Goonhammer Interviews VShojo’s Matara Kan: “It Took Me 14 Years to be an Overnight Success”

Continuing to deliver you the content that only we can bring you, I recently had a chance to sit down with VShojo’s Matara Kan for an interview! Matara debuted with the company in October, shortly after my interview with fellow VShojo content creator Zentreya (If you’re unsure of what a VTuber is, please give the previous interview a read!). During her debut stream, Matara mentioned that she was interested in running a Warhammer themed book club, and that she had plans to include Warhammer content in her streaming rotation. I knew I had to act, and so I reached out to set up the interview you’ll read below. Often referred to as “Mom” by her fans, the interstellar cockroach entertainer took time from her busy schedule to chat with us.  Over the course of three hours, the two of us talked about her getting into Warhammer, her thoughts on streaming, the importance of hobbies, and her Warhammer themed book club. The transcript of our interview is below:

Matara Kan invites you all to become anime with her while enjoying Warhammer.

Marcy:  You’ve been in the Vtubing game a long time. What prompted your jump from live streaming, and how did you determine the kinds of content you’d create?

Matara Kan: I like how we’re starting with the big big question. I’ll try to make a long story short, but I had been watching anime for a long time, and VTubing had been on my radar because I was into Hatsune Miku and I remember when Kizuna Ai came out, but I think I got into VTubing when the English boom started, and a lot of these Japanese VTubers were getting clipped and translated into English. And you know how the YouTube algorithm works; people watching anime and anime adjacent content were just getting fed VTuber stuff. And I said to myself, “I like this.” I’ve always been very into theater, and it felt so nice to look at people that were able to make an anime character come to life, and I thought to myself, this looks… It’s rare that you see something happen, and you almost instantly think “I want this, this is what I want to do, this is where I should be going”. It just made so much sense to me… about 4, or 5 years ago… a bit before COVID. It’s been beautiful ever since.

Marcy:  I suppose you could argue that VTubing allows you to interact with people more comfortably?

Matara Kan: I think more genuinely, believe it or not. I really feel like I am most genuine or relaxed… Have you ever heard the quote that when you put on a mask, you are most yourself? It feels a little more relaxed, [there’s] a little more of a buffer. You can really kind of be your silliest, goofiest self. You can really lean in and do things that, if you did them as we call them “FleshTubers,” it is almost more embarrassing to be that honest or jarring. I always recommend it to everybody.

Marcy:  You recently said “It took me 13 years to become an overnight success.” You’re a veteran in a relatively recent internet space often dominated by younger players. How has streaming changed since you started, and how does your experience change how you approach your streams?

Matara Kan: Streaming has gotten bigger, [with] a lot more opportunities, and a lot more niches. When I first got into streaming, you had to be very good at a game like League of Legends, or Hearthstone–I started streaming way before Hearthstone even, but–you kind of needed to be one of the top [players] at a certain game, and then you would gain viewers. If not, you could get lucky if you streamed more niche stuff like Binding of Isaac. If you were averaging 300 viewers, having 500 subscribers was very rare. Nowadays, you can average 50 viewers and 500 subscribers on Twitch. The industry has grown, the number of viewers, sponsors, and opportunities have grown.

I also think you can build a stream in a niche much easier. You can start streaming Rimworld, or be a 4x gamer and play Civilization, or an RTS like Starcraft and Age of Empires, or shooters like Darktide and Deep Rock Galactic that still kind of have a niche audience. It is much easier to grow as what we’d call a “variety” streamer… Back then, you’d have to relegate yourself to specifically one game. Now you also have TikTok and YouTube Shorts. 13 years ago I would go on Twitch Reddit and post that I’m streaming, or ask my family and friends, or my Ragnarok guild, but now you can go to TikTok and YouTube and multistream over four platforms until you gain some sort of traction. Streaming is way more competitive, but you have a way easier time growing, making connections, meeting people and networking that maybe wasn’t as possible back then.

As far as younger streamers… the more popular streamers do tend to be younger simply because younger audiences consume at a much bigger rate than older audiences. A younger fan is connected. They’re following your every move, gossiping about who you’re dating, what you’re tweeting, who you follow, what you did or didn’t do. A lot of folks who are in their 30s, 40s, even 50s have grown up with the internet and are getting to an age where we go to work and put a stream on in the background. We’re very much connected, we’re just maybe not as following that person 24/7. We’re still fans and we still want to watch content. A lot of folks cater to the younger audiences because that’s where the numbers are at, but if you are older you should try and cater your content to maybe your age range, since no one’s really making content for them, nor does everyone want to watch really young people be hyperactive. There tends to be a lot of yelling all the time, for example, and while the space is dominated by younger audiences, that’s fine – If you’ve ever seen those Minecraft channels with content for 8 year olds with hundreds of millions of views [you know what I mean]. But you shouldn’t be afraid to do content that’s in your niche, in your interests – you will find an audience.

Marcy:  That makes a lot of sense. I feel like from my perspective, it also feels like streaming is something that, if you wanted to try, you could actually just try now, instead of when it felt like you had to commit to doing it as a career almost. Like if I wanted to stream myself building a keyboard or painting a miniature once a month, I can.

Matara Kan: Oh, yes, exactly. And the rise of Just Chatting, I had a pal at the time who used to do painting streams. When she would sit in the League of Legends category or another who would play guitar of League themes, they would get bans from Twitch for not doing “gaming” category, but now many channels that are growing and doing very well are in categories like Just Chatting, or Art, things that weren’t available 10 years ago.

Marcy:  And now you even have Warhammer as a category, where you have everything from painting miniatures to games on camera, from Games Workshop to tournaments and even local players streaming their games.

Matara Kan: Mhm! I streamed myself opening up a Warhammer set from 2006. I found one of those vintage sets in a mom and pop shop. Spoiler alert, the paint was super crusty. And, for example, you can build and paint that miniature, then go play Boltgun, or Darktide, or Mechanicus, right? You can play Dark Crusade Inquisitor, this whole universe of games you can expand into on the same platform and within your niche.

Marcy:  When you debuted with VShojo, you mentioned Warhammer as a topic you’d like to cover. Did you expect it to become such a cornerstone of your content and even spur you diving so deeply into the hobby?

Matara Kan: It completely blindsided me. The community has been so kind, so inviting… a lot of these kinds of hobbies that have been around for so long can feel extremely intimidating when you first step into them. Some people have been painting and playing with these minis for 20+ years. Did I think it would be a cornerstone? No. Without going into too much detail because of legalities, I took a big break last Summer. I started reading a lot, and I had gotten into reading about Warhammer. I had played Total War: Warhammer, but that’s fantasy, so I was curious about 40k. I started reading about the cult mechanicus and the like, and I told myself that when I did debut with VShojo as Matara Kan I would play Warhammer games; as an independent creator I can play whatever I want when I want. I was just kind of shocked at the positive reception to the idea of Warhammer content. Seeing other people get excited made me even more excited, but I’m now running into the problem all variety streamers have: Too much variety, not enough time! You want to finish that game? Too bad, Lethal Company collab. Oh no, Helldivers 2 is out! You’re playing games with your friends all day…! My mechanicus playthrough…!

Marcy:  You mention that excitement, and honestly that’s kind of how this chat even started. I follow a lot of things, and so while I was watching your debut I heard you mention Warhammer and Book Club and said, ‘there’s an email,’ and then I noticed on your Discord server your community is super excited and now they’re constantly showing off their own miniatures and painting jobs.

Matara Kan: Yeah! We have a little room where people post what they’re doing, and I even did a stream where I reacted to some of them live, and it was so cool just to see people talk about how like, “this took me so much time,” or “I used this technique,” and while I haven’t done much painting yet I admit to being a little intimidated to try it! My community has been telling me that it is OK to suck, but as a creator it is a little nerve wracking to suck at something! They keep telling me not to worry, please, we just want to see you suck at it and we can paint with you!

Marcy:  I think everyone kind of goes through that initially. I don’t play much but I found painting and modeling fun, and you see that progression of where you came from and it can be really fun and interesting to look back at where you came from.

Matara Kan: Everyone tells me that it’s easy, and to just start painting, but I really am more of a collector. I love pretty things. I have shelves of pretty things, figurines, anime girls, and I love a lot of the minis I’ve seen but the problem is for those, I have to put them together and painting them! I’ve considered buying pre-painted ones or having them painted for me. For example, I really love Mortarion, and people just keep saying “just paint him,” and I’m like “yeah, right! I’ll just paint him!” So I’ve put some thought into getting a pre-painted one, and then over time work up to painting one myself. Then I can have two of them on my shelf, is that bad? Is that my collector bias showing?

Marcy:  One thing that sets your channel apart is the book club, and you talk about reading pretty often. Do you have a particular genre you gravitate to? A favorite author?

Matara Kan: I have a really long history of reading, getting into things with Young Adult novels… I think I got really into reading with David Eddings. No spoilers, but every David Eddings book is “young boy goes on a quest to save the world, evil happens.” Kind of the quintessential fantasy plot, if you’ve never read The Belgariad series, it starts with Pawn of Prophecy. I really got into books like Golden Compass, Harry Potter, and as I got older, I started reading things like The 4-Hour Work Week or Atomic Habits, stuff about how to maximize your life and live better, how to do things better, philosophy… And then few years ago I realized I did not like reading anymore! Reading felt like a chore because all my books were about the human condition or how to be more productive or how to cram more stuff into your day.

A really good friend told me “Just get back into reading the stuff you really enjoyed when you were younger,” which just happened to be those escapist kind of novels. I had many months off before debuting on, so I read Brutal Kunning, the Ciaphas Cain novels, and The Infinite and Divine… and I have to be honest, I haven’t had much time to read lately! My second book club has been delayed a bit, and I gave myself a mission to read five of the Horus Heresy books and we’re already three months into the year! One of the reasons for that is I’ve been so busy due to planning and building the podcast that just launched on April 1st (you can check the first episode out here). Building and starting something takes a lot of time and effort, but I’m hoping to catch up by the end of the year since I’m hoping to slow down a little bit now with content and get back to my hobbies. I have not been doing enough hobby!

Marcy:  The eternal balance. Speaking of the Horus Heresy, though, I wish you luck in reading those. When you’re done with them, I would be interested to pick your brain about, however many years that is down the line! (laughs) But it is interesting because the series is “historical” in a fictional setting, that these are things that “happened” rather than “happening” like in 40k.

Matara Kan: (laughs) Yeah, maybe in 5 years we can come back to it. But yeah I think it is interesting because when you get into these types of universes, it’s really exciting that there’s a whole universe where the history is already written. There’s something so nice about being in 40k and knowing about what happened “before” 30k, and I think that even though I know bits and pieces of that history, I think it’s going to be really exciting, and it’s been a while since I found such a vast universe to explore. A lot of Young Adult stuff is only a few books long, so even when they are interesting, there’s not always a lot there. How often do you get into a universe and get to go “I really want to know about this random village? Why do they do things that way?” and 40k just has that vastness where you can get into as much as you want to get into it.

Matara and Mint Podcast
Matara’s new podcast, which she said will include an episode where she tries to explain Warhammer lore to Mint. Good luck.

Marcy:  Do you want to talk about this new podcast a little bit?

Matara Kan: Yeah! Basically, a really good “friend” of mine… some would say we are frenemies. I love her and hate her. Because we’re on the internet and people don’t always catch sarcasm, I absolutely adore her and I think the timing is just right. Right now the VTuber world is… a little bit… in the Dark Timeline. The Horus Heresy has come to the VTubing world! (laughs). When 2020 happened, VTubing was having this amazing blow up, but now when you hear something it’s a little dark and a little heavy, so we wanted to start something for the Summer that’s a little light and yap. Whenever we’re together, people really love our dynamic, we really love our dynamic, it’s really exciting to work with one of your closest friends. It’s hard, right? When you’re a creator, it’s hard to catch up with your friend, so this is kind of an excuse to catch up, to travel together, go to a convention or something… We’re basically just hoping for this podcast to be a breath of fresh air, a drop of sugar in people’s lives, a happiness boost! We’re definitely going to have a Warhammer episode where I’m gonna explain the Warhammer timeline to her, she’s gonna explain her favorite Japanese idol groups. We’re both going to talk about Metal Gear. Just girls yapping about their favorite hobbies and hyperfixations.

The first book in Matara’s Book Club segment, Robert Rath’s Infinite and the Divine, or Grumpy Old Men 40k Edition.

Marcy:  Your dip into 40k fiction started with Ciaphas Cain, Hero of the Imperium, a pretty common jumping on point. What did you end up enjoying the most? What about that book made you go “yes, more of this, please?”

Matara Kan: The Ciaphas books kind of reminded me of a bit of… What was that series? So long and thanks for all the fish?

Marcy:  Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy?

Matara Kan: That’s it! It felt a little surreal and funny in how he would keep running away and succeeding. I love this almost Zap Brannigan type of hero where absolutely he’s goofy and gets away with it, he lands up on top all the time. And sort of like with Trazyn… everyone likes him because he’s cool all the time, but frankly I really liked Orikan. I like these kinds of characters that aren’t the hero or groomed to be the hero, but the one who ends up getting stuff done and getting stuff done right. In Ciaphas Cain, I see this absolutely flawed person who things keep working out for, and he’s aware of it happening around him.

Marcy:  Yeah, Cain basically fails upward, but he’s also self-aware of himself enough so he isn’t a complete buffoon.

Matara Kan: Exactly. I love Orikan because he’s like a grumpy old man and while I know he’s not everyone’s favorite I think he’s great. He and Cain are different but they’re both flawed and I like flawed characters a lot. And Cain certainly has a lot of them.

Marcy:  What are your thoughts about Trayzn, especially as someone who came into the storylines fresh?

Matara Kan: He comes across as this grumpy, grudge-holding old man. These two old men are just trying to one-up each other constantly and both have their egos, but also realizing they have to work together. They don’t even really know what they’re fighting each other about, but they keep it going.

Marcy:  I guess to go back, you could certainly call them “frenemies”.

Maara Kan: They really are! They have this dynamic of where they’re both kind of pointing at each other going “if you betray me,” “if YOU betray ME,” and even play pranks on one another, like, “we have to save the universe and work together, but also, here, play with a Genestealer”.

Marcy:  I’m excited to see what happens since I believe there’s a sequel planned, especially because Necrons are so interesting.

Matara Kan: Yeah, I love them. I’ve been playing through Mechanicus and really enjoyed learning about them there as well. There’s so much to explore with them that hasn’t been, since they’ve been around for so long. They’re old, they’re groggy, they’re mean, and they’re ready to get you off their lawn. They talk about the War in Heaven a lot, so I’d really love to see adaptations of that.

Marcy:  It is kind of a shame in a sense that so many of the books deal with Space Marines; it makes sense why, but it does feel like a little bit of a bummer.

Matara Kan: I have things to say about this! I have felt this way since Mass Effect! You come to this galaxy of aliens and you’re really gonna romance a human? Really? You’re IN SPACE with these aliens! The New Frontier! Have fun with it! I say this joke on stream: “Really? You’re getting into 40k? You think I got into the deep dark future for a human man who is just a little bit bigger than a normal man? No no no. Give me my Necrons, give me Tyranids, give me Orks!” I don’t know how they would do it but give us books from the Tyranid perspective. I’d love to see books about how the Necrons lost their… Necron-manity…? And there are certainly Ork books, but they do tend to be goofy and comedic.

Marcy:  I think I’ll take a chance to plug my favorite trilogy of novels, Forges of Mars, which I think is a great introductory read for people curious about the 40k universe, since the novels don’t require a lot of pre-existing knowledge to enjoy and use it as a way to get into the hobby.

Matara Kan: I’m gonna add it to my list! The Cult Mechanicus is probably my favorite faction in the Imperium. Another faction I really like is Sisters of Battle, because it’s so badass to have these women to destroy you with their big meltas! I think my only problem is that when I look at the models the hair looks a little bit… I always forget the name but Danny DeVito in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia–

Marcy:  Oh god I know who you mean and I can’t think of it–

Matara Kan: –Ongo Gablogian. There we go. So sometimes models, every time I look to buy Sisters of Battle Merch, they look a little… “Ongo Gablogian”?

Marcy:  As soon as you said it, it popped into my head and you’re right, they totally do look like that. I know that a lot of modern models have tried to vary up their hairstyles now, but the iconic cut really is the… the…

Matara Kan: The Ongo.

The Ongo
Ongo Gablogian, Sister of Battle.

Marcy:  When you first envisioned a book club as part of your stream, did you always think of it as being a Warhammer book club?

Matara Kan: It was always a Warhammer book club, because I knew that as I was going to get busy with streaming I wanted to keep exploring this Warhammer world. Fortunately, and unfortunately, as a creator, if you put something in your streaming schedule that’s how it gets done. I knew that one of the only ways I could keep reading these books with how busy I am was to do a book club, and because the book club had a lot more folks than I expected because my stream did a lot better than I initially expected–Everything is going really well!–It kind of made me go back to the drawing board and think about how I want to do the book club. Now I’m working on making it into something where I do a presentation and then we have a discussion. It’s a lot! It’s stressful to present a whole project in front of everybody!

Marcy:  I know initially you had hoped to have other VShojo members to read the book and chime in as well as your chat, so with the response to your book club and streams in general, what’s your headspace going into the second one?

Matara Kan: I’ve definitely learned quite a bit. For example, I bought the book physically, and even between other physical editions or digital editions, everyone seemed to have different page numbers and passages, and it ended up really making things difficult to engage with because it kept creating a lot of confusion between which edition people were referencing. So this is something we’re changing. As for having the other VShojo members recommend books, but I think in the future I might ask guests to come by, and for the third book club, I’m going to have a book that Bricky recommended to me about the Imperial Assassins. Assassinorum: Kingmaker. I think the third book club book will be this one, and eventually I’d love to have other people in the Warhammer space recommend me other books. I’d also love to try a trilogy, your Forges of Mars would be one, Ciaphas Cain could be, but a trilogy is a big barrier to entry.

Marcy:  Yeah, when you have these one off novels they’re very self-contained and it makes things a little easier, but the trilogies do make things hard even when they are written with that in mind that there will be multiple volumes, it still ends up being like 1500 pages long.

Matara Kan: Right? And then how much time would I give people? I want to get back to it once a month again, and so if I did something like a trilogy, are we doing one of those books a month? What happens if you show up in month two? That’s not the end of the world but it does make things hard, and then also I can’t ask people to read the entire trilogy in a single month, because that’s just not realistic even if you’re listening to it as an audiobook. My goal, though, I’m gonna tell you this right now, and I don’t think it’s that far-fetched, is that I would like to get an author on as a person who would recommend a book for us, like a little cameo. It’s closer than I think.

Marcy:  I think you’d be surprised! And yeah I think as you said, time is a big deal, because with a series like Eisenhorn, are you just going to read that series for the rest of the year?

Matara Kan: Oh yes, I do want to get around to reading that one though, because I know that there are rumors about Henry Cavill potentially being Eisenhorn and a lot of people are talking about the series because of it.

Cavill Painting
If Henry Cavill can do it, anyone can. Or something.

Matara Kan: You know, can we actually, like, go into the topic of adaptation a little? I know it isn’t in the questions but we have to talk about it.

Marcy:  Sure!

Matara Kan: So, Amazon has acquired a lot of the rights for the Warhammer universe which is good, right? Like, we get it, but the thing with Henry Cavill is he has proven to be a hyperfan, super nerdy about things he’s into, left The Witcher over it, right? All Amazon has to do is give him a lot of money and leave him alone. Give him your credit card and leave! That’s it! I genuinely believe he can do a phenomenal job just with that. I am just hoping that with the rise and fall of the Witcher, it’ll be enough to convince executives to leave him alone. If you want to make money off us nerds, just let the nerd make the thing. I think Warhammer is proof that we will buy it, I have SO many boxes of unassembled minis and I am new to this hobby. Everyone is always joking about 40(1)k, Plastic Crack, right? Just leave him to his devices, give him a lot of money, he’ll make it back. Please! Please! I think lately it seems like they’ve been making wise decisions with their licensing…

Marcy:  There is kind of a line to the past in which Games Workshop has done a lot of licensed games, and a lot of them are not… great. You guys have a lot of money and a stellar IP, do you not realize exactly the weight class you could be punching in with games? And then Space Marine came out and even then it didn’t take hold.

Matara Kan: There’s such a vast universe of games, too, and I want to get into games like Inquisitor Martyr and Dark Crusade. I am not good at RTS, but if you were on the internet in the 90s, RTS were everywhere, and so I have to play it. It looks so goofy, I love the Necrons with their little plasma guns.

Marcy:  I didn’t play Dawn of War but I did play the second one, Dawn of War 2, and played so much of the Last Stand mode.

Matara Kan: It’s so funny! But even modern games like Boltgun… if you’re into ‘Boomer Shooters’, games like Cruelty Squad, etc., Boltgun is worth checking out, and I’ve had people tell me Inquisitor Martyr is good, so I think the games have certainly improved. And even if you want to give it a shot, Dawn of War is pretty cheap, and my chat assures me it is easier than Starcraft if you are worried about it being too hard.

Marcy:  And of course, you also have games like Vermintide and Darktide–

Matara Kan: Darktide! I really enjoy Darktide. I’ve been playing as an Ogryn. I’ve never really played a lot of shooters; Overwatch was kind of my first, and even Mass Effect was different because you were supposed to use cover, which I frankly did not use much of. Darktide is so much fun, and while I want to try Vermintide, every time I try to set it up we end up playing Darktide instead!

Marcy:  You mentioned that you tried to avoid finding out too much about the lore or ideas around things until after you’ve read them, can you tell me a bit about your thought process behind that?

Matara Kan: I do try to do that with most things I am getting into. I think it comes with having streamed so much; I want to experience things for the first time on stream, but with Warhammer, I felt that I was struggling because as you would read books and then need to read up on lore that you just don’t know but are expected to know. I think Infinite and the Divine was easy for that in that there wasn’t a lot you needed to know, but if you’re going to get deeper into the games or the lore you have to kind of read up on it. For example, I’m playing Darktide. I don’t know what an Ogryn is, so now I have to read up on them. Eventually, while trying to avoid ‘spoilers’ was important to me, I had to sacrifice some of that just so that I would know what the heck is going on.

Marcy:  With Warhammer, it is one of the ‘negatives’ in that you tell people you’re getting into it, and suddenly everyone wants to share their favorite video and wikipedia article, and I remember when you were talking about Infinite and Divine and the Genestealer–

Matara Kan: Yeah! There’s a point–mild spoiler–that an actress comes on stage that has a third arm, which I had thought was just a metallic arm. I didn’t notice it on my first or second read of the book, and it wasn’t until I learned what that was that it filled that gap, and now I’ve had to be more careful of going back to ensuring that I’m filling those gaps in knowledge.

Marcy:  And that really is one of the hurdles, because there is so much you are expected to ‘know,’ such as that someone with a third arm is supposed to of course be a Genestealer.

Matara Kan: Yeah! I really just assumed she was an actor using a prop, you know? It could have really been anything, a third leg, a tail, etc., and I would have just accepted that as making sense since she’s an actress.

Marcy:  Speaking of buying models, I know you’ve bought a couple–

Matara Kan: –Oh god.

Marcy:  –How many do you have? Where is your collection currently?

Matara Kan: I am very proud of myself, currently. I’ve paused buying more until I paint at least one mini. Now, I will have to buy a few more minis because I want to paint Necrons, but… let me get my stuff out and I’ll tell you. So I have, currently in front of me right now, I have an Inquisitor Greyfax, Horticulus Slimex, The little Grotmas Grits, a Drukhari Raider, and the like 2006 Warhammer Battle for Skull Pass Paint Set, which… the goblins are pre-assmbled, but the paint is… rancid (You can watch Matara unbox it here, if you like).

Marcy:  Oh dear.

Matara Models 2
The paints were described as “rancid”.

Matara Kan: I have a full cart, but I will make some exceptions. I am going to buy a few Age of Sigmar models; they don’t count, because they’re Sigmar, and not 40k. Two, I’m also going to buy a few Necrons since I want to start my painting with Necrons since I hear they are easier to paint, or I might paint the pre-built goblins. There was also that miniature, the Vindicare Assassin… Operative Umbral Six, I think.

Marcy:  The one on the statue?

Matara Kan: Yes! It’s beautiful. It isn’t being sold anymore, and so I want to get it on eBay, so I’m basically thinking if I buy that set, I don’t know if I’d be good enough to paint it for a while, so I could just… buy a painted one, right? Or I could hire someone to paint it, right?

Marcy:  Right, that’s totally fair; honestly it’s a piece that looks super cool when done well so I get that.

Matara Kan: And with a lot of the big pieces, like Kairos Fateweaver, or some of the big Age of Sigmar pieces, I don’t think I’ll feel comfortable painting them any time soon. I think I’d like to get them painted and have them on my shelf, but I am also thinking that maybe I can make it into a YouTube video of sorts. Maybe I can find an artist, maybe even someone who is in the community that then could make content of them painting it, I get a painted model, they get some money and some eyes on them, and it allows me to kind of feedback in to the hobby in a way. I’m sure there are plenty of people getting into the hobby like me who just see these models and go “I really want that on my desk right now”!

Marcy:  I don’t blame you for that, and certainly it is a neat idea of how to “give back” so to speak by networking and creating these ideas to build your collection and the community.

Matara Kan: I’m still kind of brainstorming a bit. You know how people do like, “I went to a cheap restaurant versus an expensive one,” something like, “I got a 5 dollar artist versus a 100 dollar one,” and then I thought, “I got three people to paint for me,” and like, is there something wrong with getting 3 Mortarions? No, right? Getting into this hobby was such a bad financial decision…Please watch my YouTube videos!

Marcy:  Having a year end conversation with your accountant about “Well, I spent all this money on Warhammer,”

Matara Kan: I am going to have to have that conversation soon…

Matara Models 4
“This is the model I want to paint after my first models”, Matara told me.

Marcy:  On the topic of community and getting people to paint models, though, I think again that’s a sign of the community growing. I think there was a sort of opinion that people painting miniatures for others had a bit of a stigma on it, but now I think so many people are like, “I would love to do this hobby but I can’t paint” for any number of reasons, and now the community has grown in a way that can support that sort of need.

Matara Kan: Yeah, it does seem like people are okay with it, but there is obviously that sense of pride in “my first mini”, right? I completely get that.

Marcy:  True, and you know, it’s totally ok to try painting and decide it’s not for you, or that you don’t have the time for it, or don’t enjoy it, also.

Matara Kan: We’ll see. I think as a Creator I have had to let go of my ego and shame and all that stuff but it still feels scary to do something for the first time in front of a big group of people. I have begun learning to sing, and when I hear myself from 2 years ago which is on the internet, and hear myself singing now, I’m like, “oh God.” It’s just improvement! Maybe it will be the same with painting, I don’t draw, I don’t paint, I don’t even color with crayons. I don’t know if you all are that familiar with what I look like but I got three fingers, two toes, six claws, it’s hard to hold pencils!

Marcy:  That ego death is kind of important, which sounds a little heavy, but if you’re too hard on yourself you aren’t going to allow yourself to try doing something.

Matara Kan: Most people are never as hard on you as you are. Sure, there are going to be haters, but who cares? It’s my turn now.

Marcy:  That really is just good advice in general; sometimes you see people replying to things from Warhammer Community or our painting round ups, and people say “oh I can’t do that,” but you can; the person that you’re seeing has just been doing it for years and years.

Marcy:  It’s certainly something; speaking of models, have you considered 30k models at all?

Matara Kan: Mmm, this might be unpopular but I’m not super into the aesthetic, they just look like little men and tanks. I’m not really into World War 2 aesthetics; I love a lot of 4X games, but I often tune out when they’re WW2 themed, and sometimes Horus Heresy gives me WW2 vibes.

Marcy:  That makes sense, with HH having this sort of civil war vibe. Lots of marines fighting marines.

Matara Kan: I am really excited to read about it but I don’t think I’m going to be interested in collecting those.

Marcy:  Yeah; there are some cool models in the Primarchs, but even then they’re just kind of like, big guys.

Matara Kan: It’s that meme of “You versus the Guy She Told you Not to Worry About,” right? There’s Mortarion, and then there’s Mortarion.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Marcy:  One thing I think that’s so fun with the hobby, is that you can find that faction that really speaks to you, like the Votann for that sort of ‘space dwarf’ aesthetic, or Necrons, or Tyranids. Would you say Necrons are your favorite faction?

Matara Kan: I think they are my favorite lore wise, probably, and that’s just because we don’t know more about the tyranids, but aesthetics-wise, I’ve always really loved Zerg in Starcraft, so Tryanids are up my alley. But with the Necrons, their lore is so badass. If I ever got a chance to play on the tabletop, and I’m a little bit of a troll when I play games; I like to have fun, just a bit, so… I think I’d possibly play Orks. I think just rolling a ton of dice would be exciting. I used to play a lot of CRPGs, and while I don’t have time for them anymore, I rolled a 1, I guess I killed myself! Rolled another 1, guess my entire platoon is dead! So on the tabletop, I’d probably play Orks.

Marcy:  When you do finally get a chance to try the game out on the tabletop, I’d love to hear about your experiences. I think it is such a unique thing all on its own that it’s worth trying it at least once.

Matara Kan: Yeah! I’d love to get a chance to perhaps stream when I go back to Thailand and finally visit Legendary Wargame, that sounds like such a fun time. I didn’t get a chance to go on my recent trip but I’m planning to the next time I’m there.

Marcy:  Oh, I’m absolutely looking forward to hearing about that; I’ve seen pictures.

Matara Kan: When we do another interview, we can talk all about it after I’ve had a chance to visit all of the Warhammer cafes and stores in the world.

Marcy:  Is there anything you’re still curious about with Warhammer or find a little daunting?

Matara Kan: I am slowly learning the tabletop game and find it a little confusing, but I’m not really focusing on that at the moment. I think otherwise, I’m just enjoying learning the lore and catching up on things. I’m excited to see more gods awaken or return, changes on the horizon, and maybe a little heretical, but I think it would be kind of cool to see the Emperor off the throne…

Marcy:  Is there anyone you’d like to give a shout out to before we wrap up? Any closing words for the readers?

Matara Kan: No, not really–is what I’m going to say before I start saying a lot of things! First, Bricky, here’s your shoutout! If you’re reading this, here you go! Thank you for letting me steal you for all my VTubing adventures. Who knows, maybe by the time you read this he’ll have his own model!

As a parting message, if you’ve been wanting to get into streaming, especially streaming about Warhammer, it is such a good time to get in. Don’t worry about it, it is a great time to get in, you will find so many like-minded people who just want to share in the hobby with you. It is such an inviting and open community. Especially if you are a woman who is maybe nervous about content creation in the hobby, like I said it’s been nothing but inviting and amazing. There are so many resources online and offline. Second, thank you for reading, thank you all for inviting me to do this interview, I’m very excited for all of the Warhammer games to play and books to read this year, and I’m excited to take this journey with you, whether you’re an old fan or a new fan, it’s a really exciting time to be into Warhammer!

Thank you again to Matara and her team for arranging the interview and the lovely chat!