It’s still the same old story
A fight for love and glory
A case of do or die
The world will always welcome lovers
As time goes by
– Herman Hupfeld
It’s hard for me to believe that I’m typing these exact words: one year ago today, we metaphorically opened our doors at The Well-Red Mage and posted our very first review. In retrospect, it’s a crude and unpolished post, what’s been called “lighthearted teasing”, but it was a start. February 20th marks the start of our Year Two. Today, we step into the bright dream of the future.
When we began, the few of us who survived the imperialist massacre crawled from the ashes of ruin and ignorance into a world where knowledge had to be restored. You can read the full story on our Lore page.
Every review we write is another tome resurrected from annihilation to find its place in the heart of the library of culture and entertainment. That’s why we treat each review (mostly) as an inspection of a work of art. Can you treat video games as works of art? Well, we did just that for a full year. Our goal has been to provide in-depth and analytical reviews of gaming art (and gaming non-art), and we’ve received positive feedback for this approach.
Before I go any further, I sincerely need to thank our founding members and contributors, without whom none of this could have happened. As much as this has been a labor of love for me, I fully recognize that it is the different perspectives of our guest writers and contributors, and the input of our founding members, which shaped this sliver of the internet into the well-read place it’s becoming.
Both the Black Humor Mage and the Timely Mage were with me from the very beginning. I owe both of you quite a lot, like all of the success this blog has seen. Though you’ve moved on, Black Humor, I couldn’t be more grateful for your suggestions, contributions, and continued friendship. You’ll always be a part of this place. And Timely, you are ever a source of inspiration, a confidant, a standard of quality and my continued informant.
To my darling wife, the White Out Mage, I’m consistently flattered that you would take time out from your increasingly busy day to stop in and read, as if for the sheer joy of it, and help with editing. Thank you. I hope our little Baby Blue Mage and Sweet Pea Mage turn out as wonderful as you.
To the many other friends like the Green Screen Mage, Bluebonic Mage, and Golden Godd Mage, I know you also lead busy lives so I’m thankful for your contributions as well. It’s about time for that next review, Greenie! 😉
The Silver Screen Mage, thank you for the movie reviews you blessed us with, and I wish you the best for your future endeavors beyond our quest. The Shamrock Show Mage, who has now gone on to vlogging (Andy Trejo Vlogs), thanks for gracing us with some awesome television series reviews, aiding us in extending our reach to the small screen.
And then there are the friends abroad I’ve never even met. Thank you for expressing your interest in joining our writing team. I’ve been greatly educated by your insights and perspectives on many things I’d never read about before. My gratitude to the Writing Beige Mage, the Red Hot Chili Mage (Stuff and That), the Midnight Mystic Mage (Sublime Game Reviews).
As for the Rage Mage… you can go take a hike. Hikes are good for improving a positive attitude toward life.Check out the bios for our thirteen-member staff on the Authors page or see their contributions in our Archives. So the only question now that Year One is over is this: What awaits us next?
A new vision for Year Two: this blog continues to morph into a hub. Readers have mentioned they’ve encountered each other here in the comment sections and post mentions. Contributors have expressed that they’ve seen improvements in their traffic after posting here, so that’s a trend I’d love to see continue. We’ve built an audience of a few hundred followers and I’m more than happy to welcome anyone interested in crafting quality writing for us. Check out the Join the Party tab for details.
Need a snappy Mage name like the cool kids? Voila! The Mage generator, a blast from the past!
During my stay at WordPress, I’ve seen the community of bloggers come together and discuss, agree, disagree and demonstrate civility in a world sorely lacking it. Yeah, there has been the occasional feather-ruffling but that’s as to be expected. Truly, we are a bastion and a haven for a society that has forgone the ability to express mutually exclusive ideas. Intolerance, hatred, racism, inequality, selfishness, social ills and even moral ambiguity are things I’ve seen scarce traces of here. We as writers can show the world what it looks like to get a long, despite sometimes disagreeing with each other. That is a great inspiration to me.
But beyond the inspiration, this is all just really fun. Yeah, sometimes it can feel like a chore, in which case I either give it a rest for a few days or push through to finish a post and get excited again. Ultimately, though, I’ve found a lot of enjoyment through blogging and interacting with others here.
And now it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty stats. As I always say, I share these metrics out of a love for the craft of blogging, on the hopes that these will help to shape a direction in my mind and help to guide others who feel like they want to start driving more traffic. This isn’t out of some kind of misplaced braggadociousness. Rather, this is the Well-Red Mage blueprint, what I think can be achieved through perseverance and networking. The “making it big” concept is a myth that occurs to a fraction of the human beings who have ever lived. Sudden overnight success can happen, but it is a fantasy next to the results of hard work.
Too bad these don’t come in black.
Adding to our 379 WordPress and 222 social media followers is 1 email follower. Yep, you read that right. One email follower. Whoever you are, you unsung hero, I wrote you the following poetry:
An emailer gave me a follow
So that all my crap he could swallow
…I hope that he knows as our readership grows
That all of our humor is borrowed
Since our year began in February, here are some additional numbers I crunched myself:
Total views in Year One: 34,138
Total visitors in Year One: 10,495
Total likes received in Year One: 4,098
Total comments received in Year One: 4,184
Speaking of commenters… I prepared awards for some of you!
I have the distinct pleasure of talking with these five folks consistently, and as well of course with the other wonderful people out there. Thank you for commenting and proving yourselves to be beacons of discussion and knowledge, Mr. Panda, The Shameful Narcissist, Matt, NEETaku, and LightningEllen! If you are reading this and you don’t follow these five… tsk tsk tsk…
#1. “I Was Born For This” lyrics (Journey) – 2,067 views
#2. The Legend of Zelda (1986) “First Quest” – 421 views
#3. The Legend of Zelda (1986) “Second Quest” – 195 views
#4. Marvel vs Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes (2000) – 194 views
#5. Armored Core 3 (2002) – 157 views
I wouldn’t have anticipated these numbers. Journey is of course a very popular and widely lauded game but it was the informative post on the translation of its end credits song which soared in popularity over the review of the game itself. I can only attribute that to appealing to the curiosity of readers who wanted to know the meaning of the words. I think a principle there of trying to craft a post which satisfies the curiosity or desire of a large audience. As for the other numbers, The Legend of Zelda spawned an iconic series and Marvel vs Capcom 2 is one of the best arcade fighters ever, but I didn’t expect to see Armored Core 3 ranked so high. Thanks, reddit!
Spirited Away (2001) – 59 comments
Princess Mononoke (1997) – 52 comments
Final Fantasy IX (2000) – 50 comments
“Your Gaming Memories in a Bottle?” – 50 comments
“Rose-Colored Glasses and the Nintendo Switch” – 48 comments
These really shouldn’t be too surprising. As discussion generators, three of these posts represent some really iconic works of art in two Ghibli movies and a Final Fantasy, then there’s the current topic of the Nintendo Switch, and of course our social and textual collage a bunch of bloggers helped put together for our 100th post.
Batman: Arkham Origins (2013) – 15 views
Well-Red Mage interviews Timely Mage – 14 views
“Pat Grant’s Art” – 13 views
“Why I Love Vintage Gaming” part III: No DLC – 13 views
Timely Mage interviews Black Humor Mage – 12 views
I don’t know what happened here. Nothing to see. Nothing to see.
Also, of course. Came in handy for an April Fool’s joke.
I know I’ve shared this information before but I am convinced that consistent posting makes for the best results in terms of traffic. Last July we managed to post at least once every single day and July saw 3,547 views. Even though we’ve had more visitors in more recent months, that was the most monthly views we’ve ever had. Chalk it up to trying out something consistent like the 31-Day Mage Challenge.
Mike Scorpio of Miketendo64
Thank you for giving me my start, Mr. Scorpio! You’re a legend! You deserve this:
lex luthor and donald trump
cara mengalahkan phaedra equus prime
what store sells terraria
konami please hurt
when i was born when i was born lyrics
mage couple pinterest
who to stop breathing
I don’t know which is stranger, that someone might have been planning a mage-themed wedding or that someone was trying to figure out who to prevent from breathing…
What’s this? A surprise announcement? Yes. I’m pleased to announce an additional vision for Year Two: Well-Red Mage casts. After things settle down with having a baby, now due in less than 6 weeks, I plan to start podcasting. We’re looking at some time later this year or the beginning of the next, once I can get a hold of the proper equipment and figure out all of the technical details. The casts will focus on taking an even more in-depth look at the in-depth looks we’ve given to select titles, so be on the look out for this. Blogging will always be most important to me as a writer, but I’m excited to take The Well-Red Mage to the realm of earstuffs! There are no limits.
What else is there to say? Hold down PgDn on your keyboard and check it all out. As always, thanks for reading and thank you for coming along with us this first year.
-The Well-Red Mage