Game Sack is a video game-focused Video Review Show hosted by Joe Redifer and Dave White that started on YouTube in April of 2011. The usual format is that Joe and Dave take turns reviewing games based around a general topic, most often standard topics like focusing on a specific console or genre, but sometimes other topics like imports, games they recently beat, remakes, etc. The show differs from most review shows on YouTube in significant ways: they're way more positive about gaming than most review shows (though they occasionally won't recommend games), Joe and Dave go by their real names and don't portray characters, and the show isn't a Mid-Review Sketch Show, but they do end their shows with sketches, not necessarily sketches related to the preceding episode. The sketches reflect the type of home movies the guys had been making in the decades (yes, decades) preceding the show.
Until 2017, they were assisted by Jennifer Pan, usually behind but occasionally in front of the camera. In April 2019, Dave announced that he was leaving the following month due to personal and time commitments, though he did leave the possibility open for occasional appearances in the show in the future.
Game Sack features the following tropes:
- Caustic Critic - Generally averted, though they do review games they don't like here and there.
- Cool Old Guys - Joe and Dave were already in their late 30s-early 40s when they started the show. Almost all of their games were collected over the last 30+ years, including many rare games bought when still in print.
- Early Installment Weirdness - Joe and Dave played up their respective console fandoms more often in early episodes (Joe is a Sega fanboy who owned a Master System in the 80s whereas Dave is a diehard Nintendo fan). There was also more toilet humor with stock fart sounds added into the opening title music.
- Lesser Star - Dave White. If other YouTube shows feature an appearance by Game Sack, it's almost always just Joe, the most notable exception being Retroware.TV's Video Game Years. Joe has also filmed some special episodes on his own and did a few live streams without Dave. Most of the social media named "Game Sack" is Joe, with Dave having his own accounts as "Game Sack Dave".
- Milestone Celebration - Their 100th episode featured their full-length theme song and focused on their Top 10 16-Bit Games. Their 200th episode was about games with "TUDE!", with the host segments filmed to look like a wild game commercial of the 1990s.
- Parody Episode - "Let's Make A YouTube Show", an episode centered around Dave wanting to make his own YouTube channel and Joe showing him the channels of Happy Console Gamer, Game Sack, Metal Jesus Rocks, Classic Game Room, The Irate Gamer, and Angry Video Game Nerd. Every segment features Joe dressed as each channel's host, with Dave appearing in the Game Sack and Metal Jesus segments, and culminates with Dave combining them into the Exasperated Gamer.
- Reality Is Unrealistic - In their "WTF?" episode, people in the comments were impressed with how they were able to make the flashback footage look like it came from the 90s and the makeup and wigs that made them look 15-20 years younger. The flashback footage was actually shot in the 90s and they legitimately were younger.
- Running Gags - "X MEGA POWER", a spoof of game packaging that touted the size of the games ROM chips
- A clip of Joe saying "Did you just say tits?" if someone says "titular"
- A sketch premise of Dave doing something like eating or playing a game, Joe approaching, asking what Dave's doing, and stealing whatever is in Dave's hand. Only featured in the "WTF" episode, but they filmed different versions of the sketch over a period of thirteen years!
- Dave stealing Joe's copy of Snatcher in closing segments.
- Vindicated by History: Invoked twice on the show, where Joe recommends games that once left a bad first impression on him:
- In the "Video Pinball" episode, Joe admitted that he hated Sonic Spinball when it was first released for its dreary graphics, clunky gameplay, and grating soundtrack (the latter which he still stands by in this video). While he still feels it could have benefited from living up to the standards set by the main games, he nonetheless appreciates the game on its own merits. He even lampshades this in the end of this segment of the video:Wow, I never thought the day would come where I'd actually recommend Sonic Spinball, but I am, and you should have it.
- In "The Best 16-Bit Castlevania" video, Joe initially dismissed Castlevania: Bloodlines for its unfortunate timing, having come out five months after the technically superior Castlevania: Rondo of Blood, and also its atypical take on the series. However, after giving the game a chance, he "began to realize just how truly amazing this game really is", with qualities that aren't noticeable at first, but are nonetheless substantial. What solidified this installment's vindicated status is the end of the video, where Joe set his own Nostalgia Filter aside and ranked Bloodlines above Super Castlevania IV, the latter of which he's praised as a generally flawless experience.
- In the "Video Pinball" episode, Joe admitted that he hated Sonic Spinball when it was first released for its dreary graphics, clunky gameplay, and grating soundtrack (the latter which he still stands by in this video). While he still feels it could have benefited from living up to the standards set by the main games, he nonetheless appreciates the game on its own merits. He even lampshades this in the end of this segment of the video: