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Phil Sims (also known as Vger) is the owner of EmeraldCoast.co.uk, a popular Sega fansite that includes comics, news, reviews, a radio channel and more. He also happens to be an organiser of Summer of Sonic, the world’s biggest and longest-running Sonic the Hedgehog convention.
 Phil has kindly agreed to do an interview for PlusXp. HelenBaby shoots the breeze with him about the Emerald Coast site, Summer of Sonic, and Sonic games in general.

 

 

Phil, you do all the site design yourself. What were your artistic inspirations when designing the layout of your page and the different themes?

I take my inspiration for the design of my website from other website designs, seeing how other sites are laid out and work, and adapting it to work on EC. One of the features I’m most proud of is the themes option which allows any visitor to change to colour scheme and style of EC with the push of the button. It adds variety to the site, something that I think is missing to a lot of Sonic fan sites which go for mostly blue themes for obvious reasons.


The site’s updated fairly frequently, and always seems a-buzz with new content. How many hours a week, roughly, would you say you put in to working on the site?

It really depends, currently I have a lot of things going on with work and real life so I can’t work up the enthusiasm to work on EC that much. In the past I’ve had far more time to dedicate to the site and I’ve really enjoyed working on it, generally though I try to put at least an hour or two into it a week, more if I have time.

 

What would you say has been the site’s biggest achievement so far?

It’s actually really hard to pin something specific down, when I set out to start EC I was just looking to do it for a bit of fun. I never thought my work would end up giving me so many opportunities, but if I had to choose one it would be getting the opportunity to interview Yuji Naka, the creator of Sonic the Hedgehog, it really blew my mind that I got this chance just from running a small fan site.

 

Emerald Coast's been going since 2005

 

What are your future plans for Emerald Coast?

I keep asking myself that question; in the short term I want to continue to produce comics, it’s what I started the site for and I still enjoy doing it, although coming up with ideas seems to be a lot harder than I remember. Beyond that, I’d look to maintain it as a place for my staff to publish their comics and ideas. I have a few ideas floating around but nothing specific; once again it all comes back to finding the time and inspiration to do what I’d want to do.

 

Can you explain to our readers what Summer of Sonic is and why they should attend this year?

Summer of Sonic is an annual UK based convention celebrating the world’s favourite blue hedgehog, run by fans (primarily the Sonic Stadium) in conjunction with SEGA. In the past SoS has had musicians like Crush 40, Julien K, Bently Jones etc who have helped shape the sound of Sonic; Comic artists from the Archie and Fleetway comic series’; and even some of the creators of Sonic himself.

 

Crush 40 performing to a crowd of 800 people at Summer of Sonic 2010. The event gets bigger every year, with this year's set to have a guestlist of 2000...


What can you tell us about the upcoming Summer of Sonic event happening this July?

At this stage I’d say expect more of the same from what we’ve had previous years. This year’s SoS event will be taking place on the 7th of July, this time the event will be all ticketed so make sure you get one when they become available, beyond that it’s a case of keeping an eye on the Summer of Sonic website details of where and guests at the event will be announced soon.

What are your personal opinions on the recent Sonic games (eg. Generations et al)

I’ve really enjoyed the recent Sonic games, with Colours, Generations and Sonic 4, Sonic seems to have had a good run recently, pardon the pun. I like the decision that has been made to focus more on Sonic and the core concept of speed for the games, that is what drew me to the Sonic games way back in the early 90′s and it’s what keeps me going even now 20 years later.

 


 

Emerald Coast : http://emeraldcoast.co.uk/
Summer of Sonic : www.summerofsonic.com


Find Phil :
On deviantArt : http://vger.deviantart.com/
On Twitter here : https://twitter.com/#!/philvgersims

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HelenBaby On May - 4 - 2012

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