Are YouTubers Slowly Replacing Traditional Games Press?

An interesting article from Gamasutra explores whether traditional games journalism is slowly being damaged by the advent of the YouTube video game personality. The article, "Is YouTube killing the traditional games press?" goes directly to game developers to ask them if having their videogames played or highlighted by a popular YouTube personality has had an actual impact on sales. For the most part, the majority of those queried about the topic said that being noticed by a popular YouTuber has been really good for business.

One thing that even YouTubers admit though, is that traditional AAA publishers haven't quite gotten a handle on the situation and still rely heavily on traditional media outlets to promote their games.

"I may differ from most YouTube commenters talking about an issue like this," says popular YouTuber Jesse Cox. "I think much of the 'importance' of YouTubers in the gaming world is perpetuated by YouTubers wanting to be important in the gaming world."

Cox goes on to say that most AAA publishers – for the time being, at least – do not care about YouTubers.

"You can get invites, and yes, you will be shown around booths, but you will never have the access that traditional media has," he says, referring to events like E3. "Because the people in charge of these companies still respond to them far more than they will ever respond to you."

Still, publishers like EA have created internal programs to get their games in the hands of popular YouTubers and to work more closely with them because they see the space as a new promotional vehicle that often isn't really about reviewing games at all – but about playing them and having fun.

You can check out the feature here. The real take-away is that indies and smaller studios get a lot more mileage out of getting their games in the hands of YouTubers than AAA publishers. But when guys like Pew Die Pie are making millions of dollars it's hard for anyone who makes a video game to ignore their huge influence on this generation of gamers.

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One comment

  1. 0
    Neo_DrKefka says:

    The Gaming News Press is almost reminiscent of the old Radio, Pay to Play (Payola, 47 U.S.C. § 317) industry where before the Radio Industry accepts in secret money for play time for a product.

    Bioware is always the best example to use as a company that once had both great fanfare with critics and consumers the Mass Effect 3 incident brought an interesting conflict of interest. The Gaming Press which received favors, money, jobs, all for good reviews and also the Gaming Industry which leans left like Bioware wishes to push a political agenda that the majority of customers out there did not like.

    Back in March 2012 it was Bioware Vs Customers (They call them fans since technically they are EA's Customers) but at the same time the Gaming Press viciously attacked consumers attacking Bioware. At this point the REAL Media got involved and it was not a clueless reporter talking about something that did not exist in a video game outraging fans but rather the story about consumers upset at how they were getting treated.

    At this point Bioware Employees got fired even Stanley Woo who is known to attack customers and even banned a user from playing a single player game at one point in time was let go but was allowed to come back once the dust settled to work for free.

    The fact Video Game Press still is against the consumer where are we to turn when its an us vs them?

    That incident helped many find themselves to Youtube but the video game industry is again trying to buy off these YouTube personalities. I think Boogie is the biggest guy out there for video game sponsorship and Pay to Play for Youtube.


    The problem here what I said will fall on deaf ears because it's almost like a political argument. The Video Game Press feels they are in the right but if they want to improve the situation they are in they have to develop standards. By standards I mean announcing they are being paid and sponsored to say this game is great or to play this game.

    We as gamers are not represented in Congress. The transactions between the gaming industry and the gaming press would be illegal if it were any other industry. Remember that Janet Jackson rootkit that happened ten years ago? Since music is almost universal Congress quickly fined Sony and had them remove the DRM rootkit but the gaming industry with its DRM is able to pack its games with the most restrictive content! Why? Because we are not being represented!

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