Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Xander Skullion who currently is displayed on card number 2725, from the Superstars of 2017 Collection.  Xander is a full-time podcaster who loves the gaming community and gives back when ever he has a chance.  Some of his time is reviewing video games for different companies.  He loves the idea of getting contacted by gaming vendors and helping them. Xander is also a musician and movie lover.

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How does video game music influence games past and present?

Oh man video game music is a huge part of my life. Other than playing video games I’m a musician. I play 4 different instruments. And that’s always been a dream of mine to compose video game music. I’ve some opportunities in the past with Indie titles but those went belly up. Who knows though maybe I’ll be the next Yuzo Koshiro (laughs) I mean we share the same birthday!

Do you remember your first video game / arcade you played and what do you remember about it?

Ah the first video game I ever played was missile command with my Grandpa. He was a huge gamer and cut my teeth in the hobby. I played it on his Sears 2600 model. I actually still have his cart. It’s one of my most prized collection pieces.

What are your opinions about today’s generation of video games?  How do you compare them to older, classic games?

I think it’s great, looking past the whole DLC microtransactions, we have some hungry indie devs and AA companies making amazing games!

What games today do you play and what are your favorite genres of games?

My favorite genres would have to be platformers, RPGs, and fighters. Right now, when I’m not reviewing titles I’m digging into Yakuza Kwiami 2. Which by the way fantastic Series!

If you could own one arcade game or pinball game, what would it be and why? 

Sadly no, but that’s going to change, I’m getting the SF2 mini Cab from Arcade 1up in Dec (for my birthday) It’s always been a dream to own that. And with it having the Championship Edition design it’s a mini piece of my Childhood…All pun intended.

Which console company is your favorite and why?  Nintendo, Sony, Sega, or Microsoft?

Nintendo, Sony, Sega, or Microsoft? WOW that’s a loaded question, I have no big favorites. Right now, just because I can play more I love the Nintendo Switch. Sega though I have a huge special place in my heart. I actually Started collecting Sega coffee cups. Weird I know but nothing kicks a morning more than an Afterburner mug with 2 shots of expresso!

What does it take to be a Video Game Journalist?

By today’s standards not much, everyone is one now with Social Media. It’s sad to say that, All I want to say is while it’s easy, if you want to be a respected/good one. Research and be humble.

Are video games aimed mainly at children, adolescents or adults?

In the past it was a mixed bag. The big wigs thought of kids first I mean those were the ones spending the quarters. But now the normal age for gamers are in their 30s. So, it’s a vast direction more so then ever.

Do you believe some Video Games are too violent and lead to violence in America today?

Not at all, same with music and movies It’s not the games but Mental Health. Which is sad media will focus on games like Doom, but not focus on how bad bullying is, it’s worse now with our Social media culture anything can be recorded and go viral. I would hate to be a 12-year-old today.

Do you prefer playing video games alone, against friends or online against the world and why?

Fighting games and beat ‘em ups with friends is bliss. Other than that, I’m a selfish Gamer. I’ll turn my phone off getting a new title. I game to escape a lot of real life BS.

What is your favorite portable gaming device and why?

Right now? Nintendo Switch seeing this is a hobby and doing reviews, I love I can play the games anywhere. I’ve gamed so much more with that console then most in years. Just because I can, I love it!

Do you prefer PC or Console gaming and why?

I prefer consoles, but that’s only cause my PC isn’t that great. I’m a gamer and will play anything fun in the big picture. Hell, I even love some great Mobile games like “Venture Kid!”

Which company makes the best games and why?

Still have to say Nintendo the games are classics, there’s a reason why 30 plus years later we still want to play Super Mario Bros.

Do you learn anything from playing video games?

Ha-ha I learned how to read, no lie when I was 7 I had no desire to read books. I’m a visual person always have been. And it wasn’t until I got Dragon Warrior on the NES that I was like “ok I need to learn to read to enjoy this”

Are video games good for relieving stress?

Yes! Mainly I like to play mindless arcade games or Bullet hell shooters they just put me in a Zen element.

Do you like it when Hollywood makes a movie from the video game?

Yes and No 9 times out of 10 they never get it right. But with the Popularly it can spawn new games for a series. Money talks look at Konami they are just now realizing Castlevania rocks. And a lot of that credit is the Netflix Series I feel. Hopefully we will see a new game other than that mobile title coming soon.

Who is your favorite video game character and what makes that character special?

Kiryu from the Yakuza series, he’s a kind-hearted man who was thrown in the Yakuza crime circle at a young age. He hates the lifestyle but somehow gets thrown back in. And it’s not for money or Pride but because at the end of the day it’s for the people he loves. I can’t recommend that series enough!

What springs to mind when you hear the term ‘video games’?

Arcades tons and tons of cabs in a smoke-filled room full of noise and neon lights.

Of these five elements video games, which is the most important to you and why?  Gameplay, Atmosphere, Music, Story, Art style

Game play always comes first no matter what we love video games for the playability everything else is a plus.

Do you find boss battles to be the best part of a video game?

They can be it gives you that accomplishment to the game, the climax of a story, and closure to an experience.

What is your favorite single player game and favorite multiplayer game?

Favorite single player…hmmm I would have to say Castlevania SOTN and favorite multiplayer hands down Street Fighter 2.

If you can design your own game, what would it be about and who would be the main character?

HA you know I had a dream a couple of weeks ago about a video game. I woke up upset it wasn’t real, it was a Noir style VR game set in an almost blade runner kind of world. Riding future motorcycles like in Akira. Solving a murder mystery tied to a new world order Government real fun stuff!

Did you ever think when you were younger you would be on a Video game Trading card?

It’s crazy, I didn’t know about Walter Day and his Card collection until “King of Kong” Doc but, I never thought I would get a card because I’m nowhere near as good as some of the Classic Arcade legends .

Have you ever received any media coverage for your appearance on the Trading Card?  If so, where?

Not yet I got my card last year, it’s something I’m proud and excited about being a part of.

When did you first meet Walter day and where was it at?

I still haven’t met him in person, but I’ve talked to him online. It’s surreal though such a kind-hearted Guy.

If you could describe Walter Day in one word, what would that word be and why?

Passionate, in today’s world of Social Media many are looking to ride trends and look for fame. That’s not Walter Day the guy loves and appreciates video games.

Are you still involved with gaming today, and what role do you play?

I’m a Content Creator and Podcast host. I’ve interviewed some great people from Gaming Devs to Voice Actors. Also, I do a lot of reviews, which is crazy getting an email from Sega wanting ME! To try out a new game. My 6-year-old self would be flipping out! ha-ha.

Where do you see Video gaming in the next 20 years?

To be honest all digital which I’m ok with, I admire those keeping history alive with collecting. If it wasn’t for them so much history would be lost. Cause the Companies truly don’t care as much as we do. But digital isn’t bad I like the fact my whole Switch collection is on me. And nothing is more relaxing then playing MAME with a 6 pack after a long week.


This is one of an ongoing series of articles based on the Walter Day Collection of e-sports/video gaming trading cards – check out more information at thewalterdaycollection.com

Todd Friedman Todd Friedman (397 Posts)

Todd Friedman is heavily involved in the retro gaming community and has co-promoted the Video Game Summit in Chicago, IL for the past 16 years. He also has published 2 books and written for various different gaming magazines including Old School Gamer.