Do you play video games well and often? Do you think your skills are worth showing off? Many players have made a killing simply live-streaming their video games when they play, so why shouldn’t you?
Live-streaming video games is a pretty simple concept. However, it can prove tricky when you get down to it. What equipment do you need, and how should you set it up? These are questions that may daunt you, but they shouldn’t dissuade you from streaming when you play. Here is everything you need to know about how to live-stream video games.
Know Your Streaming Services
There are plenty of streaming sites. Some of the lesser-known ones are Uplay and U-stream, but the most popular are YouTube and Twitch. You need to learn more about these platforms since they are your channel to reaching out to fans and sponsors.
YouTube is by far the best game streaming platform for several reasons. For starters, it provides streamer a ‘control room’ feature that lets them see vital data such as the performance of streaming equipment and number of viewers online, among others. It also automatically records and archives your live streams so that you can access them in the future. It is also easy to use.
Twitch is the biggest and most popular game streaming platform. It is entirely dedicated to gaming and has a vast community of gamers and fans. It is also always improving its features and proving just as good as YouTube.
Every pro gamer has a preference. Weigh the different options against each other and determine the one you will use. Your decision is crucial as it may make or break your streaming efforts. Just to be safe, open channels with all the popular streaming services and stick with the one that earns you the highest number of fans.
Make Yourself Seen and Heard
Your fans and viewers will be just as interested in knowing who is on the other end as they are in the game. As such, you need to make yourself seen and heard.
You will need a good camera and microphone to interact with your viewers. Attach the camera to the computer (or whatever other device you are streaming through) and be sure to position well so that it captures you up-close – a dedicated web camera should be easy to use. The camera should ideally capture and stream in HD quality to give your fans and viewers a better view.
You also need a good microphone to communicate with your viewers. Some of your viewers will want to talk to you and add a commentary here and there. You will also need to speak to your viewers to tell them of your thoughts and explain your strategy. To ensure clear communication, make sure that the microphone is of great quality and audible – a good-quality pair of gaming headsets with an in-built microphone should get the job done.
Add a camera and microphone to your gaming setup to
Streaming Equipment and Hardware
Some of the newest consoles, such as the PS4 and Xbox One, feature in-built recording and streaming equipment. However, if the gaming equipment you use doesn’t have this capability, you can still stream by complementing it with special streaming equipment.
Depending on your gaming equipment, you will need to buy either a personal video recorder (PVR) or capture card. A PVR will work with virtually every gaming equipment, except for older consoles that may be incompatible. A capture card, on the other hand, is designed to facilitate the transfer of data from the console to the computer. It essentially acts as a relay between the console and computer, and it facilitates compatibility with the HDMI signal.
You will need a powerful capture card if you are trying to stream from older and earlier consoles. This may be necessary if you are specializing with retro games, which are becoming increasingly popular today.
You’ll also want a fast gaming router to keep up with the speed of streaming.
A capture card is not sufficient to relay the live video of your game to the internet. It needs the aid of special software built for this purpose. There are many options to choose from, and the most popular include OBS and XSplit.
OBS is quite effective and easy to use compared to other software. It may not look like much when looking at its user interface, but it is as good as they come. It gives you total control of the streaming process, and you can customize virtually any feature, including the maximum encoding bitrate. It is an open-source software that is free and easy to use.
XSplit is preferred for its ease of use and neat user interface. It is also just about as good as OBS, but you will not get the same level of control. It has plenty of overlays to use with your video games, and it can integrate well with numerous streaming services. It is incredibly easy to use, especially with computers and PC games – a few strokes will have your live stream ready to go.
There are many other streaming software options. It is recommended to try out several of them and settle for the one that suits you best.
Build a Stellar Online Gaming Profile
The purpose of streaming your game is for other people to see it. Everyone wants as many fans and viewers as possible, right? If you wish to reach a big audience, you need a stellar reputation as an awesome game worth watching. As such, join the gaming community and make sure that everyone knows just how good you are. Choose a cool name and build a complete profile showcasing your victories. Finally, work on your skills until you are the best in your chosen genre.
Live-streaming video games is an increasingly popular practice that is not only fun but also potentially profitable. You are good to go if you have a PS4 or Xbox One console. If not, don’t worry – follow these tips to get you into the vast online game streaming grid, and watch as your fans and viewers base grows.
Complete your gaming set up with the best gaming equipment: