With the mass expansion of online video games over the last two decades, there are more and more people that select becoming a YouTube gamer as their career of choice.
If done right, such a channel can be extremely lucrative. Here is how to start a gaming YouTube channel in five steps:
Step 1: Invest in good equipment
Get a good video camera, a PC that can support the game and streaming, and editing software.
Step 2: Establish your niche and target audience
Determine who you would like your videos to reach. Decide whether you want to play horror or popular games like Fortnite or Minecraft. Then decide which type of videos you want to create: walkthrough videos, how-to guides, pros and cons, reviews, etc.
Step 3: Pick a game and practice it
Start with just one game that you’re passionate about. Get good at it, so you can create different videos around that game.
Step 4: Create your YouTube personality
Use your personality to draw viewers’ attention and stick out among hundreds of other YouTube channels.
Step 5: Learn how to use YouTube’s algorithm to your advantage
Get familiar with how YouTube works, which titles get the most clicks, and the tags you need to include in the description to draw more viewers.
Some of the more popular gaming youtube channels earn millions in revenue. If you want to become a professional YouTube gamer too, read our guide on starting a gaming YouTube channel.
Table of Contents
How To Start A Gaming Youtube Channel
When writing this guide, I have considered a number of factors that are essential to giving your gaming channel the best start possible.
The factors included are the importance of choosing the right game and audience for it, finding a niche within an already popular game (such as speedrunning or finding easter eggs, for example), as well as using the gameplay to create unique content.
Finally, the guide will give you some insight into how to use the YouTube algorithm to your advantage as well as create your own recognizable online persona.
1. Choose Your Video Game(s)
While some YouTube gaming channels choose to deal with multiple games to reach as wide a gaming community as possible, I would recommend that you pick one game at first, as it will help you grow a successful YouTube gaming channel faster than recording several games at once.
It will also let you know your game better, which will help you in the long run, especially if you are planning on doing guides or tips and tricks type of videos that are hugely popular today.
In addition, you are choosing a single video game to start with makes creating gaming content that much simpler, which will help with attracting viewers and audience retention.
In my opinion, choosing the right game to begin with, is perhaps the most important part of creating a successful YouTube gaming channel. While playing Fortnite or something as popular might be tempting, there are advantages to choosing a game with fewer YouTube gamers already creating content about it.
Still, it partially boils down to personal preference as well. You cannot make quality gaming content if you don’t enjoy the game itself, so pick something you can play for days on end.
Most YouTube influencers that are playing video games on their channels started as passionate gamers before turning it into their profession, and there is no reason that you cannot be as successful as these other YouTubers.
2. Choose Your Target Audience
When starting a YouTube gaming channel, choosing your target audience is immensely important. Yes, it will always be the people that play games you are live streaming or creating YouTube videos about, but there are still many things to consider.
Not all people play games for the same reason, and not all popular games have the same community to them. This means that many gamers have their own preferences as a group, and you should be aware of them when you begin to post content.
Just as music videos have genres, we can safely say that gaming videos on YouTube do too. Other than typical walkthrough videos and regular gaming footage, gaming videos include tips and tricks, humor videos, guides on important updates, and a lot more.
Each of these genres is different enough to target a different subsection of the audience, meaning that there are a lot of things that you can do if you wish to make your YouTube channel stand out from all the rest. And you will need to if you wish to succeed.
3. Find a Niche
The next thing you should consider when creating your YouTube account is that you will have to find a specific niche to fit in, something that your channel has that others do not.
This can be done in many different ways, from choosing a unique and intriguing name that will get first-time viewers to click on your videos to giving your YouTube gaming channel content that is different from what can usually be found.
Some gaming YouTube channels even completely forgo the idea of starting with a single game and instead go for playing as many of them as possible, creating reaction videos featuring relevant commentary.
Creating content that is unique to your channel can be done in many ways. For example, people will create how-tos explaining the pros and cons of new games after playing them for a bit, talking about their features such as graphics, gameplay, pricing, etc.
This type of video has become hugely popular due to the freemium monetization method the games of today have. Few people enjoy a game that feels like it pays to win. Therefore, it is much less stressful to watch one of these videos than to start playing a game and find something like that for yourself.
In the end, I believe that finding a niche cannot be done without proper research. Before making your own channel, go on YouTube and see what other gamers are watching. This will help you a lot when starting to make your own videos.
4. Get to Know Youtube’s Algorithm
In order to make sure your channel grows after it is made, you will have to make sure that you are familiar with YouTube’s algorithm.
There are several key factors that influence which videos will show up in searches or someone’s recommended list, making them more likely to be found by prospective viewers.
A large part of this can be considered to come under SEO (Search engine optimization). SEO is a process that takes everything that a content creator can do in order to make their product more visible and therefore more accessible online.
The first thing you should do is choose a good title for each and every one of your videos, as it will make it more likely that they show up in searches. While clickbait sensational titles can be good as well, this is usually done by already established channels to help with attracting even more people to the channel.
Instead, what you should do is focus on making simple titles that are similar to something a gamer would type in YouTube’s search box. For example, if you are playing grand theft auto, making a video called: “All the GTA games, ranked from best to worst” might be a good shot.
Additionally, you should avoid making videos that have the same title as a video that is already out there, as YouTube is almost guaranteed to put yours at a lover spot in the search than the older one.
Just like finding a niche, a YouTube algorithm takes some serious research, as well as trial and error to get it right.
5. Create a Youtube Personality
Most people go to YouTube in order to have some fun, especially if their goal is to watch some game footage. You should ensure that you are getting to get the best out of it by creating a unique personality that makes you stand out in the best way possible.
Being funny and goofing off on your live stream or video can actually be a pretty good idea, as it is a well-known fact that when somebody laughs, other people tend to join in.
Therefore, if you are looking to make a lighthearted and funny YouTube channel, it is a relatively safe bet.
Furthermore, stuff such as your visual appearance can affect your ability to attract and retain viewers and subscribers as well. Some video games have huge cosplay communities, meaning that recording your live stream in a cosplay might be interesting to the audience.
Similarly, wearing wigs, makeup, or game developer’s merch can help you seem more relevant to people that randomly come across your channel.
On the other hand, some people prefer to keep their casual appearance and use good humor and charisma to connect with their audience. This can be a good approach as well, making people take you less seriously and more as just another gamer enjoying their favorite games.
In my personal opinion, creating a YouTube personality has a lot to do with the type of audience the game itself attracts. You will want to be appealing to that specific subset of people, so you will have to know the community first.
Because of this, I suggest that before starting a YouTube gaming channel, you take some time to watch similar channels and analyze them, as it will give you a smoother start to your own.
6. Get Good at Your Game(s)
Playing video games at a high level is hard work, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, especially if you are playing more than one.
Because of this, expect the process of actually learning the games to the point where you can create guides and how-tos to be a huge time sink, easily taking weeks if not months.
While this might be avoided if you are purely a reaction video creator, you are still more than likely to get hooked on the games themselves and play them a lot.
Finally, playing games is fun, and you can achieve a lot of success by live-streaming the fun you are having and inviting other people to join you in it.
There are few things people online enjoy more than seeing their favorite YouTube gamers have the time of their life while screaming at the enemy team in all chat or pumping their fists in satisfaction after beating a particularly difficult mission.
The gaming community has a specific mentality that wants you to “get good,” and if you are serious in your intention to start a YouTube gaming channel, you should be prepared to invest time and effort to do so.
7. Work with High-Quality Equipment
Making high-quality videos requires you to use a plethora of equipment, both software and hardware, that will make your video recording and editing easier.
First of all, you will need a way to record what is happening on your screen. Most platforms for streaming have a pretty good broadcasting system already in place, so that should be it.
Next, you are going to need a webcam and a microphone, preferably a standalone one. There are a lot of options for both of these accessories, and you will find several guides on our website to help you choose the best of each.
The same goes for video editing software. There are several options out there, both open source and paywall protected ones, with a great variance in quality between some of them. I suggest trying out a few options to find which one suits you the best.
Additionally, depending on what device you are streaming games from, you might need a capture card for OBS. This piece of hardware allows you to record videos and gaming moments on devices such as Nintendo Switch, which otherwise might not be possible.
Of all of this, however, the most important piece is your digital camera. A video camera is the centerpiece of any streamer’s or content creator’s gear. Because of this, I advise taking special care of choosing the right one while you are starting a YouTube gaming channel.
8. Be Patient
Last but not least, the key to starting a YouTube gaming channel or, really, any successful YouTube account, in general, is patience.
Subscribers don’t appear overnight, nor should you expect them to. On the contrary, this is a process that usually lasts several months, after which your subscriber count should continue to rise at a slow but steady pace.
In other words, starting and growing a YouTube gaming channel is just like starting any other business. It can happen overnight, but it usually doesn’t.
This means that you are likely going to have to invest a lot of time and effort before the revenue from YouTube ads starts to come in.
You can make this process a lot quicker; however, if you successfully encourage viewers to subscribe to your YouTube channel and like your videos, at these counts, make your videos more likely to be suggested by the YouTube algorithm.
In the end, I advise giving yourself at least half a year to see if your YouTube channel is doing well or not. These things take time but can be immensely fun and profitable with the right equipment and mindset.
What To Consider When Starting A Youtube Channel?
Have a good plan beforehand
The difference between dreaming about becoming a successful YouTube gamer one day and actually achieving that dream often lies in having a well-thought-out plan on what exactly do you intend to do.
Because of this, before starting a channel, you should give yourself time to make an idea, as well as a way to have it work.
Furthermore, make it possible for you to invest actual time and effort into working on the channel and growing it, as the competition with other channels is fierce, especially at the start.
Investing in good equipment
While I already covered this, I believe that it should be doubled down on. Having the right tools for capturing and editing your videos can make or break a YouTube channel.
Because of this, if you are serious about making the best YouTube gaming channel, there is, you should definitely invest in some high-quality equipment comparable to that of already established YouTube gamers.
Luckily for you, budget but still great options are far more plentiful nowadays than they used to be, so getting your hands on a good set of gear shouldn’t be a huge investment. There are several guides on our website that will help you find the best of each piece of equipment you will need.
Most importantly, the main reason most people decide to follow the career path of a YouTube gaming content creator is to have fun while working.
In order to achieve this, you should focus on creating a channel that deals with things you already like doing. If you are the type of person to wander through out-of-way forests in Skyrim, do that.
If you are a highly competitive MOBA gamer on the verge of going pro, show those plays to the world. Record footage and record guides, and the audience will appreciate them!
In the end, there is not much I can say about this particular topic, other than that you and you alone know what it is about gaming on YouTube that you enjoy so much, and thus you should seek to keep that feeling while growing your channel.
How do you start a gaming channel on Youtube?
Well, there are several things that you will need to consider in order to create a successful channel. First of all, you need a good idea about the contents of your channel.
Afterward, you will have to do some research on trending games and find one you like if you don’t already have one. You should also research other YouTubers to help yourself find a niche.
In the end, a lot of stuff you will need to do is also technical and time-consuming in nature.
Do youtube gamers get paid?
Yes and no. Youtube gamers, as well as YouTubers in general, receive money from ads YouTube attaches to their videos. Furthermore, a popular enough YouTuber is likely to attract a number of sponsors, as well as get some money from fans.
You shouldn’t count; however, your YouTube channel is a reliable source of income from day one. You will need a significant subscriber count for that, one that will depend on the living standard and costs of the country you are in.
Still, a popular enough channel can earn you quite a bit of money.
How hard is it to start a gaming youtube channel?
It can be incredibly difficult or rather simple, depending on how well it is planned out. Luck is certainly a factor, as is with all internet-related things and business in general, but most of the time, gaming channels succeed if they are planned well enough.
Luckily for you, I have foreseen the need for a guide on starting a successful channel featuring video games, containing some tips that will help you establish yourself as a name in this branch of the ever-growing gaming industry.