Fortnite superstar Tyler “Ninja” Blevins shocked gamers around the world when he announced he would no longer stream on Twitch and would be streaming exclusively on the Microsoft Mixer platform.
Despite being owned by such a large corporation, many people had never even heard of Mixer before. Xbox owners may have been familiar with it as it’s a native streaming platform, but Twitch was keen to convey what Amazon represents for online shopping – no competitor came close to knocking it down.
However, following the Brevins’ recent move, more attention has been paid to Mixer and is seen as a viable option. It’s worth noting that this is also happening at a time when Twitch is being criticized by the community for a series of questionable decisions regarding bans (or lack thereof) on certain streamers on their platform.
Now more than ever, people are wondering, “Could Mixer be a better streaming platform than Twitch?” Well, in a sense, it may already be.
Mixer’s HypeZone is a series of official Mixer channels that automatically target and attack streamers from a number of games while they’re at critical points in gameplay. P>
HypeZone is currently supported for PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, Fortnite Battle Royale, Rainbow 6 Siege, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 and Apex Legends – all shooters. To be eligible for HypeZone, all you have to do is stream to Mixer with a clear view of the game HUD.
When Mixer discovers tense moments among streamers playing these games, they have a chance to get on the official HypeZone channel. When this happens, live broadcasts are sent to the channel and it creates an exhilarating experience. I personally participated in the broadcast that went from under 10 to over 200 viewers during the HypeZone show and it was amazing.
Here are the official links to the five HypeZone Mixer channels:
- PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds
- Fortnite Battle Royale
- Rainbow 6 Siege
- Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
- Apex Legends
Be sure to check them out if you’re ever looking for continuous action!
Sparks & XP
While Twitch has a subscriber age and long-term subscriber rewards, Mixer includes an RPG-like system for streaming, watching, and chatting.
Sparks are a form of currency, and XP is a way to level up your account to unlock new features and showcase your experience as a Mixer viewer. Both streamers and viewers earn both.
You earn 50 sparks per minute of broadcasting and watching streams. However, with Mixer Pro, channel subscriptions and Channel One, you can earn up to 325 sparks per minute.
You can spend your Sparks building a team, enabling interactive game enhancements, launching skills (animated visuals) in a channel, and more. Overall, Sparks and XP are just ways to drive more streams and views on Mixer.
In 2014, a massive social experiment kicked off on Twitch: Twitch Plays PokÃ©mon (TPP). TPP allowed Twitch chat members to interactively influence PokÃ©mon games by spamming Twitch chat enter keys, which were then sent to the game. The channel has gained more than 121,000 viewers and is included in the Guinness Book of Records among the participants of the single-player online game – 1,165,140 people.
Mixer seems to have realized the genius of events like TPP and built interactivity into MixPlay. This allows game developers and third-party developers to make their games fully interactive using Mixer. This feature allows streamers to add joysticks and buttons to the Mixer overlay to control the flow of the game, allow viewers to influence in-game decisions, and more.
Interactivity is currently supported in Minecraft, SMITE, Paladins, No Man’s Sky, Killing Floor 2, Hello Neighbor, City of Brass, Phantom Trigger, and many more. Mixer also provides developers with all the documentation they need to create interactivity in more games.
MixPlay’s interactive gaming functionality is one of the coolest Mixer features we’ve ever seen on Twitch.
Twitch does support collaborative streaming, but its implementation is nowhere near as clean as Mixer. It includes manual software setup for streaming and is not supported on all channels.
However, Mixer co-streaming allows up to four streamers to co-stream split screen into one chat. To do this in Mixer, you just need to go to your channel, click the three-dot options icon next to your subscriber count, and click Start Sharing. Here you can invite up to three people. Once they accept, you just live. It’s really that simple.
Viewers can even choose from four layouts: grid, live sidebar, camera selection, and mobile.
While co-streaming is a feature that is likely to be used by a very small percentage of streamers, Mixer puts the time and effort into doing it much better than Twitch, showing that they care about supporting all streamers.
As you can see, Mixer has a lot of good stuff for both viewers and streamers. The only thing it lacks is the numbers – the number of views on Mixer streams cannot match the number of views on Twitch. However, changing that starts with giving Mixer a shot.