Broadcast graphics with nodecg

One of my favorite events of the year is Games Done Quick, a semi-annual charity livestream marathon where some of the most-skilled game players in the world race through hundreds of classic games to raise money for causes like Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) and Prevent Cancer Foundation. The most-recent marathon, AGDQ 2018, raised more than $2.2M for charity, and it featured some of the absolute best speedruns I've ever seen.

(If you're confused or skeptical: just watch this incredible run through a heavily modified Super Mario World. It'll give you a much better sense of why this stuff is so cool.)

I've been watching GDQ pretty much religiously since AGDQ 2014, when I stumbled upon it randomly during a frigid winter in Seattle. Since then, I've tuned in as much as possible. In that time, it's grown substantially in viewership, donations, and quality.

As a web developer, one of the things I've been most fascinated by is the presentation. Each year, the quality and professionalism of the interfaces has increased substantially, and as a casual streamer, I've often wondered how they're pulling all these amazing displays and transitions off.

Well, turns out they're just using open-source software—specifically OBS Studio (the same tool I use for streaming on Twitch!) and a pretty awesome Node.js package called nodecg.

I've been meaning to dig into nodecg development since I saw an interview with one of its creators, Alex Van Camp, introducing the project at AGDQ 2018 and encouraging other developers to check it out. Well, this morning, I finally set out to dig into it.

And, uh, wow. It's really, really cool software. If you want to get your feet wet, I think the best place to start is probably with this video tutorial series that Van Camp put together:

I'm still super early in my learning process, but I'm ridiculously excited at the prospect of finally being able to apply my full-stack web engineering experience to my occasional hobby of streaming weird-ass games about shirtless men in cauldrons who climb mountains with a sledgehammer.