Mike Fahey, a well-known video game journalist who died at the age of 49, is a Kotakus fan

Mike Fahey, a well-known video game journalist who died at the age of 49, is a Kotakus fan ...

Mike Fahey of Kotaku, one of the oldest-tenured writers at one of the game's oldest and most popular online publications, died on Friday. He was 49. Over 16 years, Fahey wrote with great hilarity and deep admiration for toys, snacks, giant robots, and video games, and the emotional bonds that tied them all to his readers.

Eugene Abbott, Fahey's partner, confirmed his death on Friday. In 2018, Fahey suffered an aortic dissection, which is a tearing of the body's main artery, that paralyzed him from the chest down and forced him to use a wheelchair. In April, Fahey suffered another such tear, and he died of an infection relating to these chronic health problems.

Mike Fahey joined Kotaku in 2006 after making humorous posts about a Pikachu plushie that went missing. According to Polygon, he had a Pikachu that people kept kidnapping. I believe it was attached to an 18-wheeler the last time it was seen.

Brian Crecente, Kotaku's editor-in-chief from 2005 to 2011, recalled that Fahey was a contributor on a blog Crecente had started prior to the company's founding. Fahey was Crecente's first hire when he was named Kotaku's editor.

Crecente explained that for him, writing funny stuff comes across as forced, but for him, it was natural. He was pushed to pursue investigative journalism and longer-form writing, but I think his favorite thing was making people laugh.

Fahey climbed out of his shell when Crecente hired him in November 2006, and he has been a staff writer ever since. I once again had a job, a girlfriend, and eventually my own apartment, sans roommates, wrote Fahey. At Kotaku, Fahey became well-known for his appraisals of delectable treats Snacktaku was the running title of these posts, and for celebrating the lighter moments of video gaming culture.

Fahey narrated himself as an everyman pop culture fan, with his interests and passion spanning the Transformers, Final Fantasy, Street Fighter, the Madden NFL, and role-playing games. In October 2009, he published a groundbreaking memoir of his own video game addiction while playing EverQuest, and how it broke apart a relationship with Abbott that he would soon mend.

Everyone would say, Ha ha, you talked to the guy who ignored you for video games? Abbott said on Monday. They seemed to understand that Fahey was approaching level 40, which they nonetheless disliked. But there was never a part of me that was ever like, Does he not care? Does he love the video game more? I was just like, Bruh, hurry up.

Michael McDonald's post about a Castlevania Wall turkey or how to prepare an authentic Castlevania Wall Turkey were par for the course. In 2008, his one-man campaign for Stan Bush got The Touch, a remake of Transformers: The Movie animated feature for Guitar Hero 5.

In one of Fahey's most memorable, and most outright outrageous, posts for Kotaku, he was playing a video game in his office, looked over his shoulder, and saw a spider the size of a small Volkswagen on the ceiling overhead. He then smashed it with a copy of Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare for Xbox One. The box is still attached to the ceiling.

Fahey made suggestions to the cliche of the big, overgrown kid, not least because he weighed 6-foot-6. Abbott remembers that he would often return from business meetings and expos with a suitcase full of surprises for his children. Hed open up the suitcase and all the candy and toys would come out, they said.

Abbott said he brought a lot of ramune and Hi-Chew [candy] home from Momocon 2015 [in Atlanta] and called the kids in, opened them up on the bed, then fell asleep, surrounded by candy.

Polygon's senior news editor, who was hired to Kotaku shortly after Fahey, had a similar impression from covering San Diego Comic-Con together. I returned to the hotel room, and there was Fahey, asleep on his bed, surrounded by all the toys he purchased from the show floor, like a kid on Christmas.

Michael Fahey is survived by Abbott and their two sons, Seamus and Archer, both 11. A GoFundMe campaign has been started to assist the family.