A Chat with Funhaus – Bruce Greene and Adam Kovic
From Inside Gaming to the widely popular Funhaus, the story of Bruce Greene Greene, Adam Kovic and the rest of the crew is indeed a fascinating one. We managed to sit down with Adam and Bruce Greene for a rare insight into their minds and what makes Funhaus what it is.
Adam Rorke – So, Funhaus, for the five people reading this who have no idea, what IS Funhaus?
Bruce Greene – We’ve called it a million different things, it’s a group of guys and a gal, actually its people, we don’t like genders, a group of personalities who want to make fun enjoyable content that has a high focus on gaming.
AR – You speak to most people and they go ‘oh I like games with friends’ how does it go from that to ‘we want other people to watch us playing games with friends?’
Adam Kovic – If you followed us from Inside Gaming (IGN), Insider gaming was sort of the same formula where you put together three or four people all playing a video game or making fun of it and just having fun. We really haven’t deviated much from that formula on Funhaus, we just added to it, we’ve added more live action stuff that showcase our personality. But we still do the comedy gameplay we did when we started Inside Gaming.
AR – So what makes you guys different from everyone else? What’s the X Factor?
BG – We were born out of a different kind of mould I think, where we were bread within a corporate structure, where we’ve grown up hating ‘the man’. Where we know where the good guys are, the talent and the higher ups just aren’t listening. And where the roof started to fall apart a bit we actually got to rise up a little bit and we were getting a paycheque every week to screw around, so we had nothing to lose! We could just be ourselves and we’re going to get the same paycheque at the end of the week, that’s a great thing and terrible thing because we’re not paid on views or anything like that. But if you’re a PewDiePie, then it would suck.
AR – So 2 years ago, almost to this day, you split from Machinima … how’s it been moving to Rooster Teeth?
AK – Great! They’ve encouraged us to no end in terms of original production and things we want to do. There is one thing they don’t do and that’s meddle in our channel at all! But they’ve also encouraged us to do other things like sketches and animated shows like Sex Swing and the Dungeons and Dragons series, so they’re broadening our stroke, which is exactly what we wanted and that’s why we left Machinima, to come to a place where they wanted us to make stuff.
BG – There’s no more ‘man’ really. Even the way we operate, it’s not like Valve, it’s a flat structure. We take our Management roles and do stuff but it’s not like I walk around going ‘I’m the VP of Programing, listen to me!’ We just know what we’re good at and we also pick up the pieces. For example one of us isn’t feeling great and one of us can pick it up.
AR – A lot of Productions under Rooster Teeth seem to have a fairly strong community, have you always had that connection with your community?
AK – Always! That was an initial mindset that we started. I remember this piece of fan art we got at Inside Gaming and I was like ‘what the hell? They’re watching and we mean something to them’ so for me I thought what do you do when it means something to someone? Well, you respond! Because that’s what you do when you want to have a human conversation, it’s what we’ve been doing with our fans since the beginning.
AR – Does that help you shape new ideas and where to go to?
BG – Yes and no. We have fans that will ask for a certain series to come back, like hey play the Sims! Well no, because we hate it, but we love you for it and love that you support us no matter what, but also we source a lot of things from the comments. We have two weekly shows that are sourced directly from the fans and questions, so that’s the snake eating its own tail in the most positive way possible.
AR – Are you surprised with your popularity?
AK – Oh I typically am. If we’re making the same quality content we were before, or better, then ideally yeah we’d get bigger and have a larger community. So I feel it’s like we had a smaller family and now it’s a bigger family, and that’s what it really means to me, it’s not that we’re getting more views, it’s a larger group of people I can talk to about funny things.
BG – Yeah I don’t think we see ourselves as famous, what you see is that we’re emulating what famous people do, and we haven’t fucked up yet.
AK – Like a sex tape or something.
BG – Even that would be ok! I mean, once we start talking down to our audience or start getting political, we know they’re not following us for our political views. We’re very self-aware of what’s going on. I’m still waiting for one of those moments where one of us gets coked out and goes nuts … hasn’t happened yet … because none of us do Cocaine.
AK – Because we can’t afford it … and it’s so hard to find.
BG – Yeah we’ll start tonight … and you know, we’re all pretty even headed people. We do this as a job and it keeps us fairly grounded.
AR – Do you notice anything different from last year’s RTX crowd to this years?
BG – They seem happier.
AK – They DO seem happier! They’re cooler … and just larger.
BG – I noticed last year, all the complaints were things we had no control over. Which made me happy, but also upset that everyone was upset with the venue and the way the stage was handled and all those things where as this feels more like a typical convention. I’m hoping the consensus is that this went great!
AR – So it’s the start of the year, what do you guys have planned ahead?
AK – Well we have the Sex Swing animated series which comes out in just a couple of weeks and that will run for about six episodes. Then ideally we’ll do another series of the Dungeons and Dragons show. And beyond that we have some drunk streams coming up, the Nintendo Switch is one we’ll do a drunk stream for that, then one for E3 …
BG – Right now at this point in time we don’t know what the future of Sex Swing will be, it could be a complete flop or success, we don’t know. We’re on the ready if Rooster Teeth want more episodes … who knows. We might have to be ready to write scripts soon.
AR – To end things here, do you have a message you want to give to your fans/community?
AK – My message to the fans would be to say, just stick with us. We’re trying new stuff this year and if you don’t like it, tell us! I really appreciate constructive feedback.
BG – And if you do like it, tell your friends!
AK – Yeah and if you do like us, tell your friends. Word of mouth helps us a lot!
AR – Guy’s thank you so much for taking the time for this interview.
BG – Thanks man!
AK – Thank you Sir! And for the tape recorder we are shaking hands, thank you.
When he’s not crunching hours in the IT world, Adam is gaming on anything that takes his interest. With a keen eye for quality, Adam keeps his finger on the pulse on the eSports scene, mainly focussing MOBA, RTS and Fighters. Even though he loves the competitive scene’s of games, the best memories are always those gaming moments he shared with his friends as they always remind him that gaming can (and always should be) fun!