GIA staff changes
[01.10.00] » Join the GIA in starting 2001 by thanking some old
friends and saying hello to new faces.
In the two years since its birth, the GIA has
gone from humble beginnings to one of the leading independent gaming
sites on the web - and we never could have done it without the excellent,
talented, and dedicated team working here. Unfortunately, the last
few months have seen the departure of a few of the long-term staffers.
Though the GIA will continue without them, we thought we'd take the
opportunity of the beginning of a new year to bid farewell to those
who have moved on, and to introduce you to some of the newer staff.
As most regular visitors to the GIA probably noticed,
site founder and longtime Double Agent Andrew Kaufman resigned
from his weekend letters column in November. Andrew's work on the
site, from writing to behind the scenes server duties has been crucial,
and without his help, there may not have even been a GIA -- and no one wants to imagine what
kind of freakish, dystopian world that would be. AK's wit
will be sorely missed, but we have managed to convince veteran letter
columnist Drew Costner to forgo his Virtual Farm and suppress his
hate for 95% of the population long enough to take over weekend letter
duties. Drew's an old hand around here, and we're happy to have him
After over a year on staff, and numerous highs
and lows, the tireless Nich
Maragos moved on to pursue other opportunities in December. We asked
Nich about his time in the trenches as the GIA, and here's what he
had to say:
"I made a lot of friends and a lot of enemies
during my fourteen-month run at the GIA, but it was usually lots of
fun, and I'd like to thank the rest of the staff for letting me handle
marquee titles like Chrono Trigger, Metal Gear Solid, Chrono Cross,
and Final Fantasy VII. (In particular, thanks for indulging my selfish
desire to do every MGS GBC-related update from the game's announcement
to its release.) They let me cover some lower-profile personal favorites
as well, such as Revelations: Persona, Rhapsody, and Tron Bonne, and
let me put in all the obscure references I wanted into captions, pull
lines, and alt texts. Though school's heating up, I'm still keeping
an eye on gaming--you might see me around in a freelance vault or
working on a Gamers.com review ... and who knows where else?"
Vault maintainer and gaming soundtrack guru Arpad Korossy was
lost in the middle of this last year to an organization even more
powerful than the GIA itself: the US military. An intrepid GIAgent
contacted Arpad during his training:
"On June 30th, 2000, I reported to the U.S.
Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD, for Induction Day, the beginning of
the six week long plebe summer training program that would change
me from a grungy civilian into at least a reasonable facsimile of
a good midshipman. About two months later, starting into my first
semester, I realized that for the time being, at least, it wasn't
really possible for me to fulfill my new set of duties and do justice
to my duties at the GIA. All concerned agreed that it would be better
to step down at least for my first year, and so my illustrious one
year long career with the GIA came to a close. I passed vaults into
the very capable hands of my good friend and recent addition to the
GIA team, Jeff Davis, and prayed that someday we'd get a proper searchable
database online so I could put the disturbing nightmares of wrestling
with our copious archives to rest at long last. Nevertheless I still
have only the fondest memories of my unfortunately brief stay. The
GIA started out relatively small, but in little over two years it
has risen to become the premier amateur site in its field, and I'm
happy to have had even the smallest part in that. And I have no doubt
that if we keep getting people as dedicated, professional, and competent
as we have in the past, we can become the best site in our field,
period. As for me, I'm still working on a project or two on a freelance
basis, in particular, a comprehensive feature on the entire Final
Fantasy series. So keep on reading, and we'll do our best not to let
They wouldn't even allow the poor freshman to have consoles, but once he emerges from the depths of Annapolis, he just may find active duty again.
Lastly, long time GIAgent Brian "Big Lick"
Glick seems to have just disappeared. Though we sent a brave GIAgent
into the savage, untamed backwaters of Canada to find him, he was
"unavailable to comment." His corporate office, however,
issued the following statement:
"Founded in 1980, Brian Glick Enterprises
has recently diversified into real-life revenue streams, focusing
its efforts on academic classroom attendance and social life development.
'After years of serving the RPG community, we've reached most of the
goals we originally set out to attain, and we now plan to fade into
the background,' the company's CEO affirms. Nonetheless, BGE assures
investors that a long-term affiliation and partnership with the Gaming
Intelligence Agency has already been negotiated and will remain in
effect for the long-term."
Translation: he got a job. Poor kid. The GIA wishes
him the best of luck in his vain pursuit of filthy lucre. The Big
Lick may be gone, but he'll never be forgotten. To Brian, Nich, Arpad,
and Andrew and the others who've worked in the limelight or in the
shadows, our thanks go out for the time, talent, and sacrifices it
took to make the GIA what it is today.
As old staff have gradually moved away from the site,
we've welcomed a few new staffers on board as well. As mentioned above,
Drew is back in his old letters groove. In addition, all-around human
dynamo Fritz Fraundorf returned from a brief stint as a freelancer
to full GIAgent status in September. Longtime readers will remember
Fritz from his excellent coverage and the odd (in more ways than one)
feature. The GIA's cold, flinty
heart grew three sizes the day Fritz returned, and he promises to
uphold the GIAgent code, as soon as we find the bourbon-soaked bar
napkin we scrawled it on.
As Arpad already mentioned, the position of Vault
editor has been taken over by classic RPG devotee Jeff Davis. A veteran
of a number of RPG sites, Jeff joined up with the GIA five months
ago. As a fan of and expert on classic games, he been hard at work
back in the dusty recesses of the site's Vault to bulk up our coverage
of older titles. Jeff's been branching out into reviews and previews
lately, but he promises the coming year will bring expanded coverage
on the games of the past.
Rounding out our new staff is the a relative newcomer
to the world of gaming coverage, Zak McClendon. Moving up from the
bush leagues of freelance work for the GIA, Zak signed on for the
full course of news, reviews, and upcoming coverage. He's also writing
most of this feature and is demonstrating his enormous restraint by not heaping
glowing praise upon himself. His editor (hello!) later secretly added this line praising his work ethic and pointing to his superlative Final Fantasy IX review.
There you have it -- the changing face of the GIA.
Though the staff may rotate and the server may crash, we promise to
provide the same timely, informed, and intelligent coverage for which
we're become known.
Now back to work.