About This Site

Welcome to Loner Strategy Games. I’m Rich Gallien, owner, webmaster, and entire crew for this web site. The image you see above is the runner up from my logo contest. Although it didn’t win I liked it so much that I bought it.

This site focuses on single player games and strategy games of all types, PC or tabletop. It focuses on space strategy games in particular, a special passion of mine when it comes to games.

By the way, if you think all you see on this site are favorable reviews, you’re right! If I don’t like a game, I don’t spend the time to play it and review it. I usually know after about 5 minutes whether I’m going to like a game or not, so why spend the time playing and writing about something I don’t like, when I can enjoy learning a new game and writing about that instead? So, if you see a game on this site, the chances are almost 100% that I like it.

I live in Indianapolis, Indiana and retired a couple of years ago from Raytheon, a defense contractor. PC gaming has always been a passion of mine and now I have the free time to pursue my hobbies as much as I like, which is gaming and building websites. What better way to enjoy them than to combine them together!

Also, it’s not entirely true that I’m the whole crew for this website, I do get a lot of help from Bandit, who likes to sleep between my keyboard and monitors.

Bandit

And then there’s Fiona, who always has an opinion and is always guarding my flank.

Tools of the Trade

For those of you who have read this far you might be interested in some of the tools I use for playing games, recording games, making videos, managing a website, etc. Most of the things have dual uses, like my PC. Can’t play PC games without a PC and you can’t run a website without a PC.


Listed below are a lot of the tools I use listed in no particular order and yes, many, but not all of those are affiliate links. The affiliate links have been clearly identified. But all things considered I could be an affiliate for many products, these are just the ones I know, love and use on a daily basis. Using these links will also help support this website.


I will eventually add pages to provide additional info about some of these, like a comparison page comparing the products I’ve tried. One would be the software I use for screen capturing, that’s been a long journey fraught with a lot of unexpected surprises.

Photo Editing

When it comes to photo editing software, I’ve struggled with that from time-to-time over the years. Freebies are nice but typically don’t serve all the purposes I need them for. I finally settled on an industry leader, Adobe Photoshop, simply because of its versatility but it is not cheap. There are a lot of freebies I do use at my website, but this is not one of them. I probably don’t even use 10% of Photoshop’s capabilities but it does exactly what I need it to do each and every time. The learning curve can be a little steep, although there are tons of tutorials out there for it, but the learning process is well worth the effort. Every image you see on this website has been edited in some fashion with Photoshop, from perhaps brightening a dim image to resizing the image to the size I need. To me it’s been worth every penny of my investment.

Screen Capturing Software

Through the years I’ve tried lots of video capture programs, from paid versions to free versions like Nvidia Ge Force Experience, Microsoft Windows Game Bar and OBS Studio. The product I favor and use is OBS Studio, hands down. With this app I can constantly monitor what’s going on in a secondary monitor and can program almost any hotkey combination I want to start and stop recording. It also let’s me choose which screen I want to capture, something at least one of the freebies lacked. It might not have all the features a paid program has but it does everything I need it to do.

I have a complete article on this in the works but until then, grab OBS Studio here if you’d like. It’s free!

Video Editing

I don’t like posting my ugly mug online. Since I mostly do screen capturing of games for my videos anyway and am not very photogenic, I don’t have a camera I recommend and use as part of my video editing. When I do make that occasional video that requires a camera, I just use my iPhone.

As for video editing software I’ve found that the paid versions suit me the best although I plan to revisit this issue again. Corel VideoStudio has been one of my favorites in the past, but I switched to Adobe Premiere Pro about 2 years ago.

I am a VideoStudio affiliate but have not posted an affiliate link yet simply because I don’t have the latest version to analyze.

Training

When I talk about training, I’m not talking about how to play games better (that’s what most of my articles are for) but how to gain visitors to my website. After all, what good is a website if nobody visits it? I’ve tried a lot of programs and approaches, most of which have good points, some paid and some free, but I’ve only had relevant success using one program and that’s Income School (paid link).

With all the other programs combined I grew my website visitors from zero visitors per month to 2 per month, and that was over the course of more than a year. Within a year of using the Income School techniques I got that number up to over 10,000 per month. Currently I’m approaching 20,000 per month but honestly, I should be much further along and be hitting well over 30,000 per month. My problem?

One is poor competition analysis, which this program traches you to do well. It’s probably the single most important skill you can learn next to writing good content. Another issue is that I’ve taken long periods of time where I haven’t written anything, mostly due to personal issues and working full-time for a while, leaving little time to write in. Besides, this is really a fun-time project for me that allows me to pay for my gaming habit. There are a lot of people who make some seriously good income from a site like this, and some even earn a full-time income!

Try not to let any sticker shock make you run. It seems expensive but Income School currently has 29 courses and is adding new ones all the time. They teach you how to create a profitable blog, a viable YouTube channel, search analysis, how to create info products, and how to write effectively for the web.

It might be best to get to know these guys and their organization a little better so visiting their YouTube channel is a great idea. They’re constantly producing new videos and actually give away some of their techniques for free.

As I said previously, Income School (paid link) has lots of courses, not just one, that help you earn a living by blogging. They teach you about affiliate programs, how to write great content, how to win the SEO battles and much more. I know this sounds like a sales pitch, and maybe it is, but this is the first program I’ve found that I really believe in. I’ve been a member for almost two years now and don’t regret a minute of it! You probably wouldn’t be at this website now if it weren’t for them!

Want to know more about making money with a website? Here are six problems Income School solved for me.

PC & Laptop

My PC and Laptop are my mainstays for more than just games, email and surfing the web, but for my business as well. I need both of them to be both reliable and fast, and for that I went with Alienware.

By buying an Alienware PC or Laptop I feel like I’m “future-proofing” my investment. By that I mean, since this is cutting edge technology, it won’t be outdated in the near future. I bought my Alienware Aurora PC in July of 2019 and my Alienware Laptop in June of 2019, recently upgraded both to Windows 11, and they both still easily play the most graphics intensive games I have and are still completely reliable. And both of them, especially the PC, have literally been on almost every day from the time I get up until the time I go to bed.

Alienware PCs and Laptops are a little more expensive than most other brands but there are good reasons why. The first reason I’ve already mentioned, advanced technology. By having a more advanced PC or Laptop now it saves me the necessity of having to buy a new one, or upgrade an existing one, when it won’t do what I want it to, like playing a graphics intense game.

The second one was a little less obvious to me until I started digging into the specs of the comparable PCs. In every case Alienware was using higher quality, sturdier parts than its competitors. For example, I noticed that instead of a 650-Watt power supply like most of its competitors use, Alienware used an 800-Watt power supply in the PC I bought. This way it can handle the intense power drain a graphics card can place on a system, while still handling all the peripherals I like to add (I have 3 monitors hooked up to it, 3 external drives, a printer, and of course a keyboard and a mouse, plus have added 2 internal drives and it handles the load very well).

Since my PC and Laptop are several years old I can’t ethically rave about how great the newest versions are, but if past experience is an indicator I’m sure they are. Here are a few of the ones on Amazon that are worth looking at.

Content Creation Software

One important aspect to all this is what I record content in and how I post it to the web. I’ve not read about this approach anywhere else, but it works very well for me. I like to use Microsoft Word, which is part of the Microsoft Office 365 Suite (paid link).

When I write an article in Microsoft Word, I have a full-featured word processor working for me, complete with spelling and grammar checking. Once I’m satisfied with an article I simply copy and paste it into the WordPress editor, headings and all. I don’t have to manually add text or heading blocks, all that is done quickly and automatically for me. The headings even come over at the right level, meaning if I’m using a heading 2 in my Word article it gets pasted into the WordPress editor as a heading 2. After that adding image blocks or anything else is a pretty simple effort.

Another big advantage is that I have an automatic backup to the webpage on my local PC in case I make an unintended change or accidentally trash a page or post. Even if you don’t use Word I’d recommend creating all your content offline so you always have a back up copy ready for use.

“Advanced” Tools

By advanced tools I simply mean you’re someone who has either decided to tackle a website or wants to get some income out of it. Maybe you can get some ideas from these little blurbs below.

Web Hosting

Web hosting is where your online presence lies. There are lots of good ones, but I like Bluehost and have used it for years. Bluehost (paid link) is one of the more reliable hosts with good uptime stats, but its main advantage is that it includes WordPress and makes using WordPress so much easier to learn and use (plenty of tutorials) than any other host I’ve tried.

For websites like this that use a content management system, the last stat I saw was that WordPress was used on over 64% of all websites. Not a bad statistic to hang your hat on if you’re Bluehost (paid link).

They’re cheap too, with plans starting as low as $2.95 per month.

Making Money With Ads

All ad companies have some type of page view requirements with the exception of Google AdSense, they will actually accept a brand-new site into their program. Most of the other ad agencies, like Mediavine or AdThrive, have a 50,000 pageview per month minimum before they will consider you. Google AdSense is an option but the money you make from their ads is very minimal and it is really not worth the effort of adding them to your site unless you just want the experience of using ads at your website.

The most viable option when it comes to adds for a medium sized website like this (less than 50,000 page views per month) is Ezoic (paid link). For sites with less than 10,000 pageviews per month they will still accept you and place you in their “Access Now” program.

Once you sign up with Ezoic (paid link) they’ll pretty much do the rest. You have the option to determine where they can place their ads on your website, but they suggest you leave all options open to them. I did just that but was worried about how that might impact my traffic. So far, so good. I’ve noticed no negative impact to my traffic and I’m making at least 10 times as much as I would be right now if I was still using AdSense and I’ve been using Ezoic for around a year now.

I can be contacted at this e-mail address: rich@lonerstrategygames.com