Whilst 2013 might not go down in history as a vintage year for Nintendo, it draws to a close with Wii U sales seemingly on the increase and 3DS still holding its firm dominance of the handheld market. For us, here at Nintendo Life, 2013 has been a fantastic year - our best yet.

If I had to choose a single highlight of running a gaming site like Nintendo Life, it has to be seeing the progress and development year on year. Not all of our visitors are aware of our humble beginnings and that the site was born simply out of love for Nintendo games by three friends in England and now sits proudly as the most visited independent Nintendo site on the web. We’re not backed by a large publishing company and we don’t take direction from anyone but ourselves and our readers.

Websites generally measure their success on visits and pageviews, which basically converts to how many different people you can ‘reach’. In that respect we’ve had a great year, practically doubling our traffic compared to 2012. This year we’ve served up 70 million pageviews across the globe on a total of 27 million visits to the website - that’s an average of 2.22 pages per second for the entire year.

If you work that out into the amount of human time spent on Nintendo Life during 2013, that would be 223 years 323 days 09 hrs 42 minutes and 02 seconds - woah, that’s a long time.

Our team served up a total of 4,230 news stories & features with the top 3 most visited being Katy’s informative Guide: How to Spot Fake Paintings and Statues in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, and team articles: Feature: Pokemon X & Y - All You Need to Know to Get Started and Feature: Our Top 10 3DS Games - Summer 2013.

Reviews weren’t in short supply either with our team publishing a whopping 434 reviews in 2013, the top 3 most visited were: Pokemon X & Y (3DS), Super Mario 3D World (Wii U) and Harvest Moon: A New Beginning.

Team members here in the UK also had some time away from the site in September at the Eurogamer Expo hosted at Earls Court in London, where we hosted our very own Nintendo Life Street Pass Zone; that was a lot of fun.

We’ll be back at EGX London (as it’s now called) in 2014, tickets are expected to go on sale during early April and we would love to meet you there!

In July Thomas and Anthony embarked on the Great Edinburgh Run (10k) dressed as Mario & Luigi and managed to raise just over £1,000 for UK games industry charity GamesAid.

Nintendo of Europe also gained two former Nintendo Life writers earlier this year, Mike Mason and Andy Green, who both discovered a secret warp pipe to Frankfurt, Germany. It was an honour for us to have them on our team and we wish them all the best in their new roles at Nintendo. We love you guys.

However Mike and Andy aren't the only heroes - we have had a total of 47 different contributors to Nintendo Life this year and we would like to thank them all for taking part, they are:

(Editorial): Damien “Virtual Console” McFerran, Thomas “Hero of Time” Whitehead, Darren "Shinobi" Calvert, Anthony "F-Zero X" Dickens.

(News & Features): Andy Green, Orla Madden, Tim Latshaw, Martin Watts, Lee Meyer, Liam Doolan, Mike Mason, Katy Ellis, Jon Wahlgren, Rory Cocker, Christopher Costabile, Conor McMahon, Lewis Childs, Gaz Plant, Kerry Brunskill, Thomas Jones, Dylan Newcome, Joshua Phillips, Olly Jones, Javier Santana Panero, Jeff Lowe, Kai Jackson, Ken Barnes.

(Reviewers): Philip J Reed, Ron DelVillano, Morgan Sleeper, Dave Letcavage, Corbie Dillard, Stephen Kelly, Marcel van Duyn, Robert Hughes, Patrick Elliot, Jamie O'Neill.

(Guest Posters): Andy Robertson, Anthony John Agnello, Alex B, Alice Le Tissier, Graham Ellaby, Greg Giddens, Jeremy Thain, Michael Westgarth, Rob Burgess, Tom Lenting.

Along with trying to provide you with the best quality Nintendo content we also work hard at making Nintendo Life a friendly place to hang out and meet friends; this is no easy task and we make a special thank you to Des for her tireless efforts this year keeping our forums friendly and safe. We also thank Raylax and DarkwingLz for joining Des in her quest for peace on planet Nintendo Life!

You guys kept the moderation team busy too, posting 245,617 comments, 411,359 forum posts and 6,866 forum topics; Oh hai there SheldonRandoms, CanisWolfred and GuSilverFlame!

There are a few other thank you’s for 2013; firstly all the awesome guys at Eurogamer (aka Gamer Network) - Rupert, Matt, Simon, Mark, David, Tom B, Ben and Tom P. Secondly the fantastic team at Nintendo UK - you know who you are and you’re all brilliant. Thirdly all the other great websites that remember to link to our articles.

Last - but not least - you, yes you. Without you, the readers, it would be kind of pointless running this website and time and time again you’ve made it worth our while. We hope you’ve enjoyed our coverage this year - it’s been great for us - and we’re looking forward to an even more exciting 2014

You’re awesome.