Attention, Writers: RPS Is Recruiting

By Alec Meer on June 29th, 2011 at 2:59 pm.

We won't really treat you like this. You won't be allowed to wear clothes, for one thing.

UPDATE: Applications are now closed. Dear grud, we’ve got a lot of very long emails to read.

RPS is expanding! For (sort of) the first time ever, we’re looking to bring another regular writer, or perhaps even writers, into the warm, loving but formerly closed fold that is Rock, Paper, Shotgun.

Trouble is… well, we’re not entirely sure what kind of recruit(s) we want. Do we want someone full-time, part-time or sporadic? Do we want an experienced magazine section editor? Do we want a crazy young buck who’s never been published outside of their own blog? Do we want a super-smart game dev who fancies a change? Do we want a fervent newshound, an indie and mods fanatic, a simulation obsessive, an essayist, a reviewer, an interviewer, a lover, a fighter?

All of the above. Some of the above. None of the above. The important thing is we want someone who’s going to make the site a better place. We’ll know what we’re looking for, and we’ll recognise it (or you) when we see it.

What we are:

We’re the world’s best PC games blog, silly. We draw 1.3 million unique users a month from a site we’ve built up ourselves over four years, and one that’s still written from our bedrooms. We’re beholden to no man, woman, publisher, manager or squid-eyed horror-freak from the 48th dimension – the four founders of RPS are the only people who say what does and doesn’t go. We might write plenty about mainstream games, but we have as independent a spirit as they come. So, if you’re a company (wo)man who likes to toe the line and write professional but personality-free copy, you’re absolutely no good to us. It doesn’t matter how experienced you are: if you are not what we would rather amorphously call ‘RPS-y’ you won’t make it past the first hurdle. Which brings us neatly to…

What we want:

  • Someone who can write about any and all PC games, from the glossiest, most meat-headed man-shoot to the most oblique and unplayable indie soul-searcher.
  • Someone who can dredge up an interesting and relevant game, story, mod, interview or opinion all on their lonesome. We’re not prepared to train someone to be a PC gamer: if you’re a console-only veteran who reckons they could probably swing PC if it came to it, that’s not good enough. You have to understand why the PC is The King Of All Platforms, and know how to find and how to write about the games and values which exemplify that.
  • Someone who can write exceptionally well, and in a defined voice of their own, but one that at least orbits the general RPS values of wit, opinion, insight and proud subjectivity.
  • Someone who’s as comfortable writing long reviews, features, diaries and interviews as they are turning out a high-speed news post that still doesn’t lack in personality.
  • Someone we’re 100% comfortable can be professional and personable while representing the site at press or other events.
  • Someone we’re going to enjoy talking to and developing ideas with every day.
  • Someone who wants to write for RPS specifically, who understands what we are and why we’re like it.
  • Someone from anywhere in the world and from any walk of life, as long as you can play PC games, be online every day and are a great writer.
  • Someone at least 18 years old.

What we would ideally want but are prepared to be flexible on:

  • Someone based in or close to somewhere that games events/creators are often found – e.g. London, San Francisco, New York… Smaller games journalism hubs such as Brighton and Bath are also good, if slightly less so.
  • Someone fully prepared to travel internationally, often short notice and for as much as a week at a time.
  • Someone who’ll sound and look presentable on podcasts, in photos or even on camera.
  • Someone with a nice, fat games industry contacts book.

What we don’t want:

  • Someone we have to tell what to do all the time.
  • Someone whose copy needs to be heavily edited and proof-read.
  • Someone who’s just an okay writer.
  • Someone who doesn’t give a crap about indie and mods and free to play MMOs, or doesn’t know why it’s annoying when a game won’t let you rebind controls.
  • Someone who thinks RPS is just a stepping stone into games journalism, or just an available way out of their current big publisher drudgery.
  • Someone who thinks this will lead to management or enormous power. This is a position for writers, on a site that respects and wants to nurture writers, rather than drive them into other disciplines so we can then go exploit younger, cheaper writers’ enthusiasm.

What we’re offering:

  • The exact nature, size and pay of the role is not yet set – it’s all going to depend on the person or persons we select. The pay – and this is a paid gig – will nevertheless appropriate to the role you are selected for. You’re probably not going to be driving a neon Lambourghini any time soon, but increased rewards will come from increase site traffic.
  • Semi-flexible hours, and all of them worked from home.
  • Relative freedom to play and write what you yourself deem to be interesting, entertaining or important, so long as you’re good.
  • Our eternal love.

How to apply:

Email with all of but only these things: a brief CV/résumé, a 500-word writing sample specifically penned for RPS and a few links to further games-related writing of assorted lengths.

You should do this soon. But definitely before Wednesday, July 13 2011.

Please note: due to the volume of applications we’re not able to enter into correspondence with unsure respondents at this initial stage. If you think this is for you, apply.

Good luck. Be good.


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  1. billyblaze says:

    first gets the job!

    • Temple says:

      I think it’s a set up and they already plan to re-hire Keeron Gillion

    • Mattressi says:

      I thought Keyring Gallon ascended? Still, I had imagined that he’d briefly descend to knight the new writer – and if that’s possible, perhaps it’s possible for him to permanently descend and continue as the undead king of Castle Shotgun?

    • der jester says:

      Don’t be silly, Karen Gillen is on Doctor Who now.

    • crainey92 says:

      Game over people Mattressi here has all the qualities required for the job.

    • jonfitt says:

      Kim-Jong Gill Ham, who’s that?

    • d34thly says:

      I was going to apply, but then thought I better not realizing that no amount of comradeship or money could get me to play all the way through most of the games released in 2011(the year of disappointment). So far this year I’ve purchased Bulletstorm, Homefront, Crysis2, Alice Returns, Duke Nukem Forever, Section8, Brink and Portal2 (8 games for $405), and none of them, except Portal2, are compelling enough to even entice me to play through once even after rationalizing having spent my hard earned money on them. If RPS needs an unpolished, honest, pwnagemaster who will only play through and review games that have some actual fun component somewhere in them, then I am the best that RPS can hope to get (the best pwnagemaster not the best writer obviously). I hope whomever RPS deems worthy to enlist is at least very honest and finally does unadulterated reviews instead of always trying to be so positive like RPS did with Duke Nukem Forever. BTW: Duke Nukem Forever is a flaming pile of dogshit <–that should be the review heading and summary all in one right there.

  2. Meat Circus says:

    Pay: Biscuits.
    Uniform: Clogs and a car coat.

  3. Saul says:

    Ah. Hmm. Will have to go for this. Expect incoming.

  4. Kdansky says:

    How can anyone hope to measure up to the glory that is RPS writing? Inconceivable!

  5. Meat Circus says:

    It’s dead man’s shoes day in Castle Shotgun. One of the hive mind will wake up tomorrow with a P45. But WHICH ONE?

  6. brog says:

    Good luck guys, hope you find someone amazing!

  7. Quasar says:

    Wanted: Someone to review games with me. Safety not guaranteed. I have only done this once before.

  8. MonkeyMonster says:

    does this mean the hivemind glass jars need a washout and put into bigger ones with the brains all floating in the bath for a few hours?


  9. Teddy Leach says:

    I am far too amateur, tired, and incapable of travelling without several months of preparation. I am almost certainly neither witty enough, nor a good enough writer. But I wish good luck to all who apply!

  10. Bobzer says:

    I would love to but I’m too afraid.


  11. Springy says:

    Job adverts such as these cause me to daydream in an unhealthy and thoroughly unproductive manner.

  12. MartinNr5 says:

    “the four founders of RPS are the only people who say what does and doesn’t go.”

    Aww, poor Quinns. :(

  13. blind_boy_grunt says:

    figured that “smee” guy wouldn’t work out. What did he do? Drunk on the job, hit on your girlfriends?
    (kidding, of course)

  14. Jacques says:

    So you don’t want an SEO guy then? :(

  15. mickygor says:

    Ah man… I wish I had what it takes to apply for this. I just don’t have any material yet :( I think I might get into video game reviews in case this opportunity pops up again in future!

  16. c-Row says:

    With your recent movement to the free-to-read service, you certainly need an accountant to keep track of all the nanopayments for sure.

  17. TacKLed says:

    I want to apply but I am 17 and can’t leave to gaming events. Well, now this sucks.

  18. Rii says:

    I always assumed you folks were grown in a lab or something.

  19. Wizardry says:

    Before reading this article, you should hire me so that I can spread my hatred to a larger audience. After reading the article, I am NOT the kind of guy you are looking for. Good luck!

  20. Monchberter says:

    I would go for this, but I scored 99% on the curmudgeon scale.

    However, I am rather handsome and can write. I’ve put the odd hour (literally) in at PC Zone, I’ve run a gaming community. Blah. Blah. Blah.

  21. Duke of Chutney says:

    “Someone who thinks this will lead to management or enormous power”
    well that rules me out

  22. BrainCandy_Yshaana says:

    If I wasn’t busy making games I would almost be tempted !

  23. Metonymy says:

    If you’re looking for someone who is consistently negative and presumptuous, stop kidding yourself, I would never work for a small time rag like this one.

  24. Uglycat says:

    Winner should get the entire TF2 hat inventory as starting bonus.

  25. Jon says:

    Is there a closing date on this?

  26. McDan says:

    As long as this isn’t a subtle hint that someon will be leaving soon I’m happy to try for this, and horribly fail. Back to the workhouse for me.

  27. Atic Atac says:

    Get someone to cover *gasp* consoles?

  28. mcwill says:

    I’d apply, but I’m afraid I’m just an okay writer who would see this as a stepping stone to ENORMOUS POWER.

    Also I’d just spend every single article ranting about the XCOM remake and how the “social games revolution” is just bollocks and it’d get really tedious really quickly.

  29. Timmeister says:

    If only i weren’t so young. Sometimes i do wonder how my life would be different if i didn’t choose to follow a life of science.

  30. tripwired says:

    The quality of writing on RPS is exceptional, to the point where all other PC gaming sites I used to read now seem rather generic and lifeless. I pretty much only read RPS now.

    Genuinely interested to see if someone suitable does come forward, they will have a lot to live up to!

  31. Antsy says:


  32. MadTinkerer says:

    Current day job (actually a night job) prevents traveling at-will. Trips planned a couple months in advance are okay. Assuming air fare, hotel, and other reasonable travel expenses are covered, it’s very okay.

    Also, I live in New Jersey, the point on Earth farthest away from all game studios.

    But other than that, I’m ready!

  33. Dusk says:

    I have a) played conputer games for over 10 years and
    b) used Microsoft office for over 10 years and
    c) excellent grammar.
    d) not american

    Please send cheque directly.

  34. zipdrive says:

    My heart is actually pounding a sort of a half African beat – half popcorn popping and so loud I’m sure everyone can hear.

    SO WHAT if I totally fall into the “only an OK writer” group.
    SO WHAT if I live as far from a game development hub as possible while still living in a place most people understand English.
    SO WHAT if I’m so intimidated by the writing prowess of RPS my hands are starting to shake on the kybeoarrrd.

    Fuck it, I’m gonna try. Start preparing the ornithopter, men..yes, and the crash-resistant pillows…yes, and the fire retardant smocks, because I’m going to try and FLY!

    • sebmojo says:

      We’re the world’s best PC games blog, silly. We draw 1.3 million unique users a month from a site we’ve built up ourselves over four years, and one that’s still written from our bedrooms. We’re beholden to no man, woman, publisher, manager or squid-eyed horror-freak from the 48th dimension – the four founders of RPS are the only people who say what does and doesn’t go. We might write plenty about mainstream games, but we have as independent a spirit as they come. So, if you’re a company (wo)man who likes to toe the line and write professional but personality-free copy, you’re absolutely no good to us. It doesn’t matter how experienced you are.

      This made my heart beat an extra special beat of love.

      Never change, my geeky gentlemen friends.

    • Eukatheude says:

      You pretty much summed up my thoughts. Think i’m gonna try, even if i think i don’t have the slightest chance.

  35. seventil says:

    Best of luck to all that apply!

  36. Skusey says:

    I thought you just grew journalists in your allotment.

  37. Schaulustiger says:

    Could someone please get Tom Francis to apply? Pretty, pretty, pretty pleeease? I don’t want anyone else :(

  38. Tony M says:

    So you should probably just take the best applicant, but if you’re on the fence choosing between them, it sure would be nice to have a female voice on RPS.

    • Jesse L says:

      I have to agree. But reluctantly, because I want to apply and I’m not a woman.


      I might be willing to give up my gender if it meant I could write for RPS. Then I could Wot I Think from both sides of the gender divide, like a modern day games-blogging Tiresias. Clearly that is what this site, not to mention the world, needs.

    • Temple says:

      The dumb thing is I don’t know why I agree so much.
      I shall have to quote someone who graced these very halls with his writing talents
      “I am mercurial. Also, an idiot” -Kieron Gillen

      I would like a female writer/perspective but would not want her to write from a female writer/perspective.
      So what am I asking for??!?!?!?
      And The RPS writers (is it wrong that I think of the commentariat as the hivemind? I need reprogramming I think) have displayed time and again that they are smart enough to write interestingly on pretty much all topics.
      And don’t want RPS to become a Leigh Alexander website.
      And yet… I guess there is a belief within me somewhere that there would be a different slant because of the different background. Simply because there has to be? Upbringing shapes you etc?

      Maybe Quinns should be dressed in ladies clothes (more often than he already is) as the new boy and made to write on the softer feminine side of things. But that is John’s job.

      Hey, I know what I want. I want a good writer. There I feel better about it now.

    • tstapp1026 says:


      Admit it, you just want B( o Y o )Bs.

      (Ugh, it hurt to write that. Be gentle with the retort)

    • Spinks says:

      “I would like a female writer/perspective but would not want her to write from a female writer/perspective.
      So what am I asking for??!?!?!?”

      You can’t handle the truth.

    • Temple says:

      @tstapp1026 And what makes you think I don’t have boobs? Man-boobs for shure, but still boobs.
      I have some boobs, and until they catch me I’ll keep them

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      If you’re thinking what I think you’re thinking, I think what you’re thinking is you want a female writer who isn’t ‘look at me, I’m a woman!’ about everything. I think.

  39. sinister agent says:

    I like the graphic it is good and the gameplay is very good and it has good sound the sound is very good


    I will accept a cheque.

  40. NukeLord says:

    I’ve heard Karen Gillan is the best games journalist there is, you should get her.

  41. Inigo says:

    wit, opinion, insight

    Oh my aching sides.

  42. Raziel_aXd says:

    Man, this job advert sounds so… corporatist. These always scare me. I’ll probably try and surely fail, but at least at some point I might write for RPS. Also, how much of a day do you guys “work” for RPS?

  43. coffeetable says:

    > one that’s still written from our bedrooms

    You mean… there is no RPS office? It’s all been a lie?

    • Kieron Gillen says:

      An office is a state of mind.


    • Raziel_aXd says:

      A dirty one probably, with views of the sidewalk and cheap whores.

    • Gap Gen says:

      “An office is a state of mind” is so true. I sat on the sofa working all yesterday, and now I’m in the office commenting on RPS. Ahem.

    • John Walker says:

      Our bedrooms in the castle, silly!

    • Daiv says:

      You think so three-dimensionally.

      In four-dimensional space folded through five dimensions all the bedrooms are separated by a membrane roughly the thickness of a proton. Opening any of the bedroom doors from the outside performs a complex topological transformation which inverts only one of the bedrooms. Indeed, topologically speaking it can be said that the act of twisting the handle actually turns the relevant bedroom inside-out.

  44. oceanclub says:

    I say we sabotage Kieron Gillen’s comics career and force him back. We could start a “Thor is a Paedo” meme.


  45. Gundrea says:

    I’m tempted to apply but RPS is competition to my blog or would be if I ever actually wrote about games and/or had an audience.

  46. matty_gibbon says:

    Umm. I got a letter printed in Edge once.

  47. ColOfNature says:

    Recruiting, when John clearly has way too much time on his hands, judging by his last post, and you yourself, Mr So-Called-Magical Meer are obviously not unacquainted with the delights of the lacuna. Get back to work, ye swabs! The four founders of RPS (and Quinns) are the only squid-eyed horror-freaks from the 48th dimension we need around here – the “Smee”/”Caldwell” scam having been uncovered through the tireless efforts of a commenter yesterday!

    It’s the NanoTransactions, isn’t it? Suddenly you’re rolling in money and you’re feeling unaccustomedly profligate. Well, on your own heads be it.

  48. Alexander Norris says:

    Get Brendan, he’s pretty good (although don’t get him if you’re ever going to call him “Brendy” again. Brendy is a rubbish thing. It’s not even cool. Quinns is a cool nickname).

    Also, cover mods, you bloody sods.

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