Today on Industry Interviews, The Switch Effect is joined by The BlackNES Guy who is the creator of The Ultimate Guides, strategy guides created for the NES Classic, SNES Classic, Legend of Zelda, and more retro titles. These fully colored and highly detailed guides are perfect for the player who wants to be sure every nook and cranny is explored or wants to learn more about the games they love. So without further ado, let’s learn more!

Thank you so much for speaking with us today. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am a father, husband and retro gamer at heart. I am a sucker for the nostalic feeling of anything from my past.

Can you tell us a little bit about how you got into gaming and ultimately putting together these guides?
I’ve always loved video games, but haven’t always had the time to play as much as I liked. Collecting a mint condition Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past CIB with Map has always been on my mind for as long as I can remember. That game was my frist video game I just really loved and played over and over again. So I have always wanted to start a retro collection, but when the NES Classic got released back in fall of 2016, I thought it would be great to have a guide book to summerize all the games in it. This would especially be helpful for people, like me, who never had a NES growing up (I started with a SNES). That’s how the first book, The Ultimate Guide to the NES Classic was made.

What was the first console and game that you owned?
I started with a SNES when it first came out.

Do you have any fond childhood memories based around gaming?
So many! Playing TMNT: Turtles in Time over and over again with my little brother, exploring Super Mario World for the first time, and renting games you know nothing about from the video store and spending the next 2 days glued to the TV trying to beat them before Monday. That was my childhood, lol.

You don’t want to travel in Hyrule without this guide!

Were any of your family members enthusiastic about gaming?
My younger brother loves video games as well, but got more into the modern systems then I did. He would purchase all the Playstaions that have come out over the years, while I would purchase the Wii so I could use the vitual console to play some of the older games on it.

Can you explain how The BlackNES Guy began?
I started publishing books on Amazon and thought it would be cool to publish books about some video games that I love. So, I did and then it morphed into something so much bigger. People started emailing me and leaving reviews saying how much they loved the books which got me even more excited about creating them. That was 12 months ago.

What led to the inspiration to create strategy guides?
Growing up I never had a NES, so I wanted guide books that I could use today to get through some of the classic games. Yes, there are so many options online, but I really like having the actual books in my hands. So I am making them for the people who never experienced the games back in the day and will be playing them for the first time. I am also making them for people who just love to collect guides for fun. Basically, I am making them for myself and I share them with everyone else J.

For those who have not had the chance to view your guides, what would you like to share about the information contained within them?
The majority of them will be complete walkthrough guides, while some are an overview of the games on the NES and SNES Classic systems. We will be releasing a brand new style of guide books that will be an Ultimate Reference Guide for Final Fantasy. For larger and more open games like FF, we are going to be going in that direction.

With The Ultimate Guide to the SNES Classic just launched, what can we expect next from you?
We are focused on producing more guides for the SNES Classic for now and once the new year is here, we will be going back and creating some more for the rerelease of the NES Classic.

Best way to learn about all the games included!

Let’s jump forward a bit. Here’s one to get you thinking. If you weren’t writing video game guides, what would be your hobby?
Scuba Diving! I love scuba diving and would love to be able to get paid to spend time in the ocean.

As you’re aware, technology continues to advance the gaming industry. Have you been a fan of these changes?
YES! Technology moves our world forward, without any advances in technolgoy we still might be stuck with E.T The Video Game!!!

Where do you think technology will bring us in the future?
I think VR is going to do wonders for the gaming industry. I am not talking about the VR that is here today, that’s not real VR. That’s kinda like the Atari version of VR. In the next 5 to 10 years I see us being able to be immersed in our favorite games and it being a full body experince. VR will be the next big thing to gaming.

We at The Switch Effect are obviously big fans of Nintendo’s new console.  What are your impressions of the Switch?
I’ve only played it a little bit, but so far I have enjoyed it. I am looking at getting my hands on one early 2018.

Which new games are you looking forward to the most?
I’ll buy it mostly for Breath of the Wild, lol. Mario Odyssey looks really neat as well. I am a huge Nintendo fan so I am excited to see what they will do with it.

We came across your website, FB, and Twitter accounts. What is the best way for our readers to keep up with you?
Facebook is the fastest way to keep in touch, www.facebook.com/theblacknesguy. I also respond to all emails personally at blacknesguy@theblacknesguy.com and my website is www.theblacknesguy.com.

Last question now that I’ve run you through the gauntlet. Is there anything else you’d like to share?
Game on!!

Thank you so much letting us and our readers get to know you better. Each guide that has been put out contains such a wealth of information and is great for wanting to explore these games for the first time or again! All of us at The Switch Effect look forward to what you write next!

Use the links below to follow and purchase The BlackNES Guy’s Ultimate Guides: