Welcome to Channel Spotlight, ThisWeekinLP’s in-depth look at small channels that deserve more love. This week I had the chance to chat with Sam, Luke and Jordan from PixelJuice and they told me all about their experiences building an audience as well as making content as a group of lifelong friends.
TWiLP: Tell us a little bit about yourselves! Names, ages, where you’re from etc.
PixelJuice: We’re Sam, Jordan and Luke from Pixel Juice! We’re all 25 (well, except Luke who’s an old man at 26…) and long-time friends from the South West of England.
TWiLP: What you got into making gaming content?
PixelJuice: The three of us have all been playing games for years (probably for too long…) and we’ve always been into film making, which back in the day took on the form of cheap sketch comedy. We all love YouTube, cheap comedy, movies and videogames, so thought this would be a great way of combining our passions while getting back into being creative and making videos.
TWiLP: What are some of your favourite games?
Sam: Being the first 3D game I played, Super Mario 64 still holds a pretty special place in my heart. Getting my copy second-hand out of the box with no manual, I had no idea what I was doing!I remember just randomly jumping about until I ended up accidently jumping into the first painting! I thought the Hub world was going to be the full game…
I also love horror games like the Resident Evil series, Silent Hill: Shattered Memories and narrative driven stuff like BioShock and Alan Wake.
Jordan: The first game I remember really loving was Lylat Wars on the Nintendo 64. It had an amazing campaign with multiple routes to take through the story and even had two different endings. As a child this blew my mind and gave me tons of reasons to play through it multiple times. The game I’m currently giving all my spare time too is Overwatch. I think Overwatch is an amazing game because of the level of care that went into the characters and balancing.
My all-time favourite game franchise is Tekken and I love it for one good reason. I’m good at it! I started back on Tekken one, playing with my brothers, and just got addicted to the franchise. I only know one scumbag who can beat me at Tekken, unfortunately for me, that scumbag is Luke.
Luke: Being a 90s kid, nostalgia plays a big part in my gaming preferences! I was raised on classic PS1 games like Tomb Raider and Crash Bandicoot. For me it’s not just about how the game looks, but the content and story also play a big part in the way I decide if a game is good or not. I would say that the one game that really resonated with me for a long time was Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic. To this day, I still believe that this is one of the greatest stories ever told in gaming.
TWiLP: With three of you over at PixelJuice, how do you end up sharing the workload? Any difficulties over there?
PixelJuice: The main problem we have is that we all absolutely despise each other. Sam and Luke have been editing the videos, we all share ideas of topics, games and films to cover and all think of cheap jokes and sketches to put in. We’re hoping soon that all three of us will be able to edit and be producing content consistently!
TWiLP: So you guys have just started making more gaming content – after the poll you did asking what people wanted to see more of, was it overwhelmingly for more LP content?
PixelJuice: So one thing we want to make sure we do with our content is make sure that people are actually enjoying it! We have a ton of ideas we want to put into practice but we also want to make sure that it’s stuff people want to see. The poll was great as it kind of gave us reassurance that we’re on the right track. Overall, people wanted to see more gameplay videos from us and in our last few videos we have tried to accommodate that with our other Pixel Playthroughs and showdown videos.
TWiLP: Do you have a preference when it comes to content – do you lean more towards doing film or gaming videos?
Sam: Personally I enjoy both. I’m a massive fan of films and videogames so either’s fun! What I enjoy the most is the comedy elements of what we do. I like trying to make whatever we do entertaining and have a lot of fun coming up with the skits and sketches, which I feel add more to what would otherwise just be us three losers babbling on!
Jordan: I guess I have to echo what Sam said really, I’m really passionate about both mediums and I really enjoy trying to make content that’s fun for other people. It’s hard to compare film and games content because we approach them very differently. I guess it also depends on the game/film we are creating the content for.
Luke: Personally, gaming plays a bigger part of my life. It’s my view that over the last few generations of consoles, games have really caught up with films in terms of storytelling and overall experience. Especially games that offer multiple paths to choose from can really keep you coming back for more.
TWiLP: What have you learnt since you started doing the channel? Anything you’ve realised you definitely don’t want to do?
Sam: I think for me, I’ve learnt that it’s right to try out a variety of content. Before we even launched the channel we put together a list of ideas for various series and videos that we wanted to make. Over the past couple of months we’ve been trickling these out and seeing what works and what doesn’t. Some people like certain videos where they may not be fans of others. Some types of video can take a lot of hours to put together, but we’re currently looking for ways we could produce some content that has a faster turnaround time so we can upload more regularly.
Jordan: I’ve learnt to feign interest in whatever Sam and Luke are discussing because I personally find them insufferable. Seeming like we are all friends on camera is actually one of the hardest aspects of our channel and we’ve had to edit out at least 9 on screen fist fights per episode. I guess the most important thing I’ve learnt is how important being part of a community is. We have made a lot of friends and had lots of help from other content creators; it’s been a really great experience.
Luke: Since producing content for the channel I’ve realised that it’s very important to try and cater to what is current. YouTube is a fickle mistress for sure! It’s very important to keep up to date with latest trends and pop culture for precious tagging purposes.
TWiLP: What’s the process for making videos? What equipment do you use?
Sam: We all get together when we can to put together video ideas and decide on what we want to cover. We’re also going through a little bit of a mix up with a bunch of new ideas on the way! Kit wise we use a Canon 80D and a Blue Yeti mic. We also have some other bits and pieces that come in useful like an LED top light for the camera and a clip tie mic.
TWiLP: How have you guys found it building an audience for your stuff? What kind of response have you been getting?
Sam: We’ve had a lot of fun over the past couple of months getting to know the community and the support from everyone has been amazing! It’s obviously hard to grow a channel with the amount of content available on YouTube so we definitely appreciate everyone who has been watching and supporting our stuff.
Jordan: I’ve found building an audience has been really fun. We have been making videos together since we were children but for the most part we have been our only viewers so this has been a really nice experience. It’s also been great talking to new people who share the same passions and creativity.
Luke: I’ve been really humbled by the responses we’ve had to our content! All the support means a lot and has made us feel really welcomed to the community.
TWiLP: Anything else you particularly want to say to people just starting out on YouTube?
Sam: Personally I’d say go for it! Make sure you try out different video styles and really think about what you want to do with your channel. Research how to reach out to an audience and check out helpful channels such as Nick Nimmin and Tim Schmoyer who have tons of great tips and tricks.
Jordan: Personally I’d say don’t do it. If you do, make sure you stick with your first style and just wing it. Don’t do any research and don’t watch any helpful channels. All joking aside, I would say the main thing is being prepared. Though we all love what we are doing, I have found it’s more work than I initially expected and having a good content plan from the get go was a huge help.
Luke: Keep your chin up and keep at it. Your channel may not be popular to begin with but if you love what you do, people will see it and appreciate what you’re doing. Some of the biggest YouTubers took years to get where they are today, but the persistence is worth it!
Thanks again to Sam, Luke, and Jordan at PixelJuice for taking the time to chat as well as supporting ThisWeekinLP. Be sure to check them out on YouTube and Twitter, and be sure to give them some feedback. Happy gaming!