There are many niche podcasts out there – one being the gaming community. With all the recent news of upcoming game systems, gaming podcasts in audio and video will have a whole group of new subjects to talk about – especially while people wait for the PS4 and XBox One.
On the other hand, you might love gaming a specific board game enough that you want to start podcasting about it. For example, my brother goes to a weekly gaming night in the “man cave” with his friends. They switch up the games (mostly battle games like ships). With a microphone and recording software, they could be discussing strategies for others to learn from.
So you want to start a gaming podcast. What do you want to do? What can you podcast about?
Choose Your Game for Podcasting
Of course gaming can mean many things. You could be a console Video gamer – Microsoft XBox, Sony Playstation, Nintendo Entertainment System and many others. You can even be a classic gamer – NES, Sega, Atari 2600, Intellevision and others.
One podcast to check out is called Factory Sealed Podcast. They podcast on a bi-weekly basis. Latest episode contained Castlevania, Mega Man and Rock n’ Roll Racing. A multi co-hosted podcast, they spend an hour telling gaming stories and enjoying the retro games.
Another genre is recent gaming news. My friends at F5Live do that – Scott and Nick recently were at E3 talking about what came out of that conference. They have up to 4 hosts which talk news and more with gaming. This is an audio and video podcast.
Gaming doesn’t have to be about video games. Board gaming, card gaming and similar are also popular podcasts. One podcast I just listened to was called Dicetruction where they audio blog about their battles on Axis & Allies. Another podcast is Meeples & Miniatures podcast where they talk news about miniatures and board gaming.
Next, you have the mobile gaming podcasts – iOS, Android and similar. A show like PocketGamer is perfect to find out what is happening in the mobile world. Even my iPad365 show covers iOS apps and does cross over from time to time to Android apps.
Choosing Audio or Video Podcasting
This might be dependent on what you are doing. If you are talking people through how-to’s, then video podcasting might be your medium. If you are discussing news and events, audio could be better. You can definitely do both audio and video no matter what your podcast is about. By giving options, people may consume what they use the most. My friends at GeekGamer are a good example of options HD video, SD video or MP3 audio.
Copyrights in Gaming
When you do a gaming podcast, you have to be especially concerned with copyrights. Technically if you show any video or audio from a game, you are breaking copyright (unless you have the proper permission).
For example – some games (Grand Theft Auto come to mind) have an option to turn on music in the background – which would then let you listen to favorite artists while playing the game. That can bring up copyright issue the gaming company cannot resolve. The game itself is copyright.
YouTube support says it best: Some video game publishers allow you to use all video game content for commercial use and state that in their license agreements. Likewise, videos showing software user interface may be monetized only if you have a contract with the publisher or you have paid a licensing fee.
That means you may have to get permission on certain games. It will be outlined on the game Terms of Service (TOS).
Most game companies just allow you to do it simply because its promotion to their game. HOWEVER, if you decide to push envelopes – e.g. run an episode where you bash the game for no reason or bring up controversy while the game is played in the background, you may receive a takedown notice for the episode or show.
The best thing to do is try and contact the game companies. You might even get discounts and review items for future episodes. Yes, I said it Free Games for podcasting. Just don’t go into podcasting expecting that.
Podcasting Gear Needed for Creating Gaming Podcasts
If you are doing audio, then a simple podcast rig works. If you want a good one with two mics and even a phone line capture device, then the Audio Technica Two-Person by B&H is pretty nice.
For video, you might want to do some captures. You can easily point a camera to a TV screen to get video. There are other options, though. Hauppage HD PVR2 allows you to capture the video via your PC or Mac (software for Mac via 3rd party). You can then insert during post-production. BlackMagic Intensity Extreme is another capture box you can get if you have a Mac with Thunderbolt port.
Tips for Creating a successful, fun Gaming Podcast
- Don’t just play a game. Interact with the podcast audience.
- Explain what you are doing – especially in an audio podcast.
- It might be funny to swear a lot on a podcast – It does turn people off the show. Try to limit your language.
- Plan your show and stick to the plan. You can do a weekly or bi-weekly show. You can even do a 2- a month schedule (1st and 15th). Anything more might lose audience.
- Remember to cover everything in the niche you pick. If you choose new gaming, don’t discount one system for another (unless your podcast is specific to one system).
- Twitter, Facebook and Google+ are your friends.
- If doing video, creating a YouTube channel and having a video on a hosting service (for set top boxes and other devices) brings a better audience. Your show might be consumed more by a couch audience than a computer audience.
Remember to follow my saying: If you have a story to tell and an idea to sell, you can podcast. Keep the stories flowing and encourage your audience to be part of new stories. It will make your gaming podcast even more fun. Good luck and let me know if you have any questions