A big part of video game culture is comprised of internet personalities that voice their opinions on games and gaming related topics. These people are not only content creators, but they are also opinion leaders. Millions of consumers put a lot of stock into what these individuals say about gaming products that are on the market. I’ve seen opinion leader’s endorsements elevate obscure games into the limelight and their criticism take others down a few notches in popularity. For this post I’ll be focusing on six individuals that I believe to be some of the opinion leaders in the video game industry. Let’s start of with some popular video creators and writers.
John Bain a.k.a “Totalbiscuit” gained popularity by offering his opinions on video games. He doesn’t sugar coat anything and his raw reactions and critical analysis on games have led many people to trust his opinions. At the time of writing this article he has over two million YouTube subscribers. His honesty has made him one of the main opinion leaders in the video game business.
Another internet personality that shares the same level of honest criticism as John, is Jim Sterling. I’ve been listening to and watching Jim for over five years now, and much like John, he also shares very opinionated pieces on gaming related topics. Jim is great at weaving humor into his biting criticism of shady video game practices. He has even been blacklisted by some game publishers because he has been so critical towards them. He runs both a website and a YouTube channel. I watch his videos on a weekly basis and view his opinions as a valuable part of my video game purchasing decisions.
The next two opinion leaders have been or are currently associated with IGN, one of the largest gaming journalism sites on the internet. Greg Miller and Max Scoville have both made a reputation through video and written content relating to video games. They both currently host shows related to video games. Listing to either of them talk about their favorite games has gotten me to check out some titles that I hadn’t heard of before they brought them up.
Scott Robison a.k.a. “Mr.Sark” and Felix Kjellberg a.k.a. “Pewdiepie” both reach large audiences of gamers on YouTube. I’m grouping these two together because their content is somewhat similar in nature. Both upload videos of gameplay with their often over-the-top reactions to the situations encountered in the game. I would consider them to be video game opinion leaders because they reach large audiences and seem to drum up interest in some previously obscure titles.
All of the people that I identified as opinion leaders are actively publishing videos that deal with video games, and that’s no coincidence. Video content seems to attract the most interest from consumers that enjoy playing video games. I think the reason behind this preference towards video-based content lies in the very nature of video games. Video games are a very visual entertainment product, and video coverage seems to provide the most accurate representation of the product. I think that anyone looking to promote their game would find the above people to be effective opinion leaders in the video game market.