It’s Saturday night. You log in to your computer to play a round of your favorite game, secretly wishing you had a community to share it with. Maybe you’ve watched video game streamers before, but you’ve had trouble imagining yourself in that role. Isn’t the equipment expensive? Doesn’t it take a lot of skill to connect to an audience online and start game streaming?  You log out, convinced that you’ll consider it again some other time. You know, someday. When you get the time. Maybe.

But it isn’t as hard as you think! Here are 5 tips to get started:

1. Pick a Platform

There are many streaming platforms to choose from, but two of the most popular ones are Twitch and Youtube. The most important thing is that you pick one that you feel the most comfortable and at home with.

2. Select Equipment

You don’t need fancy equipment when you are first starting out – start with what you have! If you own a laptop, you can use the internal webcam and microphone, and if you have a desktop computer, a cheap webcam and a headset with a microphone will do just fine. You can always upgrade later if you discover streaming is something you really enjoy.

3. Choose a Username

Your username should be easy to say and represent who you are. This is your opportunity to decide if you want to be yourself online, or if you would like to create an entertaining persona to interact with your community.

4. Decide Which Games to Play

While some streamers play a variety of games, others specialize in a category, such as horror or adventure games. Pick a game or two to start out with that you know you’ll have fun with and stay away from playing a game just because it’s more likely to garner viewers right away. If you are having a good time, your viewers will too, and they’ll be more likely to show up for your next stream.

5. Invite Friends

Viewers are more likely to engage with a new streamer if they see that you’re interactive, so speak up! Grab a few friends and chat with them as you play. It will encourage your viewers to participate as well.

That’s it. You don’t need to have it all figured out right away – just show up, try your best, and have fun. You just might build an amazing community along the way!