Paul ‘ReDeYe’ Chaloner a Commentator, Stage host and TV Presenter of video games for the last 12 years conducts an AMA on reddit. The process of an AMA is an interview for the reddit community, we have taken the best questions and answers from this interview for your reading pleasure.
Any chance of you setting up a QuadV YouTube account and posting commentary by the old cast and possibly some new members when you have time and not specifically to a schedule?
There is a QuadV youtube account and it does have some of the old stuff. Where the rest is though god only knows. I will try and find out though and see if we can find some of the great games.
What is your most embarassing behind-the-scenes moment at a large event?
Probably having to stand on a banana box on a couple of TV shows to make me appear taller and in line with my co-casters (I had to do this on a UK TV show for Sky and in CGS for DirecTV lol). I’ve probably had a few others though and notably dropping the collectors edition box on live TV wasn’t a good thing but luckily people didnt see it as bad a thing.
Perhaps my worst one though was in Denmark in 2007 or 2008 at coopenhagen games. I was trying to get a topical news item in to the cast about Usain bolt and my brain and mouth become slightly disconnected when I was presented with a chance to use it.
Instead of saying “running like Usain Bolt” when a player dashed across a courtyard in Call of Duty, I actually said “He’s running like a black man…” stunned silence from me as I realised what I’d said and then hastily trying to correct it and make it better I said “… with a gun!”. Oops.
The only other one was talking about “penis” when my mic was live while I was backstage and I didn’t know!
When can we expect you and joe commentating cs:go this year? 😉
We’ll see 😉
When do you think E-Sports will get big like football in europe? And what do you think about CounterStrike back in IEM? I really like it !
I think it will still grow, but I don’t think it will ever be as big as major sports like Football, but that’s ok, it’s close now to being mainstream accepted and that’s all I ever wanted for it.
Can’t wait to see CS back at an IEM event!
How many bow ties do you actually own?
I actually only ever own one bow tie at a time and usually buy a new one for each event I do (I don’t use bow ties for every event though).
I do have a tradition of giving away my bow tie to fans at the end of a tournament or to other organisations such as barcrafts etc.
Do you actually like WCS? Favourite event you’ve ever hosted?
I really do love WCS. I know it has had it’s faults, but I also know all of the people involved at Blizzard and ESL and the partners are passionate about it and want it to work really well.
WCS grand finals was amazing last year! I’d love to get the chance to do another Blizzcon for sure!
What do you feel is your biggest contribution to e-sports? Is there something you are extra proud over?
Great question. I’ve never really, honestly thought of about it until now. I’m proud to have helped improve commentating over the years and I feel I’ve played my part in improving it and helping it become more professional.
I don’t think there is anything I could point to as outstanding or memorable in terms of contributing, I just hope my enthusiasm and passion for esports is infectious and has helped other people enjoy what I enjoy.
Your fav moment in E-Sport/ 1.6/ CSGO?
If it’s CS it would have to be Shaguar getting knifed by an Australian player at WCG Grand finals in singapore or my all time favourite piece of action Ave with some ridiculous deagle action.
Match where the knife kill happens (first round):
What is your best eSport memory ?
Honestly I have a lot of great memories picking one only is hard, but I’m going to give you one from my playing days! I was in a 2v2 CTF tournament on LAN and reached the final to play Zaccubus and Garpy who both at the time were considered to be two top pro players and had competed at the CPL world tour and we won the final against them. It was also my last competitive tournament I played in which was a nice way to finish!
Out of everyone you have interviewed/done a show with who is the most awkward to talk to?
Haha, tough question actually. I always worry about interviewing Naniwa, yet he is always super professional and very good to interview.
I get nervous when I interview MC though as I never know what the hell he is going to do.
What’s your favorite game to play and what’s your favorite game to watch? Also, why are you such an awesome host?
I really love playing FPS games the most, but overall I’m just a gaming junky. I’ll play almost anything, but lately I’ve put a lot of time in to BF4, SC2 and League of legends.
What is the best thing about your job?
The best thing about my job is that it never really feels like a job, especially hosting or commentating. I know that may sound cliche, but I really do feel privileged to do the job I do and get paid to do it. I spent many years in financial services behind a desk, so this is just a dream come true.
If u could change one thing concerning e-sports, what would it be?
Have a global governing body that everyone, players, tournaments and sponsors respected and deferred to.
What’s your best ever e-sport memory? Would be cool if you could have a memory for each of your favorite games!
Lots of these questions, so trying to offer different memories for each!
I remember in my early days I was commentating on an Unreal Tournament semi final in EuroCup and the teams just wouldnt or couldnt cap, map ended 0-0 and in those days they played overtime until someone capped. It took over 2 hours and 30 minutes to cap and during the match I played interviews and drank tequilla untiil someone capped finally. I was so drunk…
Kicking Heaton’s ass in CS:S practice during CGS (though he would never admit it!)
Playing in WCG 2004, roaming the streets of New York with Carmac in 2005 taking stupid photos, watching a Quake player (Winz) get a date with a hot girl with the pickup line “hey I’m Winz and I shoot 60% rail” 😀
How do you get into e-sports in general? Sure you can start commentating, try to start your own tournament with a little cash and try to make some effort, but is there some tips you want to give to beginners who haven’t made themselves familiar with attending events and start up relationships with people for example?
It’s really hard these days. I was pretty lucky back in 2002 as there was few of us doing commentating. As for 2014, I’d say look for the intern jobs or volunteer roles in the esports organisers.
For example, ESL has many people there who are full time now but started as volunteers or interns. Likewise in the UK Multiplay started almost entirely with volunteers and many of them there are from that time.
I think if you can show a talent for something and do it free to a high level it isn’t that hard to get a job full time, but it does take a lot of dedication and hard work and it doesn’t come quickly usually either unless you are very lucky too.
Luck plays its part though.
What is your favorite game to cast and why?
My favourite all time game to cast was specifically CTF in either Unreal Tournament or Quake 3. CTF just has everything you can want in a game, great flag runs, teamwork, aim, prediction, brain, strategy and thrilling moments in a 20 minute period where the score is similar to a football match.
If any modern day esports ran CTF I’d be all over it like a rash!
Would you possibly be as kind to give some advice, presenter tips – preparing, talking. Even where or what to get started with, where to fully apply myself and what to look out for?
I think you have to have what we call “gift of the gab” in England. In that you need to be able to articulate well. It’s more than just talking though, it’s also about being able to understand how to talk enthusiastically without being fake, get the right information to the viewer/audience and just the right amount. Talking too much is as bad as not talking enough!
I always tell people regardless of casting or hosting, it’s mostly about preparation up front. Know your event inside out, how does it work, what is the format, structure, rules, brackets, wins/loss deciders, how does the bracket work, is it single/double? etc Prize money, sponsors and organisation is also important. You have to know it inside out so that when you tell the audience, even if you dont have a graphic (or it fails!) you still know it and you come across confidently when you say it.
Then its about players and teams. Know them as much as you can, talk to them, ask them questions no one else does before the tournament. Follow them, see what they tweet and talk about, try and understand the type of person they are and react appropriately if you interview them during the show. Know who you can have fun with and who you can’t (for whatever reason such as language barrier etc).
Confidence is obviously key too. I get mine from doing prep properly and knowing what I am talking about.
I always try to be as professional as possible. It doesn’t mean you can’t have fun but you have to judge the right times and I dont always get that right as it’s tough to do.
Learn how to present things in a smooth manner. That means pacing has to be right and not too fast or too strong. Many hosts rush what they want to say and it comes from being nervous or uncomfortable, but you have to find ways to conquer that and get the right pace. I often take a breath and let a gap appear in my hosting too as it can help build tension.
Most of all: be authentic and honest. If you don’t know something, don’t say it. If you aren’t an expert, don’t try to be one, rely on what you do know. Most of the audience don’t expect you to know everything, you aren’t there for that, rely on the others in the show to get what the viewer wants out of the show too.
Be part of a team. Understand the the strengths and weakness of each person in the show. That way you can rely on them to deliver what you can’t.
And finally. Enjoy it and embrace the feeling you get in your stomach just before you go out on to stage!