Categories
Gaming Streaming

STREAM.TV’s Thomas Rafelsberger on Game Streaming, Stream Assets, and More

There’s a lot that goes into building an impressive game streaming presentation. From a visual standpoint, your favorite streamer relies on a wealth of tools that power the notifications and other visual flourishes that viewers associate with their brand. After learning about all the different physical and digital goods that makes a game stream visually pleasing to appreciative fans, you’ll never take anyone’s streaming regiment for granted ever again. Thanks to companies like STREAM.TV, game streamers (where massively popular or relatively unknown) can acquire the assets needed to make their streaming showcases shine.

ONE37pm chatted with STREAM.TV’s Co-Founder and CEO Thomas Rafelsberger to get a better understanding of what his company specializes in, the streamers they’ve produced for, and more.

ONE37pm: Give us an overview of what STREAM.TV is all about and what kind of services it provides.

Thomas Rafelsberger: STREAM.TV and its products (own3d.tv, own3d.pro, streamheroes.gg, and more coming soon), is a supplier of digital and physical products for the game streaming community. We started with a one-stop-shop for stream designs three years ago and are now the #1 provider for digital assets for streamers, integrated in streamlabs, streamelements, tipeesstream, donationalerts, obs studio (all major streaming tools), and grew to a profitable team of 40-45 and will grow that to about 90 this year.

ONE37pm: How did the concept behind OWN3D come about? And what moves were made to turn it into a reality?

Rafelsberger: I have a background in Online Marketing and have always be a gamer. I followed the live/game streaming industry since the beginning and started own3d.tv when I met my founder colleagues Lukas and Andy in 2017/2018. The three of us just started to work on the project, 100% remote, we found two angels, got a small pre seed invest and were profitable a year after. Since then we are growing all projects out of our own pockets but will probably go for a series A in Autumn.

ONE37pm: Who are some notable streamers that have reached out to OWN3D in hopes of adding a bit more flair to their presentation?

Rafelsberger: We worked with more than 100 of the biggest creators out there (TheRealKnossi #1 German speaking Twitch streamer last year, Auronplay #1 in the spanish streaming community last year). But custom work has never been our focus – we served over 1,000,000 small to mid-sized streamers with our products already.

ONE37pm: In what ways do you educate new streamers on what it takes to succeed in their newfound hobby/profession?

Rafelsberger: Right now we do cooperate with most of the “educational streaming youtubers” out there and offer some tutorials/videos on our own. Later this year we will launch our streaming academy, which will be a free solution for everyone who wants to get into streaming.

ONE37pm: What are some of the more interesting trends you’ve come across within the video game live streaming space?

Rafelsberger: I think it is game and live-streaming itself. It is already huge, but I still see a lot of growth the next years in game streaming and even more growth in IRL/Just Chatting/Hobbies/Travel/Beauty streaming and Social Commerce.

ONE37pm: What goals and aspirations do you hope to see OWN3D attain in the near future?

Rafelsberger: STREAM.TV started in the category of live streaming in just a small niche (stream designs). Our vision is to make STREAM.TV the category leader in all its verticals within the next three years.

Categories
Culture News

Adam iLL’s Favorite Twitch Streamers

Joining Twitch at the beginning of quarantine means I’ve only been on the platform for a short while. However, in that time I’ve already learned that—although creating an audience & building a community can be fun as a Streamer, it’s also hard work. And as a viewer, there’s tons of content to choose from. But how do you filter through hundreds of thousands of options? Well, I’m here to help. From those striving for social justice to others that are pure entertainment, read on below for a list of my favorite streamers to watch.

And don’t forget to check out the highest stream with the illest community: My Twitch

TheUncleJoeShow

“Please dude, please.” Uncle Joe is one of my favorite variety streamers—and not just because I’m the center square every week on twitch squares. Uncle Joe is talented AF. From his comedy freestyles, funky smooth singing voice, drum playing, DJing or just vibing with the Nephews (a network of amazing streamers that could be a list in itself), you will always have a smile on your face watching his stream. Don’t sleep on Uncle Joe or the Nephews. Just make sure you adjust the volume before putting on your headphones.

Woke

I like seeing things first hand. So Woke, a multiple POV stream of live feeds from all over the world, shows how people are protesting and making change. This stream is a raw look at civil rights protests and the right of free speech. Always topical. Always intriguing. Always live.

Secretsesh_tim

Couples that get high together stay together. Tim and Janna, aka jimtanna, let viewers into their relationship world of smoking, gaming and watching shows together. Basically what every couple does when the cameras are off, but they involve the chat in most of their stream. They’ve built a community for likeminded individuals to have a place to chill and vibe. Check them out daily!

SmokenScan

Being born and raised in LA, I have a fascination with police chases. They are common occurrences out here and are always exciting to watch live. Damon Staleblazer, the host of the show, streams live listening parties on active police scanners and always has an eye in the sky on live newsworthy action happening in our streets. 

Lyleforever

Going to therapy is one thing, but receiving life lessons from a human gecko is a whole vibe. The calmness and realness Lyle brings is therapeutic and, more importantly, entertaining. Taking live calls and questions from his viewers is always interesting and it’s always nice to see how much we have in common when it comes to the obstacles we face in life.

Honeycombeatbox

When I’m just trying to vibe (with or without looking at the screen), I know Honeycomb will bring it. With his live loops and trippy beats, this stream always elevates my vibe. Bringing in special guests and incorporating the chat makes the whole stream more personal. Watch his next stream and see how he will incorporate your name.

Nardwuarservirtte

Who doesn’t love the interview skills of Nardwuar? If you haven’t heard of the Nardwuar, then where have you been? From fashion to interviewing, his eccentric style leaves the viewer in amazement and the celeb being interviewed in shock. Having him on Twitch showing new interviews and playing back his favorite moments gets you wanting to see more from the mind of Nardwuar. And don’t forget: doo doo d—doo doo…

TheSushiDragon

Quality content! I’m always in awe when watching Sushi Dragon. Having a whole warehouse to stream is some peoples’ dream and SD made it happen. With all of his new technology and live editing skills, I’m always excited to see what he is up to next. If you want to see what streaming on the next level is all about, make sure you check out Sushi Dragon. 

StonedNinja

“Suuuuu duuuuu?!” From gaming to trimming, SN will always be on and ready to light up with you. Though he’s one of the OGs of smoking and streaming, watching Stoned Ninja’s stream is just like chilling with your favorite dude. From playing games to dropping strains, SN does giveaways and is a treat for growers and viewers alike.

therapy_dragon

I loved the attitude era of WWE and if you enjoy classic 90s wrestling, then this stream is for you. TD plays full uninterrupted episodes and PPVS of WWF and WCW matches. But it’s not all about the stream, it’s the chat room that makes it more exciting. With everyone’s comments and added channel point sound fx, it’s like you’re at a live event. And that’s the bottom line.

Honorable Mentions:

This list can keep going; there’s so much amazing content on Twitch. Who do you like? Who should I check out? Hit me up on IG to let me know and I’ll see you all on Twitch.

Categories
Gaming Streaming

The 14 Best Twitch Extensions

When the pandemic hit the world in a big way just over a year ago, people had more time on their hands than they knew what to do with. People started trying new things like cooking for the first time and even investing in the stock market. While many things suffered as a result of COVID-19, one thing that most certainly started booming was Twitch, and streaming in general.

Streamers who were already on the platform started upping their daily streaming hours, people jumped on it to start streaming for the first time, and people found pleasure in watching other people stream. It was a cycle that kept lending itself to growth.

There’s no shame in being new to streaming and though the best time to start was yesterday, the second-best time is today, as they say. If you do intend to start streaming on Twitch sometime soon, you’ll need to know which Twitch extensions are right for you.

What are Twitch extensions?

Developed by third parties and introduced just a few years ago, Twitch extensions are essentially apps that you can download and apply to your stream to enhance your viewers’ experience. There are three kinds of extensions: panel extensions, overlay extensions, and component extensions. Panel extensions get displayed in a box under your stream, and overlay extensions get displayed over the top of the whole stream, and component extensions pop up on the stream, taking up a small portion of the screen.

The best kinds of extensions make it so that you can customize your stream, providing people with a unique experience on a large platform. Some of the other benefits of the better extensions are that they make the stream easier to navigate through and engage with and expand your growth as a streamer.

There are extensions that let people get updated on your social media posts in real time, extensions that let people request what music is played in the background, extensions that help streamers provide viewers with useful reminders about their stream and many, many more.

You can only use 6 extensions (3-panel extensions, 1 overlay extension, and 2 component extensions) at one time, so you’ve got to choose wisely. To make that choice a little easier, we’ve compiled a list of 14 of the best Twitch extensions available right now. In alphabetical order, here they are.

1. Amazon Blacksmith
Twitch

Formerly known as Gear on Amazon, Amazon Blacksmith is a helpful tool that gives your viewers a list of your favorite products that are on, you guessed it, Amazon. If anyone clicks on a product through your stream and purchases it, as long as you’re a part of the Amazon Associates Program, you’ll earn commission on it too. This one gives viewers a look into what kind of things you love, adding some personality to your stream and immediately making it stand out. What’s especially great is when you inevitably get asked what you use as part of your setup, you can just point people to your Amazon list.

2. Crowd Control
Twitch

If you play Dark Souls, Fall Guys, Minecraft, Pokémon Red, and Blue, or any of the other games on the list of supported games, Crowd Control will allow viewers to send bits and interact with the game in some interesting ways. Viewers can enable in-game effects like power-ups, extend or lessen your game time and even kill you instantly. Crowd Control takes just 20% of the bits you get.

3. Exclusive Content for Subscribers
Twitch

As the name suggests, this extension allows you to cater directly to your subscribers, giving people an incentive to subscribe to you and making subscribers feel valued. You can post members-only photos, videos, and posts. Every time you post something exclusive, subscribers get notified, and non-subscribers are constantly being reminded that they’re missing out on content as a result of not subscribing.

4. Latest Followers
Twitch

This one is a panel and overlay component that lists new followers’ names and profile pictures out as well as telling you and your viewers how many followers you gained that day. It updates in real-time, giving people an incentive to subscribe and see their name and picture on your stream. Plus, if you have a goal of gaining a certain amount of subscribers in a day, this helps you track it.

5. OWN3D Design Panels
OneTwoStream

If you’re starting your streaming adventure on Twitch soon and just want to get going, OWN3D Design Panels are going to be perfect for you. Instead of going out of your way to design your panel and making it its own creative endeavor, you can choose one of the templates offered here to make your stream look more eye-catching. As well as still graphics, you can get animated panels here too.

6. Prime Sub and Loot Reminder
Twitch

This is one of the simplest yet most important and effective extensions out there. The Prime Sub and Loot Reminder is an overly on the side of your stream that reminds viewers who have a free Prime subscription that they have a free Prime subscription. This could be the difference between just a little bit of growth and a lot of growth, whether you’re just getting started on Twitch or have been on it for years.

7. Quiz Kit
Quiz Kit

Quizzes are something that boosted in popularity a lot when the pandemic first hit, and people needed new, fun ways to communicate over video chat apps, so the Quiz Kit extension can come especially in handy nowadays. It allows streamers to either make their own quiz or pick from a bunch of ready-made ones and have viewers interact and compete with each other, with a scoreboard being kept. This one builds a sense of community really well.

8. Sound Alerts
Twitch

Sound Alerts is, without a doubt, one of the most essential extensions you can have on your stream. Streamers can apply certain sounds to certain buttons on their stream, and viewers can give bits to have them played. You can upload your own audio clips, so this can make for some pretty funny moments. More good news is that streamers get to keep 80% of the bits received, with 20% going to the extension developer, as per usual, for something of this nature.

9. Streamlabs Leaderboard
Twitch

The first of a couple of Streamlabs extensions on this list, Streamlabs Leaderboard essentially allows you to put your biggest supporters on a pedestal and express your gratitude for them by having a list of them in order from the top down. This could breed some friendly competition between viewers and get you more rewards as a streamer in the end.

10. Streamlabs Stream Schedule & Countdown
Gaming Careers

As long as you set a date and time for this extension, it will always notify people of when your next stream is scheduled to begin. You can also use it more short-term too. Having a long stream and need a short break? Put the Streamlabs Countdown on for 10 minutes to try to help retain some of your viewership while you power up for the next few hours.

11. StreamLegends
Next WZ

This one is a unique one and perhaps the most dynamic of the extensions of this list because it’s basically its own game that viewers can play. You probably don’t want viewers to feel like they’d rather be playing a game than watching your stream, but it’s a great alternative to leaving your stream empty while you’re AFK. The game is an RPG where players can level up their character, kill monsters and build a town together.

12. Spotify Recently Played
Twitch

Admittedly, this one is only useful for streamers who play music from Spotify in their streams, but if you do, then it’s especially useful. As the title implies, it allows viewers to see what music has been played on the stream as of late. This is a helpful tool because it saves you getting the “what song was that?” question over and over again, and it’s a conversational point if viewers have some of the same music taste as you.

13. Suggestion Box
Twitch

As great of a streamer, as you can be, there are always ways to improve and you can never please everyone. But a step towards helping to make your stream appeal to more people can be taking constructive criticism from viewers and that’s where the Suggestion Box extension comes in. Not only will you be able to see the suggestion, but other viewers can see them too and react to them with different emotes. If you get a suggestion and everyone agrees with it, implementing it is a no-brainer and can only be good for you moving forward.

14. Twitch AFK Arcade
Twitch

Like StreamLegends, this one provides your viewers with entertainment while you’re AFK. The Twitch AFK Arcade extension provides a selection of mini-games all designed by real game makers, so it’s a great way to retain viewership if anything pops up from you and you need to step away from your computer for a short while.

Categories
Gaming Streaming

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s ‘Among Us’ Twitch Stream Was One For the Record Books

You may know Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) for her political work, but last night, the Congresswoman embraced a new hobby—streaming. 

That’s right, streaming. The representative “graced” the stage” for her Twitch debut playing the ever-popular Among Us (you may have heard of it) as a way to further encourage people (in particular young people) to vote.

What followed was complete mass hysteria, and a historic night as Congresswoman joined big named Twitch streamers Pokimane, Hasanabi, and more for the event. The live stream was already a highly anticipated event with 240,000 viewers tuned in before gameplay even started.

At its peak, the stream reached 435,000 viewers during the first match with that number eventually dropping to 350,000 viewers. These numbers make Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez’s stream one of the biggest broadcasts ever on the Twitch platform, putting her in the top five for the most concurrent views in history. If you choose to look at from an individual stream standpoint the total could be much higher.

According to stream tracking websites such as Twitchtracker, that 435,000 viewership number could potentially put her in the top ten all-time list. At the moment, streamer Ninja holds the individual streaming record for his 2018 Fortnite stream with Drake and JuJu Smith-Schuster. Not too shabby for someone who had never streamed before.

While the concept of politicians playing games might seem a bit “odd” to some, the reality is it’s becoming a more popular method of not only getting their message across but also reaching the younger demographic of voters.  Recently the Biden Campaign revealed their very own Animal Crossing island, and other politicians are tapping into the gaming world as well (Rep. Ilhan Omar joined the Twitch stream as too). While some of the focus is geared towards politics, the majority of it is just about having a good time and interacting with the audience. Last night’s stream showcased that when Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez was revealed as the ‘Impostor” on the first match of the night.

One thing is for sure, last night was definitely one for the Twitch books, and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez proved that she can definitely rock with the best of the best.

Categories
Gaming Streaming

How VTubing is Slowly Changing the Gaming World

Do you ever wish that sometimes you could be invisible? Invisible in the sense that people can hear you, but not necessarily see you. What if you could take it a step further and create an animated version of yourself on social platforms? Well, that’s exactly what Twitch streaming sensation Pokimane has decided to do.

The official word for that is called VTubing (short for Virtual YouTubing), and it’s something that we should all start becoming familiar with. VTubing is on the rise, and in the future we’ll be seeing more big names play and stream through their animated characters. So how exactly did VTubing come about?

VTubing first originated in Japan. The process of creating a VTube is actually quite similar to traditional YouTube and blogging with the only difference being the use of a virtual avatar. These avatars replicate every single body movement, facial expression, and human action you could possibly think of. At the moment, there are about 5,000 VTubers, and while most of them are still based in Japan, we are slowly starting to see the rise of VTubers in other countries like the United States. That leads us back to Pokimane.

In the last few years, Pokimane has become a phenom in the gaming world, but like every job that puts you in the public eye, there can be some negative elements as well. Gamers, in general, receive a lot of criticism, harsh insults, and backlash. That criticism can be especially difficult if you are a woman in gaming. 

At the end of the day, gamers are still human beings, and every human has their limitations of what they can or should have to put up with. Which is exactly why, Pokimane decided to take a small break from streaming. Her return, however, was a huge surprise to the people who had followed her for years.

Pokimane’s return to Twitch, saw viewers being introduced to the anime version of herself. While Pokimane called the live stream an “experiment,” it was very much deliberate in certain areas. When asked why she chose the VTube route for her return, Pokimane stated that some days she doesn’t feel like doing the “glitz and glamor” required for a live stream. The Twitch sensation also said VTubing is a way for her to not deal with the terrible comments she receives every stream. In addition to the creative element involved in VTubing, it’s also a form of protection (like a defense mechanism). While not a permanent change(at least for now), Pokimane intends to make her VTube character a regular part of her career. 

One could argue that Pokimane is already having that impact. Since the debut of her anime character, interest in VTubing has surged significantly, and more gamers are starting to at least consider the possibility of going that route.

While Pokimane has definitely brought attention to VTubing in recent weeks, the interest has actually been building over the last couple of years. VTubers such as Kaguya Luna and Mirai Akari have been making noise in the VTubing community since around 2017. Both Kaguya and Mirai, are slowly reaching the one million subscribers mark on their channels. Kizuna AI, the streamer responsible for the early VTubing interest, is currently at two million subscribers on her channel. Known for her feisty demeanor, Kizuna’s balance between her “innocent persona” and her “bad girl persona,” has kept viewers entertained for the last four years. These streamers have paved the way for newer streamers to make an impact in the VTubing world. Kizuna is now an ambassador for the Japan National Tourism Organization. Projekt Melody (the popular 3D anime streamer) partnered with Twitch earlier this year. 

While the idea of VTube has made some streamers hesitant (some argue that VTubing challenges the authenticity of gaming), gamers are now seeing it as a way to expand their presence in the gaming world while not being “limited to one lane. ”VTubing’s demand is now more dominant than ever. This past week has seen the debut of Vtubing newbie Watson Amelia. In this week alone, the streamer has released 12 videos with huge streaming numbers ranging from 100,000 to 500,000 views on YouTube.  

Meanwhile, more artists in gaming are starting to be hired for their artwork. For example, Pokimane commissioned artist Teru for her VTube debut. Creating more work in the gaming community is a win for everybody. Whether you’ve hopped on the VTube train or not, the tide is slowly turning. Be prepared to see a lot more of VTube in the future.

Categories
Gaming Streaming

The Resurgence of ‘Among Us’: How The Game Is Dominating Two Years After Its Release

It’s definitely rare that you see a game trending two years after its release, but if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected. So what exactly is Among Us, and how did we get to the point where it’s becoming one of the most talked about titles in the gaming community?

Steam
Among Us Game Play

Among Us is a multi-player murder mystery game that was originally released on PC via Steam and mobile in November of 2018. The game is set in outer space, and leads you on a journey of deceit. Each game session can hold four to ten players, and as a group, it’s your responsibility to work together for survival. However, one of the crew members is an impostor, whose goal is to kill everybody on board before being outed. Among Us is basically a combination of The Thing, and the classic PC/board game Clue (where there’s a killer amongst you).

In these last several days, Among Us has seen a sudden rise in popularity with 1.5 million concurrent players on the server. The huge spike in gamers, has caused the servers to be overloaded, and each day has brought a new record amount of players. Again, you may be wondering why Among Us is gaining so much momentum two years after its release.

bluestacks
Scene from Among Us

The rise in Among Us can be traced back to Twitch. According to a report from Dot esports, an average of 500 channels streamed the game daily in the month of August. In the last week, that number has actually increased to 1,000 channels streaming the game daily, and with streamers like xQc and Hasanabi going viral for arguing during a livestream, the game was bound to get more attention from the general public.

In addition to xQc and Hasanabi being ready to kill each other (no pun intended), Man City striker Sergio Aguero recently made rounds in a terrible, yet hilarious, attempt to play the game on Twitch. Moments like these have resulted in curious gamers hopping on the Among Us train to see what the deal is with this game.

So now you may be wondering how you can get it on the Among Us action. As mentioned earlier, the game is available on PC through Steam and mobile, and Among Us also allows crossplay, meaning that you can play with your group regardless of whether or not they are on a computer, or a mobile device (and vice versa). While the PC version of the game is doing well, the majority of those 1.5 million players we mentioned earlier, are playing through the mobile version. 

As far as the cost goes, Among Us is $4.99 on Steam, but free through mobile platforms (with in-app purchases). Whether your group chooses to play on the computer, or through mobile, it will certainly be an adventure as you try to figure out who’s “the bad apple.” So yes, Among Us is the real deal.

Categories
Gaming Streaming

All the Essential Gaming Equipment You Need to Stream on Xbox One, PS4 and PC

Are you ready to start streaming? Don’t know what type of equipment you need to get started? Well, stress no more, here’s a list of the essentials you’ll need to start streaming.

PlayStation 4
SOPA Images/Getty Images

For PS4 players, it gets a little bit more technical because Sony manufactures their webcams. So you would have to purchase a PlayStation webcam, and this first-party accessory contains a camera as well as a built-in microphone. 


However, we would still recommend buying good headphones such as the Astro a10s. The software you would need for streaming on your PS4 such as Twitch can also be downloaded from the PlayStation store.

Xbox One
Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

For an Xbox One player, it’s quite simple. 


All you’ll need is a webcam and a headset. We’d recommend starting with a Logitech C920s HD Pro Webcam. Any Logitech webcam should be fine, but from our experience, the Logitech C920s Pro Webcam works best. Now with regards to the type of headset, we’d recommend an Astro a10s. It’s a fantastic gaming headset offering great sound, durable design and a reliable microphone. As far as software, simply download Twitch from the Xbox Store and you’ll be good to go

PC
SOPA Images/Getty Images

Now for PC Players, there is also a technical aspect that is somewhat preference-based. You can either have a single or dual PC setup. For someone who only has a single PC setup, you might suffer on the streaming side as far as quality, and this could also affect your gameplay. A dual setup requires a gaming PC and a streaming PC, so the extra equipment raises the cost.

The streaming PC doesn’t have to be as powerful as the gaming one because all you’ll be doing with the former is mostly streaming. However, your gaming pc is going to have to be a bit more jacked. We would recommend looking at brands that are well-known and respected for building gaming PCs, names like Maingear, CyberPowerPC, OriginPC and PowerGPU.

For other equipment you can use to enhance your  PC streaming setup, here’s a solid list of equipment/accessories:

Now that you know the essentials, will we see you on Twitch, Youtube or Mixer? Streaming is not hard at all; it’s just the matter of you getting started. You don’t need the best of the best equipment to start streaming.


If you ever have any future questions, just hop in ONE37pm’s Gaming Community Discord, and we’ll be more than happy to help. ​​

Categories
Gaming Streaming

How to Start Making Money on Twitch

The rise of video game live streaming has been fascinating to watch.

Gamers from all walks of life have flocked to Twitch in hopes of gaining a growing audience who’s down to watch them play the most popular (and super-niche) titles. It seems like a brand new streamer puts up his or her channel on a daily basis with the prime goal of accumulating profit from their hours-long gameplay sessions. 

If you’re one of those individuals who have dreams of becoming the next Dr. DisRespect or Pokimane, then this how-to guide should help kickstart your future Twitch career.

What is Twitch?

Twitch is undoubtedly the largest video live streaming service on the market today. Its focus lies primarily on video game live streaming. At first, Twitch was merely a spin-off of another general interest live streaming platform known as Justin.tv. Since its birth in 2011, Twitch has morphed into a juggernaut service within the gaming/live streaming industry. 

In addition to gaming live streams, musical performances rebroadcasts of classic TV shows and other types of creative content have fleshed out Twitch’s entertainment offerings. Currently, Twitch is home to more than three-million+ content creators and 15-million+ average daily visitors, plus it employs tens of thousands of creators who are a part of the Twitch Partner Program. Twitch continues to expand its viewer base as it livestreams major gaming tournaments, official events put on by video game developers/publishers, award shows, and annual gaming/geek expos.

Getting Set Up on Twitch
Hannah Smith / ESPAT Media for Mastercard via Getty Images

Getting your Twitch channel off the ground requires the proper hardware, of course. So first things first, make sure you have a computer that has the following specifications (which comes as a trustworthy set of recommendations from Twitch, by the way).

Here’s what you need:

  • An Intel Core i5-4670 or an AMD (Advanced Micro Devices) processing unit with equivalent ability, 8GB of RAM, Windows 7 Home Premium or later, and a graphics card running DirectX10 or above.
  • And most importantly, you’ll need to rely on a stable Internet connection with decent upload speeds (somewhere in the realm of 3 Mbps is the minimum upload speed you should judge your connection by).
You Need a Good Webcam and a Nice Set of Headphones
Logitech
Astro

Some of the best webcam options that come to mind are Logitech’s C920 HD Pro, C922 Pro Stream and BRIO models. Microsoft’s LifeCam Cinema is also a viable option.

Now when it comes to high-quality headsets, these five options are worth a look–the ASTRO A50, Sennheiser Game ONE, SteelSeries Arctis 7, HyperX Cloud Alpha and Logitech G430. A comfy gaming chair is a nifty piece of gear you should add to your newfound live streaming arrangement, too.

Get Yourself an Elgato Stream Deck
Elegato

This customizable control pad is practically tailor-made for the live streaming experience. It’s capable of sending out tweets that promote your channel, tinkering around with your audio options, triggering chat commands, and performing a bevy of other inputs that are usually done via the alt-tab button combination. Over on the streaming software side of things, broadcasting apps such as OBS Studio, Streamlabs OBS, NVIDIA Shadowplay and XSplit Broadcaster are some of the better options to consider.

Ways You Can Monetize on Twitch

There is a myriad of ways in which you can make a living off of Twitch. Becoming a Twitch Affiliate is one of the best paths towards game streaming monetization.

To get a personal invitation from Twitch that welcomes you into the Affiliate program, you have to complete the following achievements–stream for at least eight hours in the last 30 days, stream on at least seven different days with unique broadcasts for the last 30 days, bring in an average of three or more concurrent viewers over the previous 30 days and reach 50 followers. Once you become an official member of the Twitch Affiliate program, you’ll gain the opportunity to earn money via subscriptions, Bits and the revenue gained from the sale of games and in-game items via Twitch.

Signing up to a separate affiliate network that sells products that cater to gamers is also a viable option. For example, aligning oneself with Amazon’s affiliate program (a company that owns Twitch, by the way) is a typical move to make in this regard. As a streamer, you can use your channel for marketing Amazon products within a widget on your page. Viewers who click on that widget will then be redirected to an Amazon sales page. If they purchase that page, you’ll receive a percentage of the sales revenue earned from that sale.

If you happen to amass a massive following throughout your Twitch live streaming career, celebrating your fanbase by offering them merchandise based on your brand is worth doing. Setting up an online storefront that features clothing and other fun trinkets that market your channel is another potential moneymaker.

Having a loyal fanbase also means they’ll be more willing to support your live streaming efforts via donations. By setting up a direct payment link via PayPal, for instance, you can give fans a way to support you financially and even help you reach a clearly stated donation goal during your streams. Collecting payments via a service such as Patreon is also a viable option – placing your Patreon profile link onto your Twitch page is the best way to go in that regard.

Nabbing a sponsorship from a noteworthy company can also be incredibly beneficial for popular streamers. If a brand chooses to sponsor you, then they are confident in their product’s affinity with your loyal audience and are willing to pay you to promote said product. That product can even be something not even related to gaming (such as a food delivery service, for example). Getting a sponsorship deal is the mark of a truly successful Twitch streamer whose reach goes far and wide when it comes to loyal followers/viewers.

Successful Twitch Streamers

Becoming a moneymaking Twitch streamer is a tall task, but several streamers have done it already. If you aspire to be one of those Twitch personalities whose live stream views reach into the thousands, then these five individuals should definitely be on your radar.

Dr. DisRespect

Dr. DisRespect is a Twitch streaming staple that has garnered millions of subscribers and viewers since arriving on the platform. His over-the-top character is regularly put on display through his signature getup that consists of a black mullet wig, a pair of sunglasses, a long-sleeve athletic shirt and a tactical vest. His streams cater to games that are all about looting and shooting, such as Apex Legends, Escape from Tarkov, and Call of Duty.

Maximilian Dood

Maximilian Dood’s passion for fighting games is unparalleled. His massive fanbase checks in to watch him go in the training lab and put his best combos to work in an offline/online setting across a bevy of new and old school fighters. When he’s not pulling off double-digit combos, he hops into beloved Capcom franchises, intense first-person shooters and brutally difficult Soulsborne titles. Once the weekend rolls around, Max usually links up with his YoVideogames crew for some multiplayer mayhem.

Avoiding the Puddle

Avoiding the Puddle (who doesn’t look like Hagrid, by the way) is a streamer that plays a huge variety of games. His viewers have become accustomed to his dry wit, unmistakable beard and, let’s say, unique outlook on life. When he’s not commentating over Tekken 7 tournament matches, he can be seen playing anything and everything that tests his gaming mettle. Avoiding the Puddle’s best streams have come via titles such as Cuphead, Grand Theft Auto V and classic Resident Evil games.

Pokimane

Pokimane has successfully morphed into one of Twitch’s most popular streamers. Her biggest year to date was 2017, where she ended up gaining 450,000 followers and even earned a Shorty Award for Best Twitch Streamer of the year. Her warm and gleeful personality has made her a fan favorite for many. When streaming, Pokimane spends her time with the biggest games on the market and also participates in Just Chatting and Twitch Songs sessions from time to time. She can usually be seen playing League of Legends, Fortnite, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Apex Legends among others.

Amouranth

Amouranth is another streamer that has pulled in millions of followers and views for her live streams. She prides herself on her art and cosplay, which fans have come to appreciate as a part of her brand. Like Pokimane, Amouranth also loves to switch things up by offering her viewers light-hearted Just Chatting and Twitch Songs live streams. She’s most known for her fitness and ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) broadcasts. On the gaming side of things, she enjoys entertaining her fans with a few hours of fun Just Dance sessions.

Categories
Culture Movies/TV

10 TV Shows Airing in 2020 That You Need to Watch

We all may be doomed—we’ve seen too much TV in the last decade. 

The number of original scripted TV series in the United States more than doubled from 216 at the start of the decade to 495 in 2018. Just the first half of 2019 had 320 original scripted TV series air. The past decade didn’t see a single year produce that much until 2013. Worst of all, a lot of that TV has been really good.

The 2010s saw five seasons of a chemistry teacher’s transformation into a meth kingpin, seven seasons inside a women’s prison, four seasons following around a mentally unstable hacker who takes down America’s 1 percent, five-and-a-half seasons of a law professor trying to get away with murder, three seasons of children from the ‘80s battling demons from an interdimensional realm, five seasons of an animated horse suffering from depression and we ended the decade with a season featuring a blue god disguised as a Black man in a world where cops wear masks. That’s only a fraction of what has been dubbed “peak TV.”

This new decade will have to do more than any other decade in recent memory in order to wow people. Russians disguised as Americans? Been there, loved that. America’s most wanted man helping the FBI? We can already binge that. A Marvel TV universe? OK…and? 

It’ll be difficult—but not impossible—to amaze us in 2020, especially when major players like Netflix, Apple and Amazon are prepared to collectively spend tens of billions of dollars on original video content. So, ONE37pm decided to round up ten of the TV series coming in 2020 that will start the decade off on the right path.

‘High Fidelity’

For every person who obsesses over the minute details of past relationships the way they do favorite albums, the 2000 romantic comedy High Fidelity spoke to you deeply. Rob Gordon, played with sardonic charm by John Cusak, is a record store employee who deals with a breakup by trying to understand the futility of past relationships. 

The trailer shows Hulu’s serialized version staying true to the roots of the film while also branching out. Rob is still the protagonist who works at a record store and pines over the top five breakups of their relationship. But, Rob is now Zoe Kravitz and the record store is located in the “rapidly gentrified” Crown Heights, Brooklyn, according to the trailer’s YouTube description. Kravitz’s mother plays a small yet indelible part in the original as a singer, and the Hulu series will be more than a full-circle moment. As Kravitz’s first leading role in a TV series, the burgeoning star that has stunned on HBO’s Big Little Lies, Hulu’s High Fidelity could be the launching pad for the decade’s next great TV star.  

Season Premiere: Feb. 14

‘Homeland’

A TV character’s transcendence from trendy to epochal is wholly dependent on acting prowess convincing enough to make the TV character and the actress inextricable. If Claire Danes walked down the street in a business suit and simply glanced over her shoulder once, I’d fully believe she was escaping and/or hunting a secret terrorist cabal. For seven thrilling seasons, Showtime’s flagship spy drama Homeland did just that in award-winning and convincing fashion as CIA agent Carrie Mathison. She’s given birth to a terrorist’s child, ordered drone strikes on a family celebration and has had more psychotic breaks than this series has seasons, all while etching the “Carrie cry face” into pop culture. Since its 2011 debut, Homeland has been a searingly unflinching look into the fear-mongering and conspiratorial corruption that has shaped the United States post-9/11, and the series looks to end with a few bangs.

Season eight, the final season, finds Carrie seeking retribution on her captors who drugged her into a seven-month amnesia spell that has her CIA colleagues unsure if she even remembers if she switched sides to the enemy or not. Mandy Patinkin as a CIA agent and Carrie’s work dad, Saul Berenson, is bringing Carrie full circle by returning her to where her career started—Afghanistan. For a man who has seen the horrors, Saul saying in the trailer where Carrie going is ten times more dangerous than when she last came all but ensures that the final season of Homeland will be its wildest one yet.

Season Premiere: Feb. 9 

‘The Boys’

Regina King and Watchmen showrunner Damian Lindelof completely subverted the superhero genre in 2019, uncovering the dark and insidious side of people who disguise themselves in order to fight for the truth. Before that, Amazon Studios’ The Boys was a shoo-in for the crown of 2019’s darkest superhero drama. The first season fully fleshes out a world where a consortium of people with superhuman abilities, known as The Seven, are depended on to uphold the law and the drama that comes from their temptation to stand above it. After a superhero kills Hughie’s (Jack Quaid) girlfriend, he and superhero hunter Karl Urban search for a way to take down The Seven.

The first season established the world of the insidious nature of commercializing superheroes and hinting the fascinatingly nightmarishly possibility of militarizing superhumans. So, without a single word being uttered in the 90-second teaser trailer, fans of the first season already see a few questions answered. For those new to the series, the trailer gives you a taste of the gory glory of a truly R-rated superhero franchise, a genre of TV that may prove to be staples of the 2020s. If you ever wanted to know what Superman would be like as a corporate asshole or if Aquaman was a pervert, then The Boys is perfect.

Season Premiere: Mid-2020

‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’

What started as a one-hour HBO mockumentary about the process of getting Seinfeld co-creator Larry David back on stage to do stand-up comedy morphed into a nine-season series about the misanthropic adventures David goes on in his everyday life. When a show can have an entire episode based around pants fabric, creating the illusion of an erection and elicit laughter that rips tears from your eyes, that’s a mark of comedic gold. Each episode is a different slice of David’s neurotic life magnified by TV cameras and the hilarious ways he sucks people into his absurdist takes on normal social discourse.

The slow-walking elderly and ineffective attire during confrontations are just a few of the mundane everyday conventions that catch David’s ire in the short trailer for season ten. This season also will introduce new celebrities into Larry’s web of nihilism. Rachel McAdams, Jane Krakowski and Laverne Cox are a few who make appearances in the trailer with visible uneasiness about the way David lives his life. After taking six years in between seasons eight and nine, the latter season showed no signs of comedic atrophy proving Larry David’s humor can adapt to any decade


 Season Premiere: Jan. 19

‘Shrill’

For seven years, Aidy Bryant has been one of the most versatile comedians on Saturday Night Live. She could channel a level of unhinged hilarity into making Cardi B look tame in the same scene and confidently tell Eddie Murphy to thank God for her ass. The Hulu comedy Shrill, Bryant’s first TV role as a lead actress, follows Bryant’s character Annie Easton as she fights for respect at her job, her relationship and herself. By the end of the first six-episode season, Annie was emasculating an internet troll and his body-shaming mentality.

For the second season, Annie is “shaking my shit up a little,” as she quipped in the trailer seconds after being seen smashing into a piggy bank rummaging for money. In the world of Shrill’s second season, shaking up your life appears to involve oral sex in public and the feeling insane and amazing simultaneously. Shrill’s impressive first season flew under the radar a bit, but Bryant’s penchant for smart comedy is too magnetic to be ignored for much longer. The second season is looking like it’s shaping up to be the sort of modern coming-of-age story that Broad City was for the previous decade. One where turning booty calls into relationships and being comfortable in your chaos are marks of maturation.

Season Premiere: Jan. 24

’30 for 30: The Last Dance’

For the last decade, the standard for sports documentaries has been ESPN’s 30 for 30 series. They explored the biblical parallels of Steve Bartman’s interference in game six of the MLB National League Championship game in 2003, how O.J. Simpson created reality TV and drug lord Pablo Escobar’s connection to the Colombian soccer team. Yet in more than ten years of award-winning storytelling, the legacy of arguably the greatest basketball player of all-time has been relegated to his forgetful time playing baseball. That, and the way we view the greatest sports legacy of all time, is about to change.

The Last Ride is set to be a ten-hour documentary series about the 1990s Chicago Bulls. After a decade without a definitive retrospective looks into the biggest sports team of the 1990s, fans are getting treated to over 500 hours of never-before-seen footage from Michael Jordan and the Bulls’ final championship run in the 1997-1998 season. In just the trailer, we see Jordan dejectedly recounting the times no one would know where his teammate Dennis Rodman was for 48 hours and footage of the team playing cards on the flight. After decades of unauthorized biographies and documentaries that feature everyone but Jordan, His Airness will finally sit down to give us his insights into the decade that perched him on the top of a sports kingdom. 

Season Premiere: June 2020

‘Westworld’

For two seasons, HBO’s Westworld has bent minds around the idea of rich people living out their most debased fantasies in a man-made wonderland with human-like robots and the carnage that ensues when those robots become sentient. The show has had human consciousnesses uploaded to a cloud, samurai robot showdowns, people injecting USB chords in their arms and pretty much any dystopian nightmare you may have had about robots taking over the world. Thandie Newton, Ed Harris, Jeffrey Wright, Tessa Thompson and Evan Rachel Wood are stellar, and they’ve helped immerse fans so deep into the sci-fi world to the point of being satiated in confusion.

The first two seasons of Westworld, while enthralling, were cumbersome and complex at times, and season two’s end left more questions than answers. By the looks of the trailer for season three, it’s going to get weirder and wilder. After two seasons in Westworld, the new season will be the first where the robots have to survive in the real world, and by the sounds of the voiceover by Delores (Wood), a robot revolution of the real world is imminent. Add Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul, in his usual disheveled and petrified self, to the mix and you have the makings for one of the most anticipated TV seasons of 2020.

Season Premiere: TBD 2020

‘Better Call Saul’

Spin-offs have a high failure rate for many reasons, primarily because they remind people of the original show without most of the central figures of the original. Better Call Saul is a beautiful anomaly that hasn’t borrowed from the Breaking Bad universe—it originates as much as it’s expanded it. The show follows lawyer Jimmy McGill’s (Bob Odenkirk) slow descent into the immorality that turns him into the crooked Saul Goodman from Breaking Bad. Throughout the series, we find out how Mike Ehrmantraut (Jonathan Banks) and Gustavo Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) became a criminal partnership, the origins of Saul Goodman and the way crime worked in Albuquerque, New Mexico, before Walter White blanketed it in his sky blue meth.

The first four seasons take place before the events of Breaking Bad, but the two worlds may soon collide in season five after McGill hints that he’ll be practicing law under the name Saul Goodman at the end of season four. If that wasn’t enough, this short season five teaser trailer seems to have Saul trapped in a car being driven by a few nefarious-looking dudes as he nervously looks around for a way out. It looks like the Better Call Saul and Breaking Bad timelines may soon merge. 

Season Premiere: Feb. 23

‘For Life’

The only reason Isaac Wright Jr. isn’t a superhero is because superheroes only exist on TV. Wright received a life sentence after being wrongfully convicted in 1991 of being the kingpin of an expansive drug empire in the New York/New Jersey area. No alien gamma rays or genius gadgetry miraculously engineered his freedom. Years of teaching himself law and an unwavering determination helped Wright be his own lawyer, expose corruption at the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office helped free himself and many other inmates he represented while imprisoned. A prisoner who doubles as a lawyer to expose corruption and free people is real-life heroism made for TV.

Luckily, ABC and 50 Cent feel similarly. Created by Hank Steinberg, For Life is a new ABC drama inspired by Wright’s story. It follows Aaron (Nicholas Pinnock), a man convicted of a crime he didn’t commit, fighting for his freedom to reunite with his family after his daughter reveals to him that she’s pregnant while visiting him in prison. In a two-minute trailer, Pinnock’s steely resolve when snarling at a prosecutor incredulous of the inmate being a lawyer, as well as his tender but firm love for his daughter and wife Marie (Joy Bryant) are on full, engrossing display.

With How to Get Away with Murder ending in 2020 and Shonda Rhimes leaving ABC for Netflix, For Life could be ABC’s next legal drama gem.

Season Premiere: Feb. 11

‘Kidding’

There’s a level of delusion necessary to be as perpetually positive as children’s television personality Mr. Rogers was for generations of kids, and Showtime’s dark comedy Kidding delves into that delusion to emotionally deep, and at times surreal, effect. With Jim Carrey as the moralistically sound and universally beloved Jeff “Mr. Pickles” Piccirillo, Kidding spent a remarkable first season showing what happens to the Jesus archetype of Mr. Rogers when shattered after Jeff loses one of his twin sons in a car crash he was involved in. The second season appears to dive deeper into those dark topics.

Kidding is far more than a dark satire of children’s television—it’s an insightful analysis of the problems that arise when parents willfully neglect their children enough for a man on TV to be a surrogate parent or their children, as well as the mental state of a man who shoulders an almost innate proclivity to do good. By the looks of season two, the depths of Jeff’s mental state after ending the first season running over his estranged wife’s boyfriend were only scratched on the first season, which makes for an even more compelling second season.

Season Premiere: Feb. 9

Categories
Culture Movies/TV

The Samurai Films That Inspired ‘The Mandalorian’ Are Better Than ‘The Mandalorian’

Nostalgia addicts have been rapt with Disney’s streaming service, but the breakout success of the new network has by far been the new Star Wars TV series, The Mandalorian. The popularity of the new show, which has already broken streaming records, was pretty predictable given the American public’s insatiable craving for all things from a galaxy far, far away.


The Mandalorian has exceeded expectations in its first batch of episodes by presenting new faces for the growing franchise—and catalyzing endless memes to boot. But cinephiles were quick to notice that the basic concept of the show isn’t exactly original. A roaming, hyper-skilled assassin pursued endlessly by attackers while simultaneously protecting a young and vulnerable child? If you’re a samurai film aficionado, the source of inspiration for the new show is quite obvious: Lone Wolf and Cub, a series of manga written by Kazuo Koike and artist Goseki Kojima and later adapted into six films starring Tomisaburo Wakayama in the 1970s (and an eventual TV series after that) is an obvious influence for the new space opera side story.

Lone Wolf and Cub tells the story of Ogami Ittō, a professional executioner whose wife is killed through a labyrinthine series of betrayals that prompts him to swear allegiance only to Hell in a quest for revenge against the shogun who ordered his partner’s killing. But the wandering warrior refuses to abandon his 3-year-old son and takes the child along with him on his bloodthirsty ordeal. Ogami survives as an assassin-for-hire as his he travels the countryside, getting closer and closer to the emperor responsible for ruining his life.


At first glance, this isn’t exactly the same as The Mandalorian, whose eponymous hero does not decide to protect what fans have affectionately dubbed “Baby Yoda” out of a desire for retribution. But the themes and motifs are quite apparently similar: Can this hardened killer learn to care for a creature so weak? What are the ramifications of witnessing such violence for these young children? Can Ogami or The Mandalorian ever truly escape from their hunters—and will their souls be devoured by darkness along the way?

Disney+
The Mandalorian with Baby Yoda.

Samurai films have always been cited as an influence on the Star Wars franchise, along with serial sci-fi series like Flash Gordon and spaghetti Western cinema, which, in turn, had also been inspired by samurai films. But never has the connection been so glaring as between The Mandalorian and Lone Wolf and Cub, which often resemble each other not only thematically but cinematographically. Like The Mandalorian, Lone Wolf and Cub films are abundant with scenes of the titular ronin walking through an existentially barren landscape, or outnumbered by ornately clad villains. The melodrama of the fight scenes in each series is counterbalanced with more quiet moments of contemplative pastoral scenery. 


And already it’s been easy to pick up a few details of where the plot is heading having rewatched the Japanese movies: Baby Yoda has already been made useful in battle, as did the young Daigoro, whose stroller was equipped with secret blades—and in the later films hidden firearms. Like a main villain in the second Lone Wolf and Cub film, Gina Carano’s character in episode 4 came prepared with an iron fist-type weapon. And like Ogami, The Mandalorian is finding it increasingly difficult to abandon his adorable counterpart, setting up for further adventures down the line.

Mapping the world of Edo-era Japan onto extra-planetary affairs is not without orientalizing or exoticizing elements, as suddenly classes of actual historical fighters become transmogrified in The Mandalorian into literal aliens. Ironically, this transformation has now also occurred in reverse, with Star Wars recently adapted into a kabuki theater production in Japan—meaning that maybe the relationship between American sci-fi and Japanese aesthetics is more symbiotic than parasitic and that the discourse of cultural appropriation doesn’t exactly apply here.


So, you might be asking, which series is better? If you’re not familiar with the slow pacing of decades-old ultra-violent movies, the Lone Wolf and Cub films can feel like a bit of a slog. They’re certainly far more filled with sexual violence and gore, although the bloodshed looks more campy than horrific these days. Which is to say: the Lone Wolf films are undoubtedly more adult—the world of feudal Japan is far from the kid-friendly universe of Star Wars. But once you’ve watched The Mandalorian’s predecessor, it’s hard not to see precisely how derivative the new show actually is. Lone Wolf and Cub is undeniably more historically important and intellectually curious, given its widespread influence, but what viewers prefer will largely boil down to personal taste.