First, I suggest you read Johnny_Vega's guide on how to start out your video reporting road to glory, it is insightful, easy to understand and put into practice. What I am going to explain is my way of creating your own video file.

Creating a Video

I am an owner of Windows Vista which has an amazing cache of programs that make it really easy to create your own movie like Movie Maker and Voice Recorder. Now, you can't record your games until you download a video recorder, so first get FRAPS or, what I personally use, HyperCam.

After you aquire your video recorder of choice, you need to personalize it for the game you're going to record. (Starcraft, Counter-Strike, Civilization 4) So for Starcraft set the width to 640 and the height to 480. Set your hot key for activating the recorder, in my case, F2 to start and stop.

Then select an AVI file, you can use a variety of Video Compressors, some will compress your videos smaller then others. I suggest DivX or MPEG but you can easily do this with the Microsoft Video 1. You can configure how well of a quality you record at by clicking "Configure this Compressor". (Note: MV1 creates HUGE files because it is recording at a better quality frame rate, even if you set it to a lower setting. Make sure you have plenty of Hard Drive space to mess around with.)

To record in-game sound make sure you click the "Record Sound" option. I use 8 Bit sample size with 11025 samples per sec. In other options, make sure the "Record Cursor" is off, otherwise you'll have your windows mouse floating around in the game along with the in-game cursor.

Now go to your game of choice, hit F2 and record away! Hit F2 to stop recording.

Recording your Voice

For Windows Vista users, open up the windows tab, all programs, accessories, and click on Sound Recorder. A little box will open. Click record and do a trial run, I sang a song to see how my voice was recorded at high and low pitch.

Now you might have a problem recording your voice like I did when I first started doing this so here is a work around option if the Recorder isn't working right off the bat. In the bottom right, right click on the Volume control and open "Recording Devices". You'll get a page like this.

Right click inside the box and click "Show disabled devices". You'll get a more extensive list! Enable Stereo Mixer (I'll explain why later.) and your Microphone if need be. (I know the pictures show the Microphone already enabled but in my case when I first loaded the screen, it was disabled.)

How to record sounds

The reason I told you to enable Stereo Mixer is because the Hypercam MIGHT not record in-game sounds without having Stereo Mixer enabled but you can't record your voice if Stereo Mixer is on. To record your voice, enable your Microphone, which will disable Stereo Mixer. Think of it this way. Stereo Mixer records sounds coming from your speakers and Microphone records from your Mic. I can't get both to run at the same time because I only have 1 sound card but it is possible to do both.

Now if you don't want to record in-game sounds but want to be able to record your voice while a game is going, keep your Microphone enabled, start HyperCam and start talking. HyperCam will record the game (but not in-game sounds) AND your voice together into one file.

Throwing both together

Now if you want in-game sounds and your voice together you'll have to first, run through the game with Stereo Mixer enabled and HyperCam on to record the in-game sounds. With my first Video BR, I was commentating in my head how the game was going, so I would click around the Starcraft game with purpose and pretend that I was actually voicing the game live. After I was done recording with HyperCam, I would enable the Microphone and start the Sound Recorder and watch the HyperCam recording and actually talk out loud to how I moved around in the HyperCam recording. I hope that makes sense.

Simple Steps to remember

1. Record game with HyperCam. Stereo Mixer on. HyperCam records what you are seeing, so if you're watching a big battle, that's what it records. When you move back to a base, it'll record that. End recording when game finishes.

2. Enable your Microphone and start your Sound Recorder. Watch HyperCam recording and commentate on the game according to how you recorded it. (Example: You recorded a group of Mutalisks killing Probes. "OMG! THOSE MUTALISKS ARE KILLING THOSE PROBES!") End your voice recording when the HyperCam recording stops, unless you want to provide after game thoughts.

After you do all that use, some sort of program that combines both Audio and Video files together. An easy program for me to mix both my video file and my sound file was with Windows Movie Maker. Open it up by hitting the windows tab, all programs, and it should be listed near the top.

Now once it's open you're presented with an empty screen with an empty window to your right and some weird box lines at the bottom. First you need to import your files so click at the top left under the "Import" section the kind of file you'd like to upload. So import your video then import your audio from wherever they are saved. You can also add Pictures and Music which makes for some pretty cool home videos for family members but this is a Battle Report, not a sissy home video.

Once the files are uploaded, drag them down to their appropriate areas. Video to the Video and Audio to Audio. Then you can do two things. You can save the video so you can work on it later but by doing that you can't compress it OR you can "publish" your video which will compress the Audio and Video together into one file. So you'll want to publish to your computer.

You'll be asked to name the file and then you'll be given 3 choices. 1) Best Quality for my computer. 2) Compress to (whatever) MB. 3) More settings. (This opens up a list of specific ways to compress the video for say HD DVD, sending it over the Internet, on a portable player, etc.)

Whatever you choose it'll tell you how much space you have and how much it'll use to compress and create that file. Option 1 won't give you any details because it'll optimize the video for your computer and will use as much space as possible to do it. Option 2 you can set the amount of Megabites you want to use. If you want to keep Starcraft in it's full resolution, don't go lower then 116 MB. (But if you go to 116 MB, the quality will be at it's lowest.) Option 3 is a list of specific settings.

Now publish the file and it'll take awhile so go do something else in the meantime. Read a book. I dunno. Just don't use your computer because it will be using all it's processing power to create that file.

How to upload to YouTube

After the file is created, it'll be saved as an .WMV. YouTube accepts .WMV but also a wide variety of formats. Use the one you like best. Keep in mind that you can't have a Video longer then 10min. on YouTube. You can either break the Video up using a program called Virtual Dub or you can do it yourself when you are first recording the game. Basicly, HyperCam record 10min. of the game. Stop. Start recording again for another 10min. Stop. Etc. Etc.

Virtual Dub is a VERY user-friendly program. Once it's installed, add your game full length video file. Then to cut out sections click "Edit" "Set Selection Start" then skip ahead about 10min. and click "Edit" "Set Selection End". Then click "File" "Save Segmented AVI". Repeat this as many times as necessary until your full length movie has been chopped down into separate videos which you can then upload to YouTube with ease.

YouTube is also very user-friendly. Create an account, upload your videos, wait half an hour or so and BAM! There they are! I hoped this guide is helpful and if you have any questions, please email me at OR AIM me at PsyReaver188.