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The 20 DanTDM YouTube Videos Every Minecraft Player Needs to Watch

The YouTube sensation has posted 3,000 videos. Start with these.

DanTDM is taking the world by storm.

DanTDM—the last three letters of which are an acronym for "TheDiamondMinecart," a reference to Minecraft, the explosively popular video game—is the screen name of Daniel Middleton, a YouTuber from Northamptonshire, England. Currently, DanTDM has about 3,000 videos and more than 18 million subscribers. (To put it in context, that's more than every single currently-on-air late-night host; Jimmy Fallon comes closest with 15 million.) DanTDM's social media accounts are nothing to sneeze at, either: affiliated Twitter and Instagram pages both have 7-figure followings.

But Middleton, the businessman behind the moniker, is even more of a whirlwind force. Last year, for instance, he raked in a total salary of $16.5 million; according to Forbes, which makes Middleton the highest-paid YouTuber on the planet. In October, 2016, he published his first graphic novel, DanTDM: Trayaurus and the Enchanted Crystal. It instantly stole the number-one spot on both the New York Times and Amazon bestseller lists. What's more, Middleton also embarked on a 97-stop globe-spanning tour—and it's completely sold out.

Oh, and he's only 26.

To understand how DanTDM (and, in tandem, Middleton) became so staggeringly popular, it helps to understand the breakneck cultural ascendency of Minecraft. Released in November, 2011, the game went on to sell 15 million copies over the following year. (If a video game moves 10 million units over its entire shelf life, game publishers consider that a success.) To date, Minecraft has sold more than 144 million copies, and is currently available on nearly every platform: Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS, Nintendo Wii U, Nintendo Switch, Nintendo New 3DS, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and—last but certainly least—PlayStation Vita. And in 2019, a film adaptation, helmed by Rob McElhenney (It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia), is set to hit the big screen.

But despite the massive marketshare Minecraft has carved for itself, the game itself is surprisingly simple. In short, it's little more than digital Legos. You "mine" for resources and "craft" objects and buildings in a stylistically pixelated, block-like space. And this is where DanTDM comes in.

The lion's share of DanTDM's videos are about Minecraft—a treasure trove of tips and tricks, yes, but also a series of fictionalized plot lines, starring zany characters like Denton the Bad Guy, Grim the Skeleton Dog, and Dr. Trayaurus (who also stars on-page in that bestselling graphic novel). You see, the initial version of Minecraft was completely devoid of any story; Middleton injected a narrative where there was none, and he timed it alongside the game's meteoric rise.

Better yet, his content is unlike that of any other gaming-themed YouTuber. Where most gaming accounts are crass, DanTDM is PG-rated. Where many gaming accounts can feature violence, DanTDM steers clear of it. He radiates a positivity that appears utterly unmarred by any coming-of-age cynicism. As a result, his fans and viewers skew on the younger side; they're generally children and young adolescents. To see what your kid is watching—and learn what all the rage is about—we've gathered together DanTDM's most popular videos herein. And for more on amazing video games, learn about the 8 Video Games That Will Make You A Smarter Thinker.

1. Best of TheDiamondMinecart

Views: 41 million

The account's most popular video is a roundup of greatest hits: "Enderman;" the supposed death of Gizmo, the beloved pixelated pig; and, of course, loads of Dr. Trayaurus quips. If you want to slowly step in, start here.

2. How I Met Dr. Trayaurus

Views: 40 million

See the origin story of Dr. Trayaurus entered the DanTDM fold. (Yes, the video features plenty of the good doctor's signature mix of obliviousness and snark.)

3. Trayaurus Goes to Prison

Views: 37 million

In this zany adventure, Dr. Trayaurus gets slapped with some jail time for crafting the dangerous "Chemical X." DanTDM must bust him out.

4. 5 Secrets About DanTDM

Views: 37 million

Using Dr. Trayaurus as a mouthpiece, Middleton goes meta and pokes fun at himself in a lighthearted manner. Did you know Middleton likes pink bubble baths, for instance?

5. The Tale of Herobrine

Views: 36 million

Middleton walks the viewer through a sit-around-the-campfire ghost story in this one-off video… Until the story of Herobrine becomes all too real (thanks to Dr. Trayaurus).

6. My Brother Plays Minecraft

Views: 33 million

Middleton brings his real-life brother onto the channel. The result? That signature type of banter you only find in sibling relationships.

7. Vacation Disaster

Views: 33 million

DanTDM drags Dr. Trayaurus on a much-needed vacation. Things quickly go off the rails—before the duo even leaves the airport.

8. Trayaurus Takes Over the World

Views: 31 million

Dr. Trayaurus goes rogue. (Costarring: A cavalcade of sentient non-player characters.)

9. How I Met Grim the Skeleton Dog

Views: 30 million

In nearly every Minecraft-themed video, alongside DanTDM trots Grim the Skeleton Dog. Here's how the inseparable duo met (and how Grim became a skeleton).

10. Trayaurus Breaks Minecraft!

Views: 28 million

In a highly meta video, Dr. Trayaurus fundamentally changes the game's code by turning literally everything into blocks. (For those unaware of Minecraft terminology, that's very, very bad.)

11. Police Station Mission

Views: 28 million

Thieves steal a relic from the Great Museum, so the police (note: Not IRL) recruit DanTDM and Dr. Trayaurus to help solve the crime.

12. "Save the Show," DanTDM Creates a Big Scene pilot

Views: 27 million

Middleton scored a show on YouTube Red. The pilot episode—which blends Middleton's real-life hijinks with his Minecraft characters in an attempt to put on a "live show"—is available for free.

13. Draw My Life – TheDiamondMinecart

Views: 27 million

Middleton's episode of the popular YouTube trend "Draw My Life," wherein video makers create biography-by-drawing videos. In the clip, Middleton walks the viewer through all the juice bits, starting with his birth on November 8th, 1991.

14. I'm Back In Prison

Views: 26 million

DanTDM goes to prison (note: Again, not IRL) for stealing "a whole bunch of sweets." During filming of this episode, in the real world, Middleton has a broken hand—which, for you non-gamers, does make gaming a whole lot more difficult.

15. Ninja Academy

Views: 25 million

Dr. Trayaurus and DanTDM visit the storied Ninja Academy to learn the secret arts of ninjas. And Craig the Mailman—another recurring character from Middleton's repertoire—makes his banjo debut.

16. Dr. Trayaurus' Coffee Shop

Views: 23 million

Dr. Trayaurus opens a café—and instantly can't handle the customer load. Thankfully, DanTDM swoops in to save the day.

17. The Hospital Mission

Views: 23 million

"You're telling me that, if I pull this lever right here, nothing will explode?" asks DanTDM, standing next to a pile of what appears to be dynamite…

18. Secret Rooms Mod!

Views: 23 million

Middleton reviews the new "Secret Rooms" add-on to Minecraft—and, in the process, reveals a few tantalizing secrets about Dr. Trayaurus.

19. Turning Into A Vampire

Views: 23 million

DanTDM gets bitten by a vampire while galavanting in the Vampire Biome—in the dead of midnight—so he turns to his doctor friend for assistance.

20. DanTDM Creates A Big Scene Official Trailer

Views: 23 million

The trailer for Middleton's original show garnered nearly as many viewers as the pilot. (Some perspective: The trailer for Westworld's first season was viewed 10 million times, while the pilot itself had about a fifth of that.)

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Ari Notis
Ari is an editor specializing in news and lifestyle. Read more