Achievement Hunter is a video gaming website and a division of Rooster Teeth Productions. Founded by Geoff Ramsey and Jack Pattillo on July 6, 2008, the website is largely based on the achievement mechanic found in seventh and eighth generation video game consoles. Since its founding, Achievement Hunter has grown to become a core component of Rooster Teeth, hosting a wide variety of videos related to video games. The most frequent videos are hosted by the six most prolific employees: Geoff Ramsey, Jack Pattillo, Gavin Free, Michael Jones, Ryan Haywood, and Jeremy Dooley.

Achievement Hunter has a large presence on YouTube – where it runs four different channels: Achievement Hunter, LetsPlay, GameFails and Achievement Hunter Community – garnering a combined total of 5.4 million subscribers and 1.4 billion video views.[2][3][4][5]

History and development

2008–10: Inception and growth

In 2008, Geoff Ramsey's interest in gaming achievements resulted in the realization that no community-based website related to achievements existed. As a result, Ramsey approached Burnie Burns, then CEO of Rooster Teeth, about creating a website based on achievements; Burns agreed, and Ramsey created Achievement Hunter, which shares a similar design to the main Rooster Teeth website.[6] Alongside employee Jack Pattillo, Ramsey regularly released achievement guides and Easter egg videos, often receiving assistance from select volunteers from the Rooster Teeth community. David Dreger also assisted in the founding of the site.[7]

2011–12: Employment growth

In 2011, Achievement Hunter hired Ryan Haywood as an editor and manager; Haywood later began being featured in videos as a host in March 2012, becoming one of the main crew members. Four new shows were introduced to Achievement Hunter in 2011 one of them, Rage Quit, led to the official hiring of Michael Jones as a full-time staff member in August 2011.[8]

In December 2011, Achievement Hunter also began creating Let's Play videos. The success of the videos resulted in a weekly sub-series in 2012, in which the main hosts play Minecraft. Weekly Let's Play videos focusing on Grand Theft Auto games are also released.[9][10]

Achievement Hunter hired Gavin Free in 2012, after he had assisted with the company for many years. In March 2012, Achievement Hunter debuted Game Night, in which Ramsey and Caleb Denecour play games with community members; the series switched to a live stream format in 2014. Community member Ray Narvaez, Jr. was hired in April 2012, having worked as a contract host for multiple years. Later, in September 2012, contract editor Franco Scarcello created Five Facts, which was generally hosted by Pattillo and Ramsey and focused on little-known facts about various video games; it was not renewed for a sixth season in May 2016.[11]

2013–present: Popularization

In early 2013, Achievement Hunter introduced a competition series titled VS, in which the employees challenge each other to compete in games. In April 2013, Achievement Hunter launched their own channel on YouTube, which hosts a variety of their videos.[2] Later in 2013, the company retired Achievement HORSE, replacing it with Achievement HUNT, in which a variety of employees challenge each other until the word "HUNT" has been spelled.

In October 2013, Pattillo hosted a 24-hour live stream benefiting Extra Life, a charity benefiting hospitalized children. With appearances from other Achievement Hunter members and various Rooster Teeth employees, the live stream managed to raise $340,000. This charity live stream has become an annual event, with 2014's Extra Life live stream raising over $442,000 for Children's Miracle Network.[12] At RTX in July 2014, community members Matt Bragg and Jeremy Dooley were hired as editors and secondary hosts at Achievement Hunter.[14]

In early 2015, Achievement Hunter hosted the first Let's Play Live at the Moody Theater in Austin, Texas. In April 2015, Narvaez departed from the company as a full-time employee to focus on Twitch livestreaming, although he continues to voice his character for the company's X-Ray and Vav animated series.[15] In mid-2015, Achievement Hunter launched a new YouTube channel, named after themselves, thereon they upload series of videos that were previously uploaded to the Rooster Teeth channel. Additionally, they moved out of Rooster Teeth's Stage 5, Austin Studios office into their own office nearby.[16]

Dooley was promoted to a main host in October 2015, during an episode of Let's Play Minecraft.[18] A weekly podcast titled Off Topic was announced in early October by Michael Jones. Four test episodes aired live and were only available to "Sponsors" on their website. The first official episode aired to the public after the initial tests. Jones serves as the main host of the show and makes the most frequent appearances alongside other Achievement Hunter employees and special guests.[19]

From 2015, Achievement Hunter would feature celebrities as guest collaborators in some of their Let's Play videos such as Rahul Kohli, Laura Bailey, Travis Willingham, Dante Basco and Pop punk band Neck Deep.

Let's Play Live

Let’s Play Live in an on-stage event orchestrated by Rooster Teeth, which puts the Achievement Hunter members in front of a live audience to play games and entertain their fans. The first such performance was on February 20, 2015, at the Moody Theater in Austin, Texas.[20]

On June 17, 2016 the second rendition of Let's Play Live event was put on by the group at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California.[21] In addition to the Achievement Hunters, other YouTube creators that are part of the Let's Play family were present including: Funhaus, ScrewAttack, Kinda Funny, Cow Chop, and The Creatures.[22]

List of shows

Date debutedSeriesPrimary contributor(s)Date ended
2008Forced EnjoymentGeoff Ramsey, Jack PattilloJuly 28, 2010
July 29, 2008Achievement Guides/Achievement UnlockedVariousOngoing
December 20, 2008PajamachievementsGriffon RamseySeptember 25, 2009
July 14, 2009Easter EggsVariousOngoing
March 4, 2010Achievement Hunter Weekly Update (AHWU)VariousOngoing
May 5, 2010Behind the ScenesVariousOngoing?
September 22, 2010Fails of the WeakGeoff Ramsey, Jack PattilloOngoing
December 6, 2010Achievement HORSE/PIGGeoff Ramsey, Jack PattilloOngoing
January 20, 2011Rage QuitMichael JonesOngoing
March 29, 2011This Is...VariousAugust 14, 2015
November 30, 2011Things to Do In:VariousOngoing
December 7, 2011Let's PlayVariousOngoing
December 16, 2011A Look Back AtBrandon "Fragger" Light; Ray Narvaez, Jr.August 15, 2012
March 23, 2012Game NightGeoff Ramsey, Caleb DenecourFebruary 14, 2014
April 24, 2012Trials FilesGeoff Ramsey, Jack PattilloNovember 4, 2014
May 30, 2012Retro ActiveBrandon "Fragger" LightOctober 31, 2012
August 20, 2012Quick BitsVariousDecember 17, 2012
September 11, 2012Five FactsGeoff Ramsey, Jack Pattillo, Franco ScarcelloMay 17, 2016[11]
March 5, 2013Coming SoonKdin JenzenMay 1, 2015
March 8, 2013Versus (VS)VariousOngoing
October 29, 2013GO!VariousOngoing
October 30, 2013Achievement HUNTVariousOngoing
February 6, 2014How To:Joel Heyman, Adam Ellis, Jeremy Dooley, Matt BraggMay 15, 2016[23]
May 8, 2014Play PalsMichael Jones, Gavin Free, Geoff Ramsey, Ryan HaywoodOngoing
May 12, 2014Countdown/Top FiveVariousOngoing
August 13, 2014Imaginary AchievementsJeremy DooleyApril 8, 2015
August 18, 2014MegaCraftMatt BraggAugust 12, 2015
September 25, 2014Grab BagVariousOngoing
September 18, 2014Let's WatchVariousOngoing
October 16, 2014Achievement Hunter vs. The WorldVariousOngoing
November 6, 2014Sunday DrivingVariousOngoing?
December 19, 2014ShenanigansVariousOngoing
August 1, 2015Presented With CommentJeremy Dooley (with various contenders)May 2016[24]
October 30, 2015Off Topic PodcastMichael Jones (with various AH members)Ongoing
December 29, 2015Great Levels in GamingMax BernardOngoing
April 12, 2016VR the ChampionsRyan Haywood, Gavin Free, Jeremy Dooley, Michael Jones, Jack PattilloOngoing
April 29, 2016Theater Mode[25]VariousOngoing
June 9, 2016Heroes and Halfwits[26]Frank, Geoff Ramsey, Griffon Ramsey, Jack Pattillo, Gus Sorola, Ryan HaywoodOngoing

Cast and crew