A stream of games

He gets on his computer to play a video game. With a few clicks, “League of Legends” is loading on his screen. However, this game isn’t just his to enjoy: he has an audience to entertain.

Senior Curtis Trieu has a gaming Twitch channel and competed in over 70 Esports tournaments. His channel, Trieuloo, has over 250 followers and 2,500 individual viewers. He was inspired to create the channel by his cousin, Junior, who plays “League of Legends” on his YouTube channel and on Twitch.

“It honestly feels great [to have a channel because] it’s really great to show how I’ve improved in talking [in my streams] and my thought processes to [my audience],” Trieu said. “I always liked watching streamers, and it’s cool [to now] be part of the community.”

Junior was able to make a full-time living through his channel, Sykkuno. He did this with sponsorships, ads and his large following. He also played with professional players and other content-creators.

“[Junior] really inspired me because he showed me that [content-creation] can actually become something that you can pursue,” Trieu said.

In order to stream a game on Twitch, Trieu uses an application called Streamlabs OBS, a broadcasting service that allows you to customize and edit your streaming experience. He then sets up his user interfaces, which show up on the stream, face camera and sound systems that he wants to use. Finally, he chooses a game to record (such as “League of Legends,” “Counter-strike: Global Offensive” or “Fortnite”) and plays.

“My plans are to continually stream until the end of high school,” Trieu said. “[When] I go into college, I’m not sure how it’s going to work out. [However,] I’ve always enjoyed gaming, [and] I think I’m going to continue streaming as long as I possibly can.”

In addition to managing his channel, Trieu has been competing in tournaments since seventh grade. Organizations such as the High School Esports League and Youth Esports of America host these tournaments. By participating in these events, he gets to compete with his friends and win monetary prizes. Trieu won five hundred dollars at one tournament.

“I really like the competitive aspects of gaming, [as] I’ve always been a competitive person throughout my whole life. I’ve always loved the thrill,” Trieu said. “People like playing games casually because it’s very fun, [and] I like playing like that sometimes. I always wanted to be the best, so I always loved playing in tournaments.”

Throughout his Twitch career, Trieu has faced issues like getting artwork made for his streams, getting enough money to buy new webcams and microphones and showing the value of his work to his parents. Despite this, Trieu finds the reward of sharing his gameplay well worth its drawbacks.

“[Don’t] give up. Striving to improve is what the best thing about gaming is,” Trieu said. “Gaming isn’t limited by physical capabilities. And if you try to improve, you [will] improve.”

By Ethan Park, Staff writer
Photo courtesy of Curtis Trieu

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