Every major games media firm is investing serious money in video as the YouTube generation takes over.
What has your approach to video content been?
Chris Beaumont, GameSpot UK: Our approach is for the video team to lead video.That sounds glib, but a lot of sites have tried to integrate video by adding a producer or two to their traditional organisation of writers and editors, often with less than brilliant results.
Alex Simmons, IGN UK: It’s the same as our overall approach to editorial – if it’s relevant and interesting to our readers, we’ll do it. Some content works better as video, some works better written. Our content is presented in the best way possible.
Simon Miller, Videogamer:We do stuff where we look at games seriously. But games are there to entertain. Our videos are to inform, first and foremost, but we make sure that people are entertained. We’re as funny as we can be, and ultimately feel that people watch our videos are part of our community.
Johnny Chiodini, Eurogamer: Our approach is to make stuff we’re excited about. If the person making a video is genuinely interested in the topic, it makes for a more entertaining watch – even if the product isn’t the most SEO-chasing thing we could have produced.
How has the video content you are producing changed?
Chiodini: The type of video content I’m producing has diversified and become more specialised. The amount of video across the industry has made viewers very comfortable with different formats, but also means we need to nail the angle in order to stand out. It gives us the freedom to be flexible with our setups, but very targeted.
Rich Keith, Yogscast:The content hasn’t changed that much. It’s funny people having a conversation while messing around on games. The essence of the content continues to be about entertaining the audience and making them laugh.
Simmons:IGN has been taking video seriously for a long time – it’s part of everything we do. We create over 120 pieces of video content a month out of the UK alone, from broadcast-quality series like our Star Wars show Rebel Base, to bite-sized news videos. Every opportunity is unique, so we carefully consider the presentation of everything we create.
Who do you primarily see as your competition: YouTubers or traditional game sites?
Chiodini: YouTube personalities shouldn’t be underestimated, but they do things very differently. Many focus on one game for extended periods, or will go really deep on one game. Our coverage is broader. There’s a lot we can learn from YouTube personalities, but I set my targets by rival sites.
Beaumont: Our competitors are rival game sites.YouTubers have had a lot of success in the gaming space, but they’ve created a new space – the Let’s Play, which isn’t a big focus for us.
Keith: Yogscast doesn’t compete with gaming sites – we’re an entertainment network trying to make as many people happy and amused each month as possible. That’s a world away from traditional games sites.
Miller: Our competition is everybody, which sounds ridiculous. YouTube is so huge. You have game sites, and then you have PewDiePie, You can’tbe specific anymore. You’d be silly to not look at people like YouTubers because in many ways they are the new games media now.