Announcing: Quindependence Day


Hello, ladies! Men.

I joined the RPS team this time last year. Following almost twelve months of PC gaming news, reviews, thrills and spills, some of which the RPS server was actually up for, I’m announcing that today, the fourth of July, or Quindependance day, will be my last day on the site. I’m going back to ordinary freelancing. But before I go, I’d quickly like to say thanks.

The RPS readership is, as you lot must know deep down in your aluminium, fan-cooled hearts, the finest of any gaming site around. I’d like to thank you for making me laugh every single day with what you write in the comments, as well as generally being a pleasure to write for. I’d especially like to thank everybody who ever wrote in with a tip for me, because you contributed to my humble dream of being able to start drinking at 1pm.

I’d like to thank the RPS founders for not just giving me the freedom to write god knows how many words about Norrland, but to go on to pay me for it.

Most of all, though, I’d like to thank Jim for meticulously replacing every single piece of my cursed PC over several trips to London and then continuing to puzzle over it when it still didn’t work. He fixed it, in the end. Of course he did. He’s a PC gamer, same as you.

While I’ll be around and freelancing for RPS in the future (as well as attending any future London RPS social clubs, for sure), I’d like to close with a list of all the work I’ve done for RPS that I’m proud of, because it’s simply so much longer than it would be for any other site or magazine in existence.


Butchering Pathologic. My love letter to the single strangest, strongest game I’ve ever played, and the only game I’ve loved enough to get a tattoo of.

Planetside: The 1%. Telling stories from within games is pretty much my thing, and this is the single best story I have to tell. There’s some stuff I’d change about the writing, but who cares? It happened to me, I went onto RPS and screamed about it, and people wrote to me saying they really enjoyed it. That’s as crystalline as this job gets.

AHL: The 5am. The above story might be the most cinematic, but I like this one of an expedition into a labyrinthine, evil map secret more. More spooky games journalism! That’s what I say.

Pitchfork Media: A Portrait of Wurm Online. Speaking of spooky journalism, this account of being robbed by hicks in hardcore indie MMORPG Wurm Online is about as intimidating as new games journalism gets.

Gameboys From Hell. Solium Infernum is a play-by-email strategy game by Vic Davis that casts players as arch-demons warring over who will rule Hell. Gameboys From Hell was our epic diary of a two-month long game that came close to ruining friendships. You think Song of Ice & Fire features venemous characters? You ain’t seen nothing yet. I read this again every single year, and it just gets better.

Neptune’s Pride and Falls. This fucking game.

Galactic Bartender. Space Station 13 is a free-form online game where players fill all the roles of a huge space station, making it a bit like Babylon 5 with everybody adlibbing their lines. As a trained real-life bartender, I figured I’d ply my trade in outer space. It went well, considering.

The Song of Onionbog. Seeing as RPS hadn’t yet had the inevitable Dwarf Fortress diary, I figured I’d have a go. Yeah, I didn’t finish it, but I like the format it took- one part new games journalism with one part friendly tutorial, the idea being it could simultaneously show the appeal of Dwarf Fortress while teaching you the basics. The fact that I didn’t play the game for two days and then couldn’t bring myself to return to it and re-learn all those hotkeys speaks volumes. I’m sorry, Dwarf Fortress. I love you.

Captain Smith. How shit can somebody be at Mount & Blade? I found the answer.

Wot I Think: Winter Voices. My single favourite part of working for RPS is nudging unlikely games into the limelight. I couldn’t bring myself to write a positive review of that early version of Winter Voices, but the discussion is the thing.

The Space Funeral Advent Calendar entry. There was a similar thrill in getting Space Funeral on the advent calendar. RPS contributor Brendan Caldwell reckons it’s a funnier game than Portal 2. Minute for minute, I reckon I agree with him.

Wot I Think: SpaceChem. The process of reviewing SpaceChem had me glowing for days. The game was a diamond, I feel like the review captured its brilliance and then you guys commented by the dozen saying you’d bought it and how much you loved it. At best, games journalism is like that- you’re just some tiny mediator standing between the gamer and true love.

This Deus Ex 3 preview. I was always happy at how balanced this one turned out to be, but hearing that the devs felt it captured the game was the real thrill. Sometimes it’s all too easy to feel you’re just bellowing into the dark.

The King of Space interview. A six thousand word tour of everything that makes Eve Online special that I’m not sure any interview I do will ever surpass.

Mine the Gap. Never mind writing about Minecraft first. I like that I wrote about that special Minecraft experience of getting lost in a cave first. If somebody had gotten there before me, I’d have spent years kicking myself.

Snake To Death: The Majesty of Spelunky. The tightest game that I wrote about while at the peak of my “tight” phase. The result is the kind of enthusiasm that at once makes me wince and feel proud. On the subject, you have all played Spelunky, yes? YES?


OK, that’s it from me. I’m off. You guys take care of yourselves, and thanks again for making me laugh so very much.


~ Quinns

EDIT: Quinns informed us he’d like the following edited into the end of his post:


  1. TooNu says:

    Aw Quinns :( why? why do you leave us all the time? :(

  2. Oak says:


  3. NR says:

    Noooooo! Think of the puns Quinns, the puns!

  4. The Promised Landt says:

    A sad day, but we’ll still need a picture of the Pathologic tattoo

    • Quintin Smith says:

      Neeeeever gonna happen. It’s on my balls, for one thing.

    • crainey92 says:

      A very sad day indeed, and yes we need that picture!

    • felisc says:

      yup, indeed.

    • Binman88 says:

      @Quinns: I always take a picture of my balls and show it to the customers of the companies I leave, so it’s only right that you do the same.

    • DXN says:

      You could scan it in and mess with settings in photoshop so we can’t see it’s your balls?


    • ezekiel2517 says:

      “I’ve had a symbol from the game tattooed on my back”


    • thelxr says:

      Hell, a balls tattoo would have been great if it were Odonghe :D
      Anyhow, godspeed and good luck!
      Hope you’ll still stay in the writing business, as we have an awesome announcement to make :3

    • thurzday says:

      Quinns is leaving, yet an awesome announcement from IcePick is on the horizon. I don’t know whether to cry or jump for joy right now.

      Also, turning your balls into an Odonghe-head is a truly horrific thought, but I can’t deny there’s a bit of twisted genius in there. In other words, just what I’d expect from the creators of Pathologic.

    • tomeoftom says:

      OH MY GOD. Quinns at Ice-Pick HAS to happen. Otherwise, the world is just deeply wrong (it is anyway, but whatev.s).

  5. Premium User Badge

    john_silence says:

    I wish this was a 4th of July April 1st joke.

    • drlemon says:

      Another one? No way! But in all seriousness, you will be missed, quinns.

  6. DrugCrazed says:

    Shame to see you go Mr Quinns.

    Even though you aren’t really going. But you are. Yet yo- I’ll stop now.

  7. radomaj says:


  8. Evil Otto says:

    I demand Kieran Gillon back.

  9. The_B says:

    We salute you Quinns, and fear slightly that RPS will henceforth be forever burdened with slightly too much iron.

  10. Grinterloper says:

    I hear he’s going to spend a year trying to beat AHL_5am.

    Don’t go Quinns, you’re too pretty.

    • Cael says:

      AHL: The 5am is one of my favorite articles on RPS and the one that got me to start reading daily. I’m sad to see quinns go :(

  11. Nero says:

    Can’t let you do that Tim eh Quinn.

    Ok, just go. Don’t turn around or you might change your mind. :¨(

  12. Wanoah says:

    Thanks for some great articles on here. o/

  13. dartt says:

    Will there be a ceremony to pass on the USB Drive of Power?

    Jokes aside, I’m sorry to see you go. Good luck and don’t be a stranger!

  14. sinister agent says:

    What! No! Damn it, Quinns. You were a fine lobe of the RPS multi-brain. I am saddened by this news.

    because you contributed to my humble dream of being able to start drinking at 1pm.

    But don’t you see, Quinns, it wasn’t the tips – it was in you all along!

    You’ll stick around though, making comments and borrowing staplers and stuff, right?

    • Temple says:

      I know we don’t do this around here but +1
      I hope you are collecting these gems for publishing in a hardbound folio of your work at a later date.

      (ps RPS contact Sinister and see if they’ll work for you)

  15. Danny says:

    So long…

    *plots path to filling the vacant position*

    *really need to get round to that, DAMN YOU EMPLOYERS FOR WORKING ME LIKE A MULE (Like a true games industry based company)*

  16. Stylosa says:

    Good luck in the future Quinns :) The Captain Smith series was hilarious!

    • McDan says:

      He has written some of the best articles, like that planetside 1% article. You’ll be missed quinns, a lot.On RPs, you should refuse to completely go and stick around in the comments like that Gillen fellow.

  17. VelvetFistIronGlove says:

    So sorry to see you go, Quinns. May you find more iron in your new pastures!

    Please post a link on your blog whenever you have new words published online, so I know where to go to read them.

  18. gwathdring says:

    This proves it. RPS is convinced it’s actually April Fools day.

  19. Novotny says:

    Henceforth I shall drink from 1pm every day in honour of the Quinnmeister. Best make it Guinness for the iron

  20. Sinomatic says:

    Shall miss your chat and ramblings Sir Q. Also, I am finally downloading Spelunky.

  21. mbp says:

    Any truth in the rumour that a certain Mr. Smith was seen around town asking where he could get his hands on a Playstation Move and that he recently checked a book called “The bluffers guide to dancing video games” out of his local library?

  22. Jockie says:

    Best of luck Quinns.

    Some very memorable pieces of writing there.

    That Pathologic piece convinced me to go and buy the game, despite the repeat warnings that we might find it sort of rubbish and unplayable. I did find it kind of unplayable, but I don’t regret the few hours I spent flapping about in bewilderment as everything slowly began to make less and less sense.

    The Planetside piece was able to make me understand why some people talk about Planetside in hushed tones, despite it being a bit horrible by the time I got my mitts on it.

    Hope you get to write a lot more of the small-gem diaries as a freelancer!

  23. Auspex says:

    Oh no! I’ll miss your daily RPS writing a lot Quinns. I hope you will be a fairly regular freelance contributor though.

    Also, this seems like a good time to apologize for getting drunk and hugging you at the RPS event thing shortly before you became KG’s replacement. Sorry ’bout that.

  24. The Sombrero Kid says:

    I’m taking this as a personal slight, you obviously hold some sort of personal grudge against me, I feel Kieron is behind this, he will pay big.

  25. Cooper says:

    RPS has both given, and taken away, amazing sources of unlikely pop music, and unlikely games…

  26. tikey says:

    We’ll miss you and your words.
    That Pathologic piece is still one of the best things I’ve ever read on the internet.

  27. D says:

    Good job Mr. Smith. Stellar.

  28. sonofsanta says:

    Well that has just completely ruined my evening.

    Sadface :(

    May your puns be witty and your adventures many. You eat a peach.

  29. Maykael says:

    This is appropriate: link to

    This is a sad day. Thanks for all your great articles Quinns. Hope you’ll be back soon!

  30. OctaneHugo says:

    I’m gonna miss you Quinns, and stories like those are why :(

  31. Ricc says:

    Thank you for adding so much to the site. The second great loss for RPS, but not for games journalism this time. Best of luck and looking forward to your stuff in the Sunday Papers. ;)

  32. Stijn says:

    Damn it. And it was so perfect while it lasted.

  33. Cydonian_Knight says:

    Quinns, I’m a long time reader of this site and I finally registered just to comment on this. I have immensely enjoyed your writing over the past year. Several of your pieces stand as some of the best gaming articles I’ve ever read, particularly your series on Pathologic. You have convinced me to buy several games that I wouldn’t have otherwise, purely based on the stories you’ve told. Good luck with whatever you do after this and I hope we still see some pieces from you time to time.


    • BaxAttacks says:

      Well goodness, that is almost exactly what I was going to say, right down to the signing up just to comment. ASTOUNDING.
      Really though Quinns, you’ve honestly had an impact on how I see video games with your constant look at smaller (and often experimental) games. Wish you didn’t have to leave, but I’ll make sure to follow the work you do in the future.

    • SheepSheriff says:

      Exact same, I couldn’t have put it better myself. Thankyou very much Quinns, you have truly enriched my perspective on gaming. Good luck and goodbye!

  34. daggity says:

    Hmm, sorry Quinns but I’m going to have decline your request to stop writing for RockPaperShotgun. Thank you for your interest and please check back later when RockPaperShotgun is firing people!

  35. Freud says:

    While you try to hitchhike I’ll play The Lonely Man Theme.

  36. Jumwa says:

    A true shame, you’ve done some terrifically hilarious pieces for RPS.

    Funny enough, I just hit the RPS bookmark to come fish up a link to the Mount & Blade series you did as a selling point to people on the games. Then I found this. Tragic.

    Best of luck out there!

  37. Web Cole says:

    What? No! Awww :'(

    Love you Quinns, don’t be a stranger.

  38. Protagoras says:






    I feel as though I might burst into tears at any moment. But I shan’t – I made a promise to never let a game journalist hurt me so. Not again, never again. Damn you KG. Damn you Quinns. Damn you alllllllll….

    waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. *sniff*

  39. Leyths says:

    Best of luck Quinns, you’ve given me many a laugh over the years :).

  40. Tom Camfield says:

    That’s sad, but it’ll be nice for you to roam free and do a bit of work about console games or whatever. All the bestest!

    Edit: also, do we get a full rundown of the change, a Kieron-esque “I want to work on comic books” etc, what is it you’re hoping to achieve with the change? If it’s not too personal to ask.

  41. LockeTribal says:

    All the best Mr. Smith. I have enjoyed reading the many words that you wrote and will continue to follow your career with interest.

  42. Jae Armstrong says:

    What the fuck.

    It’s only been a year. ;_;

  43. The Innocent says:

    Good luck with all your endeavors, Quintin! You were awesome. Keep in touch, Kieron style!

  44. g33kz0rd says:

    Now we all can sadly say:

    “I read RPS since Quinn was there” like the hipsters we all are.

  45. Will Tomas says:

    Will miss your writing, you wrote some pieces of sheer brilliance. And a lot of puns. I hope you have an awesome time doing whatever it is you’re about to embark on.

  46. arienette says:

    A dark day in the history of RPS, good luck in the future, it was awesome to read everything you wrote.

  47. gwathdring says:

    We’ll miss you and your beautiful stories.

  48. Lambchops says:

    What a shame (no really)!

    I thought your stint on RPS could only be described as “tight” and perhaps “solid.”

    I hope your future adventures lead you to a land rife with iron, for as well all no, you desperately need some!

    it was the sheer exuberance Minecraft diary which finally persuaded me to buy the game and I’m also downright glad that someone was there to champion Spacechem, as it’s games like this, with their perhaps not consumer friendly faces, that need someone shouting to the rafters about just how excellent they are.

    Not to mention the hilarious (for someone with zero emotional investment in the series anyway) . . .err . . . fallout . . . .from the New Vegas review.

  49. Adekan says:

    Wow. Reading this makes apparent the fact that a great deal of my favorite articles were written by you. I’m a bit lost for words. Good luck wherever you may roam, and be sure to give us some updates on what you do next!

  50. Ayam says:

    Your Mount n Blade stories made me laugh so much, I just got it in the Steam sale hoping to experience some of that St Quinnian’s magic. Good luck with the future and I hope whoever comes in to replace you can compare (errr with you).