It’s been a hell of a day. If you aren’t familiar with twitch.tv, it’s a website where you can livestream your gaming, and which others’ livestreams, and I’m on there! Today was not only my first livestream, but it was the most extensive PC gaming I’ve done in over a decade. Until recently, I’ve had Steam pretty much for the sake of it, partially because I’m accustomed to console gaming, but mainly because my MacBooks have not been up to gaming. But now I have a shiny PC, and intend to make up for lost time.
From what I’d read it’s necessary to be patient as a new twitch.tv user, as viewers and followers can start at barely a trickle. Indeed, there was not much action to speak of as I played Bastion for several hours. So I had lunch, regrouped, did some much-needed yoga, and decided to switch to Don’t Starve, in the hopes that the newness of the title would draw a few viewers. Indeed, many people ended up on my feed, and people even started chatting.
As I chatted (first through text, then, after encouragement, through the mic) and struggled to run from spiders while keeping the fire stoked, my brain started to melt. At the beginning of my broadcast I could glance over at the video and make sure I was looking presentable and wasn’t out of frame, but that went completely out the window as I endeavored to be entertaining, or at least worth watching. It is not easy to maintain conversation while efficiently playing a game. In fact, it’s fucking difficult! Of course, it was more difficult on account of my setup, which will surely be streamlined over time, but still, splitting your attention and maintaining high standards within each activity is a big ask. By the end my eyes were watering, my brain was fried, and it had gotten dark without me even realizing.
So yes, I could certainly have it much worse than playing video games for hours on end, and goodness knows I’m not complaining, but it’s still extremely taxing, and I do take it as seriously as I would any other job.
If you do feel inclined to check me out on twitch.tv I will be very grateful for your patronage.