Famous People Who Are Declared GamersGAMING
In 2018, most people believe that gaming is a normal part of life. Of course, not everyone in the world enjoys playing video games, but at least there are far fewer people today claiming such games can turn you into a devil-worshipping zombie than there were 30 years ago.
One reason behind this shift is that gaming has gone more mainstream, and is a full-fledged part of pop culture, not just a virtual playground for geeks.
As a result, every year we see more and more popular artists considering themselves a part of the gaming community. We thought it would be neat to list some of them – below you’ll find just a few of our favorites!
Even if you’ve never seen Game of Thrones or read any of George R.R. Martin’s books, you might have heard of Hodor, the gentle giant who seems to know, and endlessly repeat, a single word – his own name. In the HBO show, Hodor is played by Kristian Nairn, who apart from being a great actor is also an avid World of Warcraft player. Over the years he has even done voice work for a couple of the game’s NPCs.
As his appearance on the red carpet at Warcraft’s London premiere might attest, Nairn doesn’t hide the fact that he’s a big fan of Blizzard games. He is also a great DJ and at BlizzCon 2016, Blizzard’s 25th anniversary party, he entertained legions of fans and developers alike with his music.
You may know Terry Crews from the recently cancelled and quickly renewed show Brooklyn Nine-Nine. What you may not know is that two years ago he also had an additional solid fifteen minutes of fame—near reverence, in fact—in the PC gaming community. Observing his son’s passion for video games, he decided to get more involved and announced on Facebook that he was going to build with him a new computer. The fact that he’d never actually worked with hardware before was no obstacle, at least not when he could enlist the help of his fans on social media, who walked him through it, though not without some issues and confusion (as it often happens with first-time builders).
Since then, Terry has been no stranger to gamers, appearing in the Crackdown 3 trailer during last year’s E3 and often mentioning his new-found passion for PC gaming in various interviews. For a while, there was even a campaign to get him to voice the character of Doomfist in Overwatch.
This star of The Fast and Furious franchise has a long history with gaming, and one not limited to video games. Vin Diesel is a big fan of shooters, in particular the Gears of War and Call of Duty series, but in some interviews he also mentions playing World of Warcraft. In 2002 he founded Tigon Studios, a company that mostly developed games based on his Riddick movie series. He admits playing both on PCs and consoles, but at one point said that “once you go into computer games, it’s hard to go back to consoles”.
Apart from that, Vin has a lot of experience with tabletop RPGs – there’s a really great video of him playing Dungeons & Dragons with a bunch of voice actors you may know from various video games.
World of Warcraft seems to be a really popular title among actors, including Henry Cavill, who nearly missed the call from Zack Snyder that landed him the role of Superman in the DC Extended Universe. That he was in the middle of a raid in the game when the call came in is perhaps pertinent here. While Cavill isn’t as effusive about his gaming interests as other people on this list, he has talked about all the gaming he did with his brothers, and that his father was the one that introduced them all to computers. That said, he’s also quite fond of single-player games and at one point mentioned The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim as one of his favorites.
It’s no secret that Jack Black has a wide range of interests and skills, being a comedian, an actor, the lead vocalist of the Tenacious D duo… and a declared gamer. His gaming adventure began in the seventies with Space Invaders, but he also recalls playing Pac-Man, Donkey Kong and Marble Madness. He considers beating Project Gotham Racing on expert mode his greatest gaming accomplishment – apparently he even sent the developers a not overly modest photo proving his victory.
His biggest gaming-related project to date has been Brütal Legend, a crazy action-adventure game from Tim Schafer, the man behind Psychonauts, among other great titles. Brütal Legend’s main character, a roadie lost in a fantasy heavy metal-inspired world, is not only voiced by Black, but also clearly based on him. The game originally came out on consoles, but in 2013 it received a PC port and is now available on Steam.
Of course, let’s not forget the brilliant Tenacious D appearance during BlizzCon 2010, when Jack Black showed up on the stage dressed as a wizard, with Kyle Gass in a murloc-like costume.
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There are probably dozens of other famous actors, musicians and artists that could’ve been included in this list, as many cop to playing video games at least on some level. Do you follow any celebrities that are heavily involved in gaming?