Whether or not you’re involved in the gaming community, you’ve likely heard of video game streaming.
Live streaming is one of the fastest-growing gaming niches, and you can find streams in all genres 24/7. There are options for all tastes, from watching influencers playing the latest releases to seeing professional gamblers win jackpots in real time.
But where did this sharp increase in streaming popularity come from? And which genres are the most popular in 2022? If you want to know more about this fast-paced industry, keep reading. We’ve researched all you need to know about streams to help you find your next favorite streamer.
How did streaming become popular?
Thanks to continually increasing networks, streaming technology has been around for a few decades. However, streaming was isolated to professional TV and media for years. Only in the last 10 years have amateur gaming streams become a go-to form of entertainment.
A key player in the gaming streaming industry is Twitch, an easy-to-use platform that allows all players to log on and be connected with others. Released in 2011, this platform gives gamers worldwide access to their favorite streamers with a quick and efficient process.
Twitch is now home to millions of streamers, and you can find streams every hour of the day. Unlike other streaming platforms, Twitch offers a broad range of niche streams, an affiliate program for streamers and a broad audience reach.
Though some social media channels, such as Instagram and TikTok, now offer live streaming tools, Twitch is still the number one platform. With more users signing up daily, this will be the hub for gaming streams for years to come.
The rise of gambling streams
While streaming encompasses a broad range of genres, specific niches have experienced a boost in popularity over the last few years.
A pivotal niche to watch is online gambling. This exciting specialty includes tabletop games, slots and even online bingo websites. Viewers tune in to see big wins, to learn the ropes or simply to see what online casinos offer.
Within gambling streaming, a thriving niche is live dealer casino games. Unlike standard iGaming formats, live dealer games connect you to a professional human dealer, and you can watch the wheel spin in real-time.
Many viewers watch to educate themselves on the game, and some use streams as a guide for live dealer games in Canada. Live dealer streams add an extra layer of excitement to the experience, so there’s no wonder these streams are exploding at the moment.
Other top streaming genres
It’s not just gambling that’s exploding. A range of categories are seeing increased popularity on streaming sites right now.
Video game-specific streams
The top Twitch categories currently include game-specific niches. From Fortnite and League of Legends to Valorant, game fans can log in and explore how the best gamers play. Game-specific content is ideal if you’re looking for a particular title.
This year, GTA V is currently one of the most popular streaming genres. Many creators are tailoring content to this niche, proving that older games can still maintain popularity a decade later.
Real life content
However, it’s not just game titles that see traction on Twitch. The site also offers a category named ‘Just Chatting’, which was the most watched option in 2021. Though it sounds foreign to non-stream watchers, many users log in to connect with their favorite online personalities.
Another notable section is ‘IRL’ streaming. As the name suggests, this niche focuses on real-life content, such as fitness, travel and daily life. For some audience members, streaming is replacing typical social media apps.
Games aren’t the only content enjoyed on streaming websites; many online celebrities have reached fame status thanks to their streaming content.
Has streaming affected game advertising?
Streaming is the best form of marketing for games, so developers want their releases to look good on Twitch.
Instead of typical marketing campaigns, developers are now working with popular influencers to ensure their content is featured on top streaming channels. All streamers need is Wi-Fi and an audience to start promoting a new release.
From pre-releases to sponsored partnerships, it’s about working with the streaming community, not against them. Audience members often watch streams of potential games, similar to how you’d play a trial game before purchasing.
Streaming has changed the landscape of gaming as we know it. This is now one of the most popular forms of entertainment, and streamers are influencing their audience’s tastes and consumption. Will you be tuning into a stream any time soon?