Video Game Trading Card Spotlight – Josh Houslander


Our subsequent Trading Card Spotlight characteristics Josh Houslander who is displayed on card quantity 139, from the Twin Galaxies Superstars Collection of 2011.  Josh was 1 of the creators of a podcast for Twin Galaxies web page that discussed all items Twin Galaxies as effectively as globe records established by the neighborhood.  The new podcast which Josh is involved in can be heard mostly on  Josh also was involved in an exclusive interview with Walter Day that can be bought on DVD.   Josh has also personally interviewed best talent in the video game market by way of the years and was a essential aspect of the Video Game Hall of Fame in Ottumwa, IA in 2010.  Some of Josh’s Video Game Records involve Bubble Bobble Plus on the Wii and Super Mario Bros. three for the NES.

Did I ever consider when I was younger that I would be on a video game trading card…..?  Hmm, yes I most likely did.  My dream as a kid was to come to be an absolute video game master.  I wanted to test my capabilities against all comers, I wanted to operate in the video game field as a game tester, write up reports on the most up-to-date and greatest new games, and be the ultimate video game champion.  At a young age I believed up techniques to have prospective tournaments, championships, and competitions to obtain out who the correct “King of Nintendo” was (that is what I would have referred to as it as a kid).  The only problem is, that if 1 had been to go back in time and inform eleven year old Josh that 1 day he would be on a video game trading card but that he would be remembered much extra for covering events, podcasting, and his journalistic contributions to the subculture rather than his personal globe records or prowess as a master of all video games. That may just be 1 heartbroken small dork.

The initially video game I recall playing was Q-Bert on the Arcade in a Laundromat with my Aunt Jean.  A further early 1 for me was Mario Bros. for The Atari 2600. The system belonged to my Uncle Kurt and was left behind in my grandparent’s basement (I nonetheless have that really method).  I was a enormous fan instantaneously.  I loved the goofy graphics and game play and this is nonetheless the kind of video game I appreciate to this day.  I just recall pondering that I was performing so effectively at Q-bert due to the fact I kept jumping on to that small rescue platform.  It wasn’t till a couple of years later that I came to recognize that that was not in fact the objective of the game.

When I appear at today’s generation of video games, I of course can not aid but recognize that they are far superior in just about each and every way.  Improved handle, greater reliability, extra believed out, extra complicated, and far greater graphics.  But with that becoming stated, personally speaking I do not care a lot for them.  I am a retro gamer by way of and by way of.  I favor the simplicity and entertaining element that appears to give an inherent want to come to be an absolute master at the game in front of you.  This is not to say that I have under no circumstances enjoyed a newer game, nor do I really feel certified to give a definitive year or method that separates the retro from the new.  As a member of the competitive gaming subculture and a father of 4, with a nine year old son who loves video games, naturally I have played a number of newer ones but they very basically just do not do it for me.  And even if I had been to place with each other a quick list of “newer” games that I appreciate, even these games are having older by the minute.  Moreover, it has been a decade or more since I felt compelled to buy a new game the week it came out or even anticipate a game ahead of its release.  I guess one more main aspect of this for me personally is that I have really small time to play video games these days and with so several retro games that I adore so a lot, and scores extra that I under no circumstances had the chance to master out there I just figure why chase following a game to commit my valuable time on in which I am uncertain of the prospective entertaining to be had when I have a stack of games in the corner I am dying to play that I know I appreciate.

The initially time I met Walter Day in individual was at his residence in Fairfield, Iowa.  I was there to conduct his official “retirement from Twin Galaxies” Interview.  Hunting back at our connection considering the fact that then, I’m not confident it would be feasible for a individual to have carried out extra for a subculture following they supposedly retire from it all.  This day to me is nonetheless 1 that I appear back at with an practically magical fondness.  Walter is a wonderful man, and genuinely 1 of my favored persons in the globe.  I have nothing at all but respect for not just his accomplishments but for the man himself.  Possibly someday the market will in fact let him retire so he can ultimately get to operate on that music profession.

The 1 word I would use to describe Walter is magnanimous.  He offers with no believed of reward (to throw in a random Jedi quote).  This statement is correct of what he has carried out for the market and how he treats his mates each inside and outdoors of the subculture.  His kindness is only second to his generosity.

My favored transportable gaming device would most likely be the original Game Boy.  I am a enormous Tetris fan, and though there are several who disagree with me I nonetheless think that the Game Boy version of that game is nonetheless the most effective incarnation of it.  I also loved Super Mario Land, Alleyway, and a host of other people.  I have owned and had some entertaining with my Atari Lynx for years but I really feel it does not come close to the playability of Game Boy.  My youngsters have had the newer Nintendo handhelds:  Advance, D.S., and other people and they seemed to dig them but I was under no circumstances a enormous fan.  I also adore the Sega Nomad due to the fact you could play the wonderful Genesis classics, although I was under no circumstances a enormous Game Gear fan.  The 1 transportable that I have often wanted but have under no circumstances owned was The Turbo Express.  As a major fan of Turbo Grafx 16, the console method that plays the identical catalog I have a feeling if I had been to be capable to track 1 of these down that it would speedily reignite my lost adore for transportable gaming.

I undoubtedly favor console gaming more than Computer.  There have been a handful of Computer games that I have enjoyed more than the years but the list is smaller.  I have also under no circumstances been the kind of individual that has the most up-to-date and greatest computer system on the market place so it has under no circumstances seriously been a viable selection for me.  While I do several items that call for a computer system I have often been a “hang out in the Tim Hortons parking lot with my hand-me-down laptop for the cost-free Wi-Fi” type of guy.  I did adore Warcraft II Battlenet Edition when it was out and I nonetheless plug that 1 in from time to time, along with a couple of other people but like I stated:  “the list is short”.

I adore it when Hollywood tends to make a video game into a film!  Even although I acknowledge that the majority of them are not any very good.  My philosophy on this is straightforward:  it is not like there is any shortage of motion pictures becoming produced, nor is the quantity that can be released set or finite so the extra the merrier.  If a film does not interest you, than you really should basically not watch it.  I recognize that several lovers of motion pictures really feel that Hollywood is acting like they have run out of concepts and that as well several of the primary stream motion pictures are primarily based on books, comic books, video games, or T.V. shows.  But I for 1, even as an avid film lover really feel that film, specifically with the advent of wonderful technology is often occasions basically not as complicated of an art kind at its core as some of the other people.  For that explanation I think that they really should make as several motion pictures off of comic books, print books, video games, and T.V. shows as they possibly can.  And then if somebody in Hollywood in fact comes up with an thought for an original film, than they really should make that as well!

The games I play now are quite a lot the identical games I played yesterday and yesteryear.  Like I pointed out earlier, I am a retro gamer by way of and by way of.  I adore the old arcade classics, platformers, adventure games, puzzle games, and like several other people, I’m a sucker for something that has the word Mario in it.  But the games that I play most now are in fact ones that I can play with my youngsters.  I adore Bubble Bobble, Sonic, Galaga, any of the Super Mario Bros. games (though I admit the initially 1 for the Wii is the final Mario game that I have played for any decent quantity of time at all).  I also spent the complete summer season remastering and inventing new techniques to play the original Shining Force with my son.  It was ridiculous how a lot entertaining we had performing it (it did type of drive my wife and oldest daughter crazy although).If I could personal 1 Arcade machine, it would be the 1981 Anniversary Machine with Ms. Pac Man and Galaga with each other on it.  I’m a enormous Ms. Pac Man fan, and would have a ton of entertaining with Galaga as that is 1 of the favored games of my oldest son and several of my mates and loved ones.  Plus with Ms. Pac Man you can put in the code and play typical Pac Man as effectively so it would be like possessing 3 classic games in 1.  If I had been to get this machine, I would favor the table best version but either style would be cool.

Developing up I was undoubtedly Group Nintendo more than Group Sega.  I under no circumstances owned a Master Method till I was a lot older, and though I under no circumstances got rid of my classic Nintendo, I got a Super Nintendo proper when it came out.  With that becoming stated I did save up my funds and get myself a Genesis a small when later (after the core method came out producing it extra economical).  I, a small when later did the identical factor to get myself a Turbo Grafx 16 on clearance.  So I in fact had a number of to pick from.  I loved them all!  But if I had been to be forced to pick, my loyalties undoubtedly lied with Nintendo.

What does  it take to be a video game journalist…….  Properly for some explanation I really feel like this might be the only query on right here that I am certified to answer or that persons might care about, however it is the hardest 1 to consider of an answer for….  I am not by any suggests a formally educated journalist.  That is not what my degrees are in, and I have under no circumstances worked for the related press.  Nor have I ever produced a living solely off my video game ties.  But I do adore podcasting, writing, and interviewing other people and after or twice have been told them I’m quite very good at it (although that is topic to opinion of course).  I guess all you seriously require is a decent quantity of expertise on the topic matter, a maybe unhealthy adore of hearing your personal voice, and the capacity to not be disliked by an typically and understandingly so standoffish subculture (that 1 is a small tougher than it sounds).  A good face and killer smile aids as well, but I managed to make it occur devoid of that 1.

It appears to me that games employed to be produced and marketed towards youngsters.  These old games are the ones I favor as stated prior.  At 1 point video games had been a toy, they then became a way of life.  Currently the majority of games definitely seemed to be geared towards adolescents and adults.  I personally consider that this has in no way helped the gaming item and I also really feel that it has caused some harm to our higher culture, specifically to young males.  But that is most likely as well off subject for this specific interview.

I’m not confident that I am ready to say that modern day day video games lead to actual violence but I do consider that many of them are overly violent.  Not only in there visual effects but also in their application and topic matter.  Even though indirectly, I do think that overexposure to this has really damaging effects on our youth and our culture as a entire.  Now as a lover of liberty and freedom, I would under no circumstances help any type of ban on these items.  I oppose each censorship and government handle of market but I personally do not see the allure of such gore.  The burden of fixing this difficulty, if it even is in reality a difficulty lies inside the thoughts and hearts of these who would consume these goods.  For me a very good comparison would be persons who obsessively read the magazine Penthouse and persons who read sci-fi novels.  It does not necessarily imply you are a poor individual or a very good if you study 1 or the other.  Probably you study each?  But most logically minded persons would agree that a society brimming with the sci-fi readers might be a greater 1 to reside in than the 1 that devotes their time to one thing you wouldn’t want your 5 your old or your grandmother to see you performing.

Quite a few of my individual video game milestones have been accomplished when I was playing video games alone but that is one thing that I now hardly ever do.  When I was younger I preferred playing video games with mates, but I did quite a bit of each.  Now as an adult the vast majority of gaming I do is with my youngsters and loved ones, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.  I’ve under no circumstances been a lot of an on line gamer.

1 could argue that something can be a mastering expertise.  But relatively speaking I would not say that 1 in fact learns something of use in the outdoors globe from playing a video game.  Video games typically call for a wonderful deal of refined talent and that requires expertise to obtain, stated expertise is then employed inside the game at hand and potentially even in other games to be played later.  But there is no wisdom in video games, at least not any that would be extra very easily attained, verifiable, and greater utilized from other sources.  Who would you be extra prone to trust, a individual who discovered their information and facts from a video game or 1 that discovered it from a book?

Video games have under no circumstances been a reliever of anxiety for me.  They are intense and get my heart pumping.  When I am overly tired, or as well tired to let the adrenaline of the gaming operate, than I have a tendency to carry out poorly in the game.  But I recognize that video games are entertaining, and to some persons, from time to time video games could possibly relieve anxiety rather than result in it.  It depends on the individual of course but I also consider it depends significantly on the game

When I initially study the query of who my favored video game character was the 1 that leaped into my thoughts was Hyperlink.  I adore Hyperlink, he is in my opinion a wonderful hero, with a cool story that has stood the test of time, plus he is now and often has been my guy on Super Smash Bros.  But the strange factor about my adore of the character Hyperlink is that I’m not even that major of a Legend of Zelda fan.  It just is not seriously my type of game, I guess.  I’ve enjoyed the ones I’ve played, but I’ve most likely only played about four or 5 of them total, and I consider I have only beat two of them (if that, I can not in fact recall if I ever beat Ocarina of Time or not (although I did adore it)).  I also seriously adore Toad, I just consider he appears cool and I type of like the appear on people’s faces when I bring up how great Toad is (even if he is often in the incorrect castle).  I also often liked Luigi greater than Mario:  I view working with Luigi as an workout in patience.  The Bubble Bobble creatures, Bonk/Zonk, and Lolo are some of my secondary favorites

I guess you could say I am in the middle of a bit of a hiatus from direct involvement in the gaming globe at the moment.  Mike and Nick have morphed our show into one thing a small diverse than the original Twin Galaxies Show, and mainly just due to scheduling variations I am unable to participate with what is now identified as Settle it on the Screen.  That is the podcasting finish of it, as far as Twin Galaxies I have not been a direct employee of theirs for a number of years now.  I appear forward to a prospective return to a extra active function if and when I am required and if the circumstance is proper.  Till then I will continue to preserve my interest in the video game subculture, be active on my other non-video game podcasting ventures, and carry on the dozens of friendships I have forged by way of the years straight from my video game ties.

In the subsequent twenty years, I see video games exploding exponentially.  The video game market, by some estimates is currently larger than motion pictures and music combined and it shows no indicators of dying out.  As computer system technologies continues to develop, video gaming will come to be extra of a way of life than a break from it.  I’m not sure whether or not that is a very good factor, in reality I have a tendency to consider it is not but I’m quite confident that is exactly where we are headed.  So, for all you gamers out there, you have nothing at all to be concerned about due to the fact even if I am incorrect about the extent of it, video games are most absolutely not going anyplace.

You can see Josh on his web podcast at

This is 1 of an ongoing series of articles primarily based on the Walter Day Collection of e-sports/video gaming trading cards – verify out extra information and facts at

Todd Friedman Todd Friedman (130 Posts)

Todd Friedman is heavily involved in the video game neighborhood. He is at present writing for Old College Gamer Magazine, RetroGaming Occasions and The Walter Day Collection. He has Co-Promoted the Video Game Summit in Illinois for the previous 11 Years. Todd is an avid video game collector with more than 3550 console games and 35 systems. He holds more than 60 globe records on the Nintendo Wii game DJ Hero. Todd is also the ChairPerson of the Nomination Commitee for the International Video Game Hall of Fame.


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