Welcome to Channel Spotlight, ThisWeekinLP’s in-depth look at small channels that deserve more love. This week I had the pleasure of speaking with KanaLoneGamer aka Yuna Potato Princess, and she told me all about her struggles with her YouTube handle, tedious video editing processes, and staying away from ‘sub for sub’.
TWiLP: Tell me a little about yourself!
KanaLoneGamer: Hello! My real name is a bit of a secret -well not really it’s all over the place, but I like it when people call me Yuna. I’m 26 years old and I’m from the Netherlands! I was born in Amsterdam, but moved to a town nearby a few years ago.
TWiLP: What got you into making gaming content?
KanaLoneGamer: Well, it’s something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time. I really like gaming, but I never really had many people I could share this love with. Whenever I played a game I was imagining commenting on it or talking to someone about it, since I didn’t have many friends who were into gaming as much as I was. I figured making videos on them would be a good solution to the problem.
TWiLP: What are some of your favourite games?
Oh gosh, there’s so many! I really like the Final Fantasy series (especially 8,9 and 10), the Fallout series (especially 2 and 3) and other series like Story of Seasons, Animal Crossing, Zero Escape, Phoenix Wright…actually, the more I name the more that come to mind so I’ll stick with these.
TWiLP: What’s the story behind the name ‘KanaLoneGamer’?
KanaLoneGamer: It’s a really weird, boring and vague story but I’ll tell it anyway! I definitely wanted to have the ‘Lone’ part in it, since I was a solo player at the time even in MMO’s. So I was thinking of maybe the Japanese word for ‘lone’, but I didn’t want to get the translation wrong. I thought LoneGamer wouldn’t be original enough. My in-game name at the time was usually Kanamae, so for some reason so I just stuck that to the front of it.
I really wish I made a new channel called YunaLoneGamer (or something) though since everyone is calling me Kana now. Kana is of the far far past, while Yuna is what I started calling myself later and it’s sort of the birth of a more social me – one that didn’t mind gaming with others.
TWiLP: Even though you’re now a more social Yuna, you’re still a solo channel – are there times when you wish you could share the workload? Or do you prefer to work alone?
KanaLoneGamer: I usually prefer to work alone, but sometimes I really wish there was someone to do the editing work…although I’d rather do that myself as well, actually. Really, I just need another Yuna.
TWiLP: You have a couple of different things you do on your channel – what’s your favourite kind of video to make? LPs or the game science videos?
KanaLoneGamer: I’d have to say making the game science videos! I think it’s the thing that distinguishes me the most from other LPers and they give me the chance to learn more myself- but unfortunately they also take the most time to make.
TWiLP: Having said that you prefer making the game science videos, which do you prefer out of episodic LPs or longer streams?
KanaLoneGamer: This is a tough one! What I like about streaming is being able to interact with the audience and not having to edit my videos. But since I’m pretty shy, it’s also more nerve-wracking than a LP.
TWiLP: What have you learnt since starting the channel? Anything you’ve realised you definitely don’t like doing, or anything you’ve realised you don’t want to do?
KanaLoneGamer: When I just started I was trying to use my marketing skills to get out there and let myself be known, but I’ve also realised that’s what I like doing the least. The main point of this channel is so I can have fun and to let others have fun, definitely not to get famous fast. I don’t even know if I want to be well known in the end – just having a few eyes on me is scary enough as it is to be honest haha.
TWiLP: What’s the process for making videos? What equipment do you use?
KanaLoneGamer: I use OBS (Open Broadcast System) to record my gameplay and webcam footage (Logitech C920) while I’m recording my audio on Audacity with a Blue Snowball microphone. Once the video portion is done I start editing the audio, and afterwards I throw everything in Filmora. First I sync up the audio with the webcam footage and export the video. After that, I sync up the video with the gameplay footage and export THIS video. I then edit the second video and export it to get the final video.
If this sounds overly complex and tedious, it is! Step 2 especially seems pointless – Filmora has a lot of limitations but this is the worst one, because it means you can’t edit multiple videos properly and the effects don’t work for all layers of the video. But I just don’t have the time or money to get better software (and learn about it) at the moment.
TWiLP: So with all of that, how have you found it building an audience for your content?
KanaLoneGamer: At the start it was awful! I had to somehow approach complete strangers without bothering them too much while avoiding all the sub for sub people – that last bit was especially hard in the beginning. Once I found some nice people I could talk to, everything was a lot easier and I could just drop the whole marketing thing. Once a few people know you, it’s enough the keep the ball rolling and then you can focus on the fun bits! If you really want a lot of subs you may not want to stop putting effort into the marketing part, but for me it was enough to just know a few people I could share this journey with.
TWiLP: What’s the response been like, overall?
Surprisingly positive! It’s insane how nice people are. I think I’m lucky the majority of my audience are also my friends and if they aren’t yet, I’ll make them my friends. My videos were terrible when I started, but these people really gave me the confidence and courage to continue.
TWiLP: Anything you particularly want to say to people just starting out on YouTube?
KanaLoneGamer: I think every new YouTuber hears this but: have fun! Whether you’re doing this as a hobby or hope to earn some money from it, it’s pointless if you’re not having fun. It’s harder to succeed on YT than it looks and working so hard on something that you hate is pointless.
Other than that, think about the kind of person you want to be. You can get a lot of subs fast by stepping over people, but do you really want to be known as the biggest douche ever? In my opinion it’s a lot more lucrative to find people to support, because you get what you give.
Also, stay away from Sub4Sub, seriously. It will just harm your channel, because it’s engagement that matters in the end, not subs. Sometimes it’s hard because people are assuring you they like your content and since you like theirs too you may as well sub back. That’s also why it’s better to form relationships with the people behind the channel rather than with the channel itself. After all, it’s more likely your friend will check you out every now and then than some random who sends out the same message to a 100 people a day saying how much they like your content.