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The Streamers Thread - Twitch.tv/Hitbox.tv/etc

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by hyp3rstrike, Apr 2, 2016.

  1. hyp3rstrike

    hyp3rstrike Community Owner
    Staff Member

    Oct 20, 2012
    Likes Received:
    Welcome to the Biohaze Gaming Streamers thread, for everyone who watches streams, streams themselves, or is interested in starting their own channel. This thread is mainly an informational resource for our members, but it can be applied to everyone.

    Quite a few of our members recently have taken their first steps towards becoming streamers on Twitch. While most of this info is catered towards Twitch, some aspects can be used in other services like Hitbox.tv etc.

    The information contained in this thread comes from the collective experience and knowledge of those who currently stream on a regular basis. This thread is a work in progress, and will be updated periodically as we learn new things to share with everyone.

    Members who stream on Twitch:
    If you want your channel added to this list, send me a PM.

    Useful tools for streaming and channel management:
    • TwitchAlerts - Allows for onscreen display notifications for followers, donations etc.
    • Nightbot - Moderator bot that allows your viewers to request music, as well as allow you to post timed messages, manage your chat etc
    • Twitch Analyzer - Assesses your stream to help identify issues you might experience, such as buffering or dropped frames
    • Twitch Bandwith Tester - Tests your available bandwidth for upstream and makes a recommendation as to what bitrate to use, as well as which aggregation server you should connect to
    Streaming software:
    • OBS Studio - Free, open source and highly customisable. The most used free software.
    • FFsplit - Another freebie software that has some slight video-related advantages over OBS, but less options for customization.
    Useful Nightbot commands:
    "Click to Tweet" link
    Help spread the word that I'm streaming right now to your followers on Twitter! Click here: $(tweet Come watch @TWITTERUSERNAME while he plays $(twitch $(channel) "{{game}}") on Twitch! http://www.twitch.tv/$(channel) #supportsmallstreams #twitch)
    This can be used for having your users promote your stream to Twitter, with a preset message that autofills the game you're currently playing. EZPZ.

    General tips for streaming:
    Here are some tips that I've learned from a few friends who are streamers, as well as people I've met since I started streaming. Credits to Wyld (twitch.tv/wyld) and ArbitrariumLoL (twitch.tv/ArbitrariumLoL).
    • Stream regularly using a schedule - People like to know when their favourite streamers will be broadcasting, so make a schedule to dedicate some time to it.
    • Your audience won't grow over night - Stick at it! People with larger followings have worked at their streaming for quite a long time and have built their audiences through consistent effort. Don't be disheartened if you don't see results right away, just keep at it.
    • Stream for a minimum of 3 hours - This one comes from Wyld. You need a minimum of three hours per broadcast to be relevant to an audience. It doesn't matter how many days you broadcast, however more is better. Just don't do 7 days, 12 hour streams like Wyld did. You'll kill yourself.
    • Acknowledge everyone who interacts with you - It can be hard responding to everyone who pings/mentions you in chat, but make the effort to acknowledge those people. After all, you want to keep them feeling wanted in your stream.

      This goes especially for any new followers, people who donate to you, or people who host your stream on their channel. Always thank them and acknowledge them for being part of your community.
    • Promote your stream regularly via Social Media - Make a promo image and tweet/facebook your stream to the Internet, and do it regularly. If you're hosting a stream on x-day at y-time, include those details and get it out there. The more you let people know, the more likely they'll come to join in on the fun.

      Twitter: With Twitter, use the #supportsmallstreams hashtag. This is regularly monitored for startup streamers and you'll likely get noticed by other smaller streamers.
    • Help build other streamers too! - While you're building your own audience, help building other streamers audiences too and collaborate with them to build each other - especially smaller streamers. Don't be afraid to retweet or host other streamers! We're in this together.
    • Don't expect big riches, fame and glory - If your intent is to stream to make money, or to make it into a dayjob... you're going to fail, straight up.

      Firstly, it's the wrong motivation to have, and doing it because "x-person gets paid to do this" doesn't mean it'll happen for you.

      Secondly, anyone who is currently partnered with Twitch has made a considerable effort using the tips above for an extended period of time. They've put the effort into building an audience, doing their thing regularly, and just enjoying what they do.

      Stream because you enjoy games, and you want to share your experiences - and if you're like me, you like to interact with people.
    • Pick a handful of games to stream, and play those - Twitchers like to watch people play games they find interesting, and will follow those people because of a similar interest. People who like Minecraft will follower streamers who broadcast Minecraft gameplay, etc.
    What to do and what not to do:
    • Don't advertise your stream in other streams. EVER. - Aside from it being rude towards the streamer and their audience you're spamming, it's a dick move. Even subtly saying "I'm off to go stream on my channel now" can be considered as advertising yourself.

      If that streamer wants to help promote you, they'll do it themselves via a Twitch Raid (where they encourage their viewers to watch you play) or they'll host you.
    • Do encourage other streamers to follow you, as well as other people you know - This ties into the earlier point about building yourself as a streamer, but others too. Share the love, and help others climb the mountain of success.
    Tips for broadcasting on connections with poor upstream/upload throughput:
    • Downscale your output resolution - Not everything needs to be shown off in full HD, 1080p/4k 144mhz etc. Broadcast at a maximum resolution of 720p, and set your bitrate to be higher than your upload bandwidth constraints, else you'll suffer buffering and have a bad time.
    • Your gameplay doesn't need to take up your entire screenspace - This tip is a bit of smoke and mirrors, but it works really well. Making your gameplay only take up a smaller portion of your screenspace is a good way to cover up the bad pixellation when broadcasting at higher resolutions. Make an overlay, like I've got below, and fill it up with useful stuff.
    • Play with your settings and tweak them! - Not all setting presets will work with your connection, so you'll need to play with it until you can get the right balance of quality that works with your connection. Keep in mind that your connection won't always run with the settings you've selected, so you may need to adjust them periodically as is required.
    • Stream games where the picture doesn't need to render as frequently! - Games with high amounts of motion don't do to well on crappy upload connections. Stick to genres that don't need to re-process all elements in the rendered image continually, such as real time strategy, 2D games, fighting games etc.
    #1 hyp3rstrike, Apr 2, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2016
    InfernoPanda and MeaKitty like this.

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