Basic gear & equipment to start as a gaming creator
Don't break the bank.
This is the second post in a series about starting to create content online. Last week, GamerZakh spoke about what you need to know before starting a gaming channel. Stay tuned next week as he walks us through ways you can earn a living from creating gaming content.
Starting a gaming channel online and wanting to play video games for a living can be intimidating enough. Worrying about having to buy a ton of expensive equipment can put you right off. Well after having gone through the process myself, over the years I have realised that you do not need to spend all your savings on hardware and software to get started.
I'm going to assume that you are already a gamer and have a PC or laptop. It doesn't need to be high end, just able to play the games you want to play, so besides that, let me recommend a few pieces of affordable equipment that is either cheap or has other uses besides making videos for your gaming channel:
1. Blue Yeti microphone
A little pricey, but it's a super good USB mic that's easy to use and has plenty of uses outside of making videos. It's great on calls and will keep your voice clear when playing with teammates.
2. A 1080p 60FPS webcam
Cameras aren't always essential, you can make videos with just your voice, but if you're getting a webcam, make sure it has 1080p resolution and records at 60 frames a second.
3. Cheap green screen
If you're going to use a webcam for your face, then you might as well get a green screen. They are super cheap now, and you can just tape it to a wall. You might need a couple of extra lights to brighten things up though.
1. OBS Studio
It's free and easy to use (with some practice). Watch a couple of videos on how to set up OBS Studio and you can use it to record games, put your face on the video, do the chroma key green screen effect, and you can even use it to live stream. You can download it HERE.
Want to edit your audio a bit more after recording? Audacity is the one to use as it's pretty good at doing everything a professional audio editor can do, plus, this is also free. Audacity is available HERE.
3. Video editor
Good video editors are hard to come by if you want it to be free. I personally use Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro is also good, plus, if you're just doing cuts, YouTube has a built-in video editor that you can use from your YouTube dashboard. Honestly, if you're just starting out, I'd keep things simple and just do basic cuts and transitions with whatever free editor you can get. If you really start to get into being a gaming creator, then you can splurge for a good video editor.
1. Make BAD videos
Your first video is going to suck. Think it's good? Look at it five years later, and it'll suck. This video here is my first ever video, it's the game From Dust and I thought I did a really good job. It's pretty cringe-worthy looking at it now, but it's the most important video I have ever made. Without this crappy first video, I wouldn't have made all the others. Make bad videos! Make really janky, unpolished, messy videos. Talk while you're recording the gameplay and yes, you sound terrible, but just do it. Make them bad and just try to make your next video a little better than your last. Do that for enough years and you'll become a master.
2. Don't measure yourself against others
Define your own version of success. Are you just having fun? Do you want to make a living? Is fame a factor at all? You can have half the subscribers compared to someone else, but be making triple the money. Sometimes, a better option is to make less money but have more free time. That's okay if it makes you happier. You shouldn't use someone else's success as a benchmark for your own because we all have different lives.
3. Do my kick-start exercise
Sign up for 7 social media platforms using the same name and post 100 things on each as quickly as possible. It doesn't matter what you're posting, just keep posting. By the end of the 700 posts, you'll know if this is a career that's for you because you'll either want to keep going or you'll feel like dying.
This is the trial by fire that I have come up with to throw you into the deep end. Essentially it's exposure therapy to get over your fears and break your lazy habits.
Here are 7 social media platforms to opt for:
1. Facebook (Stream 100 times)
2. Twitch (Live stream 100 days)
3. Twitter (Tweet 100 times)
4. Instagram (Take 100 photos)
5. YouTube (Make 100 videos)
6. LinkedIn (Write 100 articles)
7. TikTok (Do 100 things)
BONUS: Discord (Set up a community)
After that, you'll not only have the start of an online presence, you'll know what to do moving forward and whether this is actually a career for you ... or not.
Do you have any other questions about gaming gear to be a creator? Ask in the comments or GamerZakh directly!
GamerZakh is a Malaysian gaming YouTuber, Twitch streamer and content creator. He approaches gaming from a nostalgic perspective and always tries to incorporate educational elements into his delivery of entertainment. You can find his YouTube channel here.
This is a guest post and the views expressed here are the author's own.