In today’s world, the way we send and receive content is mostly driven by the online content creators. Websites like YouTube, Twitch, Vimeo, Dailymotion, Metacafe, etc. have started to replace the traditional television and media. People have been creating all kinds of videos online to cater to the demands of millions of people every day. In the past few years, the Gaming industry has seen a constant growth and the reason for that is the improvement in the quality of the content provided to the users. So if you’re one of those people who is going to start their own channel on any of these websites, then you’ll have to start with the best video game recording software.
If you want to record your screen for some good quality tutorial, streaming or gaming content online then read below and find out the best recording software for games:
OBS (Open Broadcast Software)
The first on the list of candidates for the best recording software for games is OBS (Open Broadcast Software) which is the most popular free game recording software among YouTubers, Twitch streamers because they want a ton of things in their content, and OBS makes it possible for them. There are a wide range of quality and frames the video can be recorded in, so we are talking from 720P, up to 4K video depending on your specification. Also, it might require some tweaking in setting to achieve the best quality as per your requirement.
OBS might be a little tricky at first, but once you’re familiar with everything, then you’ll realize that OBS actually has a lot of potential to be the best game capture software. Webcam, desktop, and even specific program window can be recorded or streamed if you get good upload speeds. Yes, OBS is capable of streaming on various streaming platforms like Twitch, YouTube, Facebook, etc. Once you get professional at recording/streaming on this software, you can start using overlaying webcams, applying graphics, images, text, audio, and videos to your recordings/live streams.
The video file format outputs are FLV, MP4, etc. There are hotkeys that can be assigned to start/stop recording and many other functions. With so much to offer, OBS is open-source and absolutely free of cost. There are no ads playing, no spyware, no data tracking, no watermark, and has no time limit, so you can record and stream as long as you want, OBS will not restrict you from anything. However, there are some downsides to OBS like there is no screenshot feature, no separate audio recording, and you will feel lags and jitters because the software requires a good bit of resources so unless you have a good specification to support all the recording/streaming you might not be able to make the best use of this software – so it might not be the best game recording software after all.
Second on the list is NVidia’s own ShadowPlay game capture software. With so many gamers out there that use NVidia graphics card, who tried and recorded videos using 3rd party video game recording software, but still ended up with a horrendous looking video, well don’t worry. NVidia has you covered with ShadowPlay that comes included in GeForce experience driver management software. All of this sounds fancy, but what can it actually do? Well, this software can record your games in higher quality going up to 4K @60FPS with the press of a hotkey. You are able to record your desktop screen and gameplay with graphic overlays, it is also possible to include webcam feed in the videos. You also get the option of streaming your gameplay on Twitch, YouTube, and other streaming services, so that’s been taken care of as well.
Now there is one very cool feature this software comes with which most of its competitors don’t have is the instant replay feature, which is always recording from up to last 15 seconds to 20 minutes (depending on your settings), and that too with sound! So the next time you do an awesome flip in GTA or managed to pull off a nice clutch in CSGO, but you forgot to press record or didn’t expect something crazy like that to happen, then all you need to do is press the instant replay hotkey and save the recording without breaking a sweat. The way ShadowPlay is able to do that is because the game clip is constantly being recorded in the background, but what surprised us the most is that there was no delay, lag or any kind of disturbance during the gameplay.
ShadowPlay is a piece of free game recording software but it’s only available to people using Nvidia graphics cards with supported hardware specifications and only supports limited file types and codecs. But overall it’s highly recommended if you already meet the requirements and have a Nvidia graphics card.
Action! is widely popular for its simple interface and functionality compared to OBS. There are scenarios where users are not into the whole set up procedure to find the right configuration, and this is where Action! steals the show from its competitors by simplifying the effort put in by the user. Literally, everything is so easily laid out in tabs that even a non-experienced person can use this video game recording software without any hesitation. Does that make it the best game capture software?
So, Action! has 3 different ways of recording, like – Game and application, active desktop, and active desktop region. Game and application let you record games or application running, whereas the active desktop helps you record your whole desktop window without any exception, and similarly there is an active desktop region which only allows you to record a certain portion of the desktop. You can record mouse cursor and visualization of mouse clicks, overlay graphics like a watermark. The resolution can be set up to 1080P, however, it is possible to record in 4K but you do need a monitor that supports 4K in order to record in that quality, and the file types supported are AVI and MP4. The frame rate can be set to higher if wanted but it is recommended to keep it around 30 – 60FPS in order to achieve maximum stability, and lesser file size. Audio recording lets you record audio by itself, without recording the video, and multi-channel audio lets you record with 5.1 surround sound or stereo. It is also possible to take high-quality screenshots, which is a very useful feature to have.
There are many other things that we can do on this software, like a Live streaming option, so you can connect Action! To YouTube, Twitch, Ustream, Livestream, etc and get started with your streaming career. There is a feature to record your streams, which can be used as highlights later. You can also set your webcam recording options and resolution, microphone settings, move your HUD around. Remote Action! That allows you to connect your Android device with it so you can start, pause, and stop recording without interacting with the program on pc ( your Android device will display frame rate, recording time, free disk space remaining). But the issue with Action! is that requires a decent spec machine, also you don’t get as much customization option as you get in OBS. The price for Home use is $29.95 and $49.95 for Commercial use, however, there is a free trial so try that out before purchasing this software.
Bandicam is one of those software’s that have been around for a while and has made a good name for itself. But could it be the best game capture software? At a glance, this software strikes as a simple and straightforward software with its neatly laid out interface. If you are into creating gaming videos, demonstrating a process, explaining a software or any type of tutorial on your computer then you can easily record your desktop/game with Bandicam because it offers excellent video quality. You can record gameplay @60FPS with an audio recording of bitrate up to 192KBPS, which meets the standards of potential best game recording software. There are a few other features that this software offers, like showing/hiding the mouse cursor while recording your desktop, adding mouse click effects, adding a webcam overlay while recording, hotkey to start/pause/stop recording. One thing this software can do and other can’t do is the device recording, that allows you to record external devices connected to your computer.
Now we’ll not say this is the best game recording software because there are a few things that we experienced when we tried out Bandicam. So packed with screen capture, game capture and recording up to 4K @60FPS, everything is pretty easily available but the game gets choppy during game capture, but quality looks good at the end. Also, there is no online streaming feature! This is a problem because surprisingly there are thousands of people who are streaming, going Live on YouTube and Twitch, so not being able to stream online is a big let-down. Especially when you’re paying $40 for this software, the last thing people want is to miss out on features that other video game recording software provides. But, if you’re not too big into streaming then you can try Bandicam Trial and see for yourself if you like the software or not. The trial version gives you free 10 minutes of recording with Bandicam watermark which is good enough to understand how well the software works for you.
Although, Bandicam doesn’t have a ton of customization like it’s other competitions, what it does have desktop, gameplay, region recording with few tweaks and overlays, so overall it’s a solid choice for people who want a reliable game capture software.
For years AMD has been trying to fulfill people’s demand for gaming capture software, and keep up with its competitors, so when NVidia introduced ShadowPlay to the world, then it looked like the majority of the market was shifting towards them, but only until AMD came out with ReLive which is an exclusive free game recording software for AMD users. This software is easily downloadable through the already installed Radeon driver package on your machine and gets updated from there as well.
Coming to what ReLive has to offer, so we get to record desktop, game window, certain regions of the desktop with 4K @60FPS. We can also toggle on/off microphone, or camera as we desire. Streaming to Twitch, Sina Weibo, Mixer, Facebook, YouTube, Stage ten, and Custom Streams are available, also the quality of the streaming depends on your settings, so it would be recommended to get a proper internet connection to handle the uploading since quality is one of the main factors in making the stream look professional. Screenshots can be taken without any issue, and apart from all that stuff, finally AMD users get the feature of instant replay! So your desktop is always recording when instant replay feature is turned on, which is indicated by a microphone logo on either corner of the screen. The gameplay is unchanged as instant replay doesn’t affect the FPS. Even when you do have the option of an overlay, AMD has launched ‘AMD link’ which is a software for your phone that helps you monitor your graphics cards temperature, usage, etc. and also allows you to control all the recording settings right on the phone which is pretty neat.
There are a few things that are not so great about ReLive, for example – It only works with AMD/ATI graphics cards and that too with the cards that are compatible with it. Quality of recording and streaming could use a little help but overall it’s a solid software and since it’s free, we highly suggest you give it a try.
Conclusion – best game capture software
So, what is the best recording software for games? That depends on your exact needs – we are going to let you decide what the best game capture software is. But if you are just starting out, there is a ton of free game recording software available for you to try!