Interview – Gametank.TV

Gametank – Joss and Bren

It has been a while since I did an interview piece, but today I have a great new one for you with the guys behind Gametank.TV hope you enjoy it! 

Q. Can you tell us a little bit about you?

A. All: Hello! We’re Dan, Brendan and Joss, 3 lifelong gamers who got fed up waiting for a decent TV show about games – so made one ourselves! We live and breathe gaming, although thankfully different games on the most part, or there’d be a heck of a fight every release day. We make a variety of gaming shows for YouTube from reviews and previews to competitions and sketches. Our crowning glory though has to be our full show that we try to do once a month – you can see one here

Q. How did you first get involved in gaming and why?

A. BrenGT: I remember this very clearly. I was four years old and my dad arrived home from work and I saw him get a big Toys R Us bag out of the boot of his car. I always waited at the window when he came home. When he entered he greeted me and handed me the bag. Inside was a NES! I didn’t really know what it was, but he hooked it up and I had my first play on Super Mario Bros. It was love at first sight, and I haven’t put the pad down since. The games may have changed but my passion for button bashing and saving the world has never faltered.

DanGT: I wasn’t immediately struck by games if I’m honest. We had an Atari ST and a Master System (mark I) in the house when I was very young but I was never addicted to them, they were just good for a rainy day. I remember being asked if I wanted a Sega Mega Drive for Christmas one year and I was so indifferent to the idea my parents didn’t bother. I have my dad to thank though, because I think he wanted one! So a few months after Christmas, we went to Argos and bought one on a random Sunday afternoon. The game that came with it was Sonic the Hedgehog – and this is the game that changed it all for me. To this day I’m amazed at how much gameplay and speed that’s packed into it – and it’s definitely the game that made me a lifelong gamer. Goodbye, sunshine and healthy living!

JossGT: Ahh my first main console was the Sega Mega Drive which my mum and dad bought me for Christmas on the year of release. I can remember being ecstatic about it as it was my first and the newest console on the market, so the first game I ever really played was Sonic the Hedgehog, followed by Altered Beast. It was then I knew I would always be a gamer. Well… until the consoles get too expensive. Then its noughts, crosses, circles and squares time.

Q. What is the most challenging thing about what you do?

A. BrenGT: Editing the videos is always a challenge, especially when you get a real hard film project, like our Syndicate review ( involved a lot of guns firing and visual FX. It’s hard but the end result is always a rush.

DanGT: Getting hits on our YouTube videos! Keeping on top of everything is insanely hard in this industry. Games come and go in the blink of an eye and sometimes by the time we’ve played a game, captured the footage, written and recorded the voice over and edited it the rest of the gaming community has moved on! But at this stage, we do it for the love and the fun – we’ve started making contacts and friends within the industry and they’re sending us games to review before they’re in the shops. Getting a video out on the day the game hits the shops, or even before, is always the way to go. It’s like trying to guess where lightning is going to strike. But less dangerous.

Joss GT: I guess the most challenging part for me is the acting process, as GameTank has been the only thing I have ever really needed to act in. Brendan can get pretty demanding, such as during the Syndicate review shoot. It was a hot and sweaty day, with lots of man action. Wait, that sounded wrong!

Q. Can you tell us about any interesting people you’ve met through gaming?

A. BrenGT: I guess the biggest thrill for me was meeting Charles Martinet at the launch of Super Mario Galaxy 2. Being the voice of Mario it was an honour to meet him. He was a really nice guy.

DanGT: I have to second Bren on that, it was a real “wow” moment to be interviewing the voice of Mario himself. We even got him to say “you’re watching GameTank” is that famous high pitched Italian accent! I expect we’ll be using that one for a few years to come! I must also mention all the top people who watch and comment on our videos. It never ceases to amaze me how many opinions are out there and just how much passion there is for these games. It makes it all worthwhile when you get a debate going on YouTube or Facebook!

JossGT:  I unfortunately haven’t met anyone yet as I have only been with the guys for a few months, but watch this space!

Q. What do you do when you aren’t gaming?

A. BrenGT: You mean there’s other stuff to do?

DanGT: Mandatory eating and sleeping when absolutely unavoidable. Watching other people play games. Sometimes have to go to work to earn the money to pay for games.

JossGT: Sit in a dark room contemplating why I’m not gaming.

Q. What is your most favourite thing about working on Gametank?

A. BrenGT: Definitely the laughter. When we all get together and do voice overs or film something there’s never a dull moment.

DanGT: I should probably say something like the sense of achievement I get when we put a show out. I’m very proud of the quality of what we do. I love getting the feedback and then putting the effort into making the next show better! However, the true answer to this question is Brendan’s breakfast sandwiches. My God that man can cook bacon…

JossGT: Definitely my favourite thing would have to be working with my mates, and like Bren said, the laughter. Most of the time when we are filming I start crying with laughter. We have some pure comedy gold in the full episodes we do.

Q. And the least?

A. BrenGT: When something goes horribly wrong like equipment failure.

DanGT: Pouring so much effort into making a video and then watching it founder and die on YouTube.  It’s all for the greater good – you can’t win them all!

JossGT: Getting up early. DAMN YOU BRENDAN!

Q. What is your favourite game of all time?

A. BrenGT: There are many but I guess the one I’ve played and enjoyed the most is Resident Evil 2 on the PSone.

DanGT: Banjo-Kazooie on the N64! It may be very cartoony and cute, but the gameplay is solid 24 karat gold and the difficulty curve is beautifully judged. I think I’ve replayed that more than any other game ever. Also, Crash Bandicoot on the PSone – that was the game that first made me want to make a TV show about games, which we subsequently did. On my Dad’s camcorder. In 1998. I wouldn’t hold out much hope of ever seeing that on YouTube!

JossGT: There are loads of great games out there, but the one game that has completely stolen my heart and sucked the hours away from me has been Batman: Arkham City. BATMANILICIOUS!

Q. What tips would you give to someone looking to get into gaming?

A. BrenGT: It depends what you want to do, if you want to make games then work on your art, or scriptwriting, but if you just want to play, swing by your local game store and just pick up a console and a few top titles and you’ll be well away.

DanGT: Find your style and don’t follow the crowd! I don’t really play the Call Of Duty games or any sports games, which are easily the top sellers of the last decade and the ones you see the most adverts for. I love story, action and adventure, so I end up going for things like Uncharted where you can really get into what’s going on – like an interactive movie. There are so many more games out there than you might first think. Search around, look for bargains, check the release lists and discover the games that suit your style!

JossGT: Don’t buy a Kinect or a PlayStation 3 ;o)

Q. Is there anything else you would like to share about gaming and GameTank that you haven’t already mentioned?

A. BrenGT: I love gaming and I feel that GameTank has given us a great platform for us to share that passion with everyone. I’m a firm believer in honesty and watching GameTank is like listening to your best mate tell you about the next big game that you just can’t miss playing. It’s great.

DanGT: We have the passion and drive to take this all the way. My reason for doing this is to end the drought of gaming shows on TV and give an independent honest view of what’s actually out there. We don’t score games, we give an opinion and I think that’s really important. How can one person sum up a colossal amount of development work with a number? We give opinions and let people make their own mind up if it’s worth buying or not based on that. Also, we like to make people laugh and highlight games that may otherwise fall under the radar. Oh, and watch the vids to the very end. We always put a stupid comment at the end!

JossGT: Yeah, watch it! We try and make everything as friendly as possible. We want to educate you, make you laugh, and even make you shabunaki! (That word will make sense if you watch!)

The Fun Questions

What did you have for breakfast?

BrenGT: Bacon sandwich.
DanGT: One of Brens Bacon sandwiches – seriously, if you could get Michelin stars for Bacon sandwiches…
JossGT: Coffee! I was a tad hung over this morning, and I never got offered a bacon sandwich! Dan had already eaten them.

Who would win a fight between pirates and ninjas?

BrenGT: I’d like to say pirates but there just drunks with guns. I don’t think they could take on a highly skilled ninja that’s not afraid to die.
DanGT: Pirates. Everybody forgets that Ninjas can’t swim…
JossGT:  Zombie ninja pirates. Ain’t no way something is gonna beat that!

If you were a tree what tree would you be?

BrenGT: The mighty OAK! I should probably diet more.
DanGT: MDF isn’t a tree, is it? I’d like to say Mahogany, because I’m tall, mysterious and strong. In reality I’m probably a fir, because I get blown over in the wind a lot…
JossGT: A Fern, obviously :o)

What is the last book you read?

BrenGT: It was Dead Space: Salvage.
DanGT: What’s a book?
JossGT: I’m currently reading I Partridge: We Need To Talk About Alan. Very funny. Jurassic Park!

What is your favourite song at the moment?

BrenGT: ‘Sound of Muzak’ by porcupine tree.

DanGT: ‘Want You Gone’ – the end credits song from Portal 2! Play the game first though or you’re ruining a great treat.

JossGT: ‘Dear Agony’ by Breaking Benjamin.

Many Thanks to Dan, Bren and Joss for the interview!

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2 comments on “Interview – Gametank.TV

  1. I love the MDF answer but then I’m not into games so I confess I woke up at the fun questions. But seriously good post. 🙂

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