It’s been a few months now since I began implementing Channel Point effects onto my stream through LioranBoard. Giving you the ability to control the stream has gone a long way towards taking the show to new heights. Going forward, I’ll continue to find ways for you to make your mark!
With the functionality picking up momentum and Touch Portal now offering a similar service, now is a great time to run through some specific nuggets of information I’ve picked up along the way. Hope these help you with your LioranBoard and Touch Portal integrations!
Make your effects an audio/visual experience
The very first effect I tried out was the air horn. The sound of the air horn is an iconic part of my channel and I thought it would be amazing for you to have access to it. However, once I hooked it up, it didn’t feel right with just the sound going off. How do viewers know that they triggered the effect and it wasn’t just me hitting the button? Also, for viewers who have the volume set low, how can they tell when an effect is triggered?
Going the other way, I added an “NSFW” filter that pixelates the screen. The effect is cool, but without any sort of audio aid, it just looks like the screen got messed up. Also, if viewers are just listening to me in the background, there’s no way they would know that the filter was activated. What could I do to give users the cue that something “lewd” was being censored?
In both of these cases, I found that the trick to “completing” the effect was to make sure it was an effect with a visual and audio component. By having both, the effect is a more satisfying experience that can also be enjoyed if the sound is low or if the viewer isn’t looking at the screen. The air horn hits different when it slides up and honks to the pulses of the sound. And the anime “Wow!” sound is a clear indicator of something naughty being covered up.
Animate your visual effects where you can
One of my biggest gripes with OBS is that it doesn’t allow sources to fade in or out when activated or deactivated. They simply snap into or out of view, which can look very jarring. Where possible, use video animations so that elements appear, move, and disappear more naturally around the screen.
As an example, one of my most exciting effects involves a Snorlax jumping on the screen. There’s a 2% chance that it will be a shiny. If Snorlax simply popped in, the effect would be pretty dull. But with its current animation, Snorlax peeks his head a touch before jumping onto the screen. The moment of suspense created by not being able to tell if it’s a shiny before the jump is what really makes that effect work.
Many of you may not have any experience with creating your own motion graphics. I only started learning recently and I made a very simple animation for the “Mind Blown” reward using DaVinci Resolve. Though it doesn’t hurt to develop the skill yourself, consider asking friends or hiring someone to do the animations for you. Pete from Later Levels made the air horn and Snorlax animations for me and I’m forever grateful for that.
Acknowledge their use when you can
Part of the payoff from cashing in a Channel Point reward comes from the streamer acknowledging its use. My favourite effect to illustrate this is “Haley Enters the Chat”. When used, Haley appears on screen with a random line of dialogue. When I’m playing Stardew Valley, it appears as if she’s messaging me. I then respond to her statement as if we’re having a conversation. Not only am I acknowledging the use of the effect, but it’s also adding more narrative to the content itself for all viewers.
Where you can, make sure to acknowledge or react to your Channel Point rewards when used. I know this can be tough during particularly intensive gameplay moments or if your audio setup doesn’t allow you to hear your computer while you’re playing, but it can feel like a ripoff when the effect gets ignored.
Consider methods of interaction beyond channel points for redemption
Kim and Pete from Later Levels use chat commands instead of Channel Points for their effects. They limit the use of their effects by gating these functions to VIP viewers. For those who aren’t Twitch Affiliate or those that want another means of triggering these types of functions, chat commands work too. Just make sure you find a way to prevent users from spamming the command.
Another clever use of this tech is to give your mods the ability to control core functions, such as your scenes. For example, if you’re gaming on your intermission screen, your mods can remotely set your scene to the correct view via chat commands.
Provide the right context for each effect
One of the most popular LioranBoard functions is the randomizer. However, I feel like it’s incredibly under-utilized by many. I’ve seen multiple streams and tutorial videos use this feature to simply display a random meme.
Everyone likes memes, but the randomizer can mean so much more when you provide the right context. As an example, my most popular effect is the “Poke Flute”. It’s set up so that 49 commands lead to a regular Snorlax, while the 50th triggers a Shiny. With the odds of catching a Shiny being so low, it’s a real event when a viewer gets one. Each time the flute is played, there’s a teaser animation that plays to create a level of suspense before the Snorlax jumps out. Finally, when a Shiny Snorlax is caught, we celebrate on stream and the winner gets their name immortalized on the Shiny Club panel on my Twitch page. More than just a randomizer, I’ve essentially repackaged Pokemon as a mini-game that viewers can play throughout my stream.
More recently, I implemented an “Autograph” reward that takes a black and white photo of me and adds one of a few pre-written messages to it. There’s a lot of room for hilarity that can come with the pairing of the photo and captions that are very specific to things I say and do on stream. Furthermore, there are a few Easter eggs with certain autographs, adding even more excitement around each use.
How can you make your functions more valuable than what they provide at face value? Really use your imagination to bring these functions to life!
Get rid of stuff that your viewers don’t use
LioranBoard and Touch Portal commands can take a lot of work to implement. Regardless of how much effort you put in or how cool the effect is to you, you shouldn’t keep it if your viewers don’t like using it.
As it’s currently built, the Channel Point rewards menu isn’t the best for navigating a large set of options. The more rewards you add, the harder it is for viewers to get to the rewards they want to use.
Of course, do what you can to get viewers to at least try the reward. Try to have a thumbnail for each effect, though even I can’t keep up. Play around with the description of the reward. Even lower the costs if need be. If none of that works, don’t be afraid to let it go to make room for your existing and future rewards.
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