I'm Sarah Basford, Kotaku's New Staff Writer

Image: Supplied.

I’m Sarah and I’m a new writer at Kotaku (as well as Lifehacker and Gizmodo.) In my 25 years on the planet, I’ve spent about 21 years of it playing video games so I hope I can offer an insight or two.

Before starting my role here, I worked in a bunch of writing roles. For two years, I was the Content Producer at Student Edge and I wrote about everything from a pseudo investigative report into who exactly was behind Australia’s fake space agency, ARSE, to asking the important questions like 'When does Days Gone start to get good?' Prior to that, I wrote a few things for The BRAG and was the head honcho at my uni’s student magazine.

But, my time as writer hasn’t been without a good share of old-fashioned internet hate, which I love to tell people about…

I once legitimately referred to Sonic the Hedgehog as a 'speedy mouse' and had to issue an update and apology to all the stans I subsequently offended. Among that and being written about by the anti-fan club on the “world's most viewed” blog on climate change denial, I’ve built up a bit of a resilience so feel free to @ me the next time I liken Cyberpunk 2077 to a blend of GTA V and Ready Player One. Go on, try me.

Mostly, I’m excited to get started on filling up my Kotaku portfolio with lots of fun news and handy tips to up your video game life.


    More new blood!
    Favourite Smash Bros character, go!

      Hmm, tough one. I like the classics so Pikachu when I'm up for a challenge or Captain Falcon when I'm in destroy mode.

    Welcome to the team, I'm sure Alex could use the help (and a break every now and then). PS, I had no idea 'future journalism' was a specialisation that existed but it sounds eminently qualified to write about Cyberpunk 2077.

    Welcome aboard! Looking forward to seeing what you bring to Kotaku ☺️

    I’m hoping Cyberpunk 2077 is very different to GTAV... mainly because I got burnt by the early days GTAV bug where going to MP caused SP glitches like skipping story missions so content wouldn’t unlock.

    Gotta welcome new Australian writers.

    The American's articles tend to turn our comment section into the Night Attack at Targoviste.

      Is this a particularly obscure reference or am I just really poorly educated?

        Its not terribly obscure, but neither is it well known (I dunno, how much Castlevania have you played?, lol)

        It was specifically mentioned mostly because it was a bloody affair (it was Vlad Tepes and the Ottoman Empire afterall), which was a rather depraved affair with 23,000 Turks impaled on pikes, Braila being burned to the ground, and both sides claiming victory at the end.

        I thought it was an apt analogy, lol.

          That is a pretty apt analogy to be honest.

    Welcome aboard Sarah! You should share a few of your favourite games so can can make friends/enemies for life right out of the gate!

    I once legitimately referred to Sonic the Hedgehog as a 'speedy mouse' and had to issue an update and apology to all the stans I subsequently offended.
    In defense of the speedy mouse, his species is literally in his title.

    Though I am a person that can't say Sonic without my mind adding 'the Hedgehog.' like someone just whispered it to me as a reminder... While also playing the 'SEGA' audio clip from back in the day.

      We all have those days... Mine was just more publicly visible than others!

      Hedgehog in Japanese literally translates to "spike mouse" so I think it's a legit claim.

    We'll see how you go. there are some good authors here and some that are... less than stellar. hopefully you prove to be in the first list.

    Good Luck! (mod edit: let's keep this to welcoming Sarah!)

      Again, a mod comes along and changes things. first deleting and now removing half my comment.

      Thankyou for telling me what's wrong with my comments. truly you are the pinnacle of trying to rehabilitate this horrible, horrible human being.

      If you won't dignify me with a response telling me your problem, how can you reasonably expect me not to repeat behaviour. It's nonsensical.

        Just chill out bro

          I would be fine if they'd just tell me why they keep changing things. the fact they don't gives me a reason to be annoyed with them. that and given their are no alerts to the changes made means I have to actively check back to make sure they aren't pulling more bull.

            If this were facebook this is where we'd tag in "Making White Dudes Type Paragraphs"

        Time and place dude. This is not the time to sook.

          I'm going to get pissed when a moderator bans a comment, then alters another without any explanation of the issue. at that point I will call them out. Personally I don't really care about the comment much but, the lack of transperancy on what problems they had with it, I will not leave alone. That's how you get censorship conspiracies.

            Sometimes we can't respond immediately because life gets in the way. And there's also no function to provide a reason to a user when a comment is suspended (without basically reposting the comment, which goes against the point of removing it in the first place).

            So to take the heat out of the situation, the reasoning is this. As it's noted in the community guidelines, attacks on authors aren't cool.

            Now I know you obviously weren't having a go at Sarah. But you're using a post where she's introducing herself to have a crack at other authors.

            Surely we can agree that here is not the time or place to be prosecuting that, and it's hardly the most accommodating way to welcome a new Australian writer, which everyone wants.

            Be the change you want to see in the world, and all that. I understand the frustration with the lack of reasoning, so I hear you there, but I can't work 24/7 and moderation systems are often imperfect.

            If you can indulge me a fraction further: I wanted Sarah to have a good first day and a great first week working on Kotaku and the other sites, the same way everyone did for me when I started.

            I hope everyone can all help me with that, yourself included.

            Thanks for your patience.

              Thankyou. Look I understand you aren't omnipresent and all but, If you have time to outright edit the comment, then surely some reasonable explanation isn't too much of a stretch to ask for. that said, I thank you for the polite response. It's... not something I expect from too many places online anymore. even apparent professionals have been less than polite even towards rather fair things.

              So thankyou. I can see the problem and I'll work on it.

                I'd done the edit on my phone walking home from the station. I wanted to provide something in the time that I had. But we got here in the end, so all's well I hope.


    Glad to see we are getting some more Aussie writers :)

    I was worried that Kotaku AU would wither and die after Nine bought it, but it seems that's not going to be the case, which is great.

    Welcome! It’s great to have a new writer in Kotaku. Looking forward to reading some of your articles.

    From the buildings, paving and narrow laneways, is that photo from Cusco, Peru?

    A second guess would be Antigua, Guatemala but I don't remember it being as hilly as that photo...

      On the money! That pic was taken in a the streets of Cusco, one of the coolest places I've ever visited.

    Welcome aboard! More Aussie content :)

    Oh you sound like fun, looking forward to your content!

    Good to see some more Aussie writers in the mix! :)

    "When does Days Gone get good?"

    It... doesn't. :(

    Welcome to the team, Sarah.

      Controversial opinion here but it wasn't that bad after you got over the initial 10-hour slump... if you can make it.

        Without spoiling too much, I think I got into the final quarter of the game (where you encounter the forth, really big camp) and I just lost interest in the game. I ended up trading it away through EB Games.

        I found with Days Gone, I just wasn't engaged with the story, the game play mechanics felt clunky (especially riding the motorbike) and I just didn't like Deacon St. John as a protagonist. I understand why he is the way he is but... when I don't like the character I'm playing as, I find it difficult to enjoy the story that they're involved in. Overall, the game just felt like a chore to me.

    Good luck, more Aussie stories would be great :)

    A new staff writer? Excellent!

    Now there's no excuse to not make endless articles about all of my specific gaming tastes!

    I look forward to articles discussing minutia about Stalker, System Shock 2, and turn based strategies. Forever.

      Although none of that interests me, I'd take it over the frequent posts about the sims.

    Welcome Sarah! Look forward to your work, always great to have another voice on board :)

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