Xbox Ambassadors, it’s a new month and that means a new community spotlight! We’re celebrating our last Xbox Ambassador of the Month for the year 2020 – the one and only CamicaziBoss! CamicaziBoss is a friendly and inclusive presence in the Xbox Ambassadors Discord, a repeat contributor of well-written and heartwarming submissions to this blog, and a very social gamer who is often looking for someone new to squad up on Xbox with. For all these reasons and more, CamicaziBoss is an excellent example of what it means to be an Xbox Ambassador. She’ll be joining the ranks of the Xbox Ambassador Community Champions this month, specializing in moderation, feedback, and content. Read on below for some background on her experience as an Ambassador, what she does outside of the program, and some wise words of advice as well!
How did you first get into gaming, and what is your favorite game from that period of your life?
I always like to joke that I was “late to the party.” The earliest games I remember playing were Zoo Tycoon and Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 – my older brother and I would sneak out of bed and cuddle up in the big computer chair to play together. By “play,” of course, I mean he would play while I watched. Somehow, I always fell asleep before it was my turn.
I didn’t get into Xbox until my parents separated in 2012. My dad’s friend gave him a Halo 3: ODST edition Xbox 360 to keep him company, and some of my fondest memories are playing Halo 3 with my brothers on that console. It was a hard time for all of us, and that game helped give us an escape. The disc doesn’t work anymore, but we still have it because none of us can bear to let it go.
Why did you become an Xbox Ambassador, and what keeps you so involved in the program?
Honestly, I initially became an Ambassador for the rewards. Free stuff for being nice on the internet? Sign me up! Now, nearly two years later, my motivations have changed. It’s hard to say what keeps me involved.
If I had to pick one thing, I’d say I’m here for the people. I have met so many incredible, amazing human beings, from all around the globe, through the Ambassadors Program. Some of them are amazing artists, some are involved in charity work, and others are just people like me.
What is your most positive gaming experience?
This is a hard question. I primarily game socially, and I’ve had so many wonderful interactions with other people on Xbox. A couple of my most positive experiences have made it onto the Xbox Ambassadors blog.
One of the most memorable, though, was the first time my GTA crew got together after one of our members left this world. We had a car meet, messed around, and talked, but at the end, we took a moment to honor her with speeches and a salute on a jet painted like the one she used to provide air support for us. The way everyone came together and supported each other when one of our own was lost will forever hold a special place in my heart.
You manage some communities of your own, outside the Xbox Ambassadors Program. How did those get started, and what is one tip that other Ambassadors should know if they plan to do the same?
My Discord server started as a group chat, and progressively got larger as more people have joined. My GTA Online crew actually originated in the Xbox Ambassadors – a bunch of us kept getting together to play Sumo, and eventually the group took on a life of its own. Now my nickname is “Mother of Chaos” and my members refer to themselves as “crew babies.” I’m still not 100% sure how any of that happened.
My number one tip for starting communities is to be patient with yourself and with your members. Not every community is going to take off, and those that do often take a lot of time. It’s okay if you only have a few dozen members or if activity is low, and it’s even okay if it fails altogether. When that happens, figure out what went wrong, forgive yourself, and try again.
What makes a healthy gaming community, and what can individual gamers do to help keep their communities healthy?
I think that a sense of security and trust goes a long way in keeping a community healthy. Members who feel secure within the community are more likely to express their thoughts, opinions, and feelings. Members who trust each other are more likely to form lasting friendships and even build support networks for one another.
Clearly defined rules, boundaries, and roles are also really important. What those are is up to you, but every member of the community should be on the same page about what is or isn’t acceptable, as well as who to turn to for help or when things go wrong. That goes back to trust; community members need to be able to trust community leaders to do what they feel is fair and best for the community, and leaders need to be able to trust members to respect rules and boundaries.
You’ve written some excellent blogs that we have published here on the Xbox Ambassadors Community Blog. How do you decide what to write about, and do you have any advice for other Ambassadors who want to be published here?
Both of my blog posts are about cute, heartwarming experiences with younger gamers. They were experiences that made me happy, and I decided to write about them in order to share those good feelings with the world. I write about things that are important to me, like being kind to other people and reaching out to other gamers.
The only advice I can offer to those who want to be published is to just write. If you think it’s a good idea, don’t worry about whether or not other people will agree. Write it anyway.
Can you tell us more about your life and interests outside of gaming and the Xbox Ambassadors program?
There’s a life outside the Xbox Ambassadors program?
I’m kidding! Outside of Xbox, I really enjoy reading and writing. One of my life goals is to publish a novel (I just need to motivate myself to actually finish something worth publishing). I write poetry for fun sometimes, and I like to make art but am bad at it.
I love science and learning about the world around us, as well as about people. I’ll be graduating with my bachelor’s degree in biology with a psychology minor next spring! After that, I want to go to medical school to become a surgeon.
What message would you like other Xbox Ambassadors to hear from you, when reading this spotlight?
You matter more than you think you do. I was really surprised when I found out I had been selected – I often find myself thinking that I don’t belong, don’t do enough, or that no one notices me. Imagine what a shock this was!
People do notice, even if you don’t realize it. Both inside and outside the Ambassador program, what we do impacts other people. Remember to be kind. It is both noticed and appreciated.