became interested in web development whilst playing Bootleggers then began learning how to write basic HTML, CSS and PHP. Over the years I have turned the passion for programming into a career and currently, work at one of England's largest online retailers as a full-time Backend and Systems Developer. I still find ways to utilize my code for games such as creating gaming servers with custom features and other interfacing systems.

So your job is more 'back office' (if you don't mind me saying) but by joining the Buzz you have put yourself out there into peoples view. Have you ever worked for the buzz before? And what attracted you to the Buzz either way?

I have never worked for the buzz before but I am excited to join the team. Having ghostwritten articles for a few places previously, it was a natural reaction when I saw that Aldo had been looking for new people to join the team. Being that I am very analytical in nature I would also like to provide content that can be considered educational in nature such as statistical breakdowns and mythbuster type pieces.

In regards to making educational content for the community, there has been a modern info/help website started by a player of BL but has more recently lacked slowed down with updates of the new OC format etc. Would you think of starting your own one of those, or even officially contributing to his website?

There have been many sites like this over the years and I have been interested in updating Flaton's site, however, he seems busy with real life. I’d love to contribute to a help site and would seek interest from Kyle to create a final resting place for community provided data and allow us to commit code to a public repo that could mean anybody can submit a pull request for review and acceptance for years to come. Failing this I would love to implement this community-driven approach myself.

Obviously collecting information is helpful for the community so we know what is needed and gained by stuff, but how far can that be taken before there is too much given out, therefore, making the game have no mystery? And would you stop if you thought it got that far?

This is a really good question because I adore statistics and tactics, I like to know the result of my action before I consider taking the action itself. I do think some aspects of the game shouldn’t be ruined more specifically paths where players intersect with each other, such as the bullet calculations. I dislike this because you are sure to hit every time which is only good for one party in that situation. I don’t know if I could be the person to limit the data I consumed or refrain from sharing the results.

So you need someone in your ear telling you not to press the big red button! In retrospect then, can you sum up your BL ’career’ thus far in 3 sentences for someone that knew nothing about you at all?

My career on Bootleggers has been a quiet one considering that I mostly kept to myself outside of IRC chat. I’ve always valued the people more than I valued the game and I have cherished the friendships I’ve grown here. Both the game and I have aged well, now we meet again.

That last sentence was rather poetic I'd say. And lastly, as always, If you could ask Kyle one question that he had to answer directly, what would I be?

The passionate developer in me wants to say “give Developer role please?”, however, I’d be curious what stage of the game has driven his productivity the most because nothing refreshes you more than seeing users enjoy your product.

There you have it. The newest member of the Buzz team is a self-proclaimed 'geek', and we love it. Also maybe KyleKroff could get him working on BL? Maybe make him an offer he can't refuse... You know? From The Godfather movie, and this is a mafia game. That was meant to be funny! Argh I'm wasted here!