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How to Record a Game With OBS [Steps & Tips & Troubleshooting]

David Wilson
David Wilson Originally published May 11, 24, updated May 14, 24

If you’ve recently discovered a fantastic game and want to share your gameplay with the world, capturing your gaming progress is the best way.

Nowadays, you have numerous game recording tools to capture gameplay footage and make it available across social media and online streaming platforms. One of them is OBS Studio.

This open-source screen recording tool offers multiple ways to capture your gameplay and turn it into top-quality, downloadable, and shareable video content. We’ll discuss the best OBS Studio game recording settings and show you how to record a game with OBS.

In this article
    1. OBS Game Capture
    2. OBS Display Capture
    3. OBS Window Capture

Three Methods for Capturing Games With OBS Studio

Below are the top three methods to record your gameplay with OBS Studio. Each ensures you get top-quality recordings of your gaming sessions. Let’s dig in.

1.OBS Game Capture

Game Capture is a fully optimized OBS feature for recording 3D gameplay with high-performance settings on your Windows computer.

Here’s how to record your game in OBS using the Game Capture option:

Step 1: Download and install OBS Studio on your computer.

Step 2: Launch the program and navigate to the Sources section.

Step 3: Click the Plus sign and select Game Capture.

add a game capture source

Step 4: Label the new source as Game Capture and click OK to confirm.

obs game capture source

Step 5: Select the game capture mode (Capture any full-screen application is the recommended setting) and click OK. Your newly created Game Capture should now become visible in the Sources list.

obs game capture source

Step 6: Run the game you wish to record in the full-screen mode.

Step 7: Switch to OSB to see if the tool recognizes your gameplay.

Step 8: Navigate to the Controls panel and click Start Recording to capture your gameplay.

2.OBS Display Capture

If you wish to capture your entire display when recording your gameplay, the OBS Display Capture is the best option. It allows Linux and Windows users to record everything on their computer display, including gaming sessions and system audio.

Here’s how to use this option to capture your gameplay:

Step 1: Launch OBS Studio on your computer, hit the Plus sign under Sources, and click Display Capture.

add a display capture source

Step 2: Select the display with the game you wish to capture and check if OBS recognizes it.

Step 3: Click Start Recording to capture your gameplay.

start recording a display capture

3. OBS Window Capture

The Window Capture option allows you to capture and broadcast the screen of a particular application or, in this case, the game you’re playing on your computer.

Here’s how to use it to capture your gameplay:

Step 1: Launch OBS on your computer and navigate to the Sources widget.

Step 2: Click the Plus sign and select Window Capture.

Step 3: Name the new source and click OK.

Step 4: Select the game you want to capture from the drop-down menu and click OK.

Step 5: Click Start Recording.

window capture in obs studio

Best OBS Game Capture Recording Settings

set up OBS to record gameplay

The best way to capture your gameplay with OBS Studio is to adjust essential recording settings, such as video, audio, and output. Here are our recommendations.

Video Settings

We recommend choosing Full HD (1920x1080) or higher to capture top-quality gameplay footage. In addition, pay attention to the recommended FPS (frames per second). The 60 FPS rate is perfect when recording fast-paced gaming action because it can capture smooth motion.

Audio Settings

Adjust the audio bitrate to 128 kbps or higher and check other parameters like audio channels (stereo or mono) and sample rate (44.1 kHz or 48 kHz). You can also enable audio noise suppression to eliminate noisy environments and enhance audio quality.

Output Settings

Output settings like the default encoder and bitrate are critical for balancing file size and video quality, especially considering your storage capacity and bandwidth. Though a higher bitrate (10,000 kbps or higher) ensures better video quality, it also leads to larger file sizes.

On the other hand, software encoders like x264 and x265 help capture videos using optimal compression and quality settings. Such videos are suitable for various scenarios, including sharing on streaming platforms. Hardware encoders like AMD VCE and NVIDIA NVENC ensure faster and more efficient video encoding.

Recording Format

Finally, the ideal video recording format for capturing top-class gameplay videos with OBS is MP4. It ensures optimal compression and compatibility with most systems and online platforms. If you want to make your gameplay videos widely accessible across various operating systems and devices, MP4 is the perfect option.

Tips for Recording Games With OBS

Here are several quick tips to help you capture a high-quality gameplay recording with OBS Studio:

  • Don’t forget to adjust the video bitrate – Change the video bitrate to the highest possible setting to ensure top video quality and smooth playback.
  • Experiment with different audio bitrates – Aim for the highest audio bitrate your device can support to ensure you capture top-class videos with crystal-clear sound. Anything above 100 kbps should be fine.
  • Check the FPS – Though you can go with 30 FPS, this FPS rate is more suitable for standard videos as it may result in choppier playback. For smoother motion, we recommend setting the FPS rate to 60.

Troubleshooting Game Capture in OBS

While using OBS to capture your gameplay, numerous problems may arise, such as OBS stuttering, OBS not recording audio, or OBS gameplay recording not working.

Here are some fixes to help you overcome these issues:

  • OBS stuttering while capturing gameplay – If screen recording is encoding lag, you’ll experience an OBS stuttering problem. This issue occurs when your computer’s system resources, like the GPU, get overloaded. You can fix it by changing the OBS recording settings.
  • OBS not recording audio – If OBS is not recording audio while capturing gameplay, you’ve probably muted the software in the Volume Mixer. Simply unmute the OBS to capture gameplay videos with audio.
  • OBS game capture not working – You need specific system permissions to ensure smooth gameplay capture in OBS. If OBS stops working while recording game videos, fix it by re-launching the program as an administrator.

How to Record Gameplay With an OBS Alternative

record gameplay with wondershare democreator

If you find OBS Studio complicated for your game recording preferences, consider a simpler, more user-friendly alternative. Wondershare DemoCreator is an effective multipurpose screen and game recording software for Mac and Windows users with excellent audio and video editing features.

The software lets you capture top-quality gameplay videos you can edit in any way you prefer. Aside from offering a top-notch game recording mode, DemoCreator gives you access to popular gaming titles on the market.

Top DemoCreator Game Recorder features include:

  • High-quality creative video effects for gameplay videos
  • Recording gameplay videos in outstanding performance at 120FPS and 4K/8K UHD
  • Reliable extended recording time (up to 24 hours)
  • Enhancing your gameplay videos with top-notch audio and voiceover
  • An extensive library of game-related motion stickers
  • Customizable gameplay video thumbnails
  • Adding your face to your gameplay videos
  • Access to popular games like Roblox, Fortnite, LOL, Minecraft, and Call of Duty
  • Advanced video editing features to enhance your gameplay videos beyond your expectations

Recording gameplay with DemoCreator is straightforward. Download and install Wondershare DemoCreator on your computer, then follow the steps below to capture a game:

Step 1: Launch DemoCreator and click Video Recorder > Game.

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choose a game recorder

Step 2: Customize the video and audio settings according to your needs and select whether you want to record the camera, microphone audio, system audio, and game screen or just your gameplay.

Step 3: Click the red REC button to start recording.

record a game with democreator

Step 4: Press F9 to pause the recording or F10 to stop the capture.

Step 5: Click Export to save the video to your computer.

record gameplay with wondershare democreator
Wondershare Democreator
  • Record customized screens with audio and edit them in different tracks.
  • Capture gaming videos, tutorials, and presentations and then edit them in one tool.
  • Built-in unlimited editing templates, special effects, and other sources.
  • Supported export to MP4, MOV, MKV, GIF, and other formats.
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Conclusion

OBS Studio is an excellent tool for recording gameplay. It has everything you need to capture shareable, professional-looking gaming videos according to your preferences.

Whether you wish to capture simple playthrough videos or top-quality gameplay tutorials for the global audience, OBS Studio offers a reliable game recorder you can count on to create ideal multipurpose video content.

However, OBS has a somewhat steep learning curve. It requires time to learn how to use all its extensive settings and features. Since it may feel overwhelming due to all the options it offers, you might want to consider an effective alternative like Wondershare DemoCreator.

The software has advanced, AI-powered audio and video recording features you can rely on to capture gameplay videos in ultra-high quality and at the highest FPS rates.

Aside from empowering you to capture high-class videos, DemoCreator offers access to popular games, advanced audio and video editing tools, and other exciting features that might come in handy when trying to showcase your avid gaming skills.

FAQ

  • Where can I find my OBS gameplay recordings?
    OBS automatically saves videos to a default location on your computer. Here’s how to find it:
    1. Run OBS on your computer.
    2. Navigate to Settings > Output > Recording > Recording Path.
    3. Access your recordings or click Browse to change the save location.
  • 2. Is OBS Game Capture the best screen recording mode for capturing gameplay?
    OBS Game Capture is an optimized recording mode for capturing 3D games with top-performance settings.
  • 3. What are the best recording settings for capturing gameplay in OBS?
    Set the output resolution to 1920x1080 or higher and adjust the FPS to 60. Also, consider setting the video bitrate to 5000–8000 kbps (for 1080p) or 12000–24000 kbps for 4K video quality. If your computer supports NVIDIA GPU, set the video encoder to NVENC.
David Wilson
David Wilson May 14, 24
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