Merry Christmas With Our Favorite Articles


As you may have noticed, the schedule has been a bit strange lately. The reason for this is the strange timing of Christmas this year, coupled with Toy-TMA’s Head Writer/Editor coming down with the Black Death. Well, while I’m recovering and dealing with Christmas, I’m taking the time to think about some of the best articles Toy-TMA has to offer. I really am proud to lead this team of writers here, even if we aren’t the biggest site on the Internet. We’ve done a lot of great content, and I want to point some of it out. So here, in no particular order, is a handful of my favorite articles from the last few years.

Let’s Think Deep: The Great Zelda Schism:

There’s no better place to start than one of our original Toy-TMA Originals, a column of Let’s Think Deep, our longform opinion pieces. We’ve done a lot over the past two and a half years, but one that I felt really proud of was “The Great Zelda Schism”. In it, I get a chance to pontificate on a topic I’d previously been unable to express, specifically why there’s such a divide among Zelda fans between the art styles and what they mean. This leads into one of my favorite reviews ever…

Gonna Take You For a Ride: A Review of Spirit Tracks:

Before we had the regular segment called Bad Games That Should Have Been Great, I encountered a pair of games that for one reason or another really frustrated me. The first was God of War III, and the second was Spirit Tracks for the Nintendo DS. This review, filled with righteous nerd anger, would be the basis for many more articles to come, and something about this stream of consciousness, annoyance-fueled tirade brings me back again and again. However, not everything is terrible…

Hot Wheels, a life long friend:

Brian, our usual Friday writer, is not only a great writer and produces some of my favorite articles, but he’s also one of my favorite partnerships online. He’s consistently brought a wonderful contrast to the things that Gus and I typically write, and fresh perspective is always fantastic.For instance, I had a passing fancy with Hot Wheels, but Brian understands them inside and out, quite literally. Getting to read his writing on Hot Wheels and what they mean in his life is really something quite special, and I wouldn’t disregard it so easily.

Crash Bandicoot, A Retrospective:

You can’t speak about passion without bringing Gus into the mix. Over a year ago I asked Gus for a guest piece and since that fateful day, Gus kept sending me article after article, even if I didn’t ask. I was delighted to bring him on as a fulltime writer, currently filling the Monday spot perfectly with his raw enthusiasm for every subject he touches. For instance, I’d highly recommend reading through his (currently) 4-part Crash Bandicoot retrospective as it will most certainly make a fan out of you. After his Crash Team Racing article, despite being a diehard Mario Kart fan, I was seriously considering switching teams. Do not underestimate Gus’ resolve for a good argument. Speaking of which…

Top 10 Misconceptions of Avatar The Last Airbender:

Gus spent over a year trying to convince me to give Avatar The Last Airbender a chance, and for some reason I refused to listen. Now that I’ve seen the show, I can safely say that it’s one of the best things ever aired on TV, but with that comes a love that demands argument, and in comes Gus’ list of 10 misconceptions from the series that I honestly couldn’t help myself from debating, leading to a counter article from my end. When the smoke had cleared, Gus’ original article had more comments and thus was declared the winner. However, this debate may rage on for some time elsewhere, such as No Right Answer, but that’s to be decided another day. But hey, winning isn’t everything…

How To Lose With Dignity:

Sometimes I just can’t resist a good humor article in the vein of Dave Barry, and so I’m so glad that I took the time and wrote a few guides on important subjects, most noteworthy “How To Lose With Dignity”. It’s an important skill but one that few people possess. All the same, I felt that my writing was strong and the humor flowed perfectly here. It really makes me wonder why I don’t do more How To guides more often…

Let’s Think Deep: Books and Games:

I can’t mention my favorite Toy-TMA articles without eventually mentioning my wife, Sharayah, seeing as how she’s one of my favorite writers, for clearly biased reasons. Joking aside, her Let’s Think Deep piece titled “Books and Games” is a wonderfully written article about the connection between books and video games, specifically how the two worlds relate to one another. She describes how the ideology of a hardcore gamer and the ideology of a hardcore reader don’t necessarily differ that greatly, as well as how the two media excel in different areas. So yes, we can be literary here beyond just talking about toys and video games.

Comic Book Club: Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld:

One of our past writers, Cassie, was great about offering another new voice among Gus and I ranting and raving about our favorite video games and cartoons. She covered a wide variety of toys that I’d never have thought of, such as creepy celluloid toys or some strange robots, but it was a Comic Book Club article of hers that jumped out at me. Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld is a comic book that I’d previously never heard of, but after Cassie described it I started to wish I had a greater knowledge of the source material, or at least had a younger sister that had been into comics. I’m a sucker for a good story, and Amethyst has all he elements of an interesting world. Learning about people’s past isanother big favorite of mine, hence why we have…

Halloween Costume Quest: Doing Halloween Costumes Like a Champ:

Another of Brian’s amazingly unique articles, this time regarding his history with homemade Halloween costumes, something we probably all have memories of. Not only does he take a stance that I fully endorse- that of the importance of putting forth some effort with costumes- but he shares with us some old home photos as well. Ever wanted to see Brian dressed as a train conductor? Or Macho Man Randy Savage? Well, now you can! There’s just something fun about articles written specifically to tie into a holiday, for instance…

Seven Tragic Video Game Love Stories:

I wrote this one this year to coincide with Valentine’s Day and felt extremely pleased with the results. I thought I had a good variety with a few people might not have considered at first, and best of all, it was timely! And original to our site! And well…it didn’t go as viral as I would have hoped. Perhaps part of this was because while I submitted this to Kotaku’s tip email in hopes of getting on their weekly Top 5 of Top 10 Lists, I didn’t make it, though some other list that seemed veeeeeeeery close to mine actually did. Thus is life sometimes. Every now and then when I feel lonely, I take a look back and remember some of those love stories again. But if there’s one article I look back the most fond out, it’s…

5 Things From DBZ I Wanted To See But Didn’t:

Nearly one year ago I wrote up yet another Dragon Ball Z list and initially thought nothing of it. I just wanted to talk DBZ, so I wrote a list to get my fix. However, the writing felt good, and more importantly, the images seemed to work so very perfectly at last. Part of this article’s special place in my heart is a simple fix I had made that ended up going a long way. At the time, there was a problem on our site where images wouldn’t stay centered, so I discovered that by making sure the images were the exact width of the article, they’d appear centered and by association make the article look more professional. And the result, now rendered irrelevant thanks to our spiffy new site design, was great. Not only that, I was on fire with the captions, a feat I can rarely replicate. This was a turning point for the site and sometimes when I need to remember why I enjoy writing for Toy-TMA in the first place, I stop here for a visit.

Of course, these articles aren’t the only ones that I enjoy, reread frequently, or would consider my favorites. No, there are far too many to list! So I want to hear what some of your favorite articles are instead. What have you enjoyed reading these past few years? What sort of features do you want to see more of? What can we do to serve you better? And fallow Toy-TMA writers, feel free to make a list of your own! It’s Christmas, so let’s look at the fond memories and continue on, shall we?

Merry Christmas one and all from Toy-Too Much Awesome!


About Author

Chris was the former Head Writer/Editor of Toy-TMA. He did a great job overseeing the site and getting new content published regularly. Always more than willing to respond to a comment or two, but pitiless with trolls! He has since moved on from TMA, and we wish him the best.

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