Broughy: Our November Hero of the Month

OverTake presents our Hero of the Month for November: Grand Theft Auto car tester Adam ‘Broughy1322’ Brough.

Image credit: Broughy

The word dedication doesn’t quite do justice what Adam Brough or ‘Broughy’ (pronounced “Bruffy”) does for the GTA community. Ever since Grand Theft Auto V launched in 2013, players who race on the game have always wanted the fastest cars for races. However, due to all vehicles being rather expensive, players are understandably reluctant to part with a lot of their hard-earned cash for a car, especially because of the risk that the car just isn’t that good.

That’s where Broughy comes in. Throughout the period of over eight years since the game launched, he has become the go-to guy to help players find out which vehicles are best in a racing situation with his time-consuming test driving of every vehicle around a circuit. That’s why we chose him to be our Hero of the Month for November!

Hero of the Month

Humble beginnings

Naturally, like a lot of people who get into racing games, Broughy was raised in a motorsport-centred household with his family watching Formula One and other types of racing. His first experience with a racing game was Micro Machines on the Sega Mega Drive, and later on down the line he played F1 97 on Nintendo 64. This eventually led him to the Gran Turismo and the Forza titles, which in turn led Broughy to start learning about car control and he began taking driving on games more seriously.

He started his YouTube channel way back in mid-2006 and began posting videos containing a variety of different games, whether it was Guitar Hero or Gears of War, though still not steering too far from his love of racing games. One of his earliest videos was a lap down challenge on Gran Turismo 5 Prologue in which he had to do two laps of the High Speed Ring in the 2007 Ferrari F1 before a bunch of kei cars could do one lap.

Filling a void

It wasn’t until many years later that Broughy began to find his calling. He had always enjoyed playing the Grand Theft Auto games, but when GTA Online launched he realised there was no way of knowing exactly which cars were best in a racing situation and people were keen to know which vehicles were quickest in every class. So Broughy took it upon himself to buy and fully upgrade every vehicle in the game and lap them around a test track.

When you factor in all the many classes of cars and then take into account there are also planes, helicopters, boats, motorcycles and many more, that’s close to 700 separate vehicles. Broughy has thoroughly tested every single one of them to help viewers to make an informed purchase.

Not only that, but he also goes very in-depth in order to discover in-game mechanics and techniques to help us understand the vehicles better and subsequently go faster in races. These include which cars can ride over bumps better if you apply thicker tyres, how to get a speed boost if you run over kerbs, and the downforce values that each front and rear wing option produces on Open Wheel cars. All these details that typical GTA players would never have considered.

Broughy has also campaigned extensively for GTA developers Rockstar to improve the game for the racing community. His appeals are for simple quality of life changes that would make a world of difference, but these calls fall completely on deaf ears. He doesn’t allow this to deter him and continues to acknowledge shortcomings with the game, which may have resulted in him making a few enemies over at Rockstar North’s headquarters in Scotland.

Racing on Grand Theft Auto is, by Broughy’s own admission, pretty niche. Most people who play GTA probably don’t care for racing and those who want to race in any game would most likely scoff at racing on a game like GTA. However that hasn’t stopped Broughy from fostering an incredibly strong community.

Garnering attention

Broughy’s YouTube channel currently houses over 250,000 subscribers, a number he can scarcely believe. His personal highlight of his time on YouTube is when he hit the 100,000 mark on Christmas Day 2016, and receiving the famous silver play button as a result.

Along with his testing videos, he also runs very well structured events including five seasons of what was dubbed the Multi-Class Endurance Championship. In this series, members of his community would compete in 90-minute-long races with cars of varying speeds in every GTA car class. Broughy himself has won many championships in this series across all three platforms: PlayStation, Xbox and PC.

Not only does Broughy do these races on the default version of GTA Online, but also on a custom GTA server through FiveM called ‘Project Homecoming’. On that server, he competes in races wherein he gets given a random car on every lap, and this actually got the attention of a certain Formula One driver.

A couple of years ago, Broughy was doing an event and, unbeknownst to him, a little known Twitch streamer by the name of Summit1G tuned in on a whim, saw what they were doing and was just fascinated with how they were racing on a game like GTA which wasn’t built with this type of racing in mind. He subsequently downloaded some of Broughy’s custom GTA tracks and did some races with a bunch of his friends, and Broughy went on to do some racing with Summit. Through Summit’s large following, McLaren’s Lando Norris took notice of it all and expressed an interest in taking part.

However with the attention also comes a very unfortunate side-effect. Constantly throughout Broughy’s time on YouTube, people with higher subscriber numbers have often taken the result of his testing and repeated it verbatim without giving him the credit. All that work he does to help players only for someone who did nothing to take it and relay the message.

Broughy himself is not a confrontational person and has tried to only focus on himself in spite of these people hijacking his hard work.

Content with life

Right now, Broughy is very happy where he is. He resides in his native North East England with his fiancée Liz who hails from Sweden and goes by the online name Zearxy. The couple met when he found her on Twitch and raided her stream. He also enjoys a bit of karting at his local track, and has a real life racing licence now as well.

Broughy also hosts a podcast called The Choking Hazard with a few of his fellow community members, streamed live on Twitch and uploaded to a dedicated YouTube channel afterwards. He’s also recently been dedicating himself to iRacing, even competing in Jimmy Broadbent’s 23 hours of Zolder race last year. In this race, unfortunately, his teammate had a major collision with Jaroslav ‘Jardier’ Honzik who was deeply apologetic about it afterwards.

He continues to host organised racing on both regular GTA Online and FiveM Project Homecoming which you can watch live on his Twitch. More often than not, he’s competing in a point-to-point race to varying points of the GTA 5 map called ‘GFred’, which was originally just a placeholder name but became a running joke within his community and thus was retained permanently.

Player Instragram
Broughy (left) with Super GT (middle) and Tiametmarduk (right). Image credit: stevealvarezbrown on Instagram

Possessing a strong sense of humility and not motivated purely by just numbers, Broughy is truly a remarkable person who doesn’t get the credit he deserves. When you’re asked to think of a driving game’s leading content creator, for Need for Speed we think of BlackPanthaa, for Gran Turismo we think of Super GT and for the F1 games we think of Benjamin ‘Tiametmarduk’ Daly .

Broughy deserves to be mentioned in the same light as all of them for his unparalleled selflessness and dedication to the bettering of the GTA racing community, undoubtedly single-handedly saving loads of players millions of in-game dollars. Be assured that when the new update drops for GTA Online on 15 December, Broughy will be hard at work testing all the new vehicles so we don’t have to.

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Are there any personalities in esports racing you would like to nominate for the next edition of Hero of the Month? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!

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