SPOnG's 2006 Poll ? Garry Williams: Man of the Year?

The budget software supremo speaks out

Posted by Staff
Leo 'The Ninja' Tan
Leo 'The Ninja' Tan
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Today, we bring you the latest in SPOnG?s poll of the year, with more thoughts and ruminations on the year just gone and the exciting one ahead of us from the great and the good of the UK's games industry.

Today, we have none other than value software supremo Garry Williams (MD of Sold Out Software), long-serving freelance journalist Steve Boxer (him with the hair!) and Activision?s new PR guru, Leo Tan (all pictured right and below).

SPOnG was contemplating nominating Garry Williams as our Man of the Year. However, when we asked him what TWO presents he wanted for Christmas, he typically gave us THREE answers. For this simple act of greed on his part, he is no longer our Man of 2006. Better luck next year Wodge!

Remember to keep checking in, as we'll be bringing you more poll results tomorrow and later next week (when we've recovered from Monday and Tuesday's turkey and baileys overload).

Plus of course, you can always let us know in the forums if you strongly (or even mildly) agree with, disagree with or don't really give a toss either way about what any of these guys has to say for themselves.


SPOnG: What are your (gaming and non-gaming) highlights from 2006?

Leo Tan, PR Manager, Activision

  • Going to Tokyo and meeting Chibita, the best Virtua Fighter player in the world. That was a truly spiritual journey to the motherland to meet and train with the greatest fighter ever. Nothing I've ever done, or will ever do, can ever compare to that experience. I carry a card around with me that he used when VF5 was being location-tested and pray to it at night.

  • Also - losing to Chibita 10 times in a row, Chibita signing my books, playing VF5 for the first time in an arcade in Tokyo and seeing really hot girls playing VF5 AND BEING GOOD AT IT. That's my five highlights. The last one is about girls, which have nothing to do with games.


Steve Boxer, freelance journalist

  • Acquiring a (prototype) PS3 and suddenly becoming popular.

  • The joys of Gears of War (and particularly working out how to dispatch the Berserker in the conservatory).

  • Hooking my Wii up to my TV for the first time.

  • Discovering how to play MotorStorm.

  • Acquiring a copy of Thomas Pynchon's Against the Day.


Garry Williams, Managing Director, Sold Out Software

  • The growth of Cesc Fabergass as a player.

  • The launch of the BLAST PS2 Kids value range.

  • The continued success of Mastertronic games.

  • The launch of Wii.

  • The first third of Gears of War (not the rest).



SPOnG: Five gaming and non-gaming lowlights from 2006?

Leo Tan, PR Manager, Activision

  • Leaving Tokyo

  • Sega announcing VF5 as a PS3 exclusive (since rescinded! - Ed)

  • Activision not releasing Guitar Hero: Avenged Sevenfold Edition

  • Renewing my World of Warcraft subscription

  • Handing in my notice at Barrington Harvey


Steve Boxer, freelance journalist

  • Having to play The Ant Bully for review purposes.

  • The debacle which was (and still is) the PS3's launch.

  • Discovering the dross -- with the exception of Resistance: Fall of Man and MotorStorm -- which will make up the PS3's launch line-up.

  • Having to play Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam on Wii (for review purposes).

  • England's performance in the Ashes Down Under (sorry Duncan Fletcher, it's time you moved on). And England's performance at the World Cup.


Garry Williams, Managing Director, Sold Out Software

  • Thierry Henry?s ?injury?

  • The later parts of Gears of War.

  • Loss of direction for PSP.

  • PS3 delay.

  • Windows Vista growing the PC gaming area.



SPOnG: Five things you're either looking forward to in 2007 or would like to see?

Leo Tan, PR Manager, Activision

  • VF5

  • Starting work at Activision

  • Pokemon's English language release

  • Clover Studio's goodbye PAL releases - my PS2 is plain ol' vanilla

  • The Burning Crusade :(


Steve Boxer, freelance journalist

  • BioShock -- awesome art direction, and let's hope it plays as well as System Shock 2.

  • Grand Theft Auto 4 -- what can those Rockstar boys do on the next-gen platforms, I wonder?

  • Halo 3. C'mon, Bungie, finish it in time for the PS3 launch. Yes, I know that won't happen, but you can dream...

  • Playing MotorStorm on the PlayStation Network. It had better work...

  • Prime Minister Gordon Brown receiving a vote of no confidence after widespread rioting greets the smoking ban.


Garry Williams, Managing Director, Sold Out Software

  • PS3

  • Mario Galaxy

  • Lost Planet on 360

  • Retail margins being lowered

  • Arsenal winning the European Cup



SPOnG: What two gifts would you most like to see in your Xmas stocking next Monday morning?

Leo Tan, PR Manager, Activision

  • I still don't have a Wii or PS3 so either of those would be brilliant. I am so softcore right now.

  • A year's subscription to World of Warcraft, because I begrudge paying for it but I can't help myself. That's definitely not gaming.


Steve Boxer, freelance journalist

  • Another PS3 so I could eBay it.

  • A large cheque.


Garry Williams, Managing Director, Sold Out Software

  • Wii, plus an early copy of Crysis on PC

  • An XXL Arsenal shirt bearing the words ?Kolo ?Legend?



SPOnG: What do you plan to be doing at 4pm on Xmas day this year?

Leo Tan

  • Eating extensively!


Steve Boxer

  • Playing The Legend of Zelda: Twilight princess. Sadly, I will in fact be slumped on a sofa, watching a Bond film, attempting to fart inaudibly.


Garry Williams

  • Sleeping it off.





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