TA Community Interview - Stallion83

By Jonathan Barnes, 5 years ago
This week, one of our (more famous) community members passed a huge milestone. In his quest to reach 1 Million Gamerscore, Stallion83 became the first gamer to pass 1 Million TA score, with the Rocked the Doodlebug. in Rock of the Dead achievement putting him over the top. To commemorate the occasion, we managed to snag a few minutes of his valuable time to be this week’s subject of The Gamish Inquisition.


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obj - There's a story behind every gamertag; what is yours? Are you a big fan of horses, Sylvester Stallone, neither or both?

S83- ROCKY! ROCKY! ROCKY! As a very young child I started watching the Rocky movies and fell in love with them immediately. I still watch them from time to time to seek motivation. If you do some research on how Sly Stallone came about creating and making the films it even adds more mystique. The guy wanted something and wouldn't take no for an answer. He stuck with what he believed in and went for it no matter what obstacles got in the way.

obj – Eat Lightning… Check. Crap Thunder… Check. Pitying the Fool… Check.

What pays the bills in the Stallion household?

S83- I'm focused entirely on my career as a gamer or someone who works in the gaming industry. It's a full time job and I never really have a chance to just chill out even though Sundays are supposed to be my down time. It's literally a 24/7 thing. From the gaming, managing myself, 100's of messages I receiving on a daily basis, e-mails, interviews, blogging, writing, podcasting, making videos and video capturing and editing. It's a never ending cycle that literally will eat up an entire day. So many ideas, so little time.

I signed an endorsement deal with Xwerx, the creators of XtendPlay (www.xtendyourgame.com), back in November of 2010. I also do a little writing for IGN that works with my schedule. It's exciting where this road is leading me and I plan to follow it until the very end.

As a young kid I always wanted to work in the gaming industry; I was born to do this. I'm living a lifelong dream and I feel the best has yet to come. I have the mindset that if you really want something in life all you need to do is go grab it. Anything is possible if you dig deep enough and you can apply that to anything.

My girlfriend has a part-time job and is a full time student. She is working her way to becoming a dentist.

obj - Where is home for you and, if I were to visit, what thing(s) would I have to do before I left so as not to risk being shunned/chased away with torches and pitchforks by the locals?

S83- I live in Tennessee and I like it here. There really isn't much to see or do in my neck of the woods. There are some pretty mountains so maybe visit the Smokey Mountains and hang out in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

obj - Your quest for 1 Million GamerScore has to consume a lot of time. With that in mind what other hobbies (aside from gaming) do you enjoy?

S83- I like to play tennis and other sports, lift weights, run at the park, and watch professional basketball.

obj - How's the home life? Let's hear a little more about your girlfriend and how she feels about your gaming?

S83- I have a long time girlfriend who has been putting up with my gaming lifestyle for about 7 years now. She hates it but when it comes down to it, she will tell me to keep going for my dreams/goals. If you've seen my 600,000 gamerscore video she tells me to win at the beginning. We had a discussion back in May about whether or not I should stop or continue along. I came to her and said something along the lines of, "this is going to end up killing me and I have to sacrifice so much to reach this goal." After a long discussion she told me and I quote, "Lay the smack down." A scene from Rocky 2 immediately popped into my head. I started one of my achievement leapfrogs that very day and ended up having a solid two months.

obj - Most of the public knowledge about you is gaming-related, what is one non-gaming related fact/story that you would like to share with the world?

S83- I eat healthy and I can do over 100 regular push-ups without stopping. I can juggle as well.

obj - With a trophy case chock full of Kobe Bryan faces and a Kobe jersey on your avatar, is it safe to say that you're a Lakers fan?

S83- I'm a big time Lakers fan! I really got into watching them when Shaq signed in 1996, the same year 18 year old Kobe got drafted. He looked good back then, but no one thought he would turn out to be an all-time great.

obj - To start off the gaming portion of the Inquisition, could we get a picture of your setup and a quick description of it?

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S83- One of the setups I use mainly for video capturing and Kinect playing. Fairly massive cabinet that stands over 7 feet tall and 9 feet wide. 58" Samsung plasma TV. In the closed cabinet is an Onkyo receiver and a blu-ray player. 6 xbox 360's. 4 american, 1 Japanese, and 1 pal. Infinity speakers for the surround sound.

obj - What is your first gaming memory?

S83- Atari Boxing and ET when I was a little guy. I was only about 3 or 4, maybe even younger. I just remember being stuck in a big hole in ET. I had no clue what was going on due to being too young. I loved boxing though, that was my thing.

My fondest gaming memory is beating Mario when I was 5, it was the day after my mom beat it for the first time. I still refuse to talk to her to this day. smile Kidding by the way.

obj - Given that ET was so bad that they had to bury copies of it in a New Mexico landfill, I don’t think your age was a big factor!

Let's imagine, for a moment, that the very first video game you ever played had achievements. What would your first gaming achievement have been?

S83- ET
Achievement: Pacifist
Description: Stay in the hole for 5 minutes

obj - Your blog says that your first achievement was Cluster Buster in Hexic HD. After garnering so many achievements, what is your recollection of your first?

S83- Honestly, I don't really remember much about it. I remember being in love with the dashboard and all the new features. I do know I liked the little achievement popping up, but never thought I would take it to the extreme. I don't even like Hexic!

obj - While 1 Million TA Score isn't quite the 1 Million GS for which you are aiming, it is still an accomplishment. How does it feel to break this mark and do you consider this a "dry run" for when you reach your big goal?

S83- It's very nice to hit milestones and thanks to TA I have something else under my belt. But what else is there after 1,000,000 TA? 2,000,000 TA? Nobody will ever reach 10,000,000. It's cool being the first to the TA kill screen for lack of a better term.

obj - I don't want to put the proverbial cart-before-the-horse, but what are your plans for when you DO break your 1 Million GS goal: vacation? More gaming? Switch to PS3 for a trophy record?

S83- Celebration, some champagne, maybe even some tears. My emotions are going to be out of control. The type of dedication this has taken so far is more than I can explain. I'll probably leave it on a million for a good couple of weeks, then I'll be back to playing again.

obj - What are your thoughts on Kinect? Do you think Microsoft will ever find a way to cater it to a "hardcore" audience and how does it affect your goal?

S83- I actually enjoy it quite a bit when it works properly. It feels good not being a couch potato during all my gaming sessions. It's a nice change of pace so it has only helped my goal in a positive way.

obj - A few years ago, an episode of South Park featured a storyline where Cartman froze himself so he didn't have to wait for the Nintendo Wii. Since that episode, I've begun using Cartman as an expression for not wanting to wait for something. What is the one upcoming game that you want to "Cartman" yourself for?

S83- There are some REALLY good games coming out this year but I can stand the wait since they are so close. Mass Effect 3 is too long off, I wanted to play it yesterday.

obj - I 100% agree. I’m shaking for a Shepard fix.

Do you have a beverage of choice (either alcoholic or non) when gaming?

S83- Water FTW. I will sometimes let my hair down and have a root beer.

obj – Easy there, wild man! We all know that Barq’s has bite!

Let’s imagine for a moment that you're convicted of a crime that you did not commit and are being sentenced to death. What would be your final meal and the final game you'd play that evening?

S83- King crab legs, chocolate cake, beef jerky, brownies, Cindy's cupcakes, egg nog, Crown & Coke, and gummy bears.

I would say Halo multiplayer but I don't feel like being called a homophobic slur just hours before I die. I'll have to go a Battlefield game with all of my closest friends on the same team. "I'm about to die guys, let's do this!"

obj - Since you've played more games than your average Joe Q. Gamer, what do you think is the most annoying trend (be it design, business or marketing) in games?

S83- Talk and walk with finger on ear first found in Gears. Horde mode from Gears. The push a button to see what's going on found in Gears. The Unreal Engine 3 found in Gears.

Gears is the most influential game this generation, no doubt.

obj – Very poignant given the http://www.trueachievements.com/Gears-of-War-3-xbox-360.htm release this week.

How has TrueAchievements helped you in your Gamerscore Mission?

S83- A ton! I've met a lot of likeminded folks from all over the world here. TA is the social network for achievement seekers and I visit the site every day to check the progress of my friends and myself.

obj - What is your favorite game genre and why?

S83- First Person Shooters. There's something about getting in the zone and destroying everything in an online game. That really gets my adrenalin going.

obj - And now, Stallion, are you ready for the BioShock that is the Lightning Round!?

obj - Favorite single player game

S83- http://www.trueachievements.com/Mass-Effect-2-xbox-360.htm

obj - Favorite multiplayer game

S83- http://www.trueachievements.com/Battlefield-Bad-Company....htm

obj - Least favorite game

S83- http://www.trueachievements.com/Yaris-xbox-360.htm

obj - Favorite achievement

S83- Seriously ... in Gears of War

obj - Favorite game character

S83- Sam Fisher

obj - Favorite developer


obj - Most overrated game

S83- http://www.trueachievements.com/Grand-Theft-Auto-IV-xbo....htm

obj - Most underrated game

S83- http://www.trueachievements.com/Too-Human-xbox-360.htm

obj - If you could have lunch/a drink with one person from “the gaming world” who would it be?

S83- Whoever came up with achievements and gamerscore.

obj - If you could punch one person from “the gaming world” right in the face who would it be?

S83- Not a single person.

obj - Any final thoughts, shout outs or soap box statements?

S83- Check out a new podcast about about gaming with a focus on gamerscore, The Gamerscore Popcast. You can find it on my blog or on iTunes . It features myself and fellow TA members: Pigimus Prime, StophJ, Omega Deez, and phatal1ty.

Link to podcast on blog and iTunes.

Thanks to all of those you have helped me along the way. It's been a long but exciting 6 years in the making and I'm proud to be the first TA millionaire. The best has yet to come as the community continues to grow.

Twitter: @Stallion83
Facebook: www.facebook.com/stallion83onFB


A big thanks and congratulations goes out to Stallion for his time and achievements (sic).

As always:

If you’d like to be featured in a Community Interview, want to be a solid citizen and nominate someone more awesome than yourself OR want to submit a "Community Asks the Community" question, send a PM to me, osubluejacket . FYI - You’re MUCH more likely to be selected if you’re well-written, interesting, funny and/or the model of a modern major general.
Jonathan Barnes
Written by Jonathan Barnes
Jonathan has been a news/views contributor since 2010. When he's not writing reviews, features, and opinion pieces, he spends his days working as an informal science educator and his nights as an international man of mystery.