What was your first experience with the Elite universe and what keeps you playing it today?
For one reason or another I never actually found Elite until it came out on PS4, I picked up a second hand copy about 5 years ago and little did I know that this game would change my gaming life! I love games that you can chill out in and relax, Elite is perfect for this and it has helped me get through some very difficult times over the last few years. I literally could not imagine not playing it, if someone said I had to get rid of all my games bar one I would keep this in a heartbeat.
Tell a quick story about your favorite moment in Elite: Dangerous.
I have so many it’s very difficult but I suppose it would have to be The Great Inti War from last year, I have never been a massive combat fan up to that point but the fact that the whole Fatherhood group came together and fought side by side and won was amazing. Winging up with my fellow Green Squadron friends every night to repel the onslaught was amazing and will probably always be my best memory.
Tell the story of how you earned your callsign.
Well, this really was a surprise as, up to that point, I always took it that you had to do something stupid in-game, however not this time! I was a member of Blue Squadron at the time, but none of them knew that I also owned an Xbox, there was a char going on between a few of us about other games and I said that I had just bought Red Dead Redemption 2 and posted a picture of it… forgetting that I had bought it on Xbox. Well all hell broke loose, sirens went off and the whole of Blue Squadron descended on me and ripped me to pieces for being a “double agent”. Then apparently all double agents are female and they christened me “Natasha” after Natasha Romanoff AKA Black Widow. They also found it even funnier as new recruits genuinely thought I was female and I am pretty sure a few have tried a chat up line or two on me!
Tell us about your favorite ship in the game.
My favourite has to be my Anaconda, TFS The Undertaker, kitted out in a purple and black paint job to match Takers original colours. I have done more engineering on this ship than any other and it’s my go to ship when I feel the need to go do some pew pew. it’s a beast and suits my combat style which is: sit there and blast my big guns at everything!
What drew you to join The Fatherhood?
I originally was part of Blue Squadron Original. I think I remember watching an Elite stream when I was learning the game and The Fatherhood was mentioned. After reading about what they were about it was obvious this was the group for me. I love this great community we have here and have made some amazing friends and memories.
What’s your day job, and how do you balance your home, work and gaming life (or do you)?
I am a manager of a camera store in Chester, England. What with that and having three kids along with my amazing wife it doesn’t leave much time but any spare time I do have I grab a bit of gaming time as it’s my little happy place away from the stresses of day-to-day life. If anyone wants to add me I am “Tilling 1977” on PS4 and Xbox and “CMDR Mark Tilling” on PC.
What is one thing most people don’t know about you that you wish they did?
That I am not a girl (although I have embraced my “Natasha” side now with my Black Widow welcome GIFs)
How did you come up with the name of your Commander?
I am terrible with creative names, I just chose my surname and my year of birth, stupid really as now everyone can tell how old I am (really didn’t think that through).
Any fatherly advice for new CMDRs trying to make their way in Elite: Dangerous?
If you own an Xbox and a PS4 keep it very quiet (lol). But, game-wise I would say just enjoy the game. Don’t try and rush things. Some of the early game stuff can get missed by rushing to get a bigger, better ship or more Cr. One of the advantages I had after I started my Xbox Commander and recently my PC one is slowing down and taking it all in.