We all knew this day was coming. The time for YouTube to take on heavyweight Twitch in the battle of delivering live gaming content shall soon begin.
YouTube Gaming will be launching in browser and on mobile this summer in the USA and the UK, with dedicated pages for over 25,000 games. Each game’s page will serve as a hub where users can watch livestreams and access specific videos posted by video game developers and YouTube creators.
Having grown significantly in popularity and influence over the last couple of years, YouTube is the next progression from TV; after trying (and failing) to straight up buy livestreaming gaming site Twitch, it’s not exactly a surprise that YouTube are starting up their own purely video gaming sector.
If you take a look at the stats, gaming appears in the YouTube top 10 ‘trending’ lists daily – with more and more lets players, modders, animators and completionists finding their way into the gaming community. In fact, the genre is so popular, it was number two in YouTube’s most searched terms last year, second only to music, overtaking so-called popularity legends such as ‘Frozen’, ‘movies’ and even the idols like ‘Beyonce’ and ‘Drake’.
The site and app will work essentially as YouTube does now, with users being able to subscribe and stay in the loop by adding games to collections. When streamers go live, notifications will be sent out to the people subscribed – so, a carbon copy of Twitch with a YouTube brand label, awesome.
The company have said that alongside the pre-existing 60fps streaming rate, DVR and the automatic feature of turning the stream into a YouTube video, they’re also re-designing their system so that livestreams don’t have to be scheduled and there will be ‘a single link for all your streams’.
At the very least, it will be nice to be able to type into the search bar and find specifically game related content. No more’Halo lyrics’ instead of ‘Halo – the game’, no sir. We like to talk a lot about communities on YouTube and, lets face it, the gaming one is always growing.
But it’s not just the range of casual to hardcore gamers that find enjoyment in YouTube gaming content; the Five Nights At Freddy’s fiasco showed the world, and more importantly people who don’t usually take interest in games, that there’s entertainment to be had even if you’re not playing the game. Thus, watching people scream and rage at their screens has become a sensation – YouTube Gaming is YouTube’s way of saying that they’ve noticed the sheer volume of subs and views of the creators, which is another boost to the development and evolution of the gaming industry as a whole.
Who do are you backing in this fight to dominate the gaming world? Will it be traditional Amazon-owned Twitch, or newbie Google-owned YouTube gaming?
Let me know in the comments below, because this is just round one and things are starting to get interesting.