If you enjoy gaming, the likelihood is that you have considered streaming your gameplay. There are many reasons why you may want to stream your games, from showing your friends and followers your gameplay, to filming tutorials.
Whatever your reasoning is, it is important to choose the correct software. There are a surprising number of options available, and in recent years, the screen recording process has become far easier.
1If you are unsure of what software to use, then look no further. We have tried and tested many options, and have found the best five options that work well for gaming, in particular. We will be focusing on aspects such as cost, recording quality, the length of the recording, and ease of use.
Our Top Picks
Best Game Recording Software
OBS Studio is one of the most popular game recording software, and it is used by a lot of professional gamers and streamers. While it is not the easiest software to master at first, it does provide great results.
We love this software because there are no restrictions to the video length, and the streaming and recording is of a high quality. You can record the in-game audio using it, which is a big bonus.
As it is a free software, it is accessible for everyone, and the studio mode allows you to view and adjust the recordings before uploading them.
While Bandicam can be used for any screen recording purposes, it is particularly great for game recording. The recordings it takes are of a high quality, and they also have a good compression ratio, which is useful.
The recordings can be taken with 4K UHD Video, and the overall fps is great. If you are looking to record yourself while streaming, you can add your webcam footage as an overlay.
While you cannot live stream while using Bandicam, you can schedule recordings, which is a great addition.
Action! Is another popular choice within the gaming world, as it allows you to not only record your gameplay, but simultaneously stream it too. Its interface is really easy to use, and this is a great place to start if you are a beginner.
The green screen mode is useful, and the gameplay can be recorded in 4K & HD. The quality of the recordings is fantastic, and the connections to streaming platforms is not limited.
The only downside is that you do have to pay for this recording software, however, it does have a long trial period to test it out.
Nvidia Shadowplay is a fantastic option if you own a Nvidia GPU. However, if you use an AMD graphics card, unfortunately you will not be able to access this software, you will need to use Adrenalin, AMD’s equivalent.
The great thing about Nvidia Shadowplay is that it allows you to broadcast your gaming straight to social media and streaming sites. In addition to this, you can use the software to take 8K screenshots, and to personalize your livestream.
This software is free to use if you have a Nvidia GPU, which is useful, and is already built into the PC component.
Fraps was one of the first game recording software to be released. While it is fated in comparison to some newer releases, it is still a fantastic tool to use. The term, “if it’s not broken, don’t fix it”, is certainly relevant here.
It is easy to set up and use, and it is fuss free. You can choose to use the screen capture software, or you can video capture the screen in real time too. It is completely free to download, and as it doesn’t often update, you don’t have to worry about constant updates.
How We Choose
When it comes to choosing the best possible products for our customers, we ensure that we test and review everything in detail. We only recommend products and software that we believe is a great choice to consider, and will benefit the user.
With these five game recording software options, we used them all and felt that they were the best choice when it came to how they recorded, the quality, and the way in which the software could be used.
Our in-house team carried out much research and testing, and used their vast knowledge on recording software when choosing these options. In addition to this, they also took into consideration the options of other customers and users, to provide you with the best options.
Things To Consider
Before purchasing, or downloading, game recording software, there are a handful of aspects you will need to take into consideration first.
To begin with, you will want to take into consideration the cost of the software. Fortunately, there are many great options, some of which we have included, that are free to download. Given this, you do not have to worry about spending money on a software you will be potentially unsure of.
As some game recording software is paid for, you will always want to carry out a free trial where possible to test whether this is a good software for you. While some will offer a lengthy free trial, others are shorter than this,
While a paid for game recording software can be useful, especially if you are looking for customization, and high quality, many of the free recording software can be just as good, with only a handful of limitations.
Quality Of The Recording
When choosing a game recording software, you will want to take into consideration the quality of the recording. This is one of the most important aspects to consider. If the quality and resolution is low, this will greatly impact the quality of the playback.
Ideally, you will want to choose a game recording software that records in at least HD, anything lower than this will not be clear or crisp. While there are many options that will use a 4K resolution, this is not always necessary, unless you want a professional quality playback.
In addition to the resolution, it is worth taking note of the fps that the recording is taken at. The higher the fps, the better the recording will be.
Length Of The Recording
If you are looking to record lengthy gaming sessions, you will want to take note of the recording limits of the software you choose. While some options will have an unlimited length of recording, others will cut off after a certain length of time.
Typically, some free options will have a limited amount of recording time. However, others allow you to record for any length of time. The amount of time needed will depend on how long you are planning to record for.
If you are streaming for Twitch, or for many hours, you will want to choose a recording software that is built for this.
While audio recording is not always necessary, if you are planning to stream your gameplay, or you want the recording to feature the in-game sounds, this is something you will need.
Audio recording is something that is becoming more popular as people prefer live gameplay to montages. You will want to ensure the software you choose is capable of this, otherwise it can hinder your use of the screen recordings.
If you are just recording your game to watch back, and you are not planning on uploading it on the internet, then this is not an essential factor to look for. However, the vast majority of people will record their gameplay with the intention of uploading it.
Whether you are planning to livestream on Twitch, upload your content to YouTube, or even post directly to Facebook and other social media sites, the software needs to be compatible with this. While the majority of recording software are compatible with the likes of Twitch and YouTube, some will have their limitations, which can be frustrating.
In addition to this, others will allow you to record, but will not allow you to stream simultaneously, which can be a problem if you are looking to use Twitch. As a result, this is something you need to look out for and consider before purchasing.
Ease of Use
Finally, you will want to ensure that the recording software you are using is easy to use. While the majority are fairly straightforward, some are more user-friendly than others.
In addition to this, there is certain software that a beginner may struggle to get to grips with, and they would be better suited with an easier option. The layout, format, and setting options are important to research into before deciding on a software.
Best Game Recording Software
Free to download
Records audio and gameplay
Can be used for streaming
Compatible with Twitch and YouTube
Slow to download
Our top choice for the best game recording software is OBS Studio. What we love about this software is that it is completely free to download. This allows it to be accessible to everyone. While it’s free, it has a lot of features, such as studio mode, where you can preview and adjust scenes, and customizable transitions.
It is easy to use and set up, making it a great option for beginners, and as it features an audio mixer, you can record in-game audio in addition to the graphics. The overall performance is fantastic, and it allows you to live stream and screen record.
There is no limit to the length of the recordings, and it is compatible with both Twitch and YouTube. For a free software, it truly is impressive. Its only downside is that it does take a while to download. However, this is not a huge issue, and it runs quickly when it has been set up.
In-game audio recording
HD and 4K recording abilities
Inability to livestream
Bandicam is a great option to choose, and while it does rival OBS Studio in what it can do, it is a paid for service. While it is not overly expensive, it’s still an investment. However, when downloaded and set up, it is easy to use, and is beginner-friendly.
Our favorite thing about Bandicam is its ability to allow you to add a webcam overlay to the game recording. This is great if you want to display your reactions to the game play if you are creating YouTube videos.
The software allows you to schedule recordings, and you can record the in-game audio too. The gameplay can be recorded in both HD and 4K, and there is no limit to the amount of gameplay that can be recorded. The recordings are high quality.
The thing that lets Bandicam down is its inability to live stream. Given that it is a paid for service in comparison to OBS Studio, this is something you would almost expect it to have.
Record and stream simultaneously
Green screen mode
Connections to streaming sites
Action! Is a great recording option that is a popular choice in the gaming community. As it is a paid for software, it may not be suitable for everyone. However, it is not too expensive to purchase, and a free trial of the software is available, for you to try it before purchasing.
What is fantastic about Action! It allows you to record your gameplay and stream simultaneously, which is something many gamers are looking for. The in-game audio can be recorded, and the gameplay is recorded in HD. The images are crisp and clear.
The interface is easy to use, and it is also user-friendly. It features a green screen mode, which can be useful, and the fps while using is high. You can connect to popular streaming and social media sites while using, and you can add your webcam to the recording too.
Overall, it is a fantastic option if you have the money to splurge on it.
Connectivity to steaming and social media sites
High FPS and recording resolution
Built with gaming in mind
Only available for Nvidia GeForce GPU owners
Nvidia is a popular GPU creator, and creates arguably the best in the current gaming field. If you have a newer Nvidia GeForce GPU, you will automatically have access to Nvidia Shadowplay. This is free for Nvidia GPU owners, and is a great recording software on the whole.
The recordings are high quality, and can be captured in 8K at 30 FPS, and 4K at 60 FPS, which is a lot higher than the average recording software. As it is built for gameplay recording, it is tailored towards this. You can take screenshots, livestream, and it doesn’t slow down gameplay.
It works well in the background, and will not slow down your PC in any way. It can be connected to sites such as Facebook, YouTube Live, and Twitch, which is useful and the overall experience can be personalized.
The only downside is that it cannot be used if you do not own a Nvidia GeForce GPU, and is limited to its users.
Free to download
Easy to use
Green screen option
It is a more basic option, but it is a great place for beginners to start
Last, but not least, we have Fraps. Fraps is one of the original game recording software, and while it is dated in comparison to many options, it still holds its own. It has everything you need in a game recording software, and it is completely free to download.
Its interface is easy to navigate, and it is fuss-free software. As it doesn’t update regularly, you do not have to worry about constant updates. It features screen capture software, and green screen options. It also notifies you of your current fps, which is useful.
While it is free, it does have a watermark, and a limited recording time. However, by paying a one off fee, these can be removed. Overall, this is a reliable option. It is simple, and a great introduction to game recording software. The custom frame rates are useful, as are the benchmarking statistics.
Those were our top five best game recording software choices. What is great about these options is that they all have their own unique selling points. While some have more options and customization than others, this is typically because you need to pay to download them.
Overall, we think that OBS studio is the best option. It is free to download, and has everything you need to start recording. However, the other options featured are fantastic too, and the majority allow you to record and livestream simultaneously, which is important for the majority of people.
Before purchasing, we would always recommend thinking about what you want out of the game recording software, and then choosing an option that is best suited for this purpose. This allows you to get the most out of the game recording software.