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Featured Member May 2024: RegularGuyGamer


Reed Rothchild

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RegularGuyGamer

What initially brought you to NA or VGS?

I remember back in 2011 hearing the announcement that Nintendo Power was going to be discontinued. At the time, I was actually still picking the magazine up every couple of months just to page through at work and before bed. I started searching up when the last issue was going to be printed and if any third-party source would spiritually succeed in the efforts of putting together a decent game magazine like Nintendo had for so many years. There were some Kickstarters and other websites that I ended up following. As it turns out, NintendoAge had the eZine which you had to be a member to download. I ended up joining the site exclusively to download the eZine and from there, became an active member of the forum.

Story behind your username and avatar?

At the time I started cruising the forums and YT around 2010, it seemed like everyone was some edgy game lord who devoted their entire existence to gaming and collecting. I’ve always been more of a passive gamer and collector so my username reflects that. I had a YT channel with the same name I since deactivated once I became a teacher.

My avatar was voted on back on NA. I initially had some bad Microsoft Paint images I threw together. Then, I found my brother’s old Atari 2600 box in my parents’ attic and I knew I wanted to have one of the images from the box as my avatar. I took some screenshots and made a poll. Those images are all seemingly regular folks playing games too which speaks to my user name.

Top 10 favorite games of all time?

Man, this is tough. And it is going to expose me for being a bland human being lol.

#1 Breathe of the Wild. This was a perfect storm of gaming for me. I was in a place in life where the switch being portable allowed me to pour a ton of hours into gaming in place of being on my phone.

#2 Super Mario World. This is probably one of the first handful of games I’ve ever played. I had the Super Mario All-Stars + SMW cart and essentially no other games outside of rentals for a couple of years. I have since played it at least 10 times in its entirety and it is one of a few games that I actually yearn to play.

#3 Super Mario Bros. It’s a game I can blow on and shove in the ol’ slot and play through without thinking twice. It’s satisfyingly mindless at this point.

#4 Mega Man. The OG Mega Man game just doesn’t get old to me. Just like SMB, it hits what I want from a platformer. Are Mega Man games objectively better? Yes. That doesn’t knock it down any bit for me though.

#5 Super Mario 3D Land. This game blew my mind when I got it with the 3DS. One of the best gaming experiences I ever had. Watching the world come into stereoscopic 3D is mesmerizing and the minus world and an entire remixed game. S-tier experience. Mario 3D World does not hit the same, not by a mile. It’s a handheld game that outdoes its console counterpart.

#6 Halo 3 & Reach multiplayer. This was something special. I played the COD games at the time, Counter Strike, and everything else but something was special about these two. A perfect time with the right amount of hype mixed with players just looking to have fun.

#7 GTA Vice City. Peak GTA experience. Just like above, the right amount of hype and Rockstar delivered on it all.

#8 Sega Rally Championship. If it’s not the best racing game of all time, it’s damn close. Such a dope arcade experience with physicals that punch far away its weight class.

#9 Mario Galaxy. Is 2 a more complete game? Maybe. But something about Galaxy hits different. It’s the best 3D Mario you can play.

#10 Pokemon HeartGold / Soul Silver. This game let me relive my childhood in glorious DS graphics, an updated Dex, and some gameplay. Far exceeded my expectations and took the place of Silver on my all-time fav list.

Family?  Kids?  Barnyard animals and/or pets?

I just had my second son in December so now I have a 4-month-old and a 2-year-old that turns 3 in July. Needless to say, my life is currently nuts. Nothing beats parenthood so far though. Every other life experience comes in a distant second. My wife and I got married in May 2020 so we’ve had our hands full the last few years. We don’t have any animals though. My wife is allergic to all animals and honestly, I don’t miss having them. Especially with kids, adding another layer on top of that would be insane. Shoutout to anyone juggling a zoo and babies.

Favorite book?

I honestly can’t even remember reading for pleasure. I’m about to finish my second master’s degree and I’ve read exclusively textbooks and journal articles for a decade when you mix in my undergrad. I really want to read more but most of the reading I’ve done in my life has been utilitarian. Being a mathematician doesn’t help because I end up liking textbooks and reading them like, with interest lol hard to relate.

Favorite movie?

The Departed. I love gangster movies and this is the gangster film to end all gangster films. The character arcs and acting are insanely good. It’s a movie I could watch every week for a year and say, “Ya know what I wanna watch Friday night? The Departed.” It’s that good.

Ever watch Infernal Affairs?

I have never watch internal affairs. To be fair, I don't watch a lot of TV or movies these days and really haven't for about a decade. 

Favorite TV show?

Curb Your Enthusiasm. I almost went for Seinfeld here but I think Curb has a leg up on Seinfeld. Either way, it’s between those two.

Favorite song/album/artist?

I am actually not much into music. I have a 70-mile commute and I also listen exclusively to podcasts and radio shows. My favorite thing to listen to right now is Scott Wapner’s Halftime Report on CNBC. I also try to catch Closing Bell which he hosts as well. I am a big fan of his interview and host style. I hope he branches out beyond just financials one day like a lot of CNBC hosts have in the past.

70 miles?  Ouch.  Where do you hail from?

Lebanon PA, about 10 miles from Hershey.

Is that close to Rochester?  That's where my dad's family is originally from.  They all went to Pitt.

I'm closer to Philly than I am Pittsburgh. We're central PA so not quite in the middle but pretty close 

You kind of answered this already, but what do you for a living?

I'm a HS math teacher. Right now, I'm teaching AP Statistics and Geometry. I actually struggle w both of those during my undergrad and really enjoyed the last couple years getting to teach them and sharpen my skills. I've been blessed w honors and AP classes this year.

Beer, wine, or liquor?

I actually haven't had a drink since December 2019. I just decided to see how long I could go sober and it turned out that after a couple months a didnt miss it lol I haven't had a beer since. 

Coffee or tea?  Coke or Pepsi?

Same goes with soda. I can probably count on one hand how many sodas I drink in a year on one hand. That leaves coffee and I drink a truck a day. Half a pot on weekdays and almost a whole pot on the weekends.

How do you take your coffee?

Two sugars and a splash of milk. No cream.

Best classroom story?

Last year I had a group of students in a geometry class that needed the credit to graduate. About half way through the year the students got to class and they were oddly talking about food. Like every conversation was about the food they had for lunch. So I'm standing in the middle of the classroom getting the class started and I see something thrown. I tell the kid pick it up and throw it away and I noticed it looked like food. 

Out of the corner of my eye, I have a kid walking behind me holding what I see to be a piece of chicken patty. He sits down and Im like, "hey, what's in your hand". He says nothing and tries to hide it. 

"Are you hiding chicken in my classroom??" Then he looks like a dog that got caught eating pizza off the table and says he wanted to eat it later (it's 2hrs after lunch mind you). So I start essentially scolding these kids for their behavior when another kid (he's 18) goes over to the trash and starts pulling chicken and waffles out that his classmates threw out and eating them.

Other students rush over to the trashcan like there's fuckin gold in it and start rummaging through it for God know what. 

I got them all back in their seats and the remainder of the lecture was why we do not eat out of the trashcan.

Under no circumstances do we eat out of the trash can.

Which member of The Breakfast Club are you?

I'm definitely the teacher lol I hosted lunch detention a couple years in a row and always volunteered to do in school suspension. I run summer school every year too.

PS1 or N64 or Saturn?

I had all 3 at some point growing up. It was right when my parents got a divorce and my cousin who had the Sega Saturn lived with me for a year during that era. I had the PS1 & Saturn at my dad's and the N64 at my mom's. I think I put the most time as a kid on the N64 and PS1 but since I've grown up, I definitely favor the Saturn. It's in my top 3 consoles, maybe even top 2.

Star Trek or Star Wars?

Star wars all the way. I went the midnight releases of the prequels and everything. I catch all the content now as well. I'm not a hater of the new stuff either. The Last Jedi is one of my favorite films. However episode 9 does not exist in my mind.

Do you collect anything besides games?

I've tried to collect other things but I have so many games, I just can't do it. I have a couple collections of Pokemon cards, Mario figure, DBZ figures/manga/movie but thats it. Nothing that compares to the scope of my game collection.

Other interests and hobbies?

My big hobby is yard sales. I easily go to 100 a weekend. My best friend and I get up at 5am and drive about 200 miles every Saturday and Friday in the summer. We're both math teachers, our kids are the same age, we went back college for teaching together so it's a great way to spend time w him and look at junk, sometimes get a nice deal. I mainly look for things to resell but since having kids and a family, I get a ton of stuff we need around the house as well.

Favorite restaurant?

I'm such a good snob that Gordon Ramsey Steak or Pub has to be my favorite for the food. Theirs a local restaurant called Tratorolli Fratelli that has been voted the best restaurant between Philly and Pittsburgh that I really like. Or Pizza Hut. 

Favorite meal to make?

My favorite meal to make is probably pizza. One of my good friends owned an Italian restaurant til COVID hit and there's nothing like a pizza tailored to your personal tastes. 

Dream vacation?

My dream vacation is definitely a sight seeing tour in Japan. It's one of the few places out side of the US I have a real drive to visit. 

All-time best find at a yard sale?

Man, I've had such crazy times across the board, so I'll just stick to gaming stuff. One morning, pretty late in a development that has a community yard sale every year, I saw a guy putting out broken Atari 400s. I immediately started asking questions about it he had anything that worked. I got an Atari XE CIB w a bunch of CIB games, a ton of insanely rare floppy drives about two dozen CIB box big PC games from the late 80s, several electric guitars from the same period and a tote of Atari 400, 800 and 2600 CIB games including some rare RBGs with the cloths maps and everything.

I actually left there and went down the street where someone was selling their entire Nintendo power collection and Wii U collection. They gave me a good deal on the NPs but wouldn't budge on the Wii U. I casually looked on a tarp they had out and found freezer bags full of pokemon cards and got all 4 for $20. There turned out to be an unbelievable amount of first edition and e-reader holos in them. That morning alone accounted for over half of all the money I made yard saling that summer. Truly legendary.

DS or PSP?

PSP. I was more into the PSP at release for sure. My love for the 3DS is mainly for the 3DS and a handful of DS games. However, the PSP was a different beast. I used it all the time, especially as a MP3 player. It was way ahead of it's time. I would probably have a big collection of it if it wasn't so easy to emulate. The emulation for PSP is among the best since it adds so much more on the experience.

Switch or PS4/5?

I haven't even played a PS4/5 , so I gotta go Switch all the way. Switch, like the PSP did the handheld different than anything before it and hit in a whole different way than the 3DS. It was love at first sight. Especially after being so disappointed with the Wii U.

Walk us through a day in the life of RGG

Day in the life. Assuming it's not summer, I wake up around 6 and leave around 630 to head to work. My morning commute goes is one of my favorite bc I have a PHEV so I try to max my electric range and get to work on around half my battery. I actually enjoy driving so I never truly mind a longer commute. I get to work around 720 and start teaching stat at 740. Then it's Honors geometry, lunch, more stat and more geometry til quitting time. 

I bust my ass when I'm at work so I don't have to take anything home w me. Typically, if I'm not teaching or helping a kid, I'm planning for the week or grading assignments. My goal is to to bell to bell and get as far ahead a possible. It just makes the end of the year more enjoyable instead of a mad dash to the finish line.

I leave work right at my contracted time 3 pm, then hit the turnpike. Adaptive cruise and lane keep assist are a game changer. Setting the cruise to 73 and listening to a show or podcast helps me decompress after work and I really look forward to it. 

Once I get home, it's time to play with the boys. I have a 2 yr old who turns 3 at the end of July and a 4 mn old as of April 15th. My wife stays home w the boys so when I get home I try to take over as much as possible. We play, cook dinner, play again, get them in the tub and then to bed. That brings me to about 9 pm where I'll watch a show, read some manga and browse the web, til bed around 1030. 

Rinse and repeat. 

Did you always plan on being a teacher?

Not even a little bit. Out of high school I did some construction and contracting. Once the recession hit, I lost a good job and ended up having 2 or 3 jobs just to compensate for the loss. Initially, I went back to school for biology but I found out I have more of a knack for math than I do bio. I worked at PennDOT when I went for my undergrad so I mostly went part time. I had mostly 3rd or 2nd shift and after 4 years I realized I had to shit or get off the pot. I also met the woman I knew I wanted to marry so I decided I'd go for my teach cert along side of my BS in math because math teachers get hired instantly. And I was right! I had a job lined up months before graduation. I bought a new car, a house and proposed. 

That said, teaching is ok. It's really grown on me. I am really glad I get to teach some mentally stimulating classes bc my interests are more focused on math than education. However, I think that's what makes me a good teacher. I don't care as much about how the kids feels as I do in making sure they're getting meaningful content. There was a time before I got my first masters I looked into doing something else but I realized that teaching allows me so much time with my family. It also compensates me for my time at work really well. They paid for both my masters degrees as well. It's also a rewarding and largely positive environment - at least at my job. I work with people who have become friends and I serve a really great community for people and as a result have great kids. 

Worst answer you've ever received on a test or in class?  Funniest?

I never really get anything front page worth. Mostly it's just the IDK, or because I said so, or something cheeky like that. I do get some amazing solutions to problems designed to make them think outside of the box. 

Do your students know about your gamer side?  Ever show off your collection?

I never explicitly show off my collection but I do talk about collecting w kids. I don't lead with my gamer side but I do talk about games with some students. I think it's fun to see what kids like to play and their take on current releases. I have a couple kids every year who find out I am a gamer and collector but it's not something I advertise at work. I'm the teacher who still doesn't know the kid's last names in April. On dress down days I just don't wear a tie. I really do my best to make the kids think I'm not cool lol.

What about someone active in the show off threadike @Galdius or @Renmauzo? They don't post much outside of the finds thread and it'd be nice to get to know them a little more.

Who would you like to see me interview?

Splain did do Renmauzo already.  Galdius an interesting thought though.

10 games in your backlog that you need to finally get to?

I have a couple games I need to finish that are in limbo.

Zelda TOTK

Mario Wonder

Jedi Survivor

Ori 1

Up on the dock

Hallow Knight 

Cuphead

Pokemon S/V

Bayonetta 1&2

Castlevania DS Collection 

And Streets of Rage 4 has been on the back burner for far too long.

If you can wait a few years, my kids are absolutely obsessed with playing SoR4 with me.  Between the campaign, the endless mode, the versus mode, and all of the unlockables, we've been playing it for a month straight. 

This after I cleared it on my own in an hour or two back near release, and then shelved it without giving it another thought.  

Oh sick! Thanks for the heads up. I'll keep it on the back burner then lol

Prize piece in your collection?

Damn that is a tough one. I have a lot of games I really like and even the consoles I had as a kid. But recently, I got something I had been after for over a decade. My Commodore 1702 from a local auction. I ended up getting it AND a C64 for $50. I sold the C64 and essentially got the monitor for the price of standing in a damp basement during an auction for 3 hours lol. It's a weird thing to want but it looks so good w s video and composite hooked up to it. I have all the fancy fpga consoles but nothing beats stuffing a game in the toaster and smashing one into the old SNES. I had an Atari monitor but it didn't have a video in and got rid of it years ago. But that Commodore monitor has now become the center of my gaming experience which I'm super happy with right now. 

Upcoming game you're looking forward to the most?

I haven't been keeping up w recent releases for about the last year. I'm really interested with how Nintendo handles the next console release. They've never landed successive console releases outside of the NES, GB, SNES run. Everything else has been hit, miss, hit, miss. GBA, huge disappointment. DS wild success. Same w the GCN and the Wii. 

Spiciest gaming hot take? (from you)

JRPGs are boring and overrated. I understand with the hardware limitations back in the day, they were a good way to experience a story but turned based attacks are boring. I'd much rather have a western RPG or an action adventure game. 

Do you go to a lot of auctions?

I actually don't. I like to buy electronics and generally interesting thing and auctions around me have a ton of boomer shit all the time. My next door neighbor is an auctioneer so he lets me know which ones to go to and which ones to avoid. I probably go to about 5 a year. The craziest thing is a well organized and advertised auction can easier bring over eBay sold listings. I'm consistently blown away how much these auctioneer end up milking out of the crowd. 

It's like the complete opposite of pricing on eBay. It seems like a high BIN with a best offer would get you more than an auction. These guys running the auctions in warehouse and backyards consistently pull over market price for their items. It's actually super annoying lol The only place I get deals anymore are at yard sales and even then I find myself paying double or triple what I did pre pandemic. 

First game you ever owned?

I think the first game I ever got for myself, being the youngest of 4, was my Nintendo 64 with Shadows of the Empire followed shortly afterwards by Mario 64.

Dill or sweet pickles?

Big pickle fan. I think I'm going to go with dill. Hot pickles are the shit too. 

Summer plans?

I'm hoping to get a summer school position. It's such a sick job for the money. And I have Fridays off so that's the real draw since there's a ton of yard sales around here on Fridays. No vacation plans this year that I'm aware of since our youngest will be 5-7 months over the summer. I'm really looking forward to working half days for 6 weeks and having another 5 weeks completely off. It's the biggest draw of the job!

Sports?  Watch, play, coach, etc.

 

I cancelled cable in 2016 and haven't really watched sports since. The first year or two were tough and I would stream some bootleg streams on my computer, especially big games. As time went on, I actually forgot about sports. I still get some notifications for scores of the teams I follow (Philly fan). I legit forgot the Superbowl was on this year until around 10pm and then fell asleep watching it lol 

I did coach the 7th grade baseball team in 2018 and 2019 at work. It was fun but I realized I'm not a good coach. I was much better at a player.

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Super Mario 3D Land is actually so good. I also like it more than 3D World and thought it was crazy to have such a good 3D Mario game on a handheld.

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Hell yeah Dill pickles! Garlic pickles are dope as well, my father in law buys the ba tampte pickles or whatever they are called those are crack

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