Watching People Play
Watching other people play video games can be just as entertaining as playing them yourself — just ask the 100 million viewers who regularly tune in to Twitch, the most popular online broadcasting site for gamers.
But Twitch has far more to offer than livestreams of folks playing Dark Souls in their bedrooms. The platform has evolved to offer everything from insightful live podcasts and massive eSports tournaments to non-gaming content from musicians, chefs and even Bob Ross (no, seriously). Whether you want to see your favorite game played at the highest level or just want to get to know some really cool internet personalities, here are the Twitch channels worth watching.
When it comes to variety, Sonja "omgitsfirefoxx" Reid's channel is hard to top. Sometimes you'll catch her playing Minecraft, other times you'll see her create Pokémon-themed bead art, and if you're lucky, you'll witness one of her fascinating virtual reality streams. But whether Reid is giving dating advice or tearing through the latest games, it's her awesome sense of humor and friendly community that makes her channel a true standout.
Kinda Funny Games
Colin and Greg Live
Kinda Funny Games is the result of four beloved IGN personalities quitting their day jobs to create cool internet videos. Hosted by Colin Moriarty and Greg Miller, the group's flagship Twitch show Colin and Greg Live (weekdays at 2 p.m. ET) is like a comedic SportsCenter for the gaming crowd. You'll get plenty of smart analysis on what's happening in geek culture, as well as tons of hilarious commentary and impromptu rants. The guys also stream games sporadically, and more often than not there's a cute wiener dog to look at.
Man vs. Game
If his name doesn't make it obvious, Jayson "ManvsGame" Love is a man on a quest to beat as many games as humanly possible. Love can be seen playing everything from the original Doom to Dark Souls — and often does so on the highest difficulty possible. It's easy to see why ManvsGame is one of Twitch's biggest stars; aside from being pretty damn good at a whole bunch of titles, his commentary on everything he plays is as entertaining as it is insightful.
If you're a fan of SpeedRunners — folks who race to beat games as fast as possible — Trihex should be at the top of your follow list. Trihex is best known for blazing through the SNES classic Yoshi's Island using crazy exploits and insane controller skills, but he can also be seen suffering through the deluge of nightmare levels found in Super Mario Maker. Seeing Trihex scientifically break down his games in order to shave seconds off his best times is fascinating, and it doesn't hurt that he's a generally cool and funny dude.
League of Legends is the most streamed game on Twitch, which makes it all the more impressive that Nightblue3 is one of the few that manages to stand out from the pack. His skillful play makes him a must-watch for anyone looking to improve at LoL, particularly those who prefer the sneaky "jungle" style. Despite his impressive abilities and million-plus followers, Nightblue is an extremely humble streamer who's consistently friendly to his loyal fans.
Watching King Gothalion's stream is like hanging out with your goofy, beer-loving best friend who happens to be really good at video games. Gothalion is best known for RPG-flavored shooters such as Destiny and The Division, in which he shows off plenty of high-level play while remembering not to take himself too seriously. You can often catch Gothalion teaming up and trading banter with other top Destiny streamers such as ProfessorBroman and Teawrex, and his hilarious on-screen antics with his wife prove that couples who stream together, stay together.
Few streamers can gracefully combine Counter-Strike, cosplay and cooking, but makes it look easy. This cheery broadcaster never shies away from dressing up as comic book and video game characters while she takes out online opponents, and lets viewers watch her put her complex costumes together every now and then. She'll even cook on stream. No matter what KittyPlays is doing, it's her genuine care for her viewers that keeps people coming back.
If you're a fighting game fan, just go ahead and follow Team Spooky now. This popular channel airs some of the best competitive fighting action on the internet, including a weekly Street Fighter V tournament (Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET) and a variety of major monthly events that cover everything from Mortal Kombat X to Killer Instinct to Smash Bros. When Spooky isn't broadcasting high-level brawls, you can occasionally catch him streaming live talk shows as well as a few classics and indie games.
Bob Ross Twitch
Do not adjust your monitor — the late, great Bob Ross is, in fact, on Twitch. The painter's official Twitch channel plays old episodes of his beloved The Joy of Painting show throughout the day every Monday. Watching a Twitch chat react to Bob Ross painting is hilariously surreal — and, yes, hearing him talk about happy little clouds is as soothing now as it was decades ago. Ross' channel helped kick off Twitch's hub, which is a great place to find all kinds of cool non-gaming content.
Maximilian's stream is about one thing and one thing only — hype. Every time Max and his pals get together to play games, there's bound to be shouting, crude jokes and an infectious level of general excitement around video games. Max and his crew love fighting games, but you can also catch them playing hot new titles such as Dark Souls and Overwatch. If you want a stream you can kick back and laugh to, Max's is one of the best. Plus, he has an awesome dog named Benny.
Joseph "Mang0" Marquez is one of the most successful and entertaining personalities in the professional Smash Bros. scene, so it's no surprise that his Twitch stream is a blast to watch. A multi-time world champion, Mang0 often provides a front-row seat to his daily training regimen. But Mang0 is arguably more entertaining when he's not playing Smash, as he'll provide all types of hilarious commentary while kicking back with games like Counter-Strike and League of Legends.
One of several big celebrities on Twitch, electronic artist Deadmau5 uses the streaming platform to give fans a firsthand look at his creative process. Watching Deadmau5's stream is like being in the studio with him, as you'll watch the artist put together all kinds of crazy tracks in real time. But the real treat is getting to see Deadmau5 play games — the enigmatic DJ becomes far more human when he takes the mouse head off to play some Rocket League or Diablo 3 and chat with his fans.
Jaryd "Summit1G" Lazar is a former Counter-Strike pro that now spends his days streaming for the masses. Despite being "retired," Summit consistently shows why he's one of the best Counter-Strike players around, while also tinkering with survival games such as H1Z1 and DayZ. Despite his outspoken and unfiltered personality, Summit always takes the time to talk to his fans and make them feel welcome.
Jason "Amaz" Chan is a genius-level Hearthstone player and all-around friendly guy. Aspiring Hearthstone pros will learn plenty from Chan's smart plays and brilliant deck compositions, while everyone else can simply kick back and enjoy his entertaining commentary. Chan owns his own pro team, and some of his best streams consist of him holding his own tournaments within a house full of hilarious gamers.
If you're looking for the funniest stream on Twitch, Lirik's might be it. This mega-popular broadcaster is known for providing completely off-the-way commentary while creating ridiculous situations in games such as DayZ and Arma 3. But Lirik doesn't limit his trolling to just survival titles, as the streamer will dabble in just about any new game from Pokken Tournament to Doom.
Get Your Twitch Fix at Tom's Guide
Want to become the next Twitch superstar? Check out our handy guide to getting your stream started. If you're looking to upgrade your setup, take a look at our favorite gaming desktops, as well as the best gaming headsets and gaming monitors around. Be sure to also check out our favorite streaming players, all of which make it easy to binge watch Twitch for hours on end.