What a year it's been for tip-top interviews on Eurogamer. We've talked to the leading lights behind the latest innovations in gaming, from Peter Moore to Peter Molyneux, Shuhei Yoshida to Shane Kim, Phil Harrison to Gemma Atkinson.
But for me, the most fun has been meeting celebrities and asking them about games they know very little about. I'll never forget the day I hugged a Ghostbuster, or the one-armed drummer from Def Leppard made me a cup of tea, or the darts champion convicted of indecent assault for fondling two women in a camper van kept touching me on the arm. Happy days.
To round off the year, here's a chat with former Blue Peter presenter Konnie Huq. She's currently promoting Wii and DS title SimAnimals, so we thought we'd ask her about John Leslie, posing nude for Playboy and the prevalence of bukkake-related innuendo in contemporary children's television programming.
PS: We're not supposed to talk about it yet, but come back in January for one of our biggest interviews ever, with an international celebrity you almost certainly want to have sex with. But for now...
Eurogamer: You're best known as being a former Blue Peter presenter. So: Peter Purves, Peter Duncan, Simon Groom. Wed, bed or push off a cliff?
Konnie Huq: Okay. Purves - I think he's good husband material, were I in the same age category. But then at the time, I think he was probably quite sexy, because he was trendy back in the seventies- he had all the aeroplane collars going on and the flares. So maybe a bed or a wed.
I was never a Duncster, but I like him, he's a really nice guy. I wouldn't push him off a cliff. Actually, Simon Groom voted me off The Weakest Link, so he can go off the flipping cliff. I'll wed Duncan and bed Purves.
Eurogamer: John Leslie?
Konnie Huq: I think he's a really nice bloke. I saw him just the other day. Do you want to see a picture of me and John Leslie in my phone?
Konnie Huq: Media things can blow up. I know him, and I know him well enough to know that... Anyway. Everyone's got their own opinion.
Eurogamer: And from a legal standpoint, specifically with regard to the libel laws of this country, the man has done nothing wrong.
Konnie Huq: Absolutely. He's a really sound bloke.
Eurogamer: Before you were on Blue Peter, you presented Milkshake on Channel 5...
Konnie Huq: I liked that, because I used to just do my own thing. I had no one telling me what to do, it was brilliant.
Eurogamer: Are you saying that Blue Peter is run by fascists?
Konnie Huq: I'm saying that I was on an autocue. Though it is live, actually, so when things went wrong I loved to freestyle.
I also loved doing product placement, but in a subliminal way. Obviously, because it's the BBC, you're not allowed to do any product endorsement. So I used to see how many taglines I could get in.
So if I was making Tracy Island or something and there was a Mr Kipling box, I'd go, "I've got some exceedingly good Bakewell Slices in this box." Or, "Our camera crew's been eating these miniature packs of cereal all week. These ones really turn the milk brown, these ones keep you regular, you've forgotten how good these ones taste."
Eurogamer: Did you ever try to get any naughty innuendo in there?
Konnie Huq: You almost can't help it, because nowadays nearly everything is innuendo. We had taiko drummers in once, and at the end of the show I said, "We're all going to have a big banging session now." Anything can be innuendo.
I remember doing a hovercraft film and I got absolutely sprayed with water. I went, "Oh gosh, it's all come in my face." Everyone was like, "I can't believe you said that," but I promise, I didn't realise at the time.
Eurogamer: What's your involvement with SimAnimals? How come you're promoting it?
Konnie Huq: I do a lot of stuff with young people who like gaming, and also I'm quite animal-friendly, so I think I seemed like a good choice. It's really cool because it's quite different from a lot of other games. It's great if you like nature and gardening.
It teaches you a lot about the different plants and animals you get in the woodland environment, so you can start building up a picture of how different food chains work.
The future botanists of our nation will start with SimAnimals, maybe.
Eurogamer: Our readers tend to be more into games where you shoot monsters in the face. Is there anything similar in SimAnimals? Can you run over the animals and break its legs off?
Konnie Huq: You can drop the animals in the river, and put all the plants in there and then they start dying. So if you wanted, you could create an urban wasteland. There is that possibility.
Eurogamer: Have you played the game yourself yet? What do you think of it?
Konnie Huq: I have, and it's really good. For a lot of city kids who might never get to see greenery, it's a nice compromise. It could get them into something they might not get into otherwise, so they don't just stay in front of a computer. It could open their horizons.
Eurogamer: Games are often portrayed negatively in the mainstream media as being bad for children. How do you feel about that?
Konnie Huq: I think it's good to have variety. If everything is just zombie-bashing, it gets monotonous and bland. It's good to have light and shade, and I think this is quite a nice flip-reverse.
Eurogamer: To quote Blazin' Squad.
Konnie Huq: Yes. You know the lyrics of Blazin' Squad? Shame on you.
Eurogamer: I love Blazin' Squad. I'm not ashamed.
Konnie Huq: I'm usually found quoting Shakespeare, not Blazin' Squad.
Eurogamer: Blazin' Squad's better. So what you're saying is, alongside all the zombie-bashing, it's good to have a bit of rabbit-drowning?
Konnie Huq: Absolutely. I used to be a champion at House of the Dead in my time. But it's good to be able to be brilliant at everything - to be brilliant at growing a forest, and brilliant at killing, too.
Eurogamer: During my extensive research on wikipedia, I read that you were once offered a six-figure sum to pose naked for Playboy...
Konnie Huq: I never heard six-figures. All I know is that my agent heard something... But they don't tell me stuff anyway, because they like to move all their little players about. So they probably gave it to one of their other people, who's a millionaire by now.
Eurogamer: Probably Gemma Atkinson.
Konnie Huq: That's what agents do, they just play everyone off against each other. So I don't know specifics. I have said "Never say never", but I don't think I will.
Eurogamer: I work for a videogames website which is a little bit smaller than Playboy...
Konnie Huq: How many hits?
Eurogamer: Over two million unique visitors a month, if you really want to know.
Konnie Huq: Really? Shut up! That's great.
Eurogamer: I'm afraid Eurogamer can't afford to offer you a six-figure sum to pose naked. We can offer you four-figures, though, and you can keep your vest on.
Konnie Huq: Doesn't that defeat the object?
Eurogamer: I didn't say how big the vest would be.
Konnie Huq: Aha, I see how you work... Interesting. Well, you know, we'll have to talk logistics off the tape recorder. We'll liase.
Eurogamer: I'm sure a lot of our readers would love to meet you in person. How about a 'Win a date with Konnie' competition?
Konnie Huq: Would it involve playing on the Wii all night? Would there be interaction? Verbal? Because if it's non-verbal, that's fine. I wouldn't have to do anything but do that [mimes using a controller].
Eurogamer: So you would be prepared to go on a date with one of our readers if you didn't actually have to talk to them?
Konnie Huq: Haha! I sound like a real bitch now, thanks. Um, I don't know. Am I, like, striking deals here? I'll get back to you on that.
Eurogamer: Also during my extensive research, I read an interview where you said you had a dungeon in your house with loads of whips and chains...
Konnie Huq: Oh, it was this woman from News of the World, she was pissing me off. All she kept asking was, "What are you like in bed?" I was like, "I don't have to answer that," and she said, "You're not on Blue Peter now, you have to chill out."
She was a psycho-freak interviewer from hell. So just to shut her up, I said, 'Okay, I've got whips in my wardrobe, and a dungeon.'
Eurogamer: So you don't really?
Konnie Huq: But your readers would probably like that, wouldn't they? So just put that I do. There's nothing wrong with lying. We all lie, it's fine.
Eurogamer: You were also quoted as saying you think Boris Johnson is cute...
Konnie Huq: It happened back when the BBC were apologising for everything left, right and centre, and I was the face of BBC shame, because of the phone-in scandal - which was a genuine mistake. It was a phone-in for an appeal, it wasn't like we were lining our pockets.
Eurogamer: I had this vision you stuffing handfuls of pound coins in your bra.
Konnie Huq: No. I had given a quote for the London Freewheel Cycling event - "Cycling is fun and healthy for all the family," sort of thing. That's a mayor of London initiative, and Ken was mayor at the time, though they're doing it again this year under Boris.
Some Tory MP went to the BBC and said, "Oh, that means Konnie's politically offiliated." They were running scared so they apologised on my behalf. Then to redress the balance I said, "Look, I think Boris is great, he's really funny on Have I Got News For You," blah blah.
Then these interviewers, they like to take it all back to the base, don't they? Like your bed-wed thing. So I said, "I suppose Boris's hair is quite cute and floppy." That's all. I didn't say anything about his face or whatever. He's got good hair.
Eurogamer: Just before we say goodbye, I wanted to read you this text message from our web admin, Dan. 'Ellie, I was just wondering if you could tell Connie that I wuv her...'
Konnie Huq: Wuv? Does he mean love?
Eurogamer: Yeah, and he's spelled your name with a C, so he clearly doesn't wuv you that much - 'Mostly for what she said after she got hustled for the Olympic torch. And she's super hot.'
Konnie Huq: He's allowed to be dyslexic. Is he fit?
Eurogamer: I can't answer that, I work with him. I could get done for sexual harassment.
Konnie Huq: Wed, bed or push off a cliff?
Eurogamer: Um. I can't answer that.
Konnie Huq: Ha! See, it's not as easy as you think!
Eurogamer: I wouldn't push him off a cliff.
Konnie Huq: Why wouldn't you wed him? Is he a bit of an arsehole? Imagine if you wrote that: "Yeah, he's a bit of an arsehole, honestly speaking." Have you got a picture?
Eurogamer: No, sorry.
Konnie Huq: What does he look like? Is he a complete computer geek?
Eurogamer: No, he's relatively normal.
Konnie Huq: I'm going to check out your website. I'll email him.
SimAnimals is out in January for Wii and DS. At the time of writing, Konnie Huq has not emailed Dan Pearson.