Firstly, lets look at the start and present day!
One of my first ever casts:
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One of my latest games:
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The biggest difference to me is the sound quality. When I first started out casting, I did it purely for a bit of fun. My overall thought process was that I enjoy the games, why not give it a go. My microphone and recording software were terrible, but to me at that stage it didn't matter. If you are someone who LOVES sc2 and would like to cast just do it - you may be terrible, your mic might give me ears cancer and the games may be the worst ever but guess what, if YOU like doing it then go for it. Just as if you are trying to be a great player, the number 1 thing you have to do is enjoy it or you will never put the work in.
After a few weeks, I started to get some feedback on my channel so I decided to invest in a decent mic and xsplit as well as put a bit more time into learning the game (before that point I was pure zerg play and didn't have a great understanding of the other match-ups). Learning the game is such an important thing for casters, if you have never played random I would strongly suggest it both as a player and a caster. It allows you to understand the game far better than playing a single race every could, you become REALLY aware of each of the race's strengths, weaknesses and playstyle. In turn, you can look at pro level games from any race and really respect how well they play and how they overcome problems us mere mortals stuggle with. Playing the game really is only a small portion of the fight though imo - even if you are a masters player, you simply CANNOT play like the pro's do or understand what they think - if you want to cast well, be ready to sit down with notepads and watch LOADS of games and try to understand why the players do things.
Now I quickly started to realise that I wasn't going to be a super hardcore analytical caster. For me, I wanted to make starcraft fun to watch yet still give an insight into the players thought processes. While exact timings and the benefits of going for an extractor trick over OL at 9 may be great for the top players (or those who THINK they are the top players) the average SC2 player should worry a lot more about overarching strategy, fundamental mechanics and most importantly ENJOYING the game. Now, this is just my opinion but for anyone wanting to cast, find what you want to focus on and get dedicated - you really can't do all the jobs at once effectively.
The final point I would make to people wanting to get into casting is that haters shout a lot louder than lovers. Anyone who has any intent of getting better will always seek criticism and it is right to do so, but just as a bronze player is told to uninstall the game 10 times for every 1 piece of good advice every caster starting out will (in my experience) take a lot of harsh blows. Mostly, it isn't justified - eSports has a huge amount of fan-boys and unfortunately that makes being a new kid on a busy block a tough job. This is where the real dedication hits home for me, always try to take anything you can from criticism and always try to improve but don't let it discourage you. If you really do enjoy casting, keep doing it!
This year I have:
- Posted 641 games to youtube (since Dec'11)
- Cast insomnia 46 (Aug'12) and insomnia 47 (Nov'12)
- Cast loads of Antec Attack - 200Euro weekly (Mar'12-Aug'12)
- Been involved with multiple gaming teams to cast their players
- Cast ZOWIE DIVINA $1000 show match (Nov'12)
- Appeared on multiple webshows / caster challenges
Overall, this year has been amazing - I have had the opportunity to cast some amazing games, show matches and tournaments as well as meet some incredible people and organisations who have shown and taught me so much. In the future I really hope to be able to go to more events and continue to keep up my "game a day" record on youtube!
Thank you for reading, any comments would be great! Should you want to contact me directly, tweet me or msg me on youtube