Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Day one

I've been working for Emap for just over ten years. If you've been reading my blog you'll know that I started my journalism life on Nintendo Official Magazine - I actually started on September 1, 1997, the day after Princess Diana died in a car crash in Paris. It was a happy day on the commute into London.
Walking into Emap Images in London Docklands, just down the road from where an IRA bomb had torn the area apart, it was a nerve-wracking day. The area was still devastated from the bomb the previous year and Docklands was nothing like it is today.
Emap Images was the division that housed all the video game magazines - NOM, Sega Saturn, Computer and Video Games, PlayStation Plus and CU Amiga. The offices sat next to the old docks, the festering London water nearby being used for the boat chase to the Millennium Dome in the Bond movie The World Is Not Enough.
I don't remember much about my first day. I remember there being a Tottenham supporter on work experience and I was asked to preview, unknown to me then, Rare's classic game, GoldenEye 007.
Taking the game into this living-room-sized games room just next to the work stations, in went the cart and on came the now-infamous Bond theme. Embrrassingly I couldn't even hold the N64 controller properly. Even the workie asked me why I was bothering to read the instruction manual. A hour in and I was already getting grief!
Looking back on it, playing GoldenEye was crazy days. We'd play before work, fight for a controller at lunchtime and play after work. Just like Tetris I'd see the levels lying in bed in the state between awake and sleep. One-shot, one kill, usually in the Temple level. I wish I'd take a photo of it, but the cart was pulled in and out the N64 so much that Brosnan's face on the cart's sticker rubbed away. No game, in all my years on NOM, EVER looked like that. True testament to a title that deserves its place in any top ten of all-time.

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