Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a part of the rising industry of esports? Hear the crowd go wild, travel around the world, laugh, and engage with people who have similar interests as you? Those are just some of many perks of being involved in the esports industry and you don’t have to be a pro player to have it all!
There are so many different types roles for all types of people when it comes to esports, but I am going to shine some light on one of my favorite roles: shoutcasting.
Types of casters: Play-by-Play vs. Color
Before you sit down and try shoutcasting any game, there needs to be an understanding of the two different types of casting, and the earlier you can discover your type the better.
Play-by-play casting ("The Talk")
If you like to hype up a play or talk about what is going on in an action-filled team fight in a game, then this is the role for you. You will need to have the ability to speak fast and clearly while observing every detail of the actions in the match.
To be a play-by-play(PbP) caster, you don’t need the most impressive game knowledge, though it is helpful. Something that makes a PbP caster stand out is the creativity that they bring to the table. Anyone can look at a screen and blabber out what they are seeing, but if you can be creative with it and have dynamic wordplay, then you will be more noticeable and loved by the viewers.
Here in this video where we look at some amazing shoutcasters from the Overwatch scene where they went made history. Pay attention to how the PbP casters use different methods of casting any personality traits to deliver the best entertainment and storyline.
Color casting ("The Brain")
Now let’s say you enjoy more of the complex bits of a game, such as strategies, team compositions, decision making, and sometimes a little judgment of the teams, then go no further than being a Color Caster. Your job as a color is to provide the viewers with a little explanation of why a certain action happened and how it will impact the game moving forward.
You might not have the responsibility of hyping up a play like a PbP, but that does not make a Color Caster’s job any easier. You have to have extensive knowledge about the game and the ability to explain it in the most simplest and vivid manner. Also, there will be a lot of studying of team backgrounds, rivalries, matchups, stats, and much more.
I can write an entire blog about how to cast but we are here to look at how to get your feet wet in the competitive world of shoutcasting. This short video should give you an idea of how both PbP and Color play off of each other.
Getting started as a caster
Now that you have a better understanding of the different casting types, the first thing I can start by saying is that you have to be dedicated to this craft.
The world of shoutcasting is very competitive and at times mentally draining. If you are not passionate about being an esports caster then this might not be the best career for you.
Practice Till Your Head Hurts
You will always hear that practice makes perfect, but if you don't know how to practice properly, you are not going to improve. The following are some of the ways many professional casters like to practice:
- Cast over pro games while they are muted and record the cast so you can compare it with the pro casting.
- Record every single game you cast from the very beginning because going over you casting VOD’s to look for any growth-area is a crucial part of being a shoutcaster.
- Have a spare notebook for casting so you can jot down any word that stands out to you and can be used to spice up your casting.
- Try building storylines between teams, players, and/or communities while casting. Trust me if you can do that, you will stick out like a sore thumb.
- Study teams that you will be casting ahead of time; doesn’t matter if you are PbP or Color. This goes hand to hand with storytelling. If you study teams and players you can backup your storyline with facts, stats, player intentions, or goals.
- Always ask for feedback, send your recorded shoutcasting to other casters and don’t just send the good ones, send the bad ones too. Another person will see all the mistakes you are making that you are blindsided about.
- And last, of all, be consistent, even if you think you are a great caster, there will always be room for improvement or skills to maintain.
Connect with the right community
Connecting with others is one of the most important aspects of getting started as a shoutcaster. It doesn’t matter if you are the best caster ever, if you are not putting yourself out there and making connections with different organizations, you will not get the exposure you need to succeed as an esports caster.
The best place for finding many different opportunities for shoutcasting currently is Broadcast.gg. The first thing I would recommend you do is to join their Discord server and write a professional intro at their #introduce-yourself channel. Here is an example:
This way if there are any organizations that are browsing and looking for casters, which they do quite often, you will have a great chance of getting spotted and chosen over many others. This also opens up the door for others to connect with you so you can practice and grow as a new esports caster.
The esports shoutcasting community is an extremely saturated place. Everyone wants to talk about their favorite video game and get paid for it, however, to really make it to the top of the top, you have to invest the best of your time and energy into this passion of yours and show everyone why they should go for you rather than the 50.000 other people lined up behind you.
Before I close this off, I will leave this video below for everyone to see how the life of an Esports shoutcaster looks like. So get ready to work hard and be better than the “you” you were yesterday. It is not something impossible to achieve, but more so depends on how badly you want it!
You can find Syed on Twitter @SaiEsports.
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