Hi everyone, I normally go by whiteandshiny but to my friends I’m known as Rob! Many of you know me from the Xbox Ambassador events that myself and Eden2032 have hosted at the Microsoft Store in London.
Obviously because of the COVID-19 pandemic there hasn’t been an opportunity to host another event (one is in the planning stages for when thing go back to some sort of normality)! For me personally, I have missed the interactions with other fellow Ambassadors that are only possible when meeting up in person. It’s so important- maybe more than ever- to have a safe and welcoming environment for people that have a love of Xbox and gaming to be able to come together and share their experiences.
It isn’t just the Ambassadors that I’ve missed- it’s also the incredible staff at the store who get involved in the activities alongside us (I hope they’re all still wearing their Ambassador lanyards)!
I was also lucky enough to speak with The Major himself (yes, Larry Hyrb!). This was thanks to the online only FanFest. I got to ask him about his feelings about the importance of community. He expressed sadness that he hasn’t been able to meet and engage with the amazing Xbox community at the events that Xbox put on at E3, PAX, Gamescom and XO!
Larry also raised a great point that in some ways we have been able to engage with members of the community who maybe couldn’t come along to physical events in the past. For this Xsuite in just our small group we had Xbox fans from all over the world in many time zones, but we were all able to meet in one place (the only downside was not being allowed to take screenshots of the event, so you just have to imagine mine and Larry’s face next to each other)!
I think I can say that we have all been missing meeting up in person and while there are ways to do this digitally on Xbox and Microsoft Teams it’s not the same as hitting up spontaneous conversations in person at community events like the one we host at the Microsoft Store. I think Larry’s point of using different ways to engage also rings true as for me personally I don’t think I would have had the opportunity to speak with Larry was it not for FanFest being hosted digitally last year.
There are for certain positives for the community to come together virtually in these times, they are sometimes just a little harder to find!
Though in these stranger times I think it has been more important to look out for one another in lockdown situations as it’s easy to let the weeks slip by and sometimes not talk to anyone. This can make some people feel more isolated than ever so having a warm open community such as ours is more important than ever!
If anyone is feeling left out over this cold winter period, I want them to know that the Xbox Ambassador community is always here and you can always contact either me or another fellow community member to chat or play on Xbox (just as long as it’s not the middle of the night here in the U.K!)
Here’s to a better year (stay warm) and hopefully see some of you real soon!