A few years ago when I first began to watch Twitch steadily I would frequently tune into Ducksauce’s broadcast. His stream has a great talk show vibe mixed with gameplay, comedy, and some sweet tunes. So, today I’m excited to share how I went about creating his new stream design and where my ideas came from.
When Ducksauce first contacted me, his channel and brand were all looking to go through a bit of a redesign. The idea was to hit a more clean and professional look – so my thought was to make something that appealed to the masses, but still had a hint of his old channel involved. With a broadcast such history, I felt it was important to give subtle nods to the things that most people found great about his channel in the first place.
Designing the Panels and Offline Image
One of my favorite places to start with designs is the panels below the broadcast. For me, it’s a great place to set the tone for the rest of the design. While they’re pretty simple to work with, it helps me get a grasp on which colors, fonts, textures, and styles to implement throughout other portions of the stream. The offline image follows next, as it will need to tie in with the panels.
As I mentioned before, I felt it was really important to bring some items from his old design – so, if you look closely at the panels you’ll be able to see the artwork that was used in his old panels. Another design item I’ve become found of is a “mega panel”. Sometimes it’s hard for users/viewers to find what they’re looking for at a glance, so making a panel that truly stands out (and not overusing this method) can help with that. In this case, subscribing to the channel was what I felt would work best.
Designing a Different Kind of Overlay
Another set of challenges was that I needed to create an overlay that worked with a 3440 x 1440 monitor, as well as something that provided automatically and easily updated information. For this, I created a layout where the entire 21:9 monitor was shown at the top and on the bottom was an information bar, as well as the webcam holder (seen bottom left). You’ll also get a preview of the alert design in the video below.
This overlay has quite a lot of features. First, it connects to a Google doc where Ducksauce can make changes in an easy to understand format, and have them updated instantly. You’ll also notice progress circles on the bottom of the design, representing what information you’re being shown. Sections include channel updates, live twitter feed, information about giveaways, and the latest emotes available for the channel.
I spent a large portion of the scheduled time on this part of the design. As a former (and current) viewer of Ducksauce, I definitely wanted to make sure that the design for his first hour or so of his stream was something unique, informative, and followed the brand designs.
Notifications and Gaming Overlay
With larger channels notifications (or alerts) can become a bit distracting to the content. For that reason, I wanted to design something that wasn’t intrusive to the viewers that were there for the show, but still properly displayed the names and alert information of those that decided to support the streamer. Also, I wanted to make the webcam holder portion seamlessly transition from the 21:9 design.
With the subscription notification, I felt it’d be interesting to move the icon/logo with the alert, as it is what we use to represent new subs. The donation alert simply occupies the space we’ve already designated for the “Top Daily Tip” name, which again helps us leave as much viewing real estate open to focus on the game.
Overall, these might be my favorite alerts just yet. Below is the full resolution design of the overlay portion. Hopefully it shows that you don’t need to have elaborate overlay designs in order to make your stream look nice.
Social Media Popup
Another fun part of the overlay was a simple social media popup that displayed the social media information for Ducksauce, aka Matthew Rhode. The animations have been sped up in order to view the entire popup.
Stream Transitions and Loop Designs
In order for me to focus on some other time consuming parts of the project I enlisted the help of Orels – a designer that I’ve worked with before (he actually made the YouTube thumbnail maker as well). You can view his full write up here.
Looping Introduction Video
Garage Door Transition
While I left most of the creative ideas up to Orels, I made sure to give any feedback I found helpful. Sometimes collaborating on a design can be difficult – but in this case it proved to be simple, and I think the transitions and looping designs came out fantastic.