For serious streamers, streaming is more than just playing video games. It’s having a schedule, creating “theme days”, and providing viewers with unique entertainment every day. One great way to add variety to your stream is by featuring Kickstarter or other crowdfunding games on your channel. Viewers will get to check out never-before-seen games and in turn, you as a streamer get to support new developers trying to make it in the competitive gaming world.
BurkeBlack is a Twitch streamer who regularly showcases Kickstarter games on his stream. I sat down with him to discuss how he goes about contacting developers and streaming crowdfunded games.
Lowco2525: Hey Burke! I was wondering how you go about showcasing kickstarter games. Do you just email them asking to stream it? Do they come to you?
Burke: I send out emails explaining in detail what I would like to do, some reply back, some don’t, but I keep sending them out all the time, I’m starting to get booked up for the whole month =P It’s extremely cool, I’ll just encourage you to send out professional-looking emails. Explain to them what you are wanting to do, AND what you will do for them, ask a developer to come by, tell them you want to promote their game (they love that).
Always keep in mind- to them, you are nothing but a promotion, helping them with free advertising, and for us it’s promoting our stream, and showing our viewers something that’s not yet been seen on Twitch.
Lowco2525: How do you go about critiquing a game, especially if a developer is present during the stream?
Burke: Generally, I only seriously critique a game on “release”, not a Kickstarter, Alpha, or Beta version. I also hate issuing numbers to games, like “This game is 5 apples out of 20”. So generally I just talk about what I like and don’t. As for the Kickstarters, I will simply acknowledge any bugs I run into, and otherwise just be vocal about what I’m enjoying, or when I find something annoying or something I think would be nice to add (usually only minor things such as menu opinions or things that make the game flow better to limit the frustration players might feel about getting around a game’s user interface). I’ll simply make that comment on the stream. But I’m just a guy who loves playing games, and its up to the developers at that point.
Lowco2525: How do the developers usually respond to your feedback? Are they willing to make changes?
Burke: Yes! It’s one thing to make a game, it’s another to play it. Being inside the guts of a game and play testing it over and over can sometimes give you tunnel vision. Sitting back and letting someone play it for the first time can give invaluable information to a developer. For example, “Where do they struggle? Was the boss too hard or too easy? Was the puzzle good? What bug did they find, or did they break the game? Was it fun?” Fresh eyes on a game is very useful to devs, and they love feedback and will usually (if it makes sense in the scope of the game) act on it.
Lowco2525: That’s great to hear, I can see how the developers would be so willing to get feedback like this, streaming is a great avenue!
Burke: Indeed, the streamer and the viewers can bring in a lot of useful feedback.
Lowco2525: How long have you been showcasing Kickstarter games for?
Burke: I have had one “Official” ShowCase and I have featured some games on the stream in the past, but only recently made it a weekly all night feature.
Lowco2525: So how many total KS games would you estimate you’ve tested?
Burke: About ten I think, since I started streaming. It is something I’m committed to doing from here on out.
Lowco2525: Out of all the Kickstarter games you have broadcasted for your stream, were there any you did not enjoy? Any you wouldn’t support?
Burke: Not yet! I had a Kickstarter want me to promote the game without any gameplay, I won’t do that. You MUST have something to show the viewers, otherwise how do we know it’s real and not vaporwear? But so far I have been lucky enough to play some cool stuff and nothing that I flat out hated.
Lowco2525: Which game that you have showcased looks the most promising?
Burke: Earthlock Festival of Magic was beautiful, I’m still shocked it’s an indie title. They have done an outstanding job and I’m very excited to see where they go from here; I’ll be watching them very closely.
Lowco2525: Any last tidbits or advice to fellow streamers reading this?
Burke: Don’t get discouraged from rejection, just keep at it and send those emails out, a lot will say no, some will say yes =)
Streaming developing games is a great way to provide feedback directly to the developers and allow viewers to check out something different. Two of the largest crowdfunding websites are Kickstarter and Indiegogo so if you are interested in promoting crowdfunding games, check out those websites and give it a shot!