Game awards

Former journalism student recognized in Future class at Game Awards

This year, The Game Awards (TGA) will hold its annual awards ceremony honoring excellence in the global video game industry at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, California. Among the attendees will be Lukas Eggen, a journalist and podcast host who has been named a member of The Game Awards 2020 Future Class – a group of 50 people working in the field of games who represent the future of the art form.

“[TGA Future Class] is a way to grow together, to learn and to help people take a deeper root in the gaming industry, and to determine the next steps to help improve the industry as a whole, ”Eggen said.

Eggen began his media career as a student at the Reynolds School of Journalism at the University of Nevada at Reno, where he majored in print media. While at the school, Eggen worked as a writer, sports writer and sports editor at the University’s independent student newspaper, Mugwort from Nevada.

“I can’t say how important it was,” Eggen said. “The experience of working on time, working in a structured system and having to produce a product every week is invaluable. ”

After graduating in 2011, Eggen held positions such as editor at The Ely Times, sports editor at The Polk County Itemizer-Observer, and photographer at Cashman Photo Enterprises. He landed his current job as a digital content producer at the Las Vegas Review-Journal in 2019.

Working the 5 a.m. shift, Eggen helps manage the Review-Journal’s social media accounts, occasionally writes late-breaking articles and co-hosts one of the media’s podcasts, LAN Parties, with the media specialist. video and content Ryan Smith.

“I just introduced my boss to doing a games podcast,” Eggen said. “Basically I’m saying I know there’s a big audience out there that I feel like we can tap into.”

Eggen looked for the means other media approached the play space and came up with a new angle to cover it bbefore presenting it to his boss.

“It wasn’t just me saying ‘I love video games and we want to do a games podcast,’” Eggen said. “It’s a mixture of finding what you’re passionate about, then preparing yourself, having the data to back it up. ”

LAN Parties began producing shows in January 2020, just before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States. Eggen discovered that the pandemic had helped the podcast succeed as the world moved away.

“We started having to record remotely, but so did everyone, so they became more willing to make a call,” Eggen said. “It made it much easier for us to get guests that we wouldn’t normally be able to get, due to the location, because of the world we live in now.”

One guest who particularly stands out from Eggen is Nolan North, an outstanding voice actor who has performed roles in numerous media, such as Call Of Duty: Zombies, the Uncharted series, and various Marvel Comics media. After Eggen spent months planning an interview with North’s team, bringing him in as a guest helped the LAN Parties transition to a more believable gaming podcast.

“That one always stands out because it was kind of a watershed moment,” Eggen said. “After that it just got a lot easier to get these bigger guest names because now we can convey, ‘Hey, we have experience and a history with disembarking guests. “”

The consistency of the LAN Parties in obtaining guests and producing episodes has allowed them to tailor their platform to what pleases their listeners.

“We’ve got a better idea of ​​what our audience enjoys hearing and have found ways to give them variations on these topics in something they’ve never heard before,” Eggen said.

While there is plenty of game news and reviews podcasts out there, LAN Parties has found its niche by engaging in in-depth conversations with the people who bring games to life, such as actors, directors, songwriters, and writers.

“As a journalist, I love talking to people, I love learning about their stories,” Eggen said. “Bringing together the two industries that I love so much, like games and journalism, and finding the right balance to do both, is so rewarding.

As the podcast nears its 100th episode, Eggen hopes to see the industry continue to evolve into a more inclusive industry.

“The industry as a whole is starting to make a bigger push for diversity, whether it’s racial diversity or making games more accessible to people with disabilities,” Eggen said. “Audiences are starting to be embraced and growing in ways that they probably should have been a lot sooner.”

As the industry itself becomes more connected with its audience, LAN Parties continue to both highlight people within the gaming space and connect gaming fans. Some podcast listeners even became good friends with Eggen and his co-host.

“The ability to jump online and play games with [your] friends, whether they’re on the streets or across the country, that’s a very powerful thing, ”Eggen said.