Tone Loke, better known online as Downward Thrust, is an American video game reviewer, opening his YouTube channel May 23, 2016. He reviews video games, gaming market statistics, and business practices of video games and their publishers.
It is seen and acknowledged in many videos that Downward Thrust's real name is Tone Loke.
Downward Thrust's videos largely review video games, where he recounts for his personal experience with the game/franchise as well as critic and user review scores on sites like Steam and Metacritic. His videos also discuss marketing statistics in video games and its impact on the game’s development and public reception.
Segments on Downward Thrust's channel include “Did It Fail,” where he reviews the effect of market trends and reception on a game prior to release and “Buyer Beware,” where he talks about his first impressions of a game before its release date and reviews the game in its current state.
Career & Personal Life
Loke grew up in California and revealed a small amount of his personal life during his first vlog. He studied business administration in college, and eventually entered graduate school where he got his Masters in Business Administration (MBA) and a Masters in Marketing. Loke recalls wanting to live out the “corporate dream” when he was younger.
After graduate school, Loke worked in multiple business analyst positions, and he attributes the structure of his videos to his early career, where he would present information to business owners and stock holders on a regular basis.
Loke applied as an analyst in an insurance company, where he was eventually hired with 6 others out of 600 applicants. Although he enjoyed his first few weeks, Loke felt he had very little say in his job and said the company “treated their employees like zombies.” He quit and started his channel, naming it after one of Zelda’s signature abilities. Combining his education, business experience, and love for gaming, he started Downward Thrust on May 22, 2016.
Loke eventually did a face reveal during a vlog, addressing his relationship with his audience, as well as YouTube copyright claim and his own personality. He dislikes vlogs, but chooses to do them for informal announcements.
Loke says he is not an “emotional” person, and rarely feels strongly regarding breakups or withdrawal from friends. He claimed the only time he cried was during the movie The Last Samurai for “how beautiful it was.”
CI Games and Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3
Downward Thrust released "Buyer Beware ► Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3" while Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 was in its closed beta. Upon receiving the beta key, he was told not to release any gameplay footage of the game, as the game would be released in the following month. After playing the game for a few hours, ridden with bugs, crashes, and overall lack of fidelity, Downward Thrust tried bypassing the embargo on the game set by CI Games by only showing trailer footage in order to warn people of the misleading trailers and unethical businesses practices of CI Games.
He was later contacted by CI Games that he had violated the embargo, and after refusing to take down the video, CI Games filed a copyright claim, demonetizing the video. He tried justifying his actions in "Why It's Hard To Be An Honest YouTuber (Strong Language)," where he received criticism from his viewers, including TotalBiscuit, for violating the embargo period he signed, despite agreeing with his criticism and CI Games's questionable actions.
Downward Thrust later issued an apology to his viewers, but still insults Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 because of the copyright claim and his relationship with the company.
Buyer Beware: Friday The 13th: The Game
On May 24, 2017, Downward Thrust released "Friday The 13th: The Game," where he criticized the game for lack of fidelity, content, and a $40 price tag; a stark difference from other popular reviewers and user reviews on Metacritic and Steam (who had rated much more favorably). However, Downward Thrust abandoned his general serious tone, and went on an angry tirade on the game. While most of his viewers agreed with his review points, the video became the most disliked video on his channel because of his delivery throughout the video.
Downward Thrust later apologized for his behaviour during the video, and promised to never allow his personal feelings overturn the neutrality he wants to retain on his channel. The apology was well received, and both videos remain on his channel.
Downward Thrust has been a repeatedly referenced figure on the podcast Every Frame A Pause, or EFAP. Following a video response to Downward Thrust by fellow gaming commentator and a leading member of the aforementioned podcast, Rags, the figure of Downward Thrust has often been cast into a mixed light when discussed.
The name Tone was designated as being short for the name Tonald, and so the simultaneously loved and mocked figure of Tonald Loke was brought about.
For some time, this moniker was applied in a derogatory fashion, often used to mock the oft-stilted way that Downward Thrust delivered some of his scripts, including long pauses and strange, tautological phrases such as "[an] artificial barrier of blockage."
A fictional anthology was built around the invented character of Tonald Loke. When played at half speed, Downward Thrust was presented as a character known as Slownald Loke, or when speaking particularly sage words, he was presented as Dadald Loke, in reference to Downward Thrust's reference to his own father in a video.
Frequently, Downward Thrust's comment sections can be found with scattered references to Tonald Loke, or to other anthologized characters. Frequently, these comments are in vocal support of Downward Thrust and his channel, expressing joy at new uploads and coded in-jokes to other frequent watchers of EFAP.