A few years ago, we used to watch Machinima, original content created using game engines and screen captures. Red vs. Blue became the quintessential example of it, taking assets from Halo and creating completely new stories unrelated to the lore of the game. These days, game capture software has led to a newer and simpler concept that dominates the world of YouTube: Let’s Play.
The popularity of Let’s Play is an intriguing concept. People watch for hours on their computer as another person plays a game. Usually there is commentary from the player over it and in some cases there’s a webcam capturing the visual reactions of the player.
These Let’s Players aren’t even particularly skilled players as much as they are personalities. Amazingly, some of these Let’s Players have become the top earners on YouTube.
Before Let’s Play was even a term people really used, the team over at Rooster Teeth (the same people who created Red vs. Blue) built a huge following with their videos of their Acheivement Hunter team playing Minecraft. In a game with no real goals associated with it, they devised their own games within the game to the point where the videos get a million views in their first week. The team actually the foresight to grab the YouTube username LetsPlay and have grown it as a second channel featuring only Let’s Play content with over a million subscribers in just a few months.
One of the top Let’s Players out now who is on pace to actually be the highest subscribed person on all of YouTube before year’s end is known as Pewdiepie. With his “Become a Bro” subscription campaign, this rather annoying individual has gained a million new subscribers and 171,000,000 views in just the past thirty days. All for just yelling at the screen in his awkward accent as he loses at video games.
And the thing is, I can’t figure out why it is so interesting to people? This post is really asking for people’s thoughts on the subject. What is the appeal of watching someone else play a game? It isn’t like baseball or football where the people on TV play better than you since most Let’s Players are the average video game player.
What are your thoughts on the Let’s Play revolution happening right now on YouTube.