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A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on.

Omar Shehata @OmarShehata

23, Male


St. Olaf College

Philadelphia, PA

Joined on 8/1/08

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An Open Letter to Newgrounds

Posted by OmarShehata - April 20th, 2013

Dear Newgrounds,

I love you, very very much. To say that you've been a part of my life would be a gross understatement. You've influenced me in ways I could not imagine. I've practically grown up here. I don't remember a time before Newgrounds.

I've recently gotten accepted to the University of Rochester, a very selective school in the united states. And I was accepted only because of Newgrounds. Here is an excerpt from the admission letter:

Each of our 1,200 new Rochester students will have to make a critical, personal contribution to life on Rochester's River Campus. Learning about your experiences creating Concerned Joe has convinced me that you belong here. Your personal perspective will add value for every other student.

I do not give credit to myself. It's not my experience nor perspective that would make a valuable contribution. It's the spirit and experience of Newgrounds that I have been very lucky to perceive.

I remember one summer, years ago, when I would read a little bit of Tom Fulp's biography and Newgrounds' history every night while drinking Arabic Coffee. I'll never forgot how inspired I felt, and it shook me how one thirteen year old boy's dream could eventually grow so large so as to change the lives of so many people.

Four years ago, Xelu made a thread on Newgrounds called "Looking for a programmer". I checked it out and PMed him. We just wanted to make a game for fun.

And who would have thought 4 years later, thousands of miles away, we'd be meeting for the first time ever in San Francisco, headed for the Game Developers Conference to showcase the game that has become the focal point, and purpose of our lives for the past 2-3 years, Concerned Joe.

So I would like to say, thank you Newgrounds, for being alive and beautiful.


An Open Letter to Newgrounds


Comments (17)

Also if you want to read a more in-depth review of how GDC went and our adventures:

<a href="http://concerned-joe.com/devblog/the-gdcxperience/">http://concerned-joe.com/devblog/the-gdcxperie nce/</a>

You're welcome

You too :D

Wait what?

Also, my uni's mascot is a yellow jacket too :D

A Newgrounds success story is one of the best success stories! I wish you two the best in your future careers!

Thank you!

This...this is for what NG was made.

And this is all she asks for.

How can you call NG a &quot;she&quot;?
No female would ever make so many cock jokes.
Maybe a lesbian...

But she's so pretty D:

Congratulations! Such a heartwarming story :D

Thank you!

Very cool.

Back atcha!

Oh I assumed you were like 27 this whole time.

Wait I'm lie, cheat, stealin my way to afford plane tickets over here, how the heck do you guys have a playable booth and tickets to GDC n FGS already!?
Also boooo I missed the indie meetup thing. I'm hangin out with you guys next year. Congrats, your GDC wrap-up stuff was fun.

Yeah...a lot of people think I look older than I really am.

Basically the whole development of Joe so far (along with the trip and everything) has been funded with the sponsorship money from the flash version of Concerned Joe and the revenue of Xelu's other flash game, Kawai Run 2.

And since I'm still living off my parents (and Xelu as well until recently) none of that money was wasted on rent, food or any of that sort.

Funny story about that indie meetup at the park, the one day where I decided to leave Xelu and rest at the hotel, he bumped into John Remero in the street and stumbled upon all those indies hanging out at the park.

So it's okay, I missed it too :D

Cool story! Congratulations on your acceptance to University of Rochester.


NG fosters the best of viewers and artists alike, I'm so glad your life has been enriched by your time here, and we are all stronger because of it.

Your story inspires me. I've been on here for a lot longer, and have done a lot less. Congratulations on getting into such a prestigious school, and congratulations on doing something you love.

Thank you for the kind words :D

well done poochi


Your story is kinda inspirational.

Congrats &lt;3


It's good to see you're doing something good with your life. :)

I have no idea why I missed this post when you posted it... Might have been those NATA audio entries. Anyway, congrats! It's a great achievement, and you *should* feel good about it. :P

Out of curiosity, what are you studying?

I haven't decided on the course of study yet, but probably something engineering related.

Wonderful story!

Thank you :)