Gaming as a Spectator Sport?

There was a time when many kids dreamed of being on TV and providing color commentary on their favorite sporting events. Today, children still dream of providing commentary on their favorite activities, but instead of talking about sports, some envision providing blow-by-blow updates of their video game experiences as a gamecaster online.

A few online giants and some mobile companies are positioning themselves as the online place to share and call your own gaming experience. Typically, gaming videos serve one of two primary functions. The first is to learn tips and tricks, and the other is to see what the gameplay is like before deciding on a purchase. YouTube and Twitch are two of the largest current networks for live-broadcast gameplay, and publications like Machinima provide gaming-focused programming, where gamers can find the information they seek.

In some ways, watching very adept players play a particular video game can feel like sport, and, in some places like South Korea, tournaments featuring games such as StarCraft are even considered by many as a national sport. The players are the best at what they do and they put their skills to the test. This desire to watch the best and to put your talents on display motivates many people to share their videos or tune in.

The same holds true for mobile games. The continued rise of mobile gaming has made headway for new enthusiasts to emerge. Everyplay gives players the ability to share a recording of their latest mobile gaming session via Facebook, Twitter or YouTube. Along with a video replay, users have the ability to add audio that provides post-game commentary. This opens a new realm for gamers to greet, taunt or challenge a friend.

The hope is that players who share their mobile video replay sessions with friends through social networking will help with the discovery process of new entertainment. Gamecasters can talk about the strategy for a mobile level, which, combined with the actual video footage of them playing provides social “proof” for the viewer.

So the next time you break a high score on your favorite mobile game, don’t worry if nobody is around to witness it, you can always record it and add play-by-play commentary that will make you sound like the Bob Costas of gamecasting.