Rule #1 Have Fun
The most important advice I’m going to give when it comes to picking out a game that you’re going to stream, is that you need to pick a game that you are going to have fun playing every time you stream it. If this isn’t the main reason you’re playing the game, streaming is not for you. Don’t just pick a game to stream because it’s the flavor of the month and you know someone will watch. As I’ve said before, if you’re not having fun, there is a good chance your stream will not be having fun as well. You can only hide this on your stream for so long. You might be able to get away with this mindset for a short amount of time, but in the long run it will hurt you.
I’m going to be 100% honest with you right now, growing your stream playing a very obscure game that few have heard of is not very likely. There are certain games that just aren’t stream friendly due to the lack of popularity that they have. Take a game like Metal Gear for the NES compared to Super Mario Brothers 3. Metal Gear sold 1 million copies, and SMB3 sold over 18 million. Right from the start, if you decide to stream Metal Gear, you’re at a huge disadvantage compared to the person streaming SMB3. Now I’m not saying don’t stream these games! One of the great things about Twitch is that you have so many choices. What I’m saying is just be realistic about your growth potential.
The same thought process goes for any game on Twitch. Some games are just going to be more popular than others. But this does not mean choosing a popular game will create instant success as well. If you check out League of Legends streams at peak stream hours, there are literally hundreds of people streaming it. It’s incredibly hard to break through the sea of streams when you’re streaming with 3-4 viewers. Even if you are the most entertaining person on Twitch, if no one can find you, it’s hard to grow.
Finding Your Niche…..
So how do you stand out in a crowded community? How do you grab the attention of someone who is looking for a new stream? The key is to be different. When you’re looking to stream a more popular game, do some research on the current most popular streams first to get an idea of what’s already out there. Let me use my own personal story. I’m mostly known for being a speedrunner (although that’s debatable.) I recently started playing Runescape on the side with friends back in January of 2015. At the time I had an audience that was very Nintendo based, which did not translate well to Runescape. I knew that if I wanted to make a name for myself in the Runescape streaming community, I needed to stand out. So I did my due diligence and I watched a lot of Runescape streams to see if there was content that wasn’t being streamed. After hopping around in a few streams I started to realize two missing factors.
• No one played the actual Runescape music that I was super Nostalgic for
• No one was streaming any content that revolved around completing quests
These two things that I noticed were one of the main reasons why I enjoyed playing Runescape, yet there was no on Twitch that was creating this kind of content. I thought to myself if I enjoyed this type of content, surely there are others who do as well. So I came up with my own challenge that revolved around quests in the game and only played music from the game. When I started streaming, it helped that I had 300 people from my core audience that wanted to watch, but if my idea sucked there would have been no growth. As I continued to stream Runescape with these two special features, my stream started to grow. It grew to the point where I was gaining 100-200 new followers every day. All of this happened simply because I took thirty minutes out of my day to do some research on other streams.
… And Filling It
What I did with Runescape can be applied to every game on Twitch. While some games might not have huge voids of content that need filling, there are small cracks in every game that is missing something. Think of your stream as providing a service of entertainment. What currently on Twitch is not being serviced at all in the game you want to stream? Figure that out and you’re on your way to attracting an audience to your stream and growing it!
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