How to Stream WoW - Setup Tips and Advice
With the Battle for Azeroth expansion launching on August 14th, many players are returning to WoW. A new expansion and all the content it brings is also the perfect time to take your hobby to the next level and get into streaming!
Streaming is a great way to share your passion for gaming with others and meet new friends. Growing your stream can even quality you for Affiliate or Partner status for additional payments, emotes, and other perks.
In this post, we’ve teamed up with
to go over some tips and tricks for players looking to start streaming, with an emphasis on World of Warcraft. We’ve also teamed up with some full-time streamers who enjoy playing WoW, so they can share their top picks and info!
Scott "Sco" McMillan
is a Twitch Partner, Founder and Co-Owner of
. In addition, he is the Guild Master of one of the most accomplished and famous Guilds in World of Warcraft, Method on Tarren Mill-EU. He is a full-time streamer on Twitch and mainly focuses on PvE elements of the game. Considering Sco is one of the most knowledgeable people when it comes to tanking specializations, he has posted several videos/guides discussing topics regarding tanking, as well as rating the best tanks for expansions and patches. Sco usually posts stream highlights, irl recordings, guides and raid/dungeon clear videos, and has some bodybuilding material posted as well. To stay up to date with Sco, follow him on social media:
Josh "Xaryulol" Lujan
is a Twitch Partner and member of Method. He is most famous for his hardcore approach to PvP and is indubitably one of the best mage players you will encounter. He is known to post a lot of guides and informative on his Youtube channel, and apart from his love for PvP and World of Warcraft in general, he is very passionate about fitness which he posts about on Instagram regularly. To stay up to date with Xaryu, follow him on social media:
We’ll also be doing a special stream with AnnieFuchsia on Wowhead Weekly, Thursday August 2nd at 1 pacific, with a segment brought to you by Elgato on various stream tips that have helped her with the show. Make sure to follow us at
so you don't miss out on this!
is a Twitch partner and host of Wowhead Weekly. Annie is known as an avid collector, whether it be about achievements, mounts, pets or anything else. She streams full-time on Twitch, often stuck farming something hard to obtain in World of Warcraft. Whenever anything exciting happens, she makes sure to post the highlights on her Youtube channel. To stay up to date with Annie, follow her on social media:
General Stream Setup Advice
It is advised that everyone takes their time to set up their stream appropriately in order to show their professionalism. This includes stream UI and visuals, camera, sound and stream integrations.
For your stream title you should consider using some catchy but also informative titles, such as:
Viewer Raids, Mythic+ Later
Transmog Farming, Going For 95%
Leveling With Viewers
War Mode On, Invading Orgrimmar
Things that should be taken into consideration are things like covering the chat window and turning off /say, /party and /raid chat bubbles, as you cannot control what people say when they know they are on stream. Better stay safe than risk having action taken against your channel, even through no fault of your own.
You should use a chat bot such as
to add a few chat commands to your channel, such as: !setup, !armory, !social, etc., which are always helpful to prevent you from having to answer the same questions 20 times a day.
All of the above is great advice. Keeping your stream safe is a priority so that you can keep streaming. Having commands set up to deal with repeat questions in chat, or to display a message you want to share with viewers is great and will be extremely helpful as your stream starts growing. This can be a great way to promote your other social channels, discord, or new YouTube videos releases to your audience too. Using the stream deck you could easily trigger a message to be displayed in chat and at the same time show an animation or image on your stream overlay to increase the impact and engagement of the message.
Open Broadcast Software
Open Broadcast Software
(OBS) is a free and open source software for streaming and video recording. The setup for it is user-friendly and it doesn't really take long before you get used to everything the software has to offer. It offers high performance video and sound capturing through multiple sources, such as window capturing, game capturing, text, images, webcams and more. It gives you a variety of tools at your disposal to help set up and configure your stream or recording in any way.
For a short introductory tutorial to the software,
There is so much you can do with OBS that it would be difficult to cover it all but here are a few tips that have helped me out over time:
1. If you find your sources tab becoming cluttered you can save key elements in their own scene and import that entire scene to your sources, for example; create a scene with all overlay elements and then add that entire scene to your usual gaming scene by add > scene.
2. If you find yourself travelling around a lot, it’s possible to store key overlay elements on cloud based services and accessing them with the ‘browser’ source. This means they will always work computer to computer as your graphics aren’t being accessed locally.
The three basics of OBS you should know are adding your game capture, adding your webcam, and adding a Browser source to display alerts and/or your Top/Recent supporters of the stream. To do this just right click and and add a scene, then right click under sources and add either game capture, video capture device, or browser to get started. More in depth OBS guides can be found over at their website.
To finalize your stream, you are advised to add so-called alert services or integrations in order to have a generally more interactive stream. The two most used alert services are
. They offer very useful tools to a streamer from showing and customizing popups for new followers/donators, to a database of funds, information and stream history when it comes to viewers, subscribers, revenue and similar. Choosing one of the two is down to personal preference, as both of them are quite effective in living up to what they offer.
I currently use StreamLabs but have experimented with StreamElements as well and both services do the job completely fine.
For Alerts I am using StreamLabs. There are a bunch of default alerts you can use to quickly get set up but what I would recommend is taking some time to set up custom alerts. Through custom alerts you can build upon the theme you are going for with your stream, and change the alerts based on things such as how long a person has been subscribed to your channel. If your alerts are good it can be an incentive for people to interact with your stream via following, subscribing or via other support methods. Viewers like to be noticed and alerts are a great way of doing that.
Elgato Cam Link
is a very useful addition to your stream if you're looking to 'go pro'. It offers a very significant change in quality when it comes to recording through your camera. A much more fluent video feed than any regular webcam, through its 1080p and 60FPS settings.
The Elgato Cam Link (and the camera I used with it) was a big stream upgrade for me. In this clip you can see the difference between my new camera via the Cam Link and my old web cam:
Better quality cameras that can handle higher FPS & resolution provide a much clearer and more fluid picture and this is very noticeable when your stream is on full screen camera (you will also notice how much better the lighting is handled).
A list of recommended cameras for use with the Cam Link can be found here:
The Cam Link takes the quality of my camera tiers above normal USB webcams. This gives my community a closer look at me which enhances the personal feel to the stream.
Elgato Stream Deck
is very helpful when it comes to integrating your streaming tools, detecting your settings (like your video and audio sources), scenes and similar, and helps you control them with ease. It is very user friendly and easy to customize, and on top of that it offers a wide range of customization.
It is crazy what you can do with the stream deck now and I have seen lots of videos showing off great uses of the new multi action feature. The multi action feature basically lets you assign as many actions as you want to a single key and you can then play them all with just one tap or play them one-by-one separated by time intervals. I need to get on that too, as the limits are basically only your own creativity – and believe it or not I am quite a creative person! For me personally I am still using the stream deck for quite traditional things such as playing sounds on stream, displaying graphics or gifs on stream and using it for automatic go-live posts on Twitter and similar. Here is a video from a while back where I take you through some of my uses:
The Stream Deck and Cam Link has helped take my streams to the next level. Stream Deck allows me to easily link my World of Warcraft macros, addons, and guides easily with one button when anyone asks. This is critical because when hundreds of people ask per stream where they can find certain things one you become increasingly grateful for 1-click responses.
Elgato Game Capture HD60 Pro
is a high-end capture device, that lets you simultaneously record and stream games in 1080p60, from your PS4, Wii U, Xbox One or any other games console with HDMI output.
When I got my hands of the
this was my motivation to finally try out the 2 PC setup route for streaming and gaming, something I had always been curious about after seeing other streamers doing it. WoW can be very CPU intensive and so can OBS which can lead to noticeable FPS drops when running both on the same system (unless you have a monster PC!!). I installed the HD60 Pro capture card in my old PC and start using that to host my OBS and all my stream settings, allowing me to use my primary PC only for gaming. This led to some good FPS improvements in game for sure and it wasn’t as hard to setup as I first thought! I found this setup guide useful:
World of Warcraft Stream Tips
Live streaming a role playing game is definitely a huge learning curve, here is some general advice. Covering your chat with your webcam or chat blocker is important to keep your friends privacy in mind. Not everyone wants every whisper or real id message broadcasted to a live audience, trust me. Having a way to cover these private messages doesn’t take away from the stream and allows you to keep some friends in the process. Finding a niche and doing something unique within World of Warcraft is important. In other words, finding something no one else is currently doing or working on. What was this for me? In 2013 I started doing 1v2s, 2v2s, and rank 1 2v2 pushes live on stream when there was no one else doing this type of content and my community loved the content. Asmongold popularized complete domination of the game by achieving most of the mounts/achievements/transmoggable items. What is your niche?
Twitch Extensions are 3rd party overlays/panels which are used to make your stream more interactive for your viewers. They help offer more activities to the viewers, and of course, to ease the interaction for both the streamer as well as the audience.
One of said extensions is
Wowhead's Twitch Extension
. With the Wowhead Overlay, your viewers are able to view characters' talents, gear and stats, live on the stream, with additional information provided when users mouse over talent and gear icons.
Another useful extension is the
World of Warcraft Armory Extension
, which lists all characters elegantly in one compact view. Your channel viewers can see detailed information like your current game characters appearance, talents, PVP ratings, PVE progression and more.
Depending on the type of content you plan to pursue, there is a variety of addons that can prove to be useful to a WoW player and streamer. Some of the most used addons include:
Deadly Boss Mods (DBM)
- Used to present the player with timers/bars for boss abilities in raids and dungeons, as well as other useful information regarding instance encounters.
- Acts as a huge database for collectibles such as mounts, toys and pets, and gives the user information on how to obtain them.
- Used to customize timers, bars, visuals and triggers for a variety of things such as both player and boss ability timers, procs, cooldowns and similar.
- One of the most important addons for a player and a must-have for a streamer (which will help keep your viewers engaged). It collects data for every encounter and tracks everything, such as damage dealt/taken, healing done/taken, buffs/debuffs, deaths and more.
I don’t use any additional WoW addons specifically for streaming. People can generally see on my UI when I am using a certain spell – good old Sco UI btw! On that topic, I would encourage people streaming WoW to make their UI as viewer friendly as possible, try and show off the beauty of the game and not just buttons, weak auras and timers everywhere that looks like you are in a command centre and not actually playing a game... When it comes to addons that people are interested in seeing, a big one is the damage/healing meters and this is especially true on new content patches, a lot of chat discussion is orientated around “wow look at x y class topping the meters, that is going to be my new main…”
Growing an Audience
Growing one's audience and fan-base is crucial to succeeding in the path to becoming a regular or full-time streamer. It's very important to be able to keep up with the 'trends', in order to be a viable streamer that attracts (and more importantly keeps attracting) a new audience.
One of above-mentioned 'trends' include social media platforms. Namely, your activity will need to be high, and will have to be covered across multiple platforms such as Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and Discord. The reason for this necessity is simple, it will help your fans interact with you, as well as each other, outside of your streams. And it can also serve as a means to inform your audience of stream or non-stream related information or updates.
Most of your community will be active across various social media and communication platforms, primarily
. These platforms provide a great way to interact with your community and can be used as a further way of letting your community get to know you – what do you get up to outside of streaming, what other hobbies do you have, or do you have opinions you want to share? With people getting to know your character better this can build stronger community relations which may also translate onto your stream, influencing the direction of the stream chat and potentially growing your audience. If you can build up a multi-platform following, there is the added benefit of reaching more people than you would otherwise, you are going to get more eyes on your stream when you go live – on that point make sure to post you are about to start streaming!
is a particularly good platform to grow alongside
, and while original content will always do better, stream highlights alone will still provide a good way for your community to catch up on the best moments from missed streams. This is also an opportunity again to attract a new audience who may not have seen your Twitch stream before but end up checking it out as a result of seeing a particular YouTube video. Use the stream deck to help capture these highlights while streaming live! If you can find an editor to help you put together some videos then that would be the best-case scenario, maybe you can find one within your own community who would be willing to help out.
Live streaming is essentially creating and forming a community so it is important that you have a wide array of social platforms for your community to find you on. Having a Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, Twitch, Discord, etc. all go hand in hand. I would recommend having a presence in all of the above even though naturally one of these platforms will generally take off more than the rest and be your ‘main platform’.
Every successful streamer has their theme, which is a means of making your stream different than the rest, as well as treating your audience to certain things which will help keep them more engaged and thus help them enjoy your content even more.
Further advice I can give would be to try and come up with a theme for your stream, lots of streamers do this extremely well and make their community feel as though they are a part of something bigger. This again is a perfect way to tie in custom animations or graphics via the stream deck, or just by doing something on the web cam each time someone subscribes or similar. Taking this a step further it is always appreciated when you recognise your loyal viewers, try and think of ways to show your appreciation for them, make them stand out in your community and use the tools at your disposal to do this.
When it comes down to scheduling, every regular streamer needs to keep their activity up-time, and this is best accomplished through establishing a streaming schedule. Firstly because you will be able to better organize yourself, and on top of it, your audience will know when they can expect you to start the stream so they can tune in.
Finally, I would recommend establishing a schedule, this will be good for your time management but also great for your community who will know when you will next be online and possibly also what you will be doing on the next stream. For example, if you are planning to do a viewer raid with the stream let people know in advance so they don’t miss out on the opportunity! Another point on scheduling that isn’t talked about too much is to consider when exactly is the best time for you to stream. What I mean by this is how similar is your stream to other streams currently out there? Do you share a similar audience? If the answer is yes you should consider streaming during a time slot that is less contested to make sure you get the most eyes possible on your stream and you are able to grow your community. Getting an audience on Twitch is hard and this is just one way to try and boost your chances there!
Some of the best advice I can give new streamers is finding a time they can devote to streaming on an almost daily basis to begin growing a community. Learning people's names in chat, asking them about their life, and begin chatting about yours. The first few viewers 1-10 can be difficult but often times as you climb the viewer list to higher and higher ranks you begin to sort higher on the directory and get an increasing amount of new faces. Having a professional looking stream can help people stay, and this is what Elgato has helped me with using the Stream Deck and the Cam Link.
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