I have a few thoughts about this. First, I don't think I'm quite clear on what "New Game Journalism" really is, although one of my articles has been included in the Guardian round-up. When I joked about this on IM with Julian Dibbell, whose article "A Rape in Cyberspace" is also included, we decided that we weren't sure when our writing became labelled as NGJ. I admit that when I started GGA I was tired of reviews and previews, and I knew I wanted to write about so much more than that. But at the same time I still read reviews and previews, and I still read industry news, too.
Writing experientially to me has always been a part of journalism - we have called it "gonzo" journalism in the past, but look back at 19th century American journalists - like Mark Twain - and you'll see that it's always been a facet of writing for the public. Such writing is not now intended to replace traditional, or "standard" journalism (calling it "old", as UK Resistance does, I think dates it too much). If a reporter were to turn in a piece on Baghdad, for example, we news consumers would be served well by hearing the traditional journalistic take on events, but there is also something extremely valuable about hearing the reporter's personal experiences: what was it like to try to get this piece together? What does it feel like to live in Baghdad, to dodge car bombs every day, to see your colleagues die off one by one? Writing about that adds immesurably to our understanding of the situation.
Same goes for music. Tell me, in one piece, what an album and artist are like, where they come from, what the influences are; but excite and inspire me by describing what it feels to be in the audience at an incredible rock show, to be on tour with them.
If the guys at UK Resistance want to go on reading IGN, more power to them. It's not like IGN needs the money, but hey. Let the consumer decide. And if you really make purchasing decisions based on what IGN says, go ahead. But I have to wonder if these guys even read the mainstream newspaper - because what IGN (not to single them out but just as an example) does is not journalism; it's product reviews. Not that I'm an expert, but I have to believe that journalism encompasses a lot more than that.
Even taking the angle of "It should help you decide whether to buy the game": the standard review, often written on extremely tight deadline with pressure from advertisers to raise the scores, doesn't entice my imagination the way that an "NGJ" piece detailing an unusual experience with the game does. A NGJ piece will make me understand what is fascinating about the game, what play experiences are possible, and help me decide whether or not to get it. If you prefer to keep reading standard reviews and previews, go for it. But that's not going to be the clincher for me.
I don't really see NGJ and other game writing as being in conflict - why not view them as complementary? They express two different takes on a medium. At least two, probably more. And why should anyone be upset about that? What I don't understand is the bitterness, the fury over what's being called NGJ. We're just playing games, and writing about them. Because we love them.
You really want to hate on us for that?