Interview: HoloLive Machina x Flayon Talks About Being a VTuber

Machina x Flayon HoloLive

In January 2023, Cover introduced a handful of new Vtubers joining its Hololive Vtuber roster. Each being a new, eclectic addition, Gavis Bettel, Banzoin Hakka, Josuiji Shinri, and Machina X Flayon all became members of Holostars‘ Tempus guild. Siliconera got the opportunity to interview Machina x Flayon of HoloLive to talk about his experience as a member of Cover and what it’s like to work alongside such a wide array of Vtubers.

Kazuma Hashimoto: What did the application process look like once Cover took an interest in you?

Machina x Flayon: I’m always called a genius (you can even see it on my website profile), but I never really liked the moniker.

People would always tell me “You can do this” or “You would definitely fit in here,” but I find stuff like that also pretty pressuring. I’m amazing in my own right, but I believe I’ve always had to work hard just like anyone else and nice things shouldn’t just come to me naturally. If I want friends, for example, I should work on listening to people and actually improving myself as a person. So the whole application process was pretty difficult… at first! I never really knew what to put down when applying to TEMPUS as a whole. People see a lot of things in me, but we kinda never really match our preferred version of ourselves, right?

That’s where I noticed my own issue, the perfectionist streak I had and once I started working on that the whole process was easy! Instead of comparing myself to numerous people or my own version of myself I wanted to be, I was just frank and listed my strong suits. What am I good at? I’m good at X, Y, Z. Why should you bother looking at me? You should hire me because of X and Y. Just focus on listing your strengths and being real with yourself about what you’re actually good at. If you’re not good at something? That’s fine. I had a terrible voice and singing when I started and it was never an actual “talent” for me. The important part is that you just start somewhere and begin working to make it an actual one. Confidence built upon you working on yourself overtime, in my opinion, is stronger than any faking your confidence will ever be. So, if you don’t have the skills you want? Go do your best to obtain them then show people your stuff.

How much time did you get to spend getting to know your fellow generation members, as well as the other Holostars EN Tempus members, ahead of your debut?

Machina x Flayon: Getting to know the others was pretty nerve-wracking to say the least! I’ve always had trouble expressing myself and making friends due to numerous issues since I was young, but I was pleasantly surprised with how easy the whole process was with my guildmates. It’s definitely something that you have to cultivate yourself. You cannot just expect people to come to you or to just read your mind. You have to put yourself out there even if there is a chance you won’t get along or if you will be misunderstood. I think the whole process took around a couple of months to get to know everyone? Bettel and I already were at the guild beforehand, so I had no trouble getting along with him. He’s a really charismatic guy and down to earth more than anyone else I’ve ever met. I recall mentioning this on stream once, but I think out of everyone in the guild I’ve talked the most and had the most heart to heart moments with him. When we arrived at the guild with Hakka and Shinri, I think we mainly spent that time getting to know each other while the HQ (Original 4) were busy. I will say that the first month or second felt the longest as we were all busy and still adjusting to the new environment.

What has been one of the most difficult challenges for you as a new member of HoloLive? Was there anything that you had difficulties adjusting to?

Machina x Flayon: One of the most difficult challenges for me was honestly accepting myself as part of the group! I’ve always had issues being in social environments for a variety of reasons ranging from focus to even just a lack of social interaction when I was younger. Some people would praise and call me a genius, but to me that never felt like an actual thing. So when you have that label on you and expectations are high, they can honestly be pretty difficult to work through! To be really frank, I’m amazing and that’s because of all the mistakes I’ve made and hard effort I’ve put in to get here. At the same time, however, all of my guildmmates all have a different craft that they’re strong in and they’re already cultivated a fanbase while we were on the expedition. I do not want to mess that up for anyone, but sometimes I can get the wrong idea or catch onto things a little slow! It’s extremely difficult in that regard to be nice to yourself because I really don’t want to inconvenience anyone. So out of everything, I think I would say that honing my social skills has been the most difficult as I’ve never had this much attention on me!

What is your favorite part about collaborating with so many other VTubers under the HoloLive umbrella?

Machina x Flayon: My favorite thing is that I don’t have to worry as much when it comes to performing and communicating! You would think that is something that gives me great difficulty, but I think everyone understands we have to be honest with each other with a job like this. Everyone has different goals and reasons for wanting to stream under the HoloLive umbrella whether it be for fans, recognition, money, etc.

The reason I say I don’t have to worry as much, however, is because I believe that Guild Tempus and Cover as a whole does a great job at picking out potential. Everyone here has their own craft, strong suit and knows what their selling point is. I don’t have to worry as much when collaborating with others aside from my own performance. For example, if I’m doing improvisation on a theater stage, it can be difficult if the performer you’re working with has difficulty matching your energy. Here with my guildmmates, well, they can all give me a run for my money in their own way!

Basically, I love the challenge and I like when people know more than me because it just makes me want to get stronger! When I was younger, the whole thing of someone being better than me made me super jealous. Now, however, after going through my own trials and tribulations, I’m personally grateful to even have the opportunity to do such things in the first place. It’s definitely a personal lesson that you have to learn on your own and teach yourself and no one else should tell you it for you.

What advice would you give someone looking to begin their Vtuber career or journey?

Machina x Flayon: My advice is pretty simple! Just have fun with it, start small and progressively feel things over time. However, I want to put big importance on what “fun” actually means to a person. If you’re starting a Vtuber career or journey, you have to consider what attracts you and why you like to do it. Are you doing it just for your own enjoyment? Do you need to do it to make money? Are you able to make money in the long term doing this? Does it matter if you do? Those sort of questions.

Starting small is essential, in my opinion, because sometimes… I don’t know what I want, haha! I’ve always been a person that had trouble understanding myself more than anything. We all know that no one really likes Buyer’s Remorse either. So I say start small and feel things out over time whether it’s by testing streaming or even just making small videos. You can always check with yourself too with how you feel about things and hey maybe sometimes you’ll be wrong. The important thing though is that I think you should always respect your feelings instead of repressing yourself. So, if you try streaming/Vtubing and are getting stressed out about it, why not try a break if you can afford to. Others may tell you to do one thing or another, but ultimately I think you should trust your own feelings first. Even if they aren’t pretty or can be negative, you have a right to feel things and you shouldn’t beat yourself up about it.

You can watch Machina x Flayon’s HoloLive streams on YouTube.

Kazuma Hashimoto
Translator and streamer, Kazuma spends his time playing a variety of games ranging from farming simulators to classic CRPGs. In his spare time he speedruns games from the Resident Evil series, and raids in Final Fantasy XIV.