Stream Tagged Articles RSS Feed | Stream RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network StarCraft: Remastered Launch Event Mon, 14 Aug 2017 17:02:08 -0400 Kengaskhan

Blizzard Entertainment's 1998 real-time strategy game, StarCraft, is one of the most celebrated e-Sports in gaming history. StarCraft was, and still is, a huge part of South Korean entertainment culture (some might even consider it to be South Korea's national pastime), and it was a major part of some of the first truly big eSports leagues and events, like the World Cyber Games.

Today, nearly 10 years later, Blizzard is releasing StarCraft: Remastered worldwide -- a revamped version of the classic title with brand new, high-definition graphics, re-recorded audio and dialogue, and localization for 13 different languages.

Blizzard has also fully integrated the Remastered edition with its current social infrastructure, which will finally bring first-party ranked multiplayer matchmaking and leaderboards to Brood War.

But most importantly, the gameplay (for better or worse) remains completely unchanged -- so you'd best be prepared to wrestle with the infamously whacky Dragoon pathfinding if you start playing again.

StarCraft: Remastered Launch Stream

With no changes made to the classic gameplay they know all too well, old Brood War pros will find themselves right at home with the Remastered edition -- and Blizzard has seen fit to gather several of those players together for a StarCraft: Remastered launch event.

The event, hosted by the Day[9], Tasteless and Artosis (the 'Tastosis' casting duo), and iNcontrol, and will feature eight of Brood War's Western greats: Legionnaire, Draco, G5, Nyoken, Ret, White-Ra, Artosis, and iNcontrol.

The launch event will run from 3PM until midnight, both today and tomorrow, over on takes place 3 p.m. to midnight, both today and tomorrow, on Day[9]'s Twitch channel.

Come join the stream, and experience the re-rerelease of one of eSport's most celebrated games!

Gamers Unite For a Weekend Of Gaming In Aid of Charity Thu, 23 Feb 2017 19:25:04 -0500 ESpalding

This weekend, many big-name game developers and publishers are taking part in the UK's largest charity gaming marathon, called GameBlast17. The marathon raises money for a UK-based charity called Special Effect, which helps people with disabilities play video games. This year's event aims to raise £100,000 and runs from Feb 24-Feb 26.

The retailer GAME is the event's flagship partner, and they have been raising money throughout February in their stores. They'll be joined by gaming event managers Multiplay for a 24-hour marathon in which many Guinness World Records will be attempted. There will also be an auction of merchandise donated by companies such as Ubisoft, Sumo Digital, Bethesda, and Wired Productions.

There are lots of other major names in the industry taking part and hosting their own live-streams and marathons -- including Ripstone, Rare, SEGA, and Nomad Games. There are approximately 300 gamers signed up to take part, including a team from the events' chosen fundraising platform, JustGiving.

All streams will be shown on Twitch.

For more information on the charity and the event, you can check out Special Effect or head straight to the GameBlast17 website to see how to get involved and how you can donate.

10 Reasons to be HYPED About ARMS! Fri, 13 Jan 2017 11:00:01 -0500 Unclepulky

We learned a lot from Nintendo's most recent stream about the Nintendo Switch. From hardware to software to ice cubes, there is so much to look forward to about Nintendo's newest console.

One of the things which stuck out most to me was the trailer for a new IP, Arms.

We know very little about this upcoming Switch title, and yet, I'm already super excited about it. And since I believe excitement should be shared, I'm gonna tell you all 10 Reasons to be HYPED About Arms.

The Premise

We've seen motion-controlled boxing games before. We've also seen incredibly silly, over the top fighting games before. Never before have we gotten a combination of the two.

At last, this match made in Heaven is becoming a reality!

With super stretchy arms, special moves for each equally ridiculous character, and what appear to be incredibly deep fighting mechanics, this is a game that looks great on paper.

And you know what? It looked pretty excellent in that trailer too!

The Characters

Arms clearly not shown here.

While usually not very complex, characters in Nintendo games, or even just games exclusive to Nintendo consoles, tend to have bright, colorful designs, and simple but fun personalities. While we only got brief glimpses of five of the game's playable characters, including Spring Man and Ribbon Girl, but they all appear to have interesting designs and clearly distinct playstyles.

I'm sure that over time, we'll get to see more characters revealed, and more of what their personalities are like.

The Controls

Some competitive fighting game players would scoff at the idea of a motion-controlled competitive fighting game. When first watching the trailer for Arms, I was right there with them.

However, the more I watched it, the more I realized how brilliantly this could work.

To succeed in Arms requires using a combination of motions and button presses. With the motions being as specific as they are, this game will be far from a waggle fest like many Wii titles. And with button presses serving different functions depending on what motions you're making, it seems there will be a low chance of performing an action you didn't mean to.

It seems to me that the controls of Arms will be simple to learn and difficult to master.

Split-Screen Multiplayer

Arms has been confirmed to include both online and local multi-player. While online play can be fun, that's not how a lot of us grew up.

We grew up sitting in our bean bag chairs with a bunch of friends by our sides and snacks all around. Yes, other games still include local multiplayer, but even Halo, a series famous for its split-screen multiplayer, has taken it out.

Local multiplayer is something that in my opinion should never die. And I commend Nintendo and Arms for keeping it alive.

The Story

As anyone can tell from looking at my two favorite games, The World Ends with You and Undertale, I care a great deal about the stories in the game's I play.

We don't even know yet if Arms will have a story. However, should it have one, I'm sure it'll be delightfully zany, and a lot of fun to experience.

Or I could be totally off. Maybe the story will follow Spring Man as he deals with his father issues, or perhaps it'll be about Ribbon Girl's crippling depression, and the ways she deals with it.

In a game like Arms, we can't rule out anything.

The Cheese Factor

Let's face it: The world is a pretty dark place.

As such, while there's of course room for realism in video games, Arms, despite the joke I made just a few sentences ago, really isn't the place for it.

I want Arms to be as crazy and off-the-wall as possible. People are already comparing the game to the popular anime, "Jojo's Bizarre Adventure." And frankly, I'd love it if Arms could match the creativity and cheesiness of that anime.

Realism: Something that should be no where near a game about people with stretchy arms.

The Boss Battles

Arms not shown.

A staple of the fighting game genre are incredibly cheap boss battles who can beat you over and over again before you even start to come up with a winning strategy. This has been a trend since the days of the arcade, when the goal was to get players to dump as many quarters as it took to achieve victory. And frankly, I don't see why arms shouldn't have one of these bosses.

At this point, it's just tradition. Plus, in Nintendo's most recent IP before Arms, Splatoon, the final boss was praised as being one of the greatest of all time.

Clearly, Nintendo still has it in them to create memorable and enjoyable boss battles.

The Soundtrack

The song played in the trailer for Arms was quite good, and I think we can expect a lot out of this game's soundtrack.

1st Party Nintendo games generally have brilliant soundtracks, and I don't think they'll be wanting to break that trend with a new IP. There really isn't much else to say here. We can just look forward to a bunch of great tunes.

It's a Nintendo FIGHTING GAME

For years, Nintendo consoles have been criticized for lacking quality fighting games. And all us Nintendo loyalists could retort with was "well, we have Smash."

There have been one or two other notable fighters here or there, but for the most part, Nintendo has been sorely lacking on this front.

Now, with both Arms and Blazblue coming to the Nintendo Switch, it seems that this is one criticism which will soon be a thing of the past.


We all know that Nintendo loves to advertise new games by including characters from them in Super Smash Bros. They did it in Melee, they did it in Brawl, and most recently, they did in Super Smash Bros. for 3DS and Wii U.

While we still don't know the future of the series, I'd bet good money that if a fifth entry in the Smash series is released, Arms will be represented.

Odds are it'd be Spring Man representing the game, but personally, I'd like to see more of the green ninja or the yellow mecha. Regardless, I can't wait to see how Arms plays into Smash, as well as the rest of Nintendo's franchises.

Are you hyped for Arms? What about it has you excited? Let me know in the comments!

The Meteoric Rise of Video Game Streaming Thu, 17 Nov 2016 06:00:01 -0500 SarahKel

The streaming of video games has become a phenomenon in recent years. Video platforms, such as YouTube and Twitch, have become the authoritative channels to communicate and share the virtual exploits of peoples gaming experience. Not only have the most eminent become synonymous with video gaming, but many have branched out into branding, such as clothing and candles.

These videos discuss games in a variety of formats, including ‘let’s plays’, walkthroughs, machinima and reviews. They have captured the attention of millions of loyal followers, who opt to subscribe and watch the video content regularly.

Historically, video gaming was generally a solitary activity, but now there has been a seismic shift towards not just multiplayer gaming, but a totally communal experience, where gamers watch others playing games and can comment and communicate upon the events.

Culturally, this trend is extremely important; it reiterates the place and importance of video games within the wider media environment. The sheer level of professionalism, fun and communication with fans means gamers trust streamers. The streamers themselves do recognise their influence amongst fans.

So why is the genre so popular? Let’s explore this a little further

The sheer number of games out there means gamers can be very choosy about what they purchase.  Gamers can watch a trailer and demo the game, but us savvy gamers want to see the game in action right now. The streamer is the guinea pig, with the viewer watching to ensure the game is worth the price tag. The type of games streamed range from AAA games to indie titles that have sparked their interest. In effect, their influence upon the video gaming industry cannot be understated, with games such as Punch Club, who through clever marketing embraced the Twitch streaming community and an increase in sales was clearly noticed directly after the streaming. There is nothing better than discovering a new game.

Personality is a deciding factor, as gamers want to watch engaging streamers, with a strong personality, who isn’t afraid of speaking their mind. No article about streaming video games can be written without discussing PewDiePie, who also has the most subscribers on YouTube. Naming fans ‘bros’ builds and develops an instantaneous connection with fans. Streamers such as PewDiePie and Jesse Cox are engaging and hyperbole the heck out of a game.

As a career path, streamers are extremely talented gamers and can demonstrate the games in the manner that they are supposed to be played in. They take the extreme mode challenges and chancey manoeuvres, simply for the entertainment value. The unpredictable nature of what could happen is what is truly exciting, the speed challenges and games with jump scares is very appealing for viewers.

Community spirit is important; the viewer is part of the shared experience and can comment and post on what is happening in the game. The competitive pressure is on the streamer, but the viewer can relax, enjoy the banter and chat in the forums. Savvy streamers know to utilise social media to ask fans what to stream next, thus assisting with the buying advice.

Self-improvement is a key factor, as gamers seek to improve skills and hone techniques. For strategic games like Hearthstone, learning and understanding the reason why cards should be played at a given time and the playstyle of other people. It also reminds players that the game, with perseverance and practise IS beatable and give us all hope that we too can complete the game. Watching and learning is better than reading a guide to truly understand what a player needs to do to beat a boss, for example.

There is a whole genre of esports, the professional arm of gaming where the best of the best can be watched playing their game. Whilst there is no personality shown through watching these high level players, one can watch simply in awe of the technical levels that the players have reached.

People watch streamers for a whole variety of reasons and the popularity of streaming will increase. There is a whole world of games to explore and introduce viewers to, both current and upcoming, AAA and independent games. What we all enjoy, is a person we can relate to, who plays a game that we know and love, are curious about, or equally have never heard of and learn about it, whilst having some fun along the way.

Hampden-Sydney College Needs Your Support at Extra Life Event Fri, 04 Nov 2016 06:00:12 -0400 Nukeum117

Extra Life is an organization that began in 2008 with the goal of raising money and awareness for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals across the United States. The concept was simple, yet unique: Raise money by having sponsors donate to support their favorite gamers participating in a 24-hour gaming marathon.

In 2010, Extra Life raised $450,000, and in 2015 raised $8.3 million. The number of participants bolstered as well over the years, increasing from 4,500 members to 55,000.

Over the years, numerous groups have come together to help further this cause. Many groups stream their events, with the intention that people will watch their gaming marathons and donate to the cause. Some participants host speed runs of their favorite games, while others will take on certain challenges or achievements to attract viewers.

Last year, the Chess and Strategy Game Club at Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia participated for the first time, after being introduced to the Extra Life event by a new college employee who had participated in prior years. Despite the short notice, the club hosted and ran a full 24-hour event, and managed to raise just over $1,500 for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

This year, the club is once again partaking in the event, with the aim to double last year’s fundraising total. This year, the Garnet & Grey Gamers will hold their game day from Friday, November 4th at 8:00 PM to 8:00 PM Saturday night in Hampden Sydney’s library.

We are asking the GameSkinny community to help us meet our fundraising goal. Any and all donations, big or small, are greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your support!

You can view the roster of participants or donate to the cause on our team's page. For additional information, you can check out coverage from last year's event. And to tune in to the stream, you can visit the hosting channel on Twitch.

Bungie Teases Destiny Reveal Stream on Twitter Fri, 03 Jun 2016 08:41:40 -0400 Daniel Lopez

Destiny developer Bungie tweeted the date and time for a Twitch stream that will give players a preview of content to come later this year.

The Destiny news will be unveiled through Bungie's Twitch channel Thursday, June 9th at 10 a.m. PT. Players can expect to learn "about the next threat that you'll confront as Guardians," followed by a "deeper dive with the development team."

Information and artwork on a future Destiny expansion called "Rise of Iron" were leaked in May. The press release for the expansion is slated for June, so this could easily be the topic for the upcoming stream. But with Destiny 2 possibly coming in 2017, who knows if the sequel will make an appearance as well. All I know is my June 9th 10 a.m. time slot is now booked.

[Pax East Coverage] Infiniscene Is The Next Best Streaming Platform Ever Tue, 26 Apr 2016 05:02:29 -0400 | Narz |

I will be tooting the Infiniscene horn, and will hail it as a great streaming platform, better than OBS and XSplit, for both beginners and pro streamers. Why? Because it makes streaming simple on any computer, no matter what type of rig, equipment, or mixer you have, by going via the cloud. That's right! This beautiful broadcasting studio is powered by the cloud! Anyone can start streaming in less than four minutes -- as opposed to researching, YouTubing advice, and spending days setting up your rig to actually work. Don't ever spend money on so much equipment ever again!

So How Does it Work?

Infiniscene's CEO and Co-Founder Stu Grubbs gave me a quick walk-through of the platform. By logging in via a web browser with your Twitch, YouTube Gaming, or Hitbox credentials, anyone can pair their computer, add interface content, overlays, video sources (webcam or game), via the simple drag drop system to layer any of these over each other. Go Live by simply clicking the "Go Live" button. No keys, bitrates, or codecs necessary!

Save projects on the fly for different games, streaming projects, or switching to spectator mode. Collaborate with anyone in the world easily by getting your friend's video source ID. Use DropBox to import and export files. With multi platform capabilities, it allows streaming to Twitch, YouTube gaming, and HitBox (Azubu coming soon!) at the same time. Connect your mobile phone to start, stop, and switch scenes without having a browser open!

Simple Is Better

To get a sense of how quick and easy it is to start streaming, here is 11.2 secs of GIF to show how you get set up with Infiniscene and go live!

The platform works on Windows, Macs, iPhones, Androids, Mozilla, Chrome, and Internet Explorer. Sign up for the beta now while you still can! Click here to get started!

Bungie announces a weekly Destiny show Fri, 26 Feb 2016 05:17:57 -0500 Nick Harshman

Bungie has announced that they are looking to give fans a behind-the-scenes look at how the incredibly popular Destiny game was made. Titled "Ride Along", this weekly series will play host to various Bungie employees as they discuss what it takes to keep the game up and running. The show will air on Bungie's Twitch channel.

The first episode is going to air March 2, and will be lead by Senior Artist Andrew Hopps and Senior Designer Brian Frank. The episode will mainly focus on Oryx's Fortress, as well as how they go about actually creating the destinations they have planned for their fans. 

Later episodes will focus on the audio team and Clan Resolute. The audio based installment will have members of the audio team sharing stories about the creation of the game's unique sound. From gunfire to the soundtrack, it seems like they'll talk about a little of everything. The Clan Resolute episode will emphasize what it means to be part of a clan and what it is a clan does.

It also seems that Bungie plans to reveal details regarding their Spring update during an episode of Ride Along. They mentioned that the designers will reveal more details later on regarding things such as:

"...a significant Light increase, a bunch of new gear to earn and equip, and new challenges for PvE players seeking some more fun experiences and deployability."

For the Destiny fanatics out there, this seems like a must watch. What do you think Destiny fans? Are you gonna give Bungie's new show a go?

Final Fantasy stream this weekend and with new screenshots revealed Wed, 27 Jan 2016 04:36:28 -0500 Douglas A. Skinner

Final Fantasy XV's Active Time Report will be having a program this Saturday, January 30th, on YouTube at 8pm PST/ 11pm EST. The show will highlight the most recent gameplay and activies of the Niflheim empire. In Europe, the Active Time Report will air January 31st at 4pm GMT.

Join director Hajime Tabata and global marketing director Akio Ofuji as they outline the latest news for the game. Another point of discussion will be the upcoming event in March of this year, where the official release date for Final Fantasy XV is going to be announced by Square Enix.

New screenshots have also been released on the official Twitter for the game. They depict the main hero, Noctis, dishing out some serious spells, aerial acrobatics, and stealth play.

This will be the first report in 3 months, so be sure to tune in to this stream for all the latest news on Final Fantasy XV. 

Also, Executive Officer Shinji Hashimoto and game producer  Hiroka Chiba will give a demonstration of World of Final Fantasy January 31st.

World of Final Fantasy is an adventure game stylized for the young and young-hearted. Use monster towers comprised of monsters you collect, raise, and train by battling other monsters. The game will retail for $59.99 according to the Square Enix Online Store, and is set for release on December 31st for the PS4 and PSVita. 

SMITE MLG Pro League NA Finals: Everything you need to know Tue, 01 Dec 2015 12:08:24 -0500 Auverin Morrow

Now that the SMITE Super Regionals are over, there's just one event left before the World Championships in January. This weekend, December 5-6, MLG is hosting its NA Pro League Finals for SMITE on Xbox One. 

The top six North American teams from the regular MLG Pro season will be facing off for their share of a $50,000 prize purse and a spot in the Xbox One Invitational at the SMITE World Championships next month. This event marks the end of the first competitive season we've ever seen for a MOBA on console. 

Brackets & Schedule

The initial rounds of the NA Pro League Finals will be single elimination, best of three matches. The final match on Sunday will be a best of five. Here are the current match-ups, and when they're scheduled to play:

  • Saturday
    • Juice vs. Elevate (12:00 PM EST)
    • Eager vs. Epsilon (2:00 PM EST)
    • Release vs. Match 1 Winner (4:00 PM EST)
    • XGN vs. Match 2 Winner (6:00 PM EST)
  • Sunday
    • Semifinals 1 Winner vs. Semifinals 2 Winner (2:00 PM EST)
Where to Watch

The MLG NA Pro League Finals will be broadcast from the MLG.TV Arena in Columbus, Ohio. To keep up with all the action, you can tune into the live stream over at MLG's dedicated channel. Or you can follow @MLG on Twitter for other updates. 

What's Next

The winner of this tournament will take one of four available spots at the SMITE World Championships Xbox One Invitational. Two of those spots have already been claimed. Aware won their seat in the ESL UK Grand Finals last week. Even though Eager is competing in this tournament, they've already won their spot via the UMG Invitational earlier this month. If Eager happens to win this event as well, the open seat will go to the loser of the final match. 

The last spot in the Xbox One Invitational will go to the winner of the SWC Open Bracket in the days leading up to the World Championship event. 

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for further updates and highlights as we move into this final tournament and start looking forward to Worlds.

BlizzCon 2015 Stream Schedule Mon, 02 Nov 2015 17:23:58 -0500 Courtney Gamache

Blizzard's annual convention, BlizzCon, is happening this weekend. It's sure to have lots of announcements about Blizzard's popular games and franchises.

Aside from announcements on games, the World Championships for Blizzard's competitive games will take place at this venue and over live-streaming. 

Not going to BlizzCon?

Blizzard is offering a virtual ticket for those who don't want to travel to Anaheim, which will set you back $39.99 for the basic ticket. For an add-on value of $34.99, you can also get a goodie bag of Blizzard treasures. 

For more information and purchasing, you can get details from Blizzard's virtual ticket shop

The BlizzCon 2015 Lineup

BlizzCon will consist of five major competitive activities including:

BlizzCon 2015 Opening Ceremony 
Friday November 6th @ 11 A.M. PT

During BlizzCon's Opening Ceremony, announcements are expected to take place, with surprises behind every door. 

You can view the 2015 Opening Ceremony through Blizzard's official Twitch channel or on the Xbox One for the first time through the Xbox Live Events app.

2015 Hearthstone World Championship
Friday November 6th @ 12 P.M. PT
Saturday November 7th @ 10:30 A.M. PT

This major 2015 Hearthstone World Championship will feature the eight champions who made it to the final competition: Thijs, Kranich, Ostaka, Pingingho, DieMeng, Kno, Zoro, and Hotform. They will compete in five games of Conquest format, and the best will win. Each player is required to bring three decks and win with each of them.

You can view the 2015 Hearthstone Championship through Blizzard's official Twitch channel or on YouTube.

2015 Heroes of the Storm World Championship
Friday November 6th @ 4 P.M. PT 
Saturday November 7th @ 9:30 A.M. PT 

The eSport Heroes of the Storm competition will include several top-tier teams: Cloud9, Natus, and Vincere will be there for sure. TeamYL and GIA are still competing for the chance to take on Team Dignitas for the last group A semi-final spot. Group B will have: Brave Heart and Tempo Storm, with the victor taking on Team DK. Once the semi-final teams are decided, they will play a best-of-three match up, and best-of-five for the finals. 

You can view the 2015 Heroes of the Storm World Championship through Blizzard's official Twitch channel or on YouTube.

StarCraft 2 World Championship Series Global Final
Friday November 6th @ 12 P.M. PT
Saturday November 7th @ 12:30 P.M. PT

Eight of the best StarCraft 2 players will compete on Friday in the quarter-finals with a best-of-five. The players are: hero0, Classic, Innovation, Life, Rain, sOs, Hydra, and Rogue. On Saturday those that move on will have a best-of-five for the semi-finals, and the best of the best will wrap up later that day in a best-of-seven final round.

You can watch the StarCraft 2 World Championship Series Global Final at Blizzard's official Twitch channel or on YouTube.

2015 World of Warcraft Arena World Championship
Friday November 6th @ 12 P.M. PT
Saturday November 7th @ 3 P.M. PT

Friday will consist of arena match-ups with teams who received one loss during the Group Stage. Teams competing for the two semi-final open slots are: Tempo Storm, Solari, Gaming, Cloud9, and Fellowesports. The two that move on will meet SK Gaming and Skill Capped EU later on Friday. The last two teams standing will meet for a giant finale on Saturday.

You can view the 2015 World of Warcraft Arena World Championship through Blizzard's official Twitch channel or on YouTube.

What are you most excited for during this weekend's BlizzCon? Who do you think will with their respective championships? Share your thoughts with me below!

PS4 update 3.00 has live stream features & 10GB storage Tue, 01 Sep 2015 19:46:01 -0400 Andrea Koenig

It will take a while for all PlayStation 4 users to get their hands on it, but PlayStation update 3.00, codenamed "Kenshin," is now available to members of the PS4 beta program as of September 1. 

Most update features are in hopes of helping PS4 users connect with their fellow gamers. Not all updates have been released, likely for that reason, but the PlayStation blog has released some of the highlights.

  • Online storage capacity is increased from 1GB to 10GB for all PS Plus members and a usage meter to monitor your storage.
  • Live stream your gameplay to YouTube and YouTube Gaming apps and websites.
  • Send and receive "Request to Watch" notifications to observe gameplay and start a live broadcast.
  • See what your friends are playing, join their games, and create a party with Now Playing / What's New.
  • Quickly access users you play with the most with Favorite Groups in the Friends app.
  • Be notified of any special events, activities, and official broadcasts for your favorite games in a new Event Hub.
  • Connect and share with other users via Communities.
  • Share 10 second video clips to Twitter.
  • The Live from PlayStation app has been updated for easier access to live broadcasts.
  • Use stickers in chat.

PlayStation did mention that there is a chance that not all of these features will make it to the final launch.

This beta release comes along side a public PlayStation Store app update that introduce several games, themes, bring back DIRECTV NFL Sunday Tickets, introduce a trailer for the upcoming premiere of Hand of God (ft. Ron Pearlman) on Amazon Video, and release all 27 episodes of Gurren Lagann to Crackle.

Zeldathon seeks to raise $150,000 for charity: water Sat, 20 Jun 2015 10:48:36 -0400 SwordandSorcery

Organizing a game marathon to raise money for charity is a pretty neat idea, and has been used successfully in the past. Zeldathon, a Zelda game marathon organized by Matthew Moffit (SuperMCGamer), is a bi-annual event, and the most recent one started yesterday at 4 PM EST. 100% of the proceeds go to a charity chosen prior to the event.

There are specific "unlock goals" that are set at certain monetary intervals. Every time a specific monetary interval is reached (say, $8,500), a new game is unlocked that will prolong the stream. There are even non-game unlock goals that occur more regularly, such as the chance to name Link when the group of friends involved starts a new file, as well as remake and hard mode unlock goals.

This year's proceeds will go to charity: water, a group that helps provide clean water to the millions without access to it, and the Zeldathon team hopes to raise $150,000 dollars through their marathon live stream. Check out the stream here, and consider donating to help the cause!

No More Streaming Adult Only Games on Twitch Thu, 28 May 2015 21:11:48 -0400 Victor Ren

Down with the dirty puns, and out with the phallic humor because Twitch has now banned anyone from playing Adult Only games on their streaming service. Just recently the company posted on their blog, "Simply put, AO games are not welcome on Twitch" to let all gamers know that this should not be taken lightly.

Along with this, Twitch will also be updating their rules of conduct to allow everyone a "safe, welcoming, and inclusive" environment. The ROC will be changed to read that all AO games will be banned, instead of just Twitch just naming off certain titles.

There are very few titles that hold the rating of an adult only game. However it is very unlikely that an AO game could hold an audience, being that Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is the only title that comes into most people's minds. With that said, this is a step toward Twitch being more of a friendly website and avoiding any unwanted attention in the future, as it becomes more popular with the higher amounts of underaged children being attracted to the site.

This announcement comes before the release of the game Hatred, which is sure to have plenty of controversy surrounding it, given that it is a game about killing innocent victims. Furthermore, most fans in forums and comment sections are fine with the idea, as a lot of them probably couldn't name more than two games off the meager list.

Bungie Planning a Twitch Reveal for the Upcoming House of Wolves Expansion Tue, 21 Apr 2015 20:39:54 -0400 Tom Keech

Bungie has announced that on 4/22 at 19:00 (or 7 PM for those who do not use 24-hour time) it will livestream the upcoming expansion for Destiny, "House of Wolves", on Twitch. While the time zone was not listed, it could be assumed that they are talking about 19:00 PST considering where the Bungie offices are located. 

During the stream, members of Bungie such as Deej, Bungie's Community Manager, along with Christopher Barrett, Bungie's Creative Director, will join in and add to the discussion.  Topics of interest for the stream currently seem to focus on the new social space The Reef. For a few teasers of the new area see the pictures below.

Other than the focus on the new area, the stream will also talk about the new upgrade paths that will become available with the expansion. 

For anyone interested in the stream you can find it here, although keep an eye out for exactly when it begins. As for the expansion, "House of Wolves," it launches on May 19.

So, are you planning on watching the stream or getting the expansion when it releases, or have you forgotten Destiny and moved on to other games?

Google/Twitch Deal Fell Through Due to Antitrust Issues Tue, 26 Aug 2014 12:06:14 -0400 Yasmin Curren

By now we've all heard about Google buying Twitch, with rumours about how the streaming platform might ultimately be combined with YouTube. But now those rumours can all be put to rest as Twitch has declined Google's offer of $1 billion due to fear of an antitrust complaint.

Forbes recently reported that the deal between Google and Twitch was never finalised due to an antitrust issue that supposedly Google felt as though it could face blowback for its dominance in online videos from regulators, what with YouTube already being the most popular website for video content. Because of this, even though Twitch had held talks about the acquisition, they were unable to agree on the size of any potential breakup fee.

But Twitch didn't stay untouched for long; this highly popular streaming platform, which claims to have had 55 million unique visitors watching the live gaming content in July alone, is reported to have been snapped up by Amazon for $970 million. 

amazon buying twitch“Amazon and Twitch optimize for our customers first and are both believers in the future of gaming.

Being part of Amazon will let us do even more for our community.

We will be able to create tools and services faster than we could have independently. This change will mean great things for our community, and will let us bring Twitch to even more people around the world.”

-Twitch CEO Emmett Shear

Amazon has become increasingly more involved with gaming culture in recent years; with Amazon creating small games through their in-house gaming studio, acquiring Double Helix Games (developers of Killer Instinct), as well as hiring Kim Swift (Portal designer) and Clint Hocking (worked on Far Cry). It's also a well-known video-game vendor which has risen to being the second most popular in the world, just behind Steam!

Buying Twitch will only increase their knowledge in gaming culture and promote its services to the gamers online who both watch and stream gameplay through

"Broadcasting and watching gameplay is a global phenomenon and Twitch has built a platform that brings together tens of millions of people who watch billions of minutes of games each month — from The International, to breaking the world record for Mario, to gaming conferences like E3. And, amazingly, Twitch is only three years old... Like Twitch, we obsess over customers and like to think differently, and we look forward to learning from them and helping them move even faster to build new services for the gaming community."

-Jeff Bezos founder and CEO of Amazon, said in a statement

This deal is expected to be finalised within 4 months.

5 Things the Audio Copyright Fiasco Teaches Gamers Sun, 10 Aug 2014 15:48:27 -0400 Travis McGee

This past week we've all been reading about how abruptly changed their policy on copyrighted audio in their Video on Demand channels and live streams as well. Naturally, with a Google buyout of the company already being rumored, this change sparked an immediate reaction from the gaming community.

A few days after the sudden changes, things seem to have settled down, and Twitch has back-tracked on some of the new policies. But why did this happen to begin with?

Why was there no prior announcement to these changes?

Did Twitch really implement sweeping changes of this scale and not expect outrage when they muted the streams of their users without warning?

To answer these questions, we need to look at what this debacle really tells us about Twitch, the corporate internet, and our own community. To that end, here are 10 things the audio copyright fiasco teaches us:

1. The Web is Built Upon Content Creators, but Controlled by Providers

Way back in 2008, a little company called Viacom decided to sue YouTube owner Google for copyright infringement to the tune of $1 billion. This suit was only settled just this year with the terms of the settlement left undisclosed.

In the course of this suit, Viacom demanded that YouTube be forced to hand over the personal information of every YouTuber who used copyrighted music in their videos, and unfortunately the court ordered just that. Thankfully, YouTube went through great pains to organize the data in such a way as to preserve the individual anonymity of each user (though this took a painstaking amount of time and delayed the case) which protected those users from individual liability that was obviously Viacom's goal for requesting the information to begin with.

This case was began to the definition of the fundamental law of the internet -  that users who create content will always be subject to the demands of those who provide channels for that content to reach an audience. It comes as no surprise that this was also when content providers started cringing any time the word "copyright" was typed or spoken.

You see, in the real world, content creators - authors, script-writers, artists - hold a greater control over what they create than on the internet. A writer has the option of going to any publisher he or she wants and submitting his work so he or she can be treated fairly according to his or her principles. An artist can similarly choose an agent from among many, or simply sell their work on their own.

However, when we step into the virtual world of the internet - starting with this one fundamental case - we see just the opposite, and Twitch's sudden and irresponsible changes and their consequences for users prove that.

Well, in the real world there are simply more content providers to choose from and a greater amount of competition among those providers for the work of creators. Google owns more than 40% of the internet according to, and that ownership spans the globe. Even the largest movie studio in America can only affect American audiences, and none of them can claim ownership of almost half of all the movies made each year.

That a single entity like Google has so much ownership of the internet - of the sites that stream and provide content to users - is incredibly dangerous for exactly the reasons we keep seeing with Twitch and YouTube.

It isn't so much a fear that Google is trying to monopolize the net (even though that is a valid concern) but that - as we saw in 2008 with the Viacom suit - with such a vast net presence whenever Google gets in trouble a lot of content creators get dragged into it and become collateral damage.

So, next time you go to upload something to YouTube or Twitch (which may soon also be owned by Google) consider that you're putting your content in the hands of a company with a huge target on its head for those looking for frivolous suits or "easy money".

2. Record Labels are EVIL and Online Content Providers Fear Them

So online content providers like Twitch and YouTube basically call the shots as far as those whose content they host are concerned, but who calls the shots for the content providers? After all, these providers are trying to make money at some point, so there has to be a crossover between the real world and the net, right?


And the Big Bad Wolf to Google and Twitch's Little Red Riding Hood are the corporate record labels that constantly try to gobble up anything they can remotely skew into looking like "copyright infringement."

See, by virtue of being online entities, these content providers are at an automatic legal disadvantage because of the lack of legislature regarding the way they operate. For instance, the record industry has had 126 years for governments to come up with laws to protect them, their customers, and their artists.

Conversely, Google was started in 1998 and didn't acquire YouTube until 2006. is only 3 years old. By comparison, net-based companies simply have not had as much time - nor been paid enough attention - to have the same kind of protection.

That being said, the legal protection that the record industry has built upon after so many years has now become a death grip on its artists and customers. This is due in no small part to the advent of the internet and the ease with which users can freely acquire the same music that these labels would charge for.

Beginning to see where labels are evil?

Record labels as an industry do not work well with the concept of the internet. Prior to the net, these labels were the only gateway through which you could acquire an artist's songs, and you had to pay whatever price they set within legal limits. However, with the net, artists can freely distribute their music themselves, can ask for donations, or start their own site where you can download their songs directly from them. Hell, with the advent of social media fans can tell artists exactly what they want to hear.

This is very bad for record labels. Very bad.

For one thing, labels rely a lot on word-lawyering in contracts with artists in order to maximize their profits. If artists do not sign with a label and instead publish their music online, there's no risk of signing away any of their rights or royalties.

So, labels lie to their artists and attempt to trick them into bad contracts, and that makes them evil. Seem a bit harsh?

It shouldn't, because what they do to artists is only almost as bad as what they do to fans of the artists:

And this is the industry that keeps a constant gun to the head of online content distributors. They have over a hundred years of experience protecting themselves and destroying their opponents in the courtroom, and they hate online content distributors because these distributors - while not necessarily directly competing with the labels - give people access to the same content for free that the music industry would charge for.

Is it really any wonder that Little Red is scared?

3. Nerd Rage Can Actually be Constructive

Changing gears a bit, let's take a closer look at the debacle specifically.

On Thursday, August 7, without warning, Twitch suddenly introduced audio copyright detection software to their site and servers, similar to that which is found on YouTube currently. This sudden change also came on the heels of rumors that YouTube will be acquiring Twitch for $1 billion.

Twitch has announced and admitted that the software isn't perfect but that they have no intention of muting live streams. However, Twitch's own show as well as streams of Valve's Defense of the Ancients 2 international tournament matches were muted, and because of the inaccuracy of the software the reason for either of these being muted is completely unknown.

According to Twitch's blog, the site is using Audible Magic to scan audio in videos and the software is limited to the point that background music or even in-game music from the games being streamed can trigger it.

In other words: this incredibly sudden, poorly-informed change relies on incredibly unreliable technology.

Naturally, gamers spoke out immediately and harshly against this change. Blogs, sites, guild and clan pages, and reliable gamer news sources like GameSkinny, PC Magazine, and Gamespot began immediately covering the changes.

What happens when you suddenly and without warning start using an unreliable technology to limit what gamers can do?

Twitch immediately experienced what game developers have been experiencing ever since the first days of World of Warcraft. When you break something gamers love, they set you on fire on forums, videos, news outlets - anything they can get their voices out through.

Now, I want to be perfectly clear here: I'm not making fun of gamers for their propensity to be outspoken about what they like and don't like. I honestly believe this propensity is what makes our community so great. There is nothing more pure and honest than, well...honesty.

However, something happened with Twitch that doesn't often happen with developers. They balked - and quickly.

24 hours after the changes to Twitch, parts of the new policy were amended due to the "large amount of feedback from users" according to Twitch's official blog. Among the new changes are an appeal system for videos and a revamp to make it less likely for livestreams to get unintentionally hit by the audio copyright mute.

It may seem like a small victory, but again, consider the timeframe. In a day - or slightly less than a day - a change that would have a huge impact on gamers and streamers was significantly altered because gamers were blunt and open about their disdain for it.

So rage on my fellow gamers and nerds! It's working!

4. Fair Use is Dying

It's a sad reality that we have to face, but Twitch's recent changes are another nail in the coffin for Fair Use on the internet.

Phillip Kollar's editorial on polygon gives a very good layout of the real-world legal implications of fair use, and Eric Chad - an attorney Kollar interviewed - raises a good point when he brings attention to the fact that Twitch is muting video on demand (videos on their site with copyrighted music), but not streams.

If this is really a matter of copyright, how does a video being streamed not infringe copyright, but a video that isn't live does?

The answer: it's not a matter of copyright. It's a matter of fair use - or rather a matter of fair use being cut back further and further.

See, fair use is not a law. It's an exception. In legal terms this means fair use can only apply in specific circumstances that must be determined on a case-by-case basis in court.

In short: a law must be disproved in court but an exception must be proven.

So, if Twitch were to get sued by someone like Viacom and they went to court, Viacom would almost surely win because it is an undeniable fact that many videos on Twitch contain copyrighted music. The fair use limitation of copyright law could be used as a defense, but Twitch would have the burden of proof placed on them.

That may seem a bit confusing but consider this: in the United States judicial system in all cases whether federal or civil there is the presumption of innocence which says that anyone accused of a crime is innocent until sufficient evidence is provided of their involvement.

In the case of Twitch, they'd be accused of copyright infringement which is the use of copyrighted material without permission. Well, since Twitch does not limit what music their streamers listen to or use, it is impossible for them to attain permission for all the music in videos. Thus, when called to do so in court they would fail and would instantly be proven guilty of the infringement.

Their only salvation in such a case would be the fair use limitation, but in order to invoke that limitation, Twitch would have to prove that each piece of music used in every video they host conforms to the following four factors of analysis:

  1. the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
  2. the nature of the copyrighted work;
  3. the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
  4. the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

So suddenly Twitch is now no longer in a position where the plaintiff must prove their guilt but where they - as the defendant - must prove their innocence through presumed guilt.

Twitch, rather than allowing themselves to wind up in this situation, have decided to implement anti-infringement measures on their site, but in doing so they - like Google before them - have weakened fair use's viability as a legal defense, because those measures are an admission of awareness that their content could violate copyright law (read: an admission of guilt).

This admission means that if they claim fair use as a defense, they're doing so after already admitting it may not apply - increasing doubt against them in a case where they must prove innocence rather than the plaintiff having to prove guilt.

5. Music is Very Important

This one may seem like a given, but let's really consider what Twitch's changes are all about and why as a community gamers got so upset about them.

I'm an avid gamer. I spend at least 10 hours a day - every day - at my computer playing and writing about the games I play. Anyone who follows me on twitter will see multiple tweets throughout the day linking to youtube music channels I listen to or tweets to or about my favorite artists.

Music is important to human beings. That's why it has been around since before written history. Music isn't just nice to listen to - it affects our minds and bodies. For instance, when I'm PvP-ing, I listen to something fast with a lot of bass - it gets my blood pumping and my heart racing. I think faster and make decisions quicker - if more recklessly at times - when I listen to this kind of music.

Music influences how we game and how we think.

The changes that Twitch is implementing really strike at the heart of gamers who intrinsically understand the importance of music. Broadcasters need the music in their streams to game at their best and be comfortable. Viewers appreciate streams and videos more when the music fits them or accentuates highlights of the stream.

So when Twitch is muting videos, it is not just an issue that commentary or tutorials from the streamer are being muted. There is good reason to be concerned when music is silenced for any reason in any environment.

Yes, the changes Twitch is making are important because of their impact on copyright law and how it affects the internet, but they're also important because Twitch is specifically a game streaming service. Broadcasters who listen to music while playing games, who have their broadcasts muted, aren't really left with a whole lot of options with these changes. Either they not listen to music while recording - impacting their performance - or they record the music and run the risk of getting muted and flagged for copyrighted audio.

For viewers it's just as bad, though.

The background audio of a tutorial or Let's Play on Twitch is a large part of the presentation of the video as a whole. Poor audio equals poor presentation, and if broadcasters are forced away from music that complements the rest of their presentation, viewers will not enjoy it as much - nor will they gain the full benefit.

Hopefully, after the outrage of their fans, Twitch now realizes how important music is to us, and they will keep that in mind if they intend future changes.

In the interim, check out some of my favorite music channels here, here, and here for when you game, write, or just want to relax.

The Take-away

In the end, Twitch has made some massive changes over a short period of time, and whether for better or worse, it looks as though their crackdown on copyrighted audio in Videos on Demand is here to stay.

As gamers, what we should do now is continue our blunt and open discourse with Twitch - and with other online content providers as well. These companies thrive off not only our patronage but also our approval, and when they divert too far from what we as a community want, it's our privilege and obligation to speak our minds.

Nintendo On Video Game Streaming: "What's Fun About It?" Thu, 12 Jun 2014 17:47:25 -0400 Vesthis_lol

In a recent interview with Polygon, Nintendo of America's Reggie Fils-Aime said that "we don't think streaming 30 minutes of gameplay by itself is a lot of fun.... From a consumer standpoint, what's fun about it?" In a world where video game streaming has become wildly successful, and looks to be growing rapidly into the forseeable future, how can Nintendo afford, whether or not it's fun, to not support such a successful feature?

As time goes on gaming becomes more and more of a sport. That doesn't mean that the everyday, playing for fun user will consider it a serious activity, get paid, or anything of the like. However, a casual or youth baseball player still loves to watch baseball. Whether it be to see stars in action, to learn from those better than them, or any other possible reason, people watch others perform things they do themselves, only at a higher level.

There's very little, if any, conceivable drawback to supporting video game streaming on their devices, yet the company doesn't seem willing to budge on the topic. It's no secret that the Wii U has struggled to perform even close to the level of the Xbox One or PlayStation 4. How can a competitive company like Nintendo afford to be so stubborn on such a silly issue such as this? They have been innovative and employed out of the box thinking in the past, but it's clearly not working at the moment.

Allowing users to stream their gameplay would help bolster the Nintendo community, allowing people to connect with other players, learn from the best, or simply enjoy watching a humorous streamer. Hugely popular video game streaming website Twitch was recently in talks to be sold at an estimated $1 billion to Google. In other words, this is not a small market. In the end, Nintendo has to do something about their lack of performance in the market recently, and this seems like an easy fix to assist in that.

Daylight: Stream Viewers Control The Terror Thu, 20 Feb 2014 09:36:00 -0500 Brandon Morgan

Developer Zombie Studios upcoming, procedurally generated survival horror title Daylight is going to include some intense features for those looking for more scares. The PlayStation 4's Share option is growing larger by the day and the development team intends to make use of this aspect of the new console in Daylight.

The biggest feature, the one that excited me more than anything else, is the ability for stream viewers to scare the player. I may not be able to personally stream any gameplay at this time, but that doesn't mean I won't watch, happily ensuring the person I am viewing is scared to death a little extra.

PS4 Multimedia Integration –

This is a very cool feature that we’re super stoked about. It’s no secret that Daylight is extremely friendly for the PS4′s “Share” button (ditto, PC streaming). The tinkerers at Zombie Studios found a way to use Twitch chat to cue in-game events. The example we’ve been tossing around (and is in no way final) is that someone watching a stream types the word “Meow” into the chat, which causes the game to make a corresponding sound of a cat. So yes. You can literally scare your friends now by watching them stream. There are two caveats to this:

1. They’re all on timers, so you can’t spam them. That would be ridiculous.
2. We’re not going to tell you the full list of words. You’re going to have to find them through experimentation.

It may take quite some time to figure out all the hidden word commands to give people the creeps. No doubt once they're all discovered we can find them on either Reddit or NeoGAF, that's where everything goes.

What do you think of the ability to scare your friends in-game while watching a stream?

Daylight will be released on PC and PlayStation 4 on April 8th at a price of $14.99/€14.99/£11.99

Killer Instinct Tournament Stopped by Xbox One DRM Wed, 18 Dec 2013 06:00:31 -0500 Wokendreamer

Sometimes irony is simply too beautiful.  When a couple of guys got up on stage at EVO 2013 to talk about Xbox One and Killer Instinct, they received a round of boos.  The unpleasant reception was almost certainly mostly due to the console's originally planned DRM, but the memory is a stark one.  Now a fighting game tournament, a tournament featuring Killer Instinct, has found itself interrupted by that very console's DRM policies.

And it happened during a live stream of the event.

Two fighters were interrupted in the middle of their match by the Xbox One they were playing on returning to its dashboard and prompting them to prove they own the game.  This is especially problematic with Killer Instinct, since the game is digitally distributed and technically free, with individual characters being paid for.  Often it is literally not possible for consoles to be connected to the internet during tournaments, as such is entirely venue-determined and venues for these events can be difficult to find.

In fighting games, this sort of issue is a big deal.  I have personally seen people ejected from tournaments for using a wireless controller and accidentally pausing a game they were not taking part in.  Even pausing a game someone is an active part of is generally considered a forfeit, given the precision of the timing required for high-level play.

This is the kind of thing that could seriously alienate the tournament fighting game community.

This probably was not a glitch.  From all I can find, this is a relic of the DRM systems Microsoft originally wanted for the Xbox One.  It is possible they simply did not change the way they were designed for their digitally distributed games, assuming anyone downloading games to begin with would have the system connected all the time.

Hopefully the issue is one Microsoft will correct soon with a patch.  Being able to only play a given game for a limited time before the console simply shuts it down would effectively prohibit the game from becoming a tournament staple for practical reasons.  The fighting game community can be intensely loyal if treated well and listened to, but they have their limits, and Xbox One did not start off on the right foot.