Game Grumps is a Let's Play webseries starring animator Arin Hanson, and Dan Avidan from the musical comedy duo Ninja Sex Party. The show was created on July 10, 2012 by Hanson and comedic video game critic Jon Jafari. Jafari left the show in June 2013 to focus on his primary YouTube webseries, JonTron, and was subsequently replaced by Avidan. The channel additionally expanded to include new hosts in spin-offs: animator Ross O'Donovan, series editor Barry Kramer, and Suzy Hanson, the group's manager.
Additionally appearing in some, but few, episodes is the new primary editor of the show, Kevin Abernathy, as well as their newest member, Brian Wecht, the additional half of Ninja Sex Party. Game Grumps was a part of Polaris, a network owned by Maker Studios, a subsidiary of Disney Consumer Products and the Disney Interactive division of The Walt Disney Company. They left the network in January 2016.
Each day, the channel puts out three videos that consist of varying hosts playing a video game, featuring their experiences with, and opinions of, the chosen game. Lengthy games most often result in series of ongoing gameplay and commentary, until completion. Occasionally, the hosts will participate in multiplayer games, as part of their Game Grumps VS series.
With Jafari's departure on June 19, 2013, due to unspecified reasons and conflicts with his own show, Ninja Sex Party vocalist Leigh Daniel Avidan replaced him as co-host. Avidan would additionally join Ross O'Donovan as co-host of the show Steam Train, where both play PC games (the title references the retailer Steam). This expanded the channel's output to three videos a day: two standard Game Grumps episodes and a single Steam Train episode. Steam Train later expanded to include Hanson as a co-host at times, as well as featuring one of the group's editors, Barry Kramer, and Hanson's wife, Suzy Berhow. The expansion additionally introduced a new Steam Rolled series, where four-player games (not necessarily PC games) are played by the group. In October 2013, the group began a gameplay series featuring Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate on the Polaris YouTube channel, titled Hunting Monsters. A second installment, featuring Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, began in February 2015.
In December 2013, Kramer and Berhow began hosting Table Flip, where they dress in Victorian/19th century American period clothing and play tabletop games, like card games, board games, and tile-based games with additional YouTube personalities. The series is professionally produced by Polaris, with seven cameras and extensive editing in post-production to fit the content to the show's 45 to 60 minute format on Polaris's website rather than the Game Grumps YouTube channel.
In November 2014, Kevin Abernathy was hired in order to assist Kramer with video editing and production. Although Abernathy took on editing for most of the series, Kramer continues to edit Steam Train.
In January 2015, to celebrate reaching 2 million subscribers, they released a new show, Grumpcade, featuring any combination of co-hosts playing any console games. The show additionally features guest YouTube personalities, like game critics ProJared and The Completionist, O'Donovan's wife Commander Holly, and Markiplier. Shortly after, in February 2015, GrumpOut, a channel dedicated to recreational and live-action video projects, was created, which has no schedule to follow. In November 2015, Ninja Sex Party's additional member, Brian Wecht, officially joined the team, leaving behind his career as a theoretical physicist.
The channel additionally airs special holiday-themed series, featuring holiday-themed games, including Jingle Grumps for Christmas, Ghoul Grumps for Halloween, Date Grumps for Valentine's Day, and Stout Train for St. Patrick's Day.
In February 2016, it was announced that Avidan and Hanson would appear at Hollywood Improv for a special performance of Game Grumps Live on March 30 and 31. Later, in April 2016, it was announced that Avidan and Hanson would appear at Levity Live in Nyack, New York for more performances of Game Grumps Live on April 29 and 30.
In late 2013, the Game Grumps had put various games, which they'd received multiple copies of, on eBay for auction, with all the proceeds going to the children's charity Child's Play. After the auctions had ended, the total amount they had raised was over $7,000.
In June 2015, a 5-episode miniseries was released called Guild Grumps. O'Donovan mentored Hanson, Avidan, Kramer and Berhow in a 5-day race to advance from Level 90 to Level 100 in World of Warcraft. Each participant had $1,000 to donate to a charity of their choice, if they reached the goal. If they did not, their donation would be split between those who won. In the end, O'Donovan was the sole winner, and, combined with the participants distributed funds, donated $5,000 to cancer research.
In 2016, Game Grumps raised approximately $155,000 by hosting another charity livestream on Twitch, as well as redirecting all proceeds from an exclusive shirt to the cause. The livestream was for the Crisis Text Line; a free text service available for people experiencing moments of crisis.
In 2013, before Jafari's departure to work on his own JonTron series, Jafari and Hanson appeared in a promotional video for the Warner Bros. movie Pacific Rim produced by Polaris. The video additionally featured additional internet personalities Jesse Cox, Dodger, Mike Lamond and John Bain. In the video they played new recruits under training by "The Lieutenant Commander" played by Robert Kazinsky.
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