Wow. It’s incredible to think that next summer will mark my fourth year working at BeefJack. It’s been one hell of a crazy ride, but a tremendous one, during which we’ve achieved so much.
On a personal level, it’s been an extraordinary experience: starting out by helping to take a games blog to the next level, being invited to sit on the company’s management team and, subsequently, to oversee the day-to-day operations of all BeefJack’s projects and initiatives in the position I hold today as Executive Producer.
Even though I handed over the editorial reigns to Jamie Donnelly last year, BeefJack’s flagship online magazine has remained very close to my heart. I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve achieved, considering where we started as a bedroom blog. I’m also incredibly excited about the opportunities we can explore from here, and it’s these opportunities I want to talk to you about today.
The short version sounds alarming. You may have noticed we haven’t posted any content to the site over the past few days. That’s because BeefJack.com, as we all know it, is closing down. BUT! Don’t worry. This doesn’t mark the end of BeefJack’s online magazine; merely a shift. And, for my money, it’s a shift for the better.
A bit of context. Over the years, BeefJack has dipped its toes into many waters. As you might be aware, we now operate both a game development studio and a PR and marketing agency, in addition to our words on these pages.
Our goal, for some time now, has been to explore and proliferate creativity, innovation and experience in games, and to make alternative gaming experiences accessible to all. But there were obviously a few issues with our previous model, which is why we’re moving some things around.
Firstly, it’s become clear to me that – if we want to celebrate diversity and difference – we need to be doing something pretty interesting editorially ourselves. The ‘alt-gaming’ initiative that I led last year, and which Jamie has taken on with exceptional flair, was the first step towards this. But there are many more steps to go.
The next big step, which you’ll get your first glimpse of in a few weeks’ time, is a brand new online magazine – keeping the BeefJack name but streamlining and honing in on a particular kind of content. We want to explore new and interesting trends that exist away from the mainstream, and we want to provide our thoughts on a variety of games in a way that isn’t restricted by the usual ‘news/reviews/features’ format.
But we also want to celebrate BeefJack as a whole, rather than the somewhat fragmented set of properties it is right now. We are extremely proud of what we’ve achieved with BeefJack Studio, BeefJack Promote and BeefJack Magazine, and it makes sense to tie them together in a more logically cohesive way – one that ensures we’re steering clear of any conflicting interests, while also pushing to the fore all of the core values shared by each of these subsections of BeefJack.
When we return in a few weeks’ time, you’ll enjoy more of the same flagship content we’ve been producing over the past year: the in-depth features, the insight and analysis. We’ll also be dropping news and reviews, which is – quite frankly – a terrifying decision to have made, but I’m reasonably confident it’s the right one.
Finally, we want to explore our work with Promote and Studio in an honest, open and transparent way that isn’t just a flimsily disguised marketing endeavour. We’ll be offering a platform on which our PR clients can promote their brilliant games without masking ad content, and we’ll be sharing our experiences in game development in new and interesting ways.
And don’t worry – we’ll be archiving everything we’ve done so far, so you can go back and read anything you missed, or anything you particularly enjoyed.
Watch this space, folks, and thanks to everyone for their support to date. See you on the other side…