Streaming platforms like Twitch and YouTube Gaming are becoming the first port of call for many people looking to unwind after a hard day at the office. This is partly due to the subscription packages and special prize giveaways that build wonderful communities around certain stream channels, as well as the relationships and bonds that viewers can build with some of their favorite content creators.
Many superstar streamers, and even some mid-level streamers, are now making a good living from broadcasting live feeds of themselves playing everything from first person shooters to high-level chess tournaments.
With the rising popularity and opportunity to make a living, there are no shortage of new streamers looking to get in on the act and build their respective online followings. But how can they go about doing this in the most time and cost-effective manner? That is what we look to discover here.
First things first. To stream yourself gaming you will need to own a PC of some variety, and preferably one that is powerful enough to run the sort of games you wish to engage in. If you only plan to play classic games like chess and poker, then you may only require a low spec machine. If you wish to dive into graphically demanding first-person shooters and RPGs, then you may wish to splash out on something a little more powerful. Another key to making your stream look great is an internet connection so strong, fast, and reliable that you never have to worry about lag. Once both these vital factors are taken care of, it is then time to set up a Twitch account, or even an account with another reliable and popular streaming platform.
Webcam and Mic
While most PC or laptops these days have cameras and mics built-in, they tend not to be capable of producing broadcast-quality that can satisfy a streamer and their demanding followers. To do that, most serious streamers invest in a high-quality webcam like the Logitech C920 and an equally good mic in the form of something along the lines of the Shure MV7 Podcast Microphone. Once you have these up and running, all you have to do is ensure you are looking and sounding your best for your growing horde of followers.
Caption: Top gaming streamers invest plenty of time, effort, and money in ensuring that their streaming setup is as streamlined as possible, so their viewers are treated to great video and sound quality
Open Broadcaster Software and Overlays
As ever with things as technical as this, it is never as straightforward as just turning your webcam on and connecting to Twitch. All streamers must use a software suite that connects their stream to a streaming platform. One of the most trusted of these is Open Broadcaster Software, or OBS as it’s known in the industry. Get it installed and make sure you learn how to use it to its full potential.
Some streamers like to keep things minimal for viewers, but most successful streamers set their channels apart by utilizing what are known as overlays. These come in many forms and help build a brand image, as well as adding to the sort of story that a streamer is trying to tell or image they are attempting to portray.
Night Bots and Mods
Once a streamer gets up and running and is beginning to pick up traction online, it can become an all-consuming task to maintain a high level of gameplay performance while at the same time policing chat and ensuring a stream is working 100%. This is where streamers need to start making use of automated chat commands such as night bots, as well as employing a team of Mods (Moderators) who can maintain the running of a stream while the streamer themselves entertains their audience.