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What is Stream Sniping in Multiplayer Games?

If you’ve spent any time watching a Twitch streamer play a multiplayer game, you’ve probably seen them complain about something called “stream sniping.”

Do you know what stream sniping is? If not, don’t worry. I will tell you every detail you need to know about stream sniping in this post.

In online gaming, stream sniping is a technique in which a viewer exploits information by watching their opponents’ Livestream. Sounds sneaky, isn’t it? Perhaps. Here I’ll explain what stream sniping is and what you can do to prevent it.

So, let’s get started!

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Stream Sniping
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What Is Stream Sniping?

As a simple definition, stream sniping is when someone gains access to a streamer’s in-game lobby with the purpose to assist or aggravate them.

For example, If you follow the stream of an opponent in a competitive multiplayer game, you can sneak up on or flank them simply by working out their exact position. 

The phenomenon is not necessarily exclusive to competitive titles. Although stream sniping can be used for competitive gain, it can also be used to harass and grief individuals.

Streamers may not be able to hide on-screen information like the server they connected to or their screen name, which can be used to locate them by stream snipers.

In most cases, streamers with a large audience are affected, but live streaming gamers could also be affected.

In other words, stream sniping is like peeking at your buddy’s screen of a LAN party, or “screen cheating” in the split-screen mode in a game like Halo or Goldeneye for the Nintendo 64.

Why Do People Stream Snipe?

In essence, stream sniping is a means of gathering information. You can find out who you’re playing against and which champions they plan to play.

Taking advantage of this will allow you to counter-pick. The term “counter pick” simply refers to choosing a champ that contracts the champ you’re going to play against.

For instance, choosing Zed into Lux, Renekton into Darius, or even Vi into Evelynn. It makes you more likely to win. If you have a kit that allows you to combat what your opponent picks, you’ll win the game.

However, stream sniping does not only take place in champ select.

As the game progresses, stream sniping continues. When a streamer has two devices, they can watch everything the enemy is doing in near real-time during the game.

This means they are aware of where the jungler is and as to potential ganks. They can see if an enemy is hiding. When they see the enemy setting up for an objective or heading towards it, they know that.

All of this information affects the macro play of the game.

For an experienced player in League of Legends, this information is the key to an easy victory. You’re much more likely to win the game if you know your opponent’s moves, where all of their wards are, and so on.

Without risking anything, you can plan your reaction to such events.

Stream Sniping
Photo by Fredrick Tendong on Unsplash

How To Prevent Stream Sniping?

In most cases, stream sniping can be difficult to prevent if someone is determined enough. However, the following suggestions make it harder for stream snipers to do so:

Hide Portions Of Your Screen: Hide all parts of your screen, especially the UI (user interface), that could contain important information. You can hide or obscure some components of the UI depending on the game. Here are some suggestions for what to hide from your stream.

  • Hide your exact location from your minimap.
  • Hide your game server’s name.
  • Hide your character’s name from your stream.
  • Hide in-game chat that may reveal what people are saying to you.

You can also use streaming capture programs that blur parts of your screen to hide information that could give away your location in a game.

Another option is to apply an overlay that covers specific portions of the screen. As an example, some streamers place their ads over their game tags, or those of their opponents, to hide their real identities in-game. MOBA players often use overlays that obscure only areas of the mini-map (like lanes or jungle paths) where they are located.

Put A Delay On Your Stream: When streaming your competitive game (e.g., shooting games), you reveal your position, life, and ammo, making it easier for others to kill you.

A streaming service, like Twitch, offers you the option to delay your stream by 1 to 15 minutes. Live Streaming platform Twitch offers streamers the ability to apply a broadcast delay that will reduce stream sniping.

Don’t Feed The Trolls: Some people stream snipes because they are trying to draw attention. If you want to ignore an Internet troll, the easiest and most effective method is not to acknowledge them. When you ignore their actions, most people get bored and stop.

Report The Player To The Game Developer: Sniping in the stream is a form of cheating, but it can be hard to prove.

You can report a cheater to the game developer if you have undeniable evidence that he or she is cheating (e.g., when they are streaming themselves sniping you). The game developer may ban or suspend a player based on their actions.

If you follow these tips, you’ll be able to stream any game without being constantly interrupted by stream snipers. 

Conclusion

With all the information I’ve provided, I hope that you have gained a thorough understanding of what stream sniping is. If you have any questions and suggestions about this topic, let me know in the comments below.

Thank you for reading this article!

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