As a special treat to our fans and fans of gaming in general, we here at Tommy|Zor are interviewing the lovely Raychul Moore from GameGirl.com. Raychul is a hardcore gamer and a media star, as well as a model and an all-around kickass woman! Raychul isn’t just the second sexiest gamer in the world (at my best moments, I feel I got that one in the bag, especially when I game in my boxers) but she’s a down-to-earth human being that’ll high-five you after she kicks your ass. Enjoy!
I’m pretty sure the owners manual tells you not to do this
T|Z: What is your definition of a hardcore gamer? Has it changed over the years?
Raychul: In my opinion, a hardcore gamer is not just someone who plays games, they live games. They breathe, think, and sleep games. They are up to date on news for upcoming new releases for games that they are passionate about and gaming isn’t just a hobby to them. I do not believe my view of hardcore gaming has changed much over the years. I do think there are more hardcore gamers out there than there were say back in the SNES days, but the more hardcore gamers, the better.
Although not necessarily about your favorite or first game, what is your fondest childhood memory of gaming?
My fondest childhood memory of gaming would have to be playing Super Mario Bros. on the NES. I actually beat that game as a little girl and to look back and see the time and determination I had with that game is amazing. Today’s kids have no idea, back then we didn’t have cheat codes or even options to save. If you died that was the end, back to World 1. I remember sleeping with my NES on so I wouldn’t lose my progress. I was one hardcore little pigtailed girl.
In terms of sheer influence or bar-raising-quality, what do you feel is the most important game ever made? Most important console?
Honestly, I can not think of one particular game that set the bar for other games. In each generation of games we have a different game that achieved that status in its own right. As far as consoles go I would have to go with the Dreamcast being one of the most important console of its time. The Dreamcast might not have done super well, but it paved the way for one of the things that make the Xbox so successful today. The Dreamcast really brought gaming and the Internet together. Yes, we had online play before the Dreamcast, but the Dreamcast was the first one to really put the two together. Now we have Xbox Live and I really think we have the Dreamcast to thank for that.
Xbox headset and a Nintendo shirt. Sega underwear. (not pictured)
As you’ve gotten older, have you been able to feel as strongly about gaming as you did as a child? What’s the last game that you’ve played that brought on that sense of wonder and amazement?
As I have gotten older my respect for games and the developers has really grown. As a kid you don’t think about all the time and effort that went into making the game you are playing right now. My respect for gaming itself has grown as well. Gaming is so much more than just a hobby or something to do when I am bored. To me, it’s my life.
The last game that I played that really brought out the child-like sense of wonder and amazement to me would have to be Super Mario Galaxy. Mario Galaxy had that special something, that something that made you want to keep playing for hours into the night always excited about that new galaxy or planet you just opened up. Mario Galaxy was innovative and fresh. It was something we had been needing in the industry for a while, a new idea, not just a remake or sequel.
Tell us about the first time you pulled an all-nighter playing a game.
My first all-nighter was the first Silent Hill on the PS1, me and my 2 best friends stayed up for two straight nights handing off the controller every few hours back and forth so that one could rest while another played. We ordered a lot of delivery pizza and drank a lot of coffee. After that, it became like a tradition, when any new Silent Hill games came out we would take time off from work and camp out in the living room for the weekend. Later Fatal Frame became part of the no sleep game-a-thons as well.
Luigi gets no respect, nor does he deserve it, that skinny fuck
What do you think is the golden era of video games? Do you think it’s nostalgia or can something like this be objective?
I think the golden era of video games would, in my opinion, be the end of the PS1 days and the beginning of the PS2 generation. Back then gaming technology really started to take off, and the games were so innovative with new ideas and even new genres of games. We had tons of first time classics and it was becoming more of a lifestyle than a “nerdy” stereotype to many. Nowadays we still have some great instant classics but we are seeing a lot of half- assed sequels and water downed remakes to the games that were so awesome back in the Playstation days.
If someone’s just getting into modern gaming now (be it young or old) what sorts of differences in experience do you think they would find compared to older titles? (besides graphics, of course)
The difference between today’s games compared to games in the past would really depend on how far back you mean. If you mean all the way back to arcade and Atari days, then the differences are astronomical. Just the story and length of a game not to mention the controls and the very meat of the game has completely changed. But if you only go back to PS1/Dreamcast/N64 days then I would say that even though there are great games out right now, I feel that people getting into gaming now are kinda getting shafted.
New gamers are getting the graphics and online bonuses of today’s modern technology, but they are missing the true heart of the games. Games back then had such high quality of gameplay and story, they were not held up on graphics alone, they had to stand on their own two feet, so to speak. Nowadays a lot of people judge a game purely on the graphics, to them that decides whether the game will be good or not. But only several years ago it was the gameplay and quality of the game that made it a hit or not. I guess what I am trying to say is, back then games were made for gamers, today games are made for who ever has the biggest pockets. Gaming has become the “in” thing right now and in some aspects that’s good, but in other aspects it’s bad.
Have you ever converted someone into a gamer? If so, were you to do it again, what would you have them start with?
Yep, I proudly converted my mom into a gamer. I put a Wiimote in her hands and made her play Wii Bowling with me and after that there was no turning back. She now has her own Wii and loves it. She also has a PS2 now which she plays Lord of the Rings: Return of the King on and she has become a master in Guitar Hero. My mom, who once laughed at my obsession of games now can kick my ass any day in Guitar Hero or Rock Band. I love it.
...now that should’ve been the box art for Guitar Hero
You’ve stated before that you’re very competitive. Has the influx of multiplayer games (both online and old school 4-people-per-TV-with-chips-and-talking-smack) caused this or are developers starting to finally capitalize on gamers’ personalities?
I think we are all competitive in some way or another. Yes, I think developers are starting to cash in on peoples personalities, but then again I think it’s just natural to want to compete. I am more of a lover than a fighter though, I would rather play an online co-op game than a free for all any day.
If you could be any game character for the sole purpose of kicking another character’s ass, who would you be? More important, who would they be?
If I could be ANY game character ever…I would be Kratos from God of War. Kratos is one of the biggest badass’s in gaming history. Who’s ass would I kick? Umm, probably zombies, I dunno, I just have the fascination and obsession with zombies. So yeah, I would be Kratos and I would completely annihilate zombies with my awesome godlike powers.
How do you feel about the casual game movement? (Wii, mobile phone games, Internet download mini-games, etc.) Has the worldwide adoption of casual games changed the way people look at gaming as your hobby?
Casual gaming is a great thing, it makes people happy who never thought they could have fun playing a video game. The casual games explosion has really brought people together and has changed their ideas and views of gamer stereotypes. At the same time the casual gaming boom has had negative impacts on the industry as well. With more and more people of all ages getting into the gaming scene it has caused a huge rush of developers who are trying to make a few bucks off of this fad, kinda forgetting the very people who brought gaming to where it is today. Also, with gaming becoming so popular, most media outlets and developers are being coming too censored, everyone is trying to be “family friendly”. I also believe that the developers are going too “Hollywood” with their games as of lately, the games are simple and really do not seem to challenge anymore. They want their games to attract the largest variety of people, meaning a lot of dumbing down and a lot of half assed games.
In my opinion, Nintendo has mishandled their built-in legacy audience. They are largely ignoring their fans who made them who they are today by not maturing along with them. (I’ve written about this issue strongly – see here [opens in new window]) Have Sony and Microsoft taken the torch and ran with it, or have they specifically targeted core gamers because Nintendo hasn’t?
In some ways I disagree with this statement. I do not completely agree that Nintendo has forgotten us hardcore gamers and gone too kiddy, we have to remember that Nintendo has ALWAYS been the more family focused company. I do believe that Nintendo had gone a little too crazy with the family friendly trend, but again, Nintendo has always been that way. We can’t fault them for sticking to what made us love them in the first place.
As far as Sony and Microsoft goes, I think Sony is still trying to catch up with the online community aspect of gaming. Sony still has not be able to improve their online experience and still no sign of HOME which just looks like the Sims Online to me. So, I do not think Sony can really catch up much right now with what’s new and hot in the industry, they have a lot of lost ground to cover.
Microsoft, on the other hand, began to look as is they were going to go more hardcore with their games, yet the Xbox has always been a more mature gamers kinda system. Then I saw their press conference at E3 and it kinda looks like Microsoft is jumping on the family friendly bandwagon. Take the new Live interface…could it be anymore kiddy looking? Not to mention the avatars…do they really think their target audience, all the Halo and other shooter gamers out there really want to make a Mii-like avatar to show off to all of their clan buddies? Also the new Xbox In the Movies game, didn’t the PS2 already do that with the EyeToy and didn’t it fail? I am quite disappointed.
Nerds everywhere just had their hearts stopped
What’s your take on franchises that make significant changes to their formula to attract wider audiences? Is this justified, or should franchises stay true to their roots out of respect to fans?
I do not mind game franchises that grow with their audiences and that improve with the technology, but I do dislike when they make a sequel or a next installment in a games chapter and they throw everything that made that game good and unique right out of the windows. Take for example, the latest Spyro games (I know a lot of you guys out there won’t admit that you play Spyro) they trashed everything that made Spyro good, the silly levels, the searching and collecting of dragon eggs, now the newer games are just purely fighting games. The only resemblance to the old Spyro games is that the main character is a purple dragon.
Also, another one that comes to mind is Silent Hill 4: the Room. Any Silent Hill fan will agree that the game was trash and it forgot everything that made that game good. Let’s just hope that the 5th one goes back to its roots.
I do however miss fixed camera angles, they made it hard to see and hard to control but the fixed camera angles also added to the uncomfortable and foreboding feeling of the some of the best survival horror games.
Despite the proven financial success of sequels, should developers focus more on original content? It seems like only hardcore gamers get excited about “developers or teams” where as the mass market can ignore many highly-regarded titles.
I believe hardcore gamers get more excited about developers and teams because we have come to learn which companies make truly superior products. When I hear Rockstar has a new game coming out, I get excited because in my opinion, Rockstar does not deal with only good games, they deal with excellence.
I do however wish game companies would start focusing on more original content instead of so many sequels. Making sequels are easy, they already know what we gamers want in that particular game, so all they have to do is figure out how to make it slightly better. With new game they have to be more original and creative…it’s a bigger risk but I think we need more original games.
What’s the best console controller and why?
My favorite controller used to be the PS2 controller, it was like the best of every controller in one. The PS3 changed that opinion, now it just feels cheap and too lightweight. To answer your question, I would say the Xbox 360 controller is my favorite game controller. It feels great in my hands, not too heavy like the Xbox 1 controller yet not too light like the PS3 controller. I love it!
(no caption necessary)
It’s been suggested that games are becoming more and more like movies, from presentation to their marketing. Many developers (such as Cliffy B.) have said that “passive entertainment” isn’t the future of gaming at all. Thoughts?
I don’t know about you, but I buy games to play, not to watch. I like my games to be interactive through and through, I will go to a movie theater if I want to watch something. I agree with Cliffy B., games are meant to be played, not watched, if the developers have something they want to show me, then let me play through it or I will most likely just skip it.
Are they ever going to make a better racing game than Burnout 3?
Hahaha, good question! My favorite racing game is Burnout 3 as well, and I hope they bring back the old Burnout style. I did have fun with Burnout Paradise, but I did not love it.
How excited are you for Resident Evil 5? Can it possibly be anything other than awesome?
Resident Evil 5 will not be anything other than awesome, I am so excited about this game and even more so now because of the co-op options. I have been a Resident Evil fan since day one and I think this one will just further my love for the series.
With you being a huge Silent Hill fan, answer this: Why do I like Silent Hill 3 better than the rest of them?
I did like Silent Hill 3…a lot, but I still prefer Silent Hill 2 over the rest. Sure I fell in love with the series with the first one, it was like nothing I had ever played and it put the fear in me as I played through. But the second one was something special, from the story to the gameplay, to the sets and the monsters. Silent Hill 2 was everything a horror game could ever be and in my opinion it is still untouched at the top (even though Fatal Frame comes in at a very close second).
You do know that so many guys are using your “360 Controller Made Holy” (as I’ve dubbed it) shot on Internet forums as their avatar. Flattered or disgusted? Either way, who do I send the money to for taking such a lovely photo?
Thanks! I call that one “X-Butt”. Of course I am flattered, I can not take a picture like that and then become disgusted when people want to use it or when people compliment on the photo. I am proud of every shot I have ever taken, why take it if you are going to regret it later? People like to give me shit for being a model and a gamer…but why is that such a bad thing? So what if I want to combine my two passions and take pictures with gaming things? I am not harming anyone. I am just doing what I love.
What profound Raychul message do you have for our readers who are into gaming?
Continue to do it if you love it. Do not let anyone put you down for your passions!
Did you know I’m the best Street Fighter Alpha 2 player in the entire world and could easily kick your ass in it?
[no response from Raychul, probably from intimidation]
[Zor edit: You didn't actually ask her that.]
[Tommy v2: Shut up, don't ruin this for me.]
Raychul, thanks for your time. Raychul can be found on GameGirl.com delivering news and articles for gamers everywhere.
Thanks for interviewing me! My pleasure.
So there you have it! The lovely Raychul Moore laying down the law. Oh but don’t think v2 can’t model some provocative hardware…
I chose not to wear the dress…this time.
If hers was the X-Butt, then mine’s the Dreamass. It’s just not the same, is it?