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 The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger

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William Lionheart

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PostSubject: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 11, 2017 8:28 pm

Hello there ladies & gentlemen and welcome back to another issue of The GUN Insider. Where I sit down and have a talk with one of our many, many loving members of our community. This time I bring you a – in my opinion, grand interview that will surely open your eyes. Without further ado I shall give you the man behind the name, a man who’s the most reputable and known member of our community, nobody less than @DVAted



WL: Thanks for joining us, could you tell us about yourself?

DVAted: Hey there! Thank you for having me!
First thing you oughta know is that I write a lot. I'm a writer since childhood, and I overthink almost everything. 
If you get bored during this interview, because of my typical walls of texts, you have my apologies. I'm just being honest AND comprehensive.

Well let's get the interrogation started:

I'm 28 years old, Caucasian, straight. Not currently in a relationship.
I graduated Law School and have a masters' degree in international law.
I currently work for the City Council in my home town in Romania.

I have an older brother, who is married and has a 9 month old baby-girl.
My mom's been the city hall's chief architect, head of the urban planning office, for over 30 years.
My dad was a professor, but he died in 2001, when I was 12. My mom never remarried.

I'm a gamer of course. 
Been playing video games since the days of Mario, Contra and Duck Hunt. 
At my mom's office I'd play F1 Arcade Racer back when the city hall computers were running the "innovative" Windows 98.
Moved on to Nintendo 64 Wayne Gretzky NHL and Turok at a friend's house. He then got a PC (before I had one) and we played GTA 3 and Vice City on it all the time. 
Then I got my first PC, played NBA Live 2003, GTA San Andreas and well, then pretty much everything else.

I'd been modding GTA SA since '05 up to '08 (started as a beta-tester, then texturer, then even directed some model projects), and I managed to administer a few modding communities for that game as well, during that time. In '08-'09 I was introduced to Fallout 3 and its modding. Then, in 2009 I found "fallout3underground", and joined the site, then the staff team there as well. Now, 7 years and a few months later, I'm here, being interviewed as a leader. 
It's funny how things work out, isn't it?


WL: Where does your name come from and what does it mean?


DVAted: For a long long time, I used to use the moniker of Justin Kase. It was more or less a placeholder nickname, "just in case" I don't find anything better, I'd have something to identify with in the meantime. After a few years, when I got into modding GTA, seeing as I couldn't decide on a better alter-ego, but wanting to start anew, I decided I'd just be proud of my heritage and represent my-own-damn-self, by using my real last name, my family name ALEXE. 
It was all in CAPS and it worked well for a while. Even on the rap and poetry forums where I started as Justin Kase, I began to be known better as "ALEXE - the master lyricist" (as they regarded me at the time).
When I started modding Fallout, though, after I was first banned off Nexus as ALEXE (for simply asking about a ported mod, back in 2009), I had to make a new account there, and I went with a little word-play: 
See, my real name's initials are D.V.A. (wherein the A stands for Alexe).
So I used my initials, and added "ted" at the end, to form, phonetically, the word "deviated"... as in, not normal, astray from the norms, deranged. It also figures that my first name, Doru, is etymologically related to the name Theodore, of which the shortened version is "Ted". So it fits!
Some people online still call me Alex, others call me Ted. I was even called Al for a while, which I enjoyed due to famous people like Pacino and Capone. In our staff talk, we sometimes use shortened versions of our names, so as FoVet is Feeves, I'm sometimes called Deeves. All in good fun. 
But yeah, I'm gonna stick with DVAted for as long as I have a need for an internet alias. It just works!  Hello Hats Off  


WL: So why did you create GUN?

DVAted: GUN, as it is now, started as a safe-haven (or refuge) for the VGU community. The old site (Video Games Underground Network), created in 2009 by @Maxunit (as Fallout 3 Underground), had to be shut down early 2014 when the server costs became too expensive to manage (we were even asking for donations at the time and it still didn't match up). But we still had a close-knit community and mods to release, so @dragbody and I built this forum on the free Forumotion platform, with Maxunit's blessing, to recover our great community to what it once was, and I'm happy to say we've thrived here, with zero financial expense.

For the first year here our link was "vgunetwork.forumotion.net", but Forumotion awarded us our own domain name on our anniversary, due to our above-average activity, so we decided then to rebrand ourselves to "GUNetwork", and here we are now, after 3 years, still going strong. We won a second year extension of the domain name from Forumotion for maintaining one of the most active communities on their platform, and I'm confident that we could earn a 3rd year extension as well  Dancey  


WL:  What could you tell us about VGU/F3U?

DVAted: F3U started as a safe-haven of a sort, as well, but it was for ported mods. Nexus, although not quite as popular back in 2009 as it is now, still wouldn't allow ports from other video-games. Their rules were definitive. So @Maxunit and a few other modders decided to build their own forum "...with blackjack and hookers"  Zoidberg Bouncy  . We didn't allow mod thieves, but we allowed ports, and it grew a fan base quickly. We attracted fantastic modders like @Corehound, @dazzerfong, @toxa01, @cire992, @Fraper, @Xilandro and many more (some of them still remaining with us, while others having moved on), some of whom have expanded their work from ports to original creations (hybrids of several sources or scratch made models). 
@Deepside was another very important member to us who rose the ranks quickly and became one of the wisest, strongest pillars of the community. We're still hoping he'd return to our community any day now, he was quite the leader to everyone who was around at the time. The reason he left is that he got a new job, which was much more demanding and wore out his leisure time completely. Kind of what's been happening to me these past months, but not as radical. Anyway, as we've always said, real life takes priority each time. So it is what it is.

You'd be curious to know, we had a private mods section then too. We'd nominate people to get access to it after they passed 30 posts. Some would be accepted, others would be rejected because they broke rules or had stolen mods before, or because they were dirtbags. But we had a smaller community at the time so it was manageable. After it grew and kept growing, we handled it less and less... We still had mod thieves and leakers, that's never not been the case, because people will always find new ways to miss the greater picture and disappoint you. It's just the way it goes. The better something is, the more people join, and the more people join, the more trouble begets it. Doesn't mean we shouldn't try supporting a good community for everyone else, though.

The servers became more and more expensive, though. I was against begging for donations from the start, but for a while we did (didn't offer anything in return or extra to the donors, though), and it helped a little bit. And then it didn't match up to what was required anymore, so we had to shut down. From there, we started from scratch, here. Well, almost from scratch, we did redirect a lot of the old members to come over to this new platform, so we had a boosted start, so to speak. But it's surpassed the old site's population a long time ago.
That's the gist of it, anyway.


WL: I have to ask, how does it feel to be the creator of this great community?

DVAted: I'm not really the creator. 
I'm basically the initiator and main contact with Forumotion staff, as I've started this current version of our community, and I've put the most effort into its administration, but I don't feel like I've created it. The modders and the most active members make it what it is. Without them, I'd just be an ambitious fellow with a free, yet empty forum.
Maxunit is the original creator, all praises to him and his legacy. This site is based on the blueprint he drew, and the community that came from it.
Many props to all the admins and moderators from his time too. I wish I still had a list of them all, but either way, they were amazing people.
Much love and respect and appreciation and gratitude to the current staff, Overseers and Sentinels, GFX Specialists, Paladins, and Purple Hearts, they are all amazing.
All the best wishes and love for all of our members, of all ranks and ages. 
Although I've been here slightly lesser over the past few months because of real life stuff, I'm still here for each and every one of you and I thank you all for your company and activity.


WL: Do you have any talents you wish to share?

DVAted: Well, as I said in the beginning, I write. Mostly poetry. Almost exclusively in English.
Started very young (about 6-7 years old), but developed rapidly in my teenage years on hip-hop forums which typically had poetry sections. As some of you may know, hip-hop is very lyrical, and while some of it is about violence, hoes and bling-bling, some of it is also pure poetry. Most of my friends there were doing Freestyles, but some of us were going deeper and experimented more structurally through poems. We often had contests, tournaments of poetry and I'd won almost every round, though I was still a kid at the time. My rep grew quickly and by '07 I even founded my own crew: "Power Over Every Thing Symbolic", with about 6-8 members in it, from all over the world. 
Anyway, video game mods caught my attention more and more, and I drifted away from the lyrical forums, though I kept writing for myself, of myself.

Eventually, in 2015 I published my first book. It's an English poetry volume called "The Waiting Game", and it came out in a very limited edition. About 40 copies left undistributed, the rest I've given out to some of my close family and friends. I didn't publish to make money, but to get the ISBN (international serial book number) on my work, so that I may defend my copyright in court if anyone assumes authorship of my poems. And although I haven't had my poems stolen yet, publishing it was worth it. It's quite a feeling of accomplishment when you see it in paperback form. I'm planning on publishing again. Maybe I'll focus on prose a bit more, though it's not my favorite genre. We'll have to wait and see.
I do write a bit of prose, but typically short stories, fan fiction. I started work on a fantasy action-adventure novel when I was 12-13 years old, but I never finished it. It was wiiiild haha...
But if you check the fan-fiction subforums, you may still find some of my more recent short stories there:
http://www.gunetwork.org/f5p50-fan-fic-role-play

I've been doing some graphic work too, mostly for myself. The first few banners of the site were put together by me, before I created and started relying on the GFX crew. I also did a ton of video game icons for the desktop, you can check them out here.

But I started with photoshop back in '06 when I was making buildings textures and car decals for GTA SA 

some of which you can see here:
 

and even some shark textures too lol. 
Shark 

At the time I was also doing signatures for both the gaming and hip-hop forums that I was active in. 


Spoiler:
 

I did some texture work for Fallout mods too, for example, the Monster Mod credits me for it, as well as some recolorings/camo textures for a few of dragbody's armors, and xxShepardxx's and Cpt.Rex's Turian, Krogan and Batarian race ports.
I went more into modding Skyrim, though. Had a few modeler friends who'd take my direction in shaping some really cool stuff, and with their help I released the Sabre Cat backpack, armor and weapons sets
https://imgbox.com/g/Qwtf2FjJzr
as well as the Heavy Nord Armor set
https://imgbox.com/g/VaWqXetgdS
I also made a few more creature textures (tigersgazelles and dogs), but mostly for my own enjoyment.
I did some nifskope work as well, especially with weapons like here

Besides nifskoping and textures, I did a lot of GECK work for my mods too, and I enjoyed writing up mod descriptions and readme.txt files. One that I'm particularly proud of is the Krieg companion mod, fully voiced. 

But none of which would've been attainable, valid or valuable without my very talented porters, model-makers and scripter friends. OG-Jay (aka TreasureChest), GR!M, repoman, dragbody, dazzerfong, tumbajamba, Cpt.Rex, and more!
Highest of praises to them!


WL: What kind of music do you like?

DVAted: My father, who was a music and dance professor, introduced me to Michael Jackson and Queen, so I have endless appreciation for that early influence. I'm a huge MJ fan, even now, of all his work, from the Jackson Five days, all the way to "This is It". And Queen, well they're absolutely legendary. No contest.
My older brother introduced me to Hip-Hop when I was like 10 years old. 2Pac, DMX, Ja Rule, Jay-Z, Nas, Outkast, Busta Rhymes and lots and lots of R&B - Dru Hill, Tyrese, TQ, Aaliyah, Ashanti, Erykah Badu etc.
So I grew up on that. Of course, I kept an ear open to Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Aerosmith, Linkin Park, Gorillaz, and such. Around '07, a GTA modder friend of mine showed me "Only" by Nine Inch Nails and I absolutely loved it. I wanted more, so I went and downloaded their Greatest Hits and was hooked on it for so long haha. So now I was a rocker too. 
Around '08 I started playing Fallout 3 so the oldies got to me too: Ella Fitzgerald, Ink Spots, Andrews Sisters, Louis Armstrong, Bing Crosby, etc. Of course, the radio mods which added like 60-100 new tracks of the same era, I really got into that too. And of course, New Vegas opened my ears to some country too - Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Roy Rogers, etc. 
A little further down the chronology of the world's music, I found Sam Cooke, Marvin Gaye, Muddy Waters, Al Green, Otis Redding, Donny Hathaway, Ray Charles, Temptations, Etta James, etc. They make my soul move in ways I didn't think possible.

I then went back to Rock a bit more, with Nirvana's albums, Pearl Jam, Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones, Iron Maiden, AC/DC, Zakk Wylde, and so on.
Of course I kept my ears on the hip-hop scene as well: from Ludacris, Missy Elliot, T.I., XZibit, Shyne, Joe Budden, Royce da 5'9, Nelly, Lauryn Hill, Jadakiss, Immortal Technique, Tech N9ne, ...
Newer Hip Hop artists got by my track lists too, though, Gym Class Heroes, Jon Connor, Joell Ortiz, Kid Cudi, all the way to J.Cole, Akua Naru, Kendrick Lamar. Then I harkened back to old school classics, like Gang Starr, Pete Rock, Big L, Bone Thugz n Harmony, Wu Tang, The Roots, Warren G,  etc.
And R&B and neo-soul found a strong evolution as well - John Legend, Lyfe Jennings, Anthony Hamilton, Pharrell Williams, Ne-Yo, Bruno Mars, The Heavy

And finally, some odd-ones I can't really label, like Gil Scott Heron, William Elliot Whitmore, Jamiroquai, Kimbra, Cody Chesnutt

Of course, many artists in between, that I haven't mentioned. Here's a link to most of my listening history, explore for yourselves: www.last.fm/users/D_V_A


WL: Is there any kind of car you like?


DVAted: I mostly like american cars. From low-riders to muscle cars to big 4x4 trucks.

My all time favorite vehicle is the H1 Hummer. 
There's nothing that can tip it off the #1 spot for me.


some pics of what I mean:
 

I didn't like the H2 Hummer much, and from the H3 series, only the H3T looked interesting because it had that flatbed behind it.

But anyway, I'm very affectionate of the Jeep Wrangler (in its many forms), Dodge Ram and some Ford trucks.
But almost any sand-runner, dune-buggy would do, as long as it's not too modern. The more Mad Max they are, the better.

I also love Chevrolet Camaro, Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger (classic and modern versions of it)
Chevy has a wider selection of cars I love, like the classic Impala, '79 Monte-Carlo, the Stingray and oh-so-many other Corvettes!
I love some Pontiacs too, from Firebird to LeMans, Grand National, Bonneville and GTO
Ford Mustang of course (some of them, mostly the Shelby's)
oh and some Peterbilt trucks too. The classic ones.

My favorite sports car is the Ferrari 360 Modena Spider, but I also love Porsche and Lamborghini models of many kinds.
I get a thrill from dirt-bikes too (in video games, I mean).


WL: What kind of games do you play?

DVated: To start this off, here's my steam profile:
https://steamcommunity.com/id/d_v_a

I mostly enjoy 3rd person open-world action video games.
That puts me squarely in line with Assassin's Creed, Arkham, Mass Effect, Fallout, Elder Scrolls, Saints Row, Mafia, Mad Max, GTA and other similar series and stand-alone games (Saboteur, Sleeping Dogs, Total Overdose).
Oh and Defiance - I put a ton of hours into that game. It had everything and more. But you know, passing the 400 hours mark tends to bore down even the best of them.
But I play a bit of everything. Can't avoid or deny a good first person shooter: Borderlands, Far Cry, Crysis they're fantastic experiences. 
And not gonna lie, I mostly shoot enemies in first person in Fallout cause it's easier.
Although I absolutely love open-world gameplay, I do wander into the occasional linear game every now and then, like Portal (1 and 2), some Call of Duties, Call of Juarez (the series), Max Payne (the series), Spec Ops The Line, El Matador, and more.

Although I'm not a fan of horror games, I have very much enjoyed the classic series Manhunt (1 and 2) and The Suffering (1 and 2).
I tried Resident Evil, Dead Rising and Dead Island games, but I just don't enjoy the thrill of running from and being overrun by zombies.
I do enjoy a bit of Left for Dead 1 and 2, but only if I can rely on my teammates, cause I'm the type of guy who runs in to pick your ass up if you're downed, and then I also get killed and we fail the mission lol ... Oh, also, Warframe has zombie elements with "The Infested", but it's not as much horror as it is a shooting gallery hehe...
Apparently, the game I've played most is Warframe. It has the 3rd person aspect down to a science, and although the missions are inherently linear, it still gives you an open-world feel with your own space ship, clan dojo, public relays and general progression. The missions variety is staggering, as is the number of weapons and warframes with unique abilities that they've implemented in the now gargantuan platform.
So as hack-and-slash games go, Warframe fits part of it (though it's also a shooter), as well as Darksiders and... I guess Prototype too. I recently picked up Devil May Cry 4 but I'm not that far into it.

I used to play racing games too, the NFS series and FUEL, for example, but not in recent years. 
Now I mostly resume to The Crew (since I could afford buying it, despite having participated in 2 of its betas) cause it gives me everything I need - massive open world, off-roading, bikes, customization and story ( and the Hummer H1 too! Very Happy )

Sometimes I get into fantasy RPGs like Guild Wars 2. I bought the Risen and Two Worlds series for cheap, so I'll give them a go. Never played much of the Dragon Age series, and I could never go into The Witcher 1 and 2, but I'm currently dabbling with Elder Scrolls Online and Divinity II: Ego Draconis.

I enjoy single-player most, but co-op can be fun. I don't play PvP, though. Not necessarily cause I'm bad at it, but no matter how good you are, there's always someone better. Not only that, but I empathize even when I shouldn't, so killing someone in PvP isn't as sweet a victory as it should be, because I feel the other person's loss as well. And when I get taken down, well, let's just say that the bad feeling of losing over-weighs the good feeling of winning. Whether it's a shooter or games like LoL or Smite, I just could never enjoy PvP.
I don't really play 2D sidescrollers since the good ol' Mario Bros. and Contra, but sometimes one would catch my attention for a few hours, like Stealth Inc had last year.
I don't play Isometric games, besides Diablo 3, I guess. I tried to get into Fallout 1 but it wouldn't start on Windows 10... Oh I did play Marvel Future Fight on my smartphone for a while. It had Hulk, Ghost Rider, Blade, I just couldn't pass it up.
I used to play Age of Empires II for a while (around '07-'08) but haven't gone into strategy games since.


WL: Is there something in particular you still want to learn?

DVAted: Interesting question. My mother's taught me the "life-long learning" principle - as long as you're alive, you still have things to learn. So there are plenty things I'd like to learn.

I'm currently using mobile apps to learn Spanish better. I studied it in high-school, but since I haven't had any contact with it, I lost practice and so, the basics of it slipped away.

I'd love to learn to write prose better. Like, not to screw up the verb tenses from one phrase to another, and to provide genuine character descriptions and development. 

I'd like to learn to write a screen-script for a TV series or two, or even a movie-series. But it's a hard business to get into, especially if you're not from the in-circle there.

I'd like to learn to move past rejection easier. Most successful people say "Oh I got rejected ~100-300 times before I got my first real opportunity!"
But I can hardly move past the first rejection, to compose myself and try again. I don't quit, but I just, often, don't start over. Or if I do, it's after a long break.

I'd like to learn better self-determination and self-discipline. I lack inner-motivation, I can do almost anything I set my mind to do, but only if I'm motivated by someone else or something external. Like, if I have to jump through hoops, put in effort and time and money to help someone out, I do it without hesitation. But if I have to do it for myself, and nobody else, then I get lazy and cheap and demotivated, and I just don't. 
For example, a year before my brother's wedding, he wanted to get in shape for the event, so he asked me to go to gym with him, and we did, for a whole year, 5-6 days a week. And it paid off at that time. The effects were clear, it was healthy exercise. After the wedding he stopped going, though, and I stopped going. Not because I didn't need to go, or didn't afford to, but because, for myself, I don't give as much of a damn. My brother depended on me and it helped me in the process cause it got me in shape too, but it's been 3 years and a half since then and I haven't gone back to the gym. 
If I'm left by myself, I just find excuses not to do it, typically starting with "I don't really feel like it" and ending with "Maybe I'll do it tomorrow". Same thing when I was in a relationship, I'd go "hell and high water" to give my girl whatever she needed/wanted, even if it's just a small gift or a pen she couldn't find anywhere in town, or books she required to study, I'd call in all the favors, take time off from work, save no expense, whatever I could do and more; but when it came to my own needs, I'd postpone it until it's absolutely necessary and then cheap out on the price haha. 
SO yeah, I'd like to learn to do stuff for myself with the same determination as I do it for others.


WL: Like many people probably are wondering, where does your love for tigers come from?

DVAted: This is a funny question haha  RunningTiger 
Well, I'm really not a cat-person. I mean, I like cats as I like all creatures and beings, especially the furry ones. But I prefer dogs over cats. So you'd imagine I love wolves (and I do like them) more than large cats (like tigers). But for whatever reason, the coating of these beautiful cats have hypnotized me. I love the color of orange more than any other color, so the bright orange fur of tigers just captivated me, especially with the contrasting black stripes. It's magnificent. I absolutely love their appearance, their posture, their sheer size - I mean they are the largest felines, even larger than lions, and I read that they're also more powerful than lions, proven time and time again, in arenas of ancient times and spontaneous conflicts in circuses or zoos/parks: when set face-to-face, a Tiger will literally maul a Lion of the same size in just a few moves, and could even fight two of them at once. Tigers have stronger limbs, jaws, quicker reflexes and more flexibility. Not to diss lions, they're also fantastic. But they're only the King because of their mane. If the lion is king of the jungle, then tiger is emperor haha.

Come to think of it, my infatuation with tigers might have sparked when I was playing Skyrim. Whenever I play a video-game, when I get to choose my character's race, I typically choose what's the furthest from the typical video game protagonist (and we all know most video game player characters are white guys). So if the options, as in Fallout, are white, asian, hispanic, afro-american, then I go with hispanic or black, cause they're visually most different and most rare. As Skyrim allowed me to be Argonian or Khajiit, I created characters of both. And as I found a khajiit fur retexture, it really brought the tiger appearance to life. Soon after that, I retextured the sabre-cats in Skyrim to have realistic tiger furs, and then a friend made the model itself with normal tiger teeth (rather than saber teeth) and long tail. 

kind of looked like this:
 

And then, a few birthdays ago, @dragbody gifted me a tiger pet model for FNV, it just... it came together too well. 
Tiger 
Long story short: I love their appearance and features.
But I also love Ravens, Wolves, Dogs and Dragons.


WL: Is there anything you want to say to/advise the other community members?

DVAted: Ah I don't want to sound preachy. But I have a feeling that I will...

Just keep empathy in the forefront.
Be honest, always. Be honest to yourself, as well as to others. 
Respect yourself enough in order to show true respect to others.
Acknowledge that reciprocity isn't a given, but a gift.
Don't let nobody tell you where you should limit your ambition.
Use constructive criticism and personal feedback 
as a source for betterment, not for resentment or anger.

Be loyal. Keep your word. Without your word you're nothing.
Care for the weak. Be kind. Be brave and don't be afraid to try new things.
Don't discourage yourself if you get stepped on.
Leave the world a better place than as you've found it.
Never achieve your happiness at the cost of someone else's.

This all applies to your site activity as well:
Try to understand each member, be kind. 
Leave each topic better than how you've found it.
Respect those who give of their time and effort to others.

And... enjoy your brief time here on earth!

And if you'll allow me, I'll end this interview with a poem of mine, inspired by the Mad Max series, written last year in April:


The Mad Withstand:
 

Hope you've enjoyed it! Thumbs Up

And I believe I've spent enough of your attention span.
I applaud  Applauses  everyone who's read every word.
Thank you very much for your time. 
My best wishes to you all! 

Big-Hug  


Well there you have it folks, the man behind the name DVAted, hope you found this interview as enlightening as I have. Thank you for taking the time to read this interview and stay tuned for another issue of The GUN Insider!


Last edited by William Lionheart on Fri May 12, 2017 11:03 pm; edited 6 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 11, 2017 8:49 pm

a great interview.. i realy like it. and no, it was not to much to read.. it was a good read and i did understand everything with no problems ( not fluent english speaker here ). and now after i read the poem i want to play mad max Very Happy.... +1 from me. Thumbs Up
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 11, 2017 8:59 pm

It's awesome to hear from the man himself. It's a very nice interview and hope to see more in the future.

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 11, 2017 9:01 pm

A wonderful interview, very happy I took the time to read it Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 11, 2017 9:08 pm

A very good interview. i realy enjoyed reading it. it was a great idea to talk about the past of GUN and how all began. i was feeling like i read about my roots (sounds funny but it is like it is hehe). all in all i was very impressed to learn more about the Tiger of GUN and here i want to thank you both for the great lines. Thumbs Up

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 11, 2017 9:15 pm

Fantastic interview yet again Will! It was great to read about the big Boss himself DVAted and get to know him better. I've been around here since '11 or '12 and I have to admit not knowing him much. Good to get a lil bit more insight on our boss.

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 11, 2017 9:28 pm

Thank you all for the warm reception cheers
I was worried I blabbed too much and bored you to tears
but those who matter, care, and those who don't care, don't matter
I see what you did t   Hello Hats Off

I took the liberty to remove the joking remark "all bow down before your overlord" that William made in my intro. I just don't find it amusing, or let's say, it is not representative of my type of humor, and I didn't want to give off the wrong impression either. I'm in no way superior to you guys, I'm just trying to make this a good place for all of us to socialize and geek out in Thumbs Up no bowing shall be accepted before me unless it's got arrows hehe Laugh Out Loud

Now... looking forward to more reactions to this Banana Dance and should you have any more questions (from the audience, so to speak), I'd love to hear them out Wink2
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 11, 2017 10:41 pm

I wish I could say I read all of it, but as some of you might remember I suffer from a slight case of ADHD, so it is of no fault of yours DVAted hehe Laugh Out Loud

But I liked the part that I did read Thumbs Up
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Thu Jan 12, 2017 5:54 am

Wow this was really great. I liked learning about DVAted, I was curious about the Tigers and now I know! Very great words of wisdom as well. Cool to read about the history of how GUN came to be and also cool to know this forum is doing so well! As always great interview, and look forward to the next!

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Thu Jan 12, 2017 7:45 am

good interview i enjoyed it over all a lot ov info and this bit "But anyway, I'm very affectionate of the Jeep Wrangler (in its many forms), Dodge Ram and some Ford trucks.
But almost any sand-runner, dune-buggy would do, as long as it's not too modern. The more Mad Max they are, the better." i didn't feel like i needed to read further haha to see he was a cool guy in that regard i mean in my personal book if you are into mad max and jeeps you're ok closed eyes smile

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Thu Jan 12, 2017 10:04 am

Wonderful interview Lionheart, really a fun read to say the least. It was wondrous to hear from a pillar of the GUN community. Learning more about DVAted is actually pretty nice. Hope to see more interviews Lionheart. To those who just skimmed through or haven't finished reading, I suggest you find the time to do so, you will not be disappointed.
Also, love your taste in music DVAted.

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Thu Jan 12, 2017 1:00 pm

Well damn! This interview was really great, I enjoyed reading it. Although I knew that Will and Ace (the interview guys) had in mind to interview DVA and also that one interview was to be released soon, I didn't expected it to be the Tiger-man interview. This a was a really good surprise for me, and like I said, it was a great interview to read. Now I finally know where the name @DVAted comes from and what it means, always thought it was a great play on words. The part about the old VGU/F3U was also really cool, as someone who only joined a year ago, I didn't know much about the old community, so having more knowledge about it and about the origins of this great community is really interesting. Hell, I could go on and on about how I really liked reading this interview, well, except maybe the car part cause I'm not really interested in cars but still read it anyway closed eyes smile

This was a top notch interview I think. And I gotta to say, you've done well @William Lionheart , also: "WL: Like many people probably are wondering, where does your love for tigers come from?" - asking the real question here buddy closed eyes smile Many thanks for your work on that Will, you've done a really nice job!

And also many thanks to you @DVATed for shedding some light on the man behind the Tiger. You're a great person, all I have to say is, keep on rockin'!

Oh, and one last thing, that Mad Max poem at the end is just SICK! in the good way of course. I've always had trouble getting into poetry and poems, even though I have a literature baccalaureate, but I totally enjoyed it Thumbs Up

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Thu Jan 12, 2017 1:53 pm

Great idea, thank you @William Lionheart for letting us know about the members and their lives.
Thank you very much, it's really nice concept, I did not know. Thumbs Up

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Thu Jan 12, 2017 2:04 pm

This was a great read! Good job on the interview @William Lionheart. Hope to see more of these cause they're always great. Thumbs Up

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Thu Jan 12, 2017 7:48 pm

Many thanks to all of you, it was a pleasure to bring you this interview and there shall be many more to come. Also a big thanks to @DVAted for willing to take the interview with me, as for the joke it never was meant to stay just a small easter egg :p 

Hopefully people now know that behind the title is also a man and not a robot.
You're all wonderful people and I hope I keep delivering the interviews you expect.
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Tue Jan 17, 2017 6:53 pm

Thank you all who've read it! Once again, I'm honored by your attention span haha
@Corehound, I'm honored by your reply even if you didn't get to read it word for word. I'm very glad to see you dropping by, and I hope we get to chat some more in the near future.

As for an assured step in the right direction, the interviews will keep coming! Cheers cheers
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Tue Jan 17, 2017 9:30 pm

This interview was quite entertaining. I like a lot how @DVAted writes, it's easy to understand and very eloquent for someone like me that ain't a native english speaker (at least in my opinion :p)

I would really like to ask you some other questions if you don't mind Very Happy

-Do you still visit those Hip-Hop forums every now and then or have you forgotten about it?
-How come Maxunit isn't participating in this community anymore? And why was he never staff here?
-Why do you think that GUN became more popular that F3Underground in a less period of time?

And last but not least... Justin Kase is an amazing username closed eyes smile
Thanks for the interview

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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 18, 2017 5:22 am

@mpaz96 wrote:
This interview was quite entertaining. I like a lot how @DVAted writes, it's easy to understand and very eloquent for someone like me that ain't a native english speaker (at least in my opinion :p)

I would really like to ask you some other questions if you don't mind Very Happy

-Do you still visit those Hip-Hop forums every now and then or have you forgotten about it?
-How come Maxunit isn't participating in this community anymore? And why was he never staff here?
-Why do you think that GUN became more popular that F3Underground in a less period of time?

And last but not least... Justin Kase is an amazing username closed eyes smile
Thanks for the interview

He now has his own game studio called VGU studios , so that may be why he is not on here so much and not staff

And it most likely got really popular with youtubers like ncrvet making videos about mods that are hosted on here , and of course good stuff spreads around so people talk to people and after a while this causes new members to of course
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 18, 2017 9:49 am

I appreciate Luka giving his best guess on your questions, @mpaz96 , but here's the deal:

Maxunit was forced to shut down the old site because of the debt that the site accumulated. It got way past the point where the ads and donations couldn't cover backpay, let alone current server and security bills. It wasn't an easy situation for him, I can understand that well, and it disheartened him severely. He had invested the past 4 years into it, so, if he had a choice, he wouldn't have shut it down, but it became an imminent situation.

When I told him we should rebuild and regroup on a free forum host, he said that he doesn't want anything to do with it for a while, but that we can go ahead with this refuge for the community, with his blessing. He wasn't interested, nor ready to start everything from scratch, as we were, so he stepped away, to focus more on settling his real life issues and get to a more stable environment, financially.

I told him there will always be an admin spot open for him in our staff, and that offer is still available to this day.

As time passed and we grew and grew, due to, in a major part, dragbody's packs, and the youtube videos made by ncrvet, Apoqsi and others, we were given as gift our own domain name from Forumotion, and we thought we'd just go with vgunetwork.net (like the previous site was titled).
However, that domain was still owned (by contract) by Maxunit, who, by this time, had cleared his debt and gotten a better job for himself (in real life).
When we suggested that he would cede the domain name to us, he said he was considering bringing the old site back up again. I suggested he joins our administratorship here: I would step down as "founder" of this forumotion variant, in his favor, and we'd carry on, but free of costs.
He refused, saying that he wants the full range of tools that the old site gave him (our own downloads database, higher more intricate visual and structural features, server security and direct server assistance, and more).

Problem was, that still would've costed us a lot of money! The same amount (or more) per month that got us into debt and forced us to shutdown in the first place.
We had a great meeting over skype and the staff and some of our best modders agreed that we shouldn't go back to the old expensive VGU setup, in order to avoid future debt and begging for donations every single day from our members. People are suppose to learn from past trouble, not repeat them, you know? So we all voted to remain here.
Maxunit was still invited to join our staff, though.
That's when he said he's thinking about going a different way, forming VGU Studios, to create video-games, rather than just mod them, and we said we'll support him in any way we can, but we won't risk moving the community over to his site just to have it shut down again. A community can only take so many "starting from scratch" events before it disbands entirely and loses its identity.
So anyway, we chose a different domain name, one that was available. Maxunit was given full Paladin access and is still welcomed to rejoin us anytime he wants.

His VGU Studios recruited a few modellers and scripters, but I'm not aware of any progress or updates from them in over a year. We've given them a sticky topic here too but I guess, it just didn't pan out to more productive expectations. I suspect his interests have followed different directions, that's all.

I still have great respect and gratitude for Maxunit and his crew, and if they do turn up with something testable/playable in the future, we'll support them 100%
cheers

So as I mentioned, the great, exclusive mods and awesome community kept bringing people in, and youtube videos like those made by @ncrvet and @Apoqsi and a few others, they helped as well. We had a huge member bump when AlChestBreach covered some of our mods too Thumbs Up
And also, whenever an inconsiderate, ignorant prick leaked one of our exclusive mods on reddit or some other cesspool like that, well, it tends to draw in new members to our site as well.

But we were never actively trying to advertise, to draw in people. Since we make no money, site traffic only matters socially, so as to provide sufficient companionship and variety to dispell boredom/staleness.
Of course, more members means potentially more modders, which means more mods, which means more fun in video-games, which draws in more members. And also more non-modder members means potential for more feedback and interaction, which motivates modders to make more mods, which... you know.
But a huge intake of people also brings in the scum of the world-wide-web, and that's unfavorable to all of us, including themselves, as their behavior often discourages or disheartens modders from releasing their work (here or elsewhere alike).

But yeah, I've never said "Hey, let's tell everyone how cool it is here so they join us"
In fact, we'd appreciate us being talked about less haha
Word of mouth was sufficient, and as I've said from the start, we'd rather have a small but wonderful community, rather than "more people, more problems".

So that answers your second and third questions.
as for the 1st... well, I rarely visit my old hip-hop communities. Most of them have shut down, unfortunately. To be honest, I do check in one of them, like once a year or so. I'm always surprised it's still online, despite having 0.1% of the activity that it used to.
But I get to read stuff that I was posting back in '06-'07 that make me laugh
Some of the hip-hop sites I was on in '03-'04 , I had them printed back in the day. I didn't have a home computer, so I printed out the topics and tournaments at my mom's office and read them when I got home. So I still have those printed papers. They're excellent to "browse" down memory lane, when I come across them.
I did join other poetry communities, but unfortunately they don't keep me engaged long enough.
Video games occupy a much greater part of my free time now, so G.U.N. hits the spot just right Dancey

Either way, thank you very much for the awesome questions, @mpaz96 Hugging
And thanks for liking my first internet nickname ever hahah Beer
You're a great friend and I appreciate your companionship and dedication.
Bring it in Big-Hug
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PostSubject: Re: The GUN Insider: Eye of the Tiger   Wed Jan 18, 2017 10:14 pm

Great interview. Never knew the backstory of the site so that definitely was an interesting read. AlChestBreach brought me here and I'm glad he did. Respect for everything you did @"DVAted"

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