Hello! VidBud Liam here. You may recognise me from those videos that autoplay on every page. Or not. It depends on how quickly you scroll past, I suppose.
I joined team Arpus all the way back in February, and to say the last 11 months have been a whirlwind is a bit of an understatement. In less than a year I’ve made just under 90 videos covering a wide range of topics from major releases to international gaming events and brand-new hardware. My first year at RPS has been busy, basically. So when Katharine asked me to pull together a few of my personal highlights, I was kind of stumped. It's hard to pick favourites! It's even harder to celebrate my own achievements, but that's beside the point.
I like to think the nine videos listed below should give you a good idea of the broad range of stuff we've tackled over in video land in 2022 - and if you're interested, we'll have 2022 round-ups from the other sections, too. Anyway. Grab yourself a hot drink and settle in. There's a lot here to cover!
Does anyone have time to start playing World Of Warcraft anymore?
Hands down, this is the video I’m proudest of this year. After months of chatting about it, Ed and I finally launched Inventory Space, a brand new series where the two of us attempt to discover how much space a huge live-service game takes up in our daily lives. This first episode focused on World of Warcraft, a game Ed had some experience with and one I had shamefully never played before we recorded this episode.
This video was an enormous undertaking. Like, huge. Filming it took the best part of a month, while writing, voice over and editing added an additional week on top of that. The majority of it was completed outside of work hours, too, due to the nature of the series demanding we attempt to experience these huge games in a way that is realistic to those who may be interested in trying them for themselves.
It paid off. I’m so happy with the end result, and I couldn’t ask for a better co-host than Ed, whose brain is basically a generator for magic observations I’m not clever enough to make myself. Watch this space - episode two is already in the works.
12 Elden Ring Tips And Tricks To Help You Easily Conquer The First 10 Hours
Ah, Elden Ring. FromSoftware’s epic was the first major game I covered for RPS just a few weeks into my time here. I’ll be honest, the stakes were high. How the hell do you establish yourself as a worthy successor to the likes of Colm Ahern and Matthew Castle? It’s a tough act to follow, believe me. Thankfully, this beginner’s guide was exceptionally popular right out of the gate, gaining millions of views across both the site and YouTube. In fact, it quickly became the most-watched video on the channel, scoring over a million hits in just a matter of days. As far as validation goes, this video did a lot to soothe those new-starter fears.
Fun fact about this video: my best friend from primary school, who I hadn’t spoken to for over a decade, got in touch shortly after this video went live. He had been recommended it randomly while working and was shocked to hear my northern tones emanating through his headphones. Turns out he lives just a few streets away from me, and we’ve been catching up regularly ever since. The internet is good, actually.
7 Reasons Why You'll Fall In Love With Tunic
Tunic was a hard thing to tackle in video form. The true magic of the game lies in uncovering its secrets organically through play, which made talking about (and finding clips that didn't show said secrets being uncovered) in a way that remained engaging for a viewer absolute agony. Still, I was really happy with how this video turned out in the end. I even got an excuse to use my bootleg Pokémon annecdote, which was a nice bonus.
Our Eight Favourite Games From Not E3 2022
I’ve covered a few E3s before in the past, but this year’s felt special for a couple of reasons. For starters, it was my first as a full-time member of games media. But mainly, it was because I caught Covid shortly before the show, and after a few days alone indoors watching Geoff Keighley talk about games set in space I was desperate for any form of social interaction. Getting the opportunity to chat with (basically) everyone on staff about what games they were most excited for over the course of a single day is one of my highlights of the year, and the format worked so well we've used it a few times since. It was always my goal to include more staffers in our videos, and this was the perfect excuse to do so.
The Cast Of Team Fortress 2 Reminisce About The FPS's Lasting Legacy
PAX East was especially wild, as I had only been a member of the team for around six weeks before I was pushed out of the treehouse and onto a transatlantic flight. I have too many anecdotes about our time in the states to share here, so I’ll let two videos do the talking instead. The first was an interview Rachel and I did with the cast of Team Fortress 2, a game I played obsessively for many years when I was a teenager. The second was a small documentary Katharine and I made about pin collecting that was an absolute pleasure to create.
Covering shows is hard work, but it's much easier when you have some pals hosting videos along with you. I'm eternally grateful to both Katharine and Rachel, who basically kept me sane during those long days on the show floor. And a quick shout out to Jimmy, who carried tripods and microphones around Boston despite that role being far removed from his actual job title. A genuine champ.
Resident Evil 4 Isn't Just A Remake, It's A Visceral Reimagining | Hands-On Preview
Resident Evil 4 is my favourite game of all time. I was 13 when it first launched for the GameCube, and I would spend most weekends around my cousins shooting Ganados and running away from boulders. “Games will never look better than this”, he once said to me as Leon cautiously explored a medieval castle infested with parasitic monks. Having such a personal connection to the original game made previewing its upcoming remake a daunting task. How do you measure the value of something that's attempting to recreate an experience that means so much to you? It turns out the answer is "with great difficulty". I rewrote this preview three times. I'm honestly suprised it makes any sense.
We Bought Five Unusual Steam Deck Accessories From Etsy
We made quite a few videos about the Steam Deck this year, and folks really seemed to enjoy them. It helps that hardware editor James has a voice so smooth it calms all those who listen to it. My favourite of the bunch has to be this one, where James surprised me with a bunch of accessories for Valve’s popular handheld. That framed photo of the Deck, by the way? Hung up next to my desk. It makes me smile every time I look at it.
Oh, and the less said about my dubious attempt at growing a mustache the better. Everyone hated it. It's gone now.
Can We Beat This Game In Time To Get A Refund?
Considering we publish all of our videos to YouTube, it may come as a surprise that I only made one traditional let’s play this year. Still, my short play-through of Steam meme hit Refund Me If You Can seemed to resonate with those who watched it. It was actually CJ who suggested I create this one as he needed a video for his article about the game, and I’m glad he did. It’s classic, silly fun. Weirdly, the majority of views came from this Waypoint article so, uh. Thanks, Vice?
Our Favourite Scary Moments In PC Gaming
Another group RPS discussion, this time about our favourite scary moments in PC gaming. The chat itself is very enjoyable, but personally my favourite part is the text I got from my fiance while I was recording the intro that simply said “I hate whatever you’re doing”.
Five indie games from 2022 you may have missed
@rockpapershot These are five indie games, released in 2022, that you might have missed. Make sure to check them out immediately. #games #gaming #indiegames #steam #pc #pcgaming #switch ♬ original sound - Rock Paper Shotgun
I started a TikTok account for RPS in October which gained a surprising amount of momentum straight away. It’s something I want to focus on a little more in the new year, so I’m sort of sharing this less as a highlight and more of a threat to my future self. Liam, if you’re reading this, it’s time to make another 60-second video in the cursed 9:16 aspect ratio. Yes, I know it goes against everything you’ve learned about videomaking. No, Gen Z doesn’t care. Back to work. There’s a good lad.
So! There you go. Too many words about too many videos. But you know what? It’s been quite pleasant, having this opportunity to reflect on my first year here at RPS. What will 2023 hold? Who’s to say. One thing’s for certain, though: I’ll still be here, making silly little videos about PC games. Thanks so much for watching. It really does mean a lot.