The recording and broadcasting of gameplay footage is getting easier all the time, as we pointed out in our look at two new capture devices from Hauppage and Roxio. Today it’s become even easier for those on PC, with the latest update to EA’s Origin platform allowing players to live stream gameplay footage to Twitch TV. Activision has since confirmed that those on consoles will be able to do the same to YouTube when Call Of Duty: Black Ops II releases next week.
EA’s announcement came first, with a post by Thierry Nguyen on the Origin blog last night confirming that users of the latest Origin beta can stream gameplay to Twitch – the gaming-specific offshoot of streaming site Justin.TV which boasts an audience of 20 million people worldwide. It’s a remarkably simple process, with players able to start broadcasting to their Twitch channel with just a few clicks.
Never one to be outdone, Activision today announced that multiplayer League Play games in Call Of Duty: Black Ops II can be live streamed to YouTube, and can be viewed on mobiles, tablets and PC web browsers either through Call Of Duty Elite or players’ personal YouTube channels. Black Ops II, which launches next week, contains several new features aimed squarely at the eSports community – one part of the “meaningful innovation” promised by Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg back in February. Another new feature is Codcasting, which redesigns the UI with spectators in mind, with persistent scoreboards, picture-in-picture support, and the ability to see the action from any player’s perspective at the touch of a button.
Treyarch studio head Mark Lamia said: “From the beginning of development, the team has been pushing the boundaries on every front to offer Call Of Duty fans things they haven’t been able to do before. With our competitive play and eSports initiatives, we wanted to deliver live-streaming capabilities built right into Call Of Duty: Black Ops II.
“By making the capability of live streaming as accessible as possible to our fans, straight from a player’s console without the need for any additional hardware or sophisticated setups, we are empowering our fans to share their multiplayer experiences.”
Two welcome announcements, then – but neither come without caveats. Nguyen points out on the Origin blog that streaming affects bandwidth and could hit framerates, advising those that encounter problems to either reduce their stream’s resolution or even upgrade their CPU. Black Ops players will likely experience similar issues, and latency is common enough in peer-to-peer multiplayer games as it is; throwing more data around is hardly going to help – which is presumably why Activision has restricted it to League Play matches.