Mat's Farewell | The Truth Has Not Vanished Into Darkness

Mat's Farewell | The Truth Has Not Vanished Into Darkness

This isn't the real ending, is it? Can't be.

Damn. I ran out of time there. What went wrong? Should I have gone for the Xbox Series X instead of the PS5? Maybe there was some angle on The Last of Us Part 2 that I missed? Did I path PAX East 2020 incorrectly? Where'd the run fall apart?

I kid, of course. Sad as it is, I know full-well why our time at USgamer is coming to an end, and I know it doesn't have a thing to do with how well we all played the game. I've had my fair share of impostor syndrome moments since joining the site, but it's been really heartening to see everyone react to word of our departure with well-wishes and kind words about our work. Thank you all for that.

A couple days ago, I left myself a note before sitting down to write this goodbye piece: "don't be emo." Knowing that there are loads of people who loved what we were doing with the site makes that a lot easier to do.

This is what peak 2006 video game protagonist performance looks like. | Capcom

Not long after landing my first contract gig in media, I felt an urge to write a blog post about Dead Rising, one of my favorite games. It was intended to be a portfolio piece, something I could link to an editor as I pitched other stories on games. I then sent pitches around, got nothing in return, but ended up in a lucky position at my previous job where I could write about games whenever the right inspiration struck. I guess Kat liked some of that stuff?

As I consider my next professional move, I hope to channel some of the confidence of dear old Frank West… well, minus the cockiness. I'm not going to sit here and pretend I learned anything real about reporting from playing Dead Rising—I probably won't be covering any wars, y'know—but something about a story where a journalist survives in the face of an apocalyptic scenario has a certain appeal to it these days.

I can't start this particular run over again, but even if I could, I don't know if I'd really change much about what I did. I've arrived at the only truth I need: the USG crew was a great group to work with, and I'm happy I had the chance to do so. Below, you'll find some links to work I'm particularly proud of from my time here and a thought or two on each piece. If you need me, you can always find me on Twitter.

Oh, and while I'm sort-of on the subject of zombie games, I have to issue a correction: way, way back in the day, I appeared in a video on where I said video games taught me that shotguns are only effective at close range. I was young, awkward, and Dead Rising hadn't even come out yet; it and plenty of other games have shotguns that are ridiculous at mid-to-long ranges (shout out to the Mastiff). Considering that this might be my last job as a games reporter, I didn't want to let that patently false statement follow me around forever. Glad to have cleared that up.

Anyway, here are some articles I'm particularly proud of from my run at USG:

SisQo, of Dru Hill and Thong Song Fame, Would Like to Be in The Wonderful 101: Remastered

I interviewed SisQo. I got to tell the world that Dru Hill's lead singer is into Tokyo Mirage Sessions. How about that?

Tetris Effect: Connected Brings Some Competitive Edge Back to the Chillest Tetris

I love Tetris Effect and I love the Classic Tetris World Championships. Not only was putting this preview together a blast, but it earned me a citation on Wikipedia. Please let the record show that I am an authoritative source on tetrominoes.

The Pandemic Could Be the End of Your Favorite Arcade

If I had managed to get a hold of all the arcades I reached out to for this piece, it could've been three or four times as long. I would've been happy to put all their stories to the page. Regardless, I'm still happy with the finished article, and I'm thrilled that my local favorite Wonderville recently raised $40,000 to survive the winter. Support your local arcades!

Half-Life: Alyx Behind the Scenes, Part 1: How Valve Found Its New Alyx

Being who I am, I could've just made this list out of all my Half-Life coverage. My two-part feature on Alyx is what I'm most proud of, but I also reviewed the game, interviewed the voice of the G-Man about it, wrote up silly mods it received, talked to a teacher who used it as a VR classroom, and more.

Deadly Premonition 2 Review: What Year Is This, Zach?

I did not enjoy my time with Deadly Premonition 2 (I make that very clear in the review), but I am grateful for the experience of reviewing it. It presented more of a challenge than any other title I reviewed here at USG, but the difficulties of slogging through it and putting together my thoughts on it were worth my time. Screw the naysayers who accuse game reviewers of being bought-off, lazy, or unqualified. The structures of access journalism built up in this industry can be frustrating, but we're collectively getting better at calling them out. Anyone who says they see the opposite either isn't paying attention or isn't worth paying much attention to.

Want the Tony Hawk Remaster Warehouse Demo? You Can Get it With a Burrito

Yes, this is just a Breaking News Updates | Latest News Headlines | Photos & News Videos post about a deal that Activision worked out with Chipotle, but I had to bring attention to that subhead. I think Eric came up with "lights out: burrito radio" and it's been ricocheting around the inside of my skull ever since. What a fun website, right? I thought it was pretty great.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. See our terms & conditions.

Mathew Olson


Mathew Olson is a writer formerly of Digg, where he blogged and reported about all things under the umbrella of internet culture (including games, of course). He lives in New York, grew up under rain clouds and the influence of numerous games studios in the Pacific Northwest, and will talk your ear off about Half-Life mods, Talking Heads or Twin Peaks if you let him.

Related articles

USG Game of the Year 2020: Hades Isn't Just About Escaping Home, But Rebuilding It

This Greek myth feels like the culmination of everything Supergiant Games has created thus far.

The Top Stories That Shaped Video Games in 2020

There's a lot—good, bad, and everything in between—to look back on this year. I don't know about you, but I'm mostly feeling tired.

Control: Ultimate Edition Confirms PS5 and Xbox Series S/X Dates and Ray Tracing Toggle

If you were hoping for the highest of high-end performance… dream on, Faden.

Need help?

Apex Legends Vaults - Where to Find the Vaults and How to Open Them

Need to know how to find a Vault Key in Apex Legends to open one of the three vaults? We've got you covered.

Gears 5 Collectibles - How to Find All Collectible Locations

Here's our guide to the Gears 5 collectible locations, including Act 1, Act 2, Act 3, and Act 4 collectibles.

Devil May Cry 5 Devil Breakers - Devil Breaker Arm Abilities in Devil May Cry 5

Here's our complete breakdown of every Devil Breaker arm ability for Nero in Devil May Cry 5.

Sekiro Tips - How to Beat Every Boss and Survive in Sekiro Shadows Die Twice

This is our complete beginner's guide to surviving Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, including a list of essential tips and tricks.