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GameFAQs is a website and online community that hosts user-submitted walkthroughs, guides, codes, reviews and files related to a variety of video games on multiple platforms.
On November 5th, 1995, the site was launched by programmer Jeff Veasey, also known by his online alias “CJayC,” as database for video game guides and answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs). The site was originally named “Video Game FAQs Archive” and was hosted by America Online.
On September 11th, 1996, the domain “gamefaqs.com” was registered and the site relaunched later that year under its current name “GameFAQs.” In 1997, the Imagine Games Network (IGN) acquired GameFAQs as an affiliate, which continued until the expiration of the contract in January 2001. On May 6th, 2003, GameFAQs was purchased by the tech media website CNET. On July 19th, 2007, Veasey resigned as editor and administrator of the site, handing over the role to GameFAQs employee Allen Tyner.
The site allows registered users to submit walkthroughs, cheat codes, box art, screenshots, videos, game saves and reviews for any game listed on the site. Members can also use a feature called “GameFAQs Answers” to exchange questions and answers about a specific game, similar to the service provided by Yahoo! Answers. The site also hosts a large number of discussion forums, with individual boards reserved for each title and console, as well as off-topic interests, including anime, wrestling, television shows and technology.
In 2002, the site began hosting an annual tournament of video game characters known as “Character Battles,” in which two contestants are pit against each other through daily polls and only the winner proceeds to the next round. On August 23rd of that year, the webcomic Penny Arcade published a comic featuring a robot programmed to repeatedly vote for the video game character PacMan in a GameFAQs character battle (shown below).
The Life, Universe and Everything (LUE) board is a controversial subforum on the site named after “The Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything” from the science fiction book The Hitchhiker Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. The board was created sometime during 2001 as a place to discuss religious and philosophical topics but was closed off to newer users after moderation became problematic.
Hot Skitty on Wailord Action
“Hot Skitty on Wailord Action” (HSOWA) is an expression referring to the bizarre breeding pattern of the creatures Wailord and Skitty from the Nintendo video game series Pokémon. The phrase was first coined by GameFAQs member Endgame in a Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire thread after the North American release of the games in 2005.
Suddenly X! Thousands of Them!
“Suddenly X! Thousands of Them!” is a snowclone template that is often used in storytelling to introduce a new group in an abrupt manner. It was popularized on GameFAQs with the phrase “Ninjas! Thousands of them,” which was widely used on the “Random Insanity” board.
Summoning Captain Planet
Summoning Captain Planet is a chain commenting game based on a recurring trope from the 1990s animated TV series Captain Planet and the Planeteers, in which the superhero Captain Planet can be summoned by five Planeteers combining their powers of earth, fire, wind, water and heart. The practice is believe to have originated on the GameFAQs LUE board in May of 2005.
Diamond: The Hardest Metal
Diamond is The Hardest Metal is an expression stemming from a GameFAQs Forum poster who argued that a car made out of diamonds could withstand smashing against a wall and smugly asserted that diamonds were one of the hardest metals known to man.
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