|Created by||AJ Pinkerton|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||7|
|No. of episodes||98|
|Production location(s)||Palmdale, California|
|Running time||2–6 minutes|
|Original release||June 7, 2011– present|
Random Encounters is an American musical web series co-created by AJ Pinkerton and Peter Srinivasan. The series' first official short, "A Pikachu Song", premiered on YouTube on June 7, 2011. Since launching, the series has been partnered with Disney Digital Network, Maker Studios, and at one point IGN Entertainment.
Each short consists of an original musical number (often performed by live-action actors in costumes recreating scenes or starring characters from a popular video game series (such as Suber Mario Bros or Pokémon Black). The series was first inspired in 2010 when the creators' Sonic the Hedgehog musical parody won the grand prize in an international video competition hosted by Sega.
"Random Encounters" was initially conceived during a Sega-sponsored contest, for which Pinkerton co-developed the winning entry and his first video game parody song, "Needlemouse: The Musical". The Needlemouse song was requested by Sega to be performed live at their 2011 Sonic Boom community event, where Pinkerton and Srinivasan first recognized the demand for their product and began development on a series of popular games as musical numbers.
Random Encounters consistently caters to both children and adults. Songs are often written to be cleverly self-censored, such as disregarding the rhyming scheme or timing sound effects to avoid profanity. Shorts based on mature content, such as Assassin's Creed, Five Nights at Freddy's and Dead Space, typically present light-hearted versions of the characters, rather than their colder in-game incarnations.
Musical styles for each short vary, but often consist of extremely bouncy rhythms and upbeat tempos. Some songs borrow heavily from other sources, such as Disney numbers or in-game themes. The series' derives much of its humor from each song's lyrics, which often make reference to in-game events, pop culture or internet memes.
- "Needlemouse: The Musical" (based on Sonic the Hedgehog)
- "Singachu: A Pikachu Song" (based on Pokémon)
- "The Legend of Ganondorf" (based on The Legend of Zelda)
- "The Big The Cat Song" (based on Sonic the Hedgehog)
- "Pac-Man The Musical" (based on Pac-Man)
- "Nicole: A Dead Space Song" (based on Dead Space)
- "Angry Birds the Musical: A Green Pig Song" (based on Angry Birds)
- "Nothing is True" (based on Assassin's Creed)
- "O Meta Knight" (based on Kirby)
- "Like John" (based on Mass Effect)
- "The Eggbot Bop" (based on Sonic the Hedgehog)
- "Sega Bass Fishing of the Dead" (based on Sega Bass Fishing)
- "The Best We Can Be" (based on Super Princess Peach)
- "One-Winged Office" (based on Final Fantasy VII)
- "The Magikarp Song" (based on Pokémon)
- "Rhythm Thief: The Musical" (based on The Rhythm Thief)
- "Tetris: The Musical" (based on Tetris)
- "The K. Rool Way" (based on Donkey Kong)
- "Pikmin the Musical: Cuteness in Major Thirds" (based on Pikmin)
- ""MEDIC!" A Team Fortress 2 Song" (based on Team Fortress 2)
- "Ganon Claus" (based on The Legend of Zelda)
- "We Wish You A Merry Creeper: A Minecraft Christmas Carol" (based on Minecraft)
- "Super Monkey Ball: The Musical" (based on Super Monkey Ball)
- "The Wario Rap" (based on Wario)
- "Companion Cube: A Portal Song" (based on Portal)
- "The Eevee Song: A Pokémon Jazz Number" (based on Pokémon)
- "Don't Let Me Go: A Yoshi Song" (based on Yoshi)
- "Minesweeper: The Musical" (based on Minesweeper)
- "Tricked By The Eggman: A Knuckles Rap" (based on Sonic the Hedgehog)
- "Arkham Origins Rock Opera" (based on Arkham Origins)
- "Pokémon University" (based on Pokémon)
- "Legends of Zelda: Tales of the Wind Waker" (based on The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker)
- "Dance of the Sugar Plum Clefairy" (based on Pokémon)
- "The Flag Pole Song" (based on Super Mario 3D World)
- "The Enderman Song" (based on Minecraft)
- "The Power of Pong: A Star Wars Rap" (based on Pong)
- "Phanto of the Mushroom Kingdom" (based on Super Mario Bros. 2)
- "My Date With Captain Falcon" (based on the F-Zero series)
- "Hyrule Warrior's Heart (The Legend of Zelda Parody Song)" (based on Hyrule Warriors)
- 'Resident Enis and Resident Enis: Monster Gulch"
- "Sonic Boom the Musical - A Sonic the Hedgehog Song" (based on Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric)
- "Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker - The Musical" (Based on Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker)
- "The Three Days of Clock Town: A Zelda Christmas Song (Majora's Mask 3DS Parody)" (based on The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask)
- "The Zubat Song" (based on Pokémon)
- "Cubone <3 Mudkip: A Pokemon Love Song" (based on Pokémon)
- "MEDICS DON'T HEAL SCOUTS! A Team Fortress 2 Song" (based on Team Fortress 2)
- "StreetPass Love" (based on StreetPass)
- "Paperboy The Musical" (based on Paperboy)
- "The People of Smash Bros." (Based on Super Smash Bros. U)
- "Five Nights at Freddy's the Musical: Nights 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5, along with the "Complete Edition"" (based on the Five Nights at Freddy's gaming series)
- "Octodad: The Musical'" (based on Octodad)
- "Bowser's Castle: A Super Mario Maker Song" (based on Super Mario Maker)
- "A Slender Song: Lost in the Woods (Halloween Musical)" (based on Slender: The Eight Pages)
- "The Vaults of Fallout" (based on Fallout 4)
- "Shovel Knight: A Christmas Carol" (based on Shovel Knight)
- "The Three Fates of Undertale" (based on Undertale)
- "Fran Bow: Finding Mr. Midnight" (based on Fran Bow)
- "Senpai Notice Me: A Yandere Simulator Musical" (Based on Yandere Simulator)
- "Samus The Spaceman Cowboy (Animated Metroid Parody Song)" (Based on The Metroid Series)
- "GO GO, POKéMON GO!" (based on Pokémon Go)
- "Onix The Rock Snake" (based on Pokémon)
- "Determined to the End: An Undertale Song" (Also based on Undertale)
- "Team Full of Harmony: A Pokemon Go Musical" (Based on Pokémon Go)
- "Everything's a Puzzle: A Professor Layton Song" (Based on the Professor Layton series)
- "Best Fiends Forever: Song of the Slugs" (sponsored by Best Fiends Forever)
- "Five Nights at Freddy's Sister Location: Blood and Tears" (based on Five Nights at Freddy's: Sister Location)
- "Alola Form For Me" (based on Pokemon Sun and Moon)
- "Tingle Bells" (based on The Legend of Zelda)
- "Phoenix Wright the Musical: The Turnabout Encounter" (based on Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Series)
- "HuniePop the Musical" (based on HuniePop)
- "Hello Neighbor: What's In Your Basement" (based on Hello Neighbor)
- "No More Mama: A Tattletail Song" (based on Tattletail)
- "Favorite Fiends: A Best Fiends Song" (based on Best Fiends)
- "ARMS of a Fighter (a Nintendo ARMS song)" (based on ARMS)
- "Bendy and the Ink Musical" (based on Bendy and the Ink Machine)
- "Kindergarten: The Musical" (based on Kindergarten)
- "Papers Please: The Musical" (based on Papers Please)
- "Friday The 13th: The Musical" (based on Friday the 13th: The Game)
- "My Own Little Nightmare" (based on Little Nightmares)
- "Up on my Housetop: A Hello Neighbor Christmas Song" (based on Hello Neighbor)
- "Don't Starve: The Musical" (based on Don't Starve)
- "Just Monika: A DDLC Song" (based on Doki Doki Literature Club!)
- "Cuphead the Musical" (based on Cuphead)
- "Detective Pikachu the Musical" (based on Detective Pikachu)
- "Let Me Go: A Granny Song" (based on Granny)
- "Baldi's Basics: The Musical" (based on Baldi's Basics in Education and Learning)
- "You & Me: A Team Fortress 2 Song" (based on Team Fortress 2)
- "FNAF: Ground Zero" (based on Five Nights at Freddy’s)
- "NUMBER ONE: A Fortnite Song" (based on Fortnite)
- "Baldi's Field Trip: The Musical" (based on Baldi's Basics in Education and Learning)
- "The Brony Song" (based on My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic)
- "This Isn't A Car" (based on The Dark Knight Rises)
- "Why Not Wii U" (based on Nintendo's Wii U)
- "The Amiibo Song" (based on Nintendo's amiibo)
- "The Brony Song 2" (based on My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic)
- "Lolcats the Musical" (based on Lolcats meme)
- "E3: The Musical" (based on the Electronic Entertainment Expo)
- "The Console Wars Musical" (based on the Xbox One, Wii U and PlayStation 4)
- "Muffins the Musical: A Derpy Hooves Song" (based on My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic)
- "Godzilla the Musical" (based on Godzilla)
- "Wario Wrecks E3" (based on the WarioWare series)
- "How To Beat A Monkey At Chess" (based on the game, in collaboration with Fox Home Video and the film Russell Madness)
- "THE LEAVING HOME MUSICAL: A Moving Song" ("Empty Chairs at Empty Tables" cover from Les Misérables))
- AJ Pinkerton is the writer and director of the series, frequently starring as both male and female characters. AJ is typically eccentric and energetic and is particularly known for playing Enis in the "Resident Enis" series. His other notable roles include Pikachu, Bonnie Bunny from Five Nights at Freddy's. and the entire cast of the game Kindergarten.
- Peter Srinivasan is the channel's co-founder. He sings in or stars in many videos, most famously playing The Neighbor in RE's Hello Neighbor musical. Peter creates the digital effects for the series and is the primary audio engineer for each song. During RE's February 2018 live stream, Peter announced he would be taking a 3 month hiatus beginning in April, in the interest of mental health and outside creative endeavors.
- Nathan Morse is a primary actor, editor, and producer for Random Encounters. He co-created the very first RE song, "Needlemouse: The Musical." but remained relatively uninvolved with RE for the next five years, until returning full time in July 2016. His most popular appearances include starring roles as both Granny and Baldi, as well as playing Dr. Eggman in several Sonic the Hedgehog videos. In 2016, Nate created and starred in a comedic new RE game review series, "The Shovelwarewolf." The series has since expanded to become a seasonal feature of Random Encounters.
- Brooke Lawson has made several appearances on the RE channel most notably as her role in "Resident Enis" as herself as well as the adorable Eevee in "The Eevee Song".
- Morgan Want made a brief appearance on the channel as Osana in the Yandere Musical.
- Xander Mobus is a professional voice actor credited with voicing Freddy Fazbear in "FNAF: The Musical," along with making a small cameo as a police officer in the video.
- Lora Srinivasan first appeared in "Singachu." Her most famous role was playing Amy Rose in RE's Sega-sponsored Sonic Boom musical.
- Aleu Moana has been featured in musicals for the games Yandere Simulator, Pokémon GO, and HuniePop. She was also cast as The President in RE's Godzilla musical.
- Dave Bloom is best known for playing Sephiroth in RE's "One-Winged Office" Final Fantasy VII parody, as well as Link in "Hyrule Warrior's Heart."
- Casey Dwyer provides the gruff voice of RE's recurring skeleton character, "Eisenstein McBones." He has also been featured in "Sonic Boom: The Musical," and voiced characters in RE's videos based on Pac-Man, Angry Birds, and Tetris.
- Emily Dane voiced Pinky in "Pac-Man: The Musical," as well as the square block in "Tetris: The Musical." Emily appeared again in RE's HuniePop song portraying the love goddess, Venus.
- David King has been featured repeatedly on the channel, famously voicing both Foxy and Phone Guy in "FNAF: The Musical." His earliest starring role, Dr. Badboon in the Sega-sponsored Super Monkey Ball musical, led to him becoming RE's canon Professor Oak actor for several future Pokémon projects. He also runs his own Youtube Channel called Midnight Marinara, featuring voice acted Creepy Pasta that several RE stars have acted in including, Miss Bird, Gwen and AJ.
- Anna & Sara Bartlet are twins who appeared together in "Pikmin: The Musical," and again later in "The Eevee Song" as Plusle and Minun waitresses. Though Anna has been featured more frequently, Sara was inducted before her sister to "join" RE's fictional Smash Brotherhood as the Pokémon Jigglypuff in a post-credits sequence following "The Eevee Song."
- Mark Fischbach is a popular gaming celebrity with his own YouTube channel, Markiplier. He first worked with Random Encounters in 2014, leading to iconic collaborations based on FNAF, Cuphead, and even chess (co-starring animal actress Crystal the Monkey). Mark also teamed up with RE two film two episodes of an original series, "Resident Enis," which was partly funded by Disney XD.
- Nathan Sharp is a fellow YouTube music artist, responsible for the channel NateWantsToBattle, where he uploads a mix of covers and original songs. His work with RE includes co-starring in the Five Nights at Freddy's musical, voicing the character King Dice in RE's Cuphead song, and appearing as the titular senpai in "Senpai Notice Me."
- Xander Mobus is a professional voice actor credited with voicing Freddy Fazbear in "FNAF: The Musical," along with making a small cameo as a police officer in the video.
- Sarah Williams is a professional voice actress known on RE for her voicing Chica in "FNAF: The Musical." In 2017, she was cast in a major on-screen role as Wendy Oldbag in RE's Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney parody.
- Angi Viper is an online streamer and cosplayer who has done both acting and costuming work with Random Encounters. In addition to creating the star's outfit worn in "The Eevee Song," Angi has played Princess Peach in several RE musicals, building the costume herself. Despite her rise in popularity, Angi returned for major roles in both "Phoenix Wright: The Turnabout Encounter" and "HuniePop: The Musical."
- Matthew Patrick , known online as 'MatPat,' is another YouTube guest who appeared in "FNAF: The Musical," playing the primary antagonist, Phone Guy. Matt has also starred in RE's stopmotion Bendy and the Ink Machine musical, as well as in "How to Beat a Monkey at Chess" on Markiplier's channel. Together with his wife, Steph, Matt runs three major YouTube channels: The Game Theorists, The Film Theorists, and GTLive,.
- Katie Herbert is an actress featured in several RE musicals, including songs based on the games Paperboy and DDLC.
- Gwendolyn Saltzman has appeared in RE musicals since 2016, playing the characters of Info-chan, Six, and Team Rocket's Jessie in musicals based on Yandere Simulator, Little Nightmares, and Pokémon, respectively. Following her performance as Yuri in "Just Monika: A DDLC Song," she went on to portray Playtime in "Baldi's Basics: The Musical," and was cast in the starring role in RE's Granny-inspired song, "Let Me Go." In the second season of the RE gaming series, "The Shovelwarewolf," Gwen was cast as the title character's psychiatrist, appearing in all six episodes. As of October 2018, Gwen is married to Random Encounters creator AJ Pinkerton.
- OR3O is a Youtube musician who stars in the Doki Doki Literature Club song, "Just Monika," playing Monika herself. She has her own YouTube channel, OR3O, where she creates vocal covers for video games.
- Adriana Figueroa is a YouTube musician appearing as Natsuki in "Just Monika." Adriana later recorded vocals for the character of Baroness VonBonBon in RE's animated Cuphead musical. She has her own YouTube channel, adrisaurus, where she produces a mix of original music and vocal covers of video game songs.
- Scott Leverett is a prop master who appeared in many RE videos musical and non-musical alike as the stoic original character, Sweeping Man. Because of his fabled ability to find or create rare items, as well as make emergency repairs with few resources, Scott is commonly joked to have otherworldly powers (referenced in both RE's Minesweeper song, as well as by Markiplier during "FNAF: The Musical.") Scott maintains a DIY channel for aspiring prop-makers.
- Joshua Wittenkeller is known on the channel for his role as Professor Elm in the Pokémon Professor musical, "Pokémon University".
- Kial Natale Or better known as MegaSteakMan made a cameo in the popular Pokémon musical, "Pokémon University".
- Eisenstein McBones is a grouchy half-torso human skeleton (referred to as a "Stalfos" in the series). He wears various costumes and hats depending on the occasion and is most frequently associated with his boss, Ganondorf. Eisenstein often uses the term "meat-sack" as both a synonym for "human" and an expletive.
- The Sweeping Man is a mysterious, fedora-clad man who sometimes appears sweeping the floors in RE videos. Sweeping Man rarely speaks, even in live Random Encounters performances. He is one of very few humans to have survived an attack from The Beard (allegedly).
- The Giant Crazy Snake is a bearded sock puppet, first featured in "The Legend of Ganondorf". Many of his appearances end with a special message warning kids against reckless behaviors "without parental supervision". The Giant Crazy Snake is also shown to be an accomplished cage-fighter.
- The Beard is a faceless creature used as an easter egg in each Random Encounters short. It is typically seen in a long black coat and hat, with a thick yellow beard entirely obscuring its face. The Beard does not speak English, but instead prefers to make "Oogh" sounds. At conventions, The Beard keeps a stash of marshmallows, which it throws when spotted by fans. On YouTube, viewers post timecode for The Beard's appearances in each video's comments section as warning to other viewers. Few people outside Sweeping Man are rumored to have lived through a Beard attack.
After "Needlemouse: The Musical" won top honors in their Sonic Birthday contest, Sega arranged to have the Random Encounters team perform an alternate version at Sonic Boom 2011, this time highlighting the Modern Sonic/Classic Sonic chemistry from Sonic Generations. Nine months later, Random Encounters co-produced a musical game trailer for the fictitious title "Sega Bass Fishing of the Dead" as part of Sega's online April Fools' prank. Sega approached the Random Encounters team a third time with the release of Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure, which became the focus of the first sponsored Encounter.
In 2013, Random Encounters joined the Nintendo Ambassador program as part of the Wii U Challenge. Their first project as a brand ambassador, for the Challenge, was a musical promoting The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD.
In June 2014, Nintendo sent Random Encounters to E3, along with Black Nerd Comedy, Lamarr Wilson, and Smosh Games. To help promote Nintendo's titles, Random Encounters produced a short musical starring Wario, which included a surprise Charles Martinet cameo at the end.
Nintendo teamed with RE again in 2015 for the launch of their new franchise, Splatoon, by helping host a multi-cam let's play tournament and inviting AJ to compete at their Mess Fest obstacle course promoting the game on the Santa Monica Pier.
In August 2015, Variety.com posted an online article linking Random Encounters to a Disney XD initiative labeled "Disney XD by Maker." The crossover will reportedly seek to "find and develop video concepts for distribution on YouTube, as well as potentially DisneyXD.com and the Watch Disney XD app. It was later reported by Random Encounters that Disney XD by Maker would be funding Resident Enis 2: Monster Gulch, which was released early February 2016"
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- "IGN Daily Fix 11.23.11". IGN.com. Retrieved 2011-11-23.
- "Jace Hall Show Blog RE Interview". JaceHallShow.com. Retrieved 2010-09-01.
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- "Watch Your Favorite Games Being Acted Out". dailydot.com. Retrieved 2012-04-03.
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- Random Encounters (2016-10-31), The Shovelwarewolf: DUCK DYNASTY (Ep. 1x05) [SEASON FINALE], retrieved 2017-02-09
- "Disney XD by Maker videos to premiere March 31". Kidscreen. 03/29/2016. Check date values in:
- "CRAZY Try Not To Laugh Challenge w/ Kati Morton & Random Encounters | Game Theory Charity Livestream". YouTube. Theorist Media. 12/02/2018. Retrieved 01/04/19. Check date values in:
- "PropMaster's Handbook Intro". YouTube. 10/12/2013. Check date values in:
- "Glimpse Into the Beard". YouTube.com. Retrieved 2011-10-31.
- "Random Encounters Interview". jacehallshow.com. Retrieved 2011-09-01.
- "Introducing Bass Fishing of the Dead". sega.com. Retrieved 2012-04-01.
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- "Random Encounters". facebook.com. Retrieved 2012-08-10.
- "Sonic the Hedgehog status". Twitter. 12/2/2014. Check date values in:
- "Splatoon to make a big mess in Santa Monica, California next Friday 5/15". vgtidbits.com. Retrieved 2015-05-06.
- "Disney XD Might Make TV Shows Starring YouTube Creators". variety.com. Retrieved 2015-08-31.
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