Gaming for yourself vs. Gaming for YouTube

Since I started YouTube nearly two years ago and especially since I started Let’s Plays about 1 1/2 years ago, I had (and still have) the following dilemma: Should I play this game for myself record this for YouTube?

It has been bugging me for a long time, and it still does every few days, when I feel like playing a game for fun. If you regularly record gameplay videos and then start to play a game for yourself without any capture software running, it feels a bit like doing office work and then at the end of the day, throwing out every bit of progress you made; a missed opportunity for content.

This dilemma seems especially true for story based games: You simply cannot play a story based game for yourself to ‘savor it’ and then record the same game again for YouTube; you already know the plot, your reactions are not genuine, and it’s more or less boring.

Recording it while experiencing the game the first time yourself will give you a genuine reaction and also will (generally) lead to more exciting footage for your channel since you are interested in the story progress and react the first time to events. So why not savor it while recording it for the first time?

Here is the problem: Interesting and engaging commentary take quite a bit of focus. Have you ever tried to have a conversation during a movie? Chances are, you will miss important parts. If you try to concentrate on the film, your conversation is going to be very bland.

Long story short: I believe, playing a game without recording it, results in a better gaming experience since you can fully focus on the game. But if I play for fun, I feel bad for not recording it, since I am not working towards my YouTube channel.

Now a solution to this problem would simply be to record Let’s Plays and after that play games for yourself afterward (if you want to provide daily content). I am sure that’s a legitimate possibility: If you are a full-time YouTuber living from it!

Strategy based games or survival games with a high replayability value are a good choice for this dilemma. I can have a YouTube savegame AND and personal savegame and both gameplay experiences are going to be different enough, for me to have fun every time. Now I only need not to feel like I am slacking, when I don’t record the game I am playing. 🙂

Let me know what you think about this!

One comment

  1. For youtube, in my opinion, it doesn’t matter what you play in videos, unless it’s requested a lot. It needs to be entertaining to watch and your commentary needs to also be entertaining, but for games which you’d like to enjoy, the ones you care about, and want to truly experiance them, you should play them by your self, and not care about youtube. Or if you are really used to commentating over games then it might just not bothere you that you need to talk while you play, but mostly, at least i, won’t watch someone who commentates over games, for the game only, if i want to see the specific game, i’d look for “no commentary” let’s plays. When i watch big youtube commenters, i anticipate their reaction to the game and/or just want to be entratained at the moment. Regards.

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