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GOBLIN6 – Year Zero

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:// INTRO

I was fortunate to be in my mid to late-teens when I first discovered the Internet. I had seen computers before, I vaguely remember my elementary school had a series of Apple computers back in the day [probably Apple 2’s].

I had seen pixel-perfect games on my cousin’s computer.

When I first jumped online it was like the wild west, there were many sites with their own unique HTML flare. Not to mention those sexy Flash sites. Once I finally understood that I could surf at my own leisure and [hopefully] discover sites of interest I was off to the races.

My first search was for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles toys. I was hoping to find a site with hi quality images of each character and artwork. After leaning back in my chair for about 2 minutes I remembered the name of the toy manufacturer: Playmates.

It was a huge mistake typing that in into the search engine, after realizing I was sent to the Playboy site I then typed in my second love: Resident Evil.

At the time, CAPCOM’s site barely had a presence, much less a dedicated Resident Evil site to explore. I quickly found a handful of fan sites which had carefully curated the Resident Evil lore for fans to discover.

[Then] REHORROR, RESIDENTEVILFAN, PROJECT UMBRELLA, and RECENTER.

Those were the days…

 

The Godfathers

 

Today it’s easy to go to Google, type something in and spend hours researching. It was amazing to see all these news posts and site exclusive features. It was almost like magic, it was as if these guys were sneaking into CAPCOM and obtaining exclusive info for us mere mortal to discover.

I studied each site, each individual pixel in their masterful layouts. After launching my [then] latest version of CorelDraw I started to make my own mockups for my very own Resident Evil fan site.

The color scheme was red on black, the contrast of those colors seemed perfect. I had managed to create the main screen and media player mockup. Somehow the media player featured a sprite of the sentinel from X-Men Children of the Atom.

[Thankfully] sadly I lost my folder structure due to my brother’s stroke of genius to clear up space on our shared laptop.

There was always one piece of media that stuck with me. It was a flash animation about a family being attacked in the Arklay mountains. The mother called 911 and the operator at the RPD listened as the house was overrun by the undead.

:// BIOHAZARD HISTORY

Resident Evil 2 was the title that started it all for me, I had finally found a series that was as impactful as Sonic 2, it was so powerful in fact that it overtook Sonic as my favorite series. Not to mention, it also gave me a life purpose. The creation of Digital Art.

I played everything with the Resident Evil title in it. If I had the system I bought the game or borrowed it. If I didn’t have access to the hardware I emulated it. If my buddies had the necessary hardware I was practically living at their house just to play Resident Evil. If none of those options were available to me I would get as many gaming magazines as I could, just to see and memorize those screenshots.

I unlocked everything available, no matter how long it took. I had every area memorized, I never checked the in-game map, since it took too long to pull it up. I perfected my speedruns before I knew speedrunning was a thing. My two greatest achievements were defeating William Birkin by only using a knife and surviving a 3 player ambush in Resident Evil Outbreak by defeating them and still managing to beat the level on very hard.

However, with Resident Evil Outbreak I noticed a strong divide within the RE community. Many players dismissed it since it was not a numbered title, it was almost as hated as the live action RE movies.

Resident Evil 4 came along and revived the love for the series among all fans, old and new alike.

Then, Resident Evil 5 came along.

I had followed the development of Resident Evil 4 closely. It took forever for the game to come out, we were shown exciting versions of what CAPCOM was working on and then we were told that they were moving in a different direction. I waited for any type of news regarding the project. Then, the man who built the mansion was back.

After the release of ‘4, which had taken what seemed like decades, in the snap of a finger, ‘5 was announced. And once again, it was Chris Redfield leading the charge.

This is where I fell out of love with the series, I was there for day one of every release, but it didn’t feel as exciting as the momentum around ‘4.

After many, many years of playing what can only be described as digital sludge I went back to the classics, i went back to the game that started it all: Resident Evil 2.

Appropriately, on the Dreamcast.

I went back online to catch up on the fandom which the Resident Evil fansites had so abundantly provided, then I was shellshocked.

REHORROR was no longer REHORROR, PROJECT UMBRELLA was suffering from technical difficulties and its historic threads were broken and/or abandoned. RESIDENTEVILFAN was had not been updated by Rombie in years.

Then it happened, NewsBot posted this on Project Umbrella:

:// DEVELOPMENT

I clicked on the email and started writing wishing to help, but then, I stopped cold.

I thought “No” “If I am going to finally do this, now is the time”.

I have lurked their forums for years, plus countless other RE forums as well. What once seemed impossible was finally doable. Previous projects showed me what I needed to know about URL creation, content management systems and phpBB forum implementation.

The road was long and difficult, instead of trying to catch up with twenty years of content I decided to develop a “backbone” of the site. I started with brief game bios and in-game files. A foundation which could be scaled and make the site more robust.

 

What the fuck was I going to call this thing?

Then, it clicked. GOBLIN6.

 

I got to work with the hideously archived assets and docs which I had collected over the years.

After punishing myself and finally laying out my pipeline I was set, Halloween was around the corner, what better time to launch a Resident Evil fansite.

Three weeks, 18 cans of Monster and 2 fevers later I clicked “Publish” on my dashboard.

GOBLIN6 was finally live on October 1st, 2017.

As of this writing, no one has yet to sign up for the forums, I anticipated as much, I knew the site would start slow.

According to my analytics, there has been traffic on the site.

Hopefully, with future updates and exciting content, the site and forum will flourish and hopefully inspire someone just like those Resident Evil fansites inspired me.

Long live Resident Evil.