This handsome teal gentleman requires some explanation. RKG Video is an independent production company started by Rory Powers, Daniel Krupa, and Gav Murphy (the respective R, K, and G), but I first found them when they worked at IGN and created a show called Prepare To Try. The original conceit was seeing if someone who had never played a FromSoftware game could beat Dark Souls (a game with a reputation for being punishingly difficult) before the newest game in the series came out. They managed to pull it off on a tight schedule, with Krupa providing guidance to Rory, and Gav along for the ride, keeping the "banter bus" running. When they returned to play Dark Souls 3, their custom character, Finchy, was reborn as a slimy, froggy, chapstick-eating weirdo. Long story short, I totally loved him and I decided that I wanted to sew my own version. He ended up being one of my most ambitious projects, and I'm still incredibly proud of him. Plush Finchy went off to England to live with the boys themselves, and has since gone on some exciting travels and appeared in many of their videos. Of course, I ended up missing having a Finchy around, so I made myself another, smaller version that hangs out around my apartment.
I was also fortunate enough to work with Krupa, Rory, and Gav to create the first official piece of merch they put out. I didn't know until afterwards, but the money raised by the Slug Life shirt actually helped them transition from IGN to full-time independence, now supported by their Patreon. I couldn't be more proud to have contributed something to them making the jump, and it's absolutely wild to know that people all over the world own a shirt I drew the art for. It was intended as a symbol for the community they created - a lone slug on the front, making its way to the party on the back with three slugs meant to represent each of the boys. Slugs, of course, are what fans of RKG called themselves - I don't think it was ever intended to take off, but it stuck after some jokes, and it's only become more appropriate as the FromSoft games the boys started off playing have repeatedly included slugs as well.
The community that has built up around the work RKG makes is full of incredibly kind, supportive people, and it's truly a reflection of how wonderful the boys themselves are. I highly recommend checking out their work even if you know nothing about video games - the first season of PTT is a great entry point for learning about Dark Souls, and I also like to use their incredible Ape Out video (featuring a live jazz band) as an introduction to what they do. They're constantly working to make new, interesting things, and I look forward to everything they put together because they make it all with so much passion, even when things get silly. It's an honor to still occasionally see myself referred to as Finchy's Mum, and to be a small part of the lore, as it were.
Prepare to Try Fan Day
With the help of lots of other slugs, we put together a thank you video for the boys on the anniversary of the creation of our fan group - check it out! Special thanks to Verónica Han and Steve Wood for editing the video and audio respectively.