If you could cash in on your passion, would you? The combination of hip hop and video games is almost as weird as hip hop and startups, but it’s real. The purpose of this post is to highlight a few leaders in this space and hopefully it can serve as inspiration for you to find a way to make a living with your hobby. Doesn’t get any better than that.
Who is Mega Ran? A self proclaimed “nerdcore” rapper from Arizona. I first met Ran at E3 2 years ago and didn’t realize how big he had become online. Mega Ran music is super influenced by video game culture. His albums usually carries themes such as Mega Man, Final Fantasy, Street Fighter and more. A normal person would probably think this is some weekend hobby, and nothing serious. So wrong. Mega Ran has become so large he actually quit his job as a teacher and tours full time now. He has done collaborations with major brands and is the first rapper ever licensed officially by Capcom. Not bad.
Gerard “HipHopGamer” Williams is the most known unknown personality in gaming. I say that because everyone in the gaming industry knows who this guy is, but he has yet to dominate the television screen, which is his ultimate goal. Gerard is the perfect example of “use what you have, to take you where you want to go.” He started recording his game review videos in his room with a Playstation Eye camera. Today he still carries that same authentic feel, except hes now being paid and treated to travel all over the states and more just so publishers can get his cosign for their games. He has been featured on top selling titles like Prototype and Twisted Metal with more to come. He also recently went into partnership with EGM magazine and has a content partnership with Sony Playstation. Not bad.
Konsole Kingz is a hip hop and video games lifestyle brand cofounded by CJ Peters. KKZ hits this small niche vertical from all angles possible. They officially sell hiphop influenced virtual goods on both Playstation and Xbox 360 marketplaces. They also are responsible for many of the big video game release parties that you see with rappers and tons of celebs showing up. Publishers seek out KKZ not only for their release parties but for gaming events, soundtracks, models and more. To think this all started as a dvd magazine doing interviews, to now having corporate clients such as Microsoft. Not bad.