I never knew what lay beneath the surface of Twitter until 2017. Despite having had an account since 2011.
Until I started to realise that pretty much everyone in my life was moving away from video games and I had literally nobody to talk to about games anymore. I decided to look for people that liked video games. Old games. New games. Everything.
Gaming, for me, is more than just mashing buttons. It’s a passion, a love, a way to unwind, a place to go when the world disappoints or lets me down, a challenge, a recreation, a hobby, a pleasure, a leisure, an escape. It’s always been that way for me.
But growing up, I always had others to share that with. I’ve always had people to talk about games with. I used to live with one of my best friends up until Feb 2017. We played a lot of games together. All kinds of games. It was bliss. I miss it in so many ways.
After we went our separate ways, I started to realise just how little I got to talk about games.
So this is why I started looking on Twitter and YouTube. I was looking for friends. New friends. Gaming friends. People I could talk about games with. Share my passion with.
But I didn’t know that right under my nose, in the place I was going regularly to get my football fix, there was a whole community of gamers bubbling beneath the surface of Twitter. A huge, amazing network of passionate gaming people from all over the world. Ireland, the UK, The USA, Australia, France, Spain, Brazil, Russia, New Zealand, Germany, Norway. All from different countries but all with the same interests as me.
I found all these people through one account. RetroBoyJon. He was the first person that popped up when I was searching for gaming people. Well others popped up but they were the usual big names that weren’t really that interesting to me. With Jon’s profile, I was seeing all these awesome other people commenting and getting involved in his posts. No celebrity statuses or egos. Just like-minded people sharing their stories and interests. And all positive and informative. Talking about games and consoles that I loved as a kid and still love today. People just having fun, talking about what they loved. No negativity.
I knew I needed to be a part of it. I needed it in my life. To fill a hole.
That sounds quite dismissive but it’s not. It was a big hole and I didn’t realise until I found everybody just how much I needed them.
So I just want to say a big Thank You to RetroBoyJon and to all of you. You’ve more than filled a hole in my life. You’ve filled it and then kept going, piling up like a tower. 5,000 amazing, unique, interesting, fun and friendly followers. Not followers. Friends.
Thanks for everything. You’ve been amazing and I’m very grateful for your friendship. Long may it continue.