Rock Paper Shotgun
Rock Paper Shotgun homepage as of 24 June 2021
Type of businessSubsidiary
Type of site
Video game journalism
OwnerGamer Network
EditorGraham Smith
IndustryVideo game industry
Launched13 July 2007; 16 years ago (2007-07-13)
Current statusActive

Rock Paper Shotgun[a] is a British video game journalism website. It was launched in July 2007 to focus on PC games and was acquired by Gamer Network, a network of sites led by Eurogamer, in May 2017.[1][2]


This section relies excessively on references to primary sources. Please improve this section by adding secondary or tertiary sources. Find sources: "Rock Paper Shotgun" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (November 2023) (Learn how and when to remove this message)

Rock Paper Shotgun was founded by Kieron Gillen, Jim Rossignol, Alec Meer and John Walker in 2007. All four were freelancing for Future Publishing and wanted to create a website focused entirely on PC games.[3]

Gillen announced that he would no longer be involved in posting the day-to-day content of Rock Paper Shotgun in 2010,[4] focusing more on his work with Marvel Comics. He continued to act as a director and occasionally write essay pieces for the site. Rossignol founded his own game studio, Big Robot, in 2010,[5] but also continued to contribute to the site for six more years. Meer and Walker left in 2019.[6][7]

In June 2010, Rock Paper Shotgun announced an exclusive advertising partnership with the Gamer Network.[8] In May 2017, Gamer Network acquired the site outright.[9] A German sister-site was launched in 2017. It included translated and original content.[10]

The Gamer Network was acquired by ReedPOP in 2018, making the site a subsidiary of RELX Group.[11] In May 2024, IGN Entertainment acquired the Gamer Network, making Rock Paper Shotgun a subsidiary of Ziff Davis.[12]

Rock Paper Shotgun contributors include:



On 8 February 2011, the game Bulletstorm came under scrutiny by Fox News. These claims were largely ridiculed among gaming websites, including Rock Paper Shotgun, who ran a series of articles discrediting the reports by Fox News.[7] The articles analysed Carole Lieberman's claims and found only one of eight sources she provided had anything to do with the subject at hand. Fox News acknowledged that they had been contacted by Rock Paper Shotgun and responded to their claims on 20 February 2011 through another article, stating that the game still remained a threat to children.[13]

Public domain article

In 2014 a Rock Paper Shotgun article by John Walker about the existence of orphaned classic video games, and the suggestion to let them enter the public domain after 20 years, raised a controversial public debate about copyright terms and public domain[14][15] between game industry veterans John Walker, George Broussard and Steve Gaynor.[7][16][17]


  1. ^ Also rendered as Rock, Paper, Shotgun


  1. ^ Pearson, Dan (3 May 2017). "Gamer Network acquires Rock, Paper, Shotgun". Archived from the original on 3 May 2017. Retrieved 3 May 2017.
  2. ^ RPS (13 July 2007). "The Website That Saved The World". Rock Paper Shotgun. Archived from the original on 30 June 2019. Retrieved 30 June 2019.
  3. ^ "The Secret History Of Rock Paper Shotgun - Part One: Matters Of Import". Rock Paper Shotgun. 8 April 2019. Archived from the original on 28 September 2020. Retrieved 15 September 2022.
  4. ^ "Half-Life: On Turning 35 And Leaving RPS". Rock Paper Shotgun. 30 September 2010. Archived from the original on 9 November 2020. Retrieved 15 September 2022.
  5. ^ Rossignol, Jim (27 September 2010). "Big Robot Lives Again". Big Robot. Archived from the original on 30 March 2019. Retrieved 21 April 2012. my new company, Big Robot
  6. ^ Smith, Graham (9 April 2019). "Thank you and goodbye, Alec Meer". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Archived from the original on 13 August 2020. Retrieved 21 September 2020.
  7. ^ a b c Walker, John (18 April 2019). "Bye-bye RPS, thanks for having me". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Archived from the original on 23 October 2020. Retrieved 21 September 2020.
  8. ^ Martin, Matt (1 June 2010). "Eurogamer strikes Rock, Paper, Shotgun partnership". Retrieved 23 May 2024.
  9. ^ Pearson, Dan (3 May 2017). "Gamer Network acquires Rock, Paper, Shotgun". Retrieved 23 May 2024.
  10. ^ Smith, Graham (20 September 2017). "We've launched!". Rock Paper Shotgun. Gamer Network. Retrieved 20 March 2024.
  11. ^ Dring, Christopher (26 February 2018). "PAX organiser ReedPop acquires Gamer Network". Retrieved 23 May 2024.
  12. ^ Dring, Christopher (21 May 2024). "IGN Entertainment acquires Eurogamer, GI, VG247, Rock Paper Shotgun and more". Retrieved 23 May 2024.
  13. ^ Brandon, John (20 February 2011). "Bulletstorm: Censored in Germany, Coming to America". Fox News. Fox News Network. Archived from the original on 11 August 2016. Retrieved 26 June 2016.
  14. ^ Walker, John (29 January 2014). "GOG's Time Machine Sale Lets You CONTROL TIME ITSELF". Rock Paper Shotgun. Archived from the original on 2 November 2015. Retrieved 30 January 2016. As someone who desperately pines for the PD model that drove creativity before the copyright industry malevolently took over the planet, it saddens my heart that a game two decades old isn't released into the world.
  15. ^ Walker, John (3 February 2014). "Editorial: Why Games Should Enter The Public Domain". Rock Paper Shotgun. Archived from the original on 16 April 2016. Retrieved 30 January 2016. more than a couple of decades old aren't entering the public domain. Twenty years was a fairly arbitrary number, one that seems to make sense in the context of games' lives, but it could be twenty-five, thirty.
  16. ^ George Broussard Archived 1 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine on Twitter "@wickerwaka The whole thing, really. But especially that. Whoever allowed that to be printed should be fired."
  17. ^ Copyright, trademark & money in a creative industry Archived 2 May 2016 at the Wayback Machine on by Steve Gaynor "There is some argument going on about for how long a copyright holder should be able to charge exclusively for their own work, before it enters the public domain. John Walker argues that perhaps a good cutoff would be 20 years before an 'idea' enters the public domain." (February 03, 2014)