Ever recorded a game or tried to stream? Then chances are you’ll have used, tried, or thought about using Open Broadcaster Software. It’s the basis for programs like StreamLabs and StreamElements and has become one of the most versatile little tools in gaming. And that program has just gotten its first major update in a long time, with a little help from one of Ubisoft’s biggest studios.
One of the unfortunate failings of OBS was that it couldn’t properly record games using the low-level Vulkan renderer. Vulkan still isn’t that widely used, but it’s super effective in some games – even low to mid-range cards can run DOOM on an average PC in 4K because of how efficient Vulkan is. But because of how Vulkan works, OBS wasn’t able to really hook in properly, forcing gamers to use less optimised settings so they could happily record gameplay.
But thanks to some help from Ubisoft Montreal, a studio with more than 3,800 staff and the head studio behind Watch Dogs, Rainbow Six: Siege and some of the biggest Assassin’s Creed games, OBS now plays very nicely with Vulkan.
And it gets better. Anyone hoping to capture a browser window, a UWP program – that includes games like Forza Horizon 4 on PC, or any game you might be playing through Xbox Game Pass on PC – will have a new window capture method. This is handy if you had issues trying to capture windows because of hardware acceleration (something you needed to enable if, say, you were trying to record an 8K video).
And there’s more. Lots more. You can copy/paste multiple sources. If you’re someone who knows what you’re doing with video editing, you can use your .cube Lumetri colour correction files in OBS’s LUT filter. Fade to Black has been added as a quick transition for anyone using Studio mode. Some annoying memory leaks have been resolved. You can drag and drop URLs into OBS to make browser sources, which is a lovely quality-of-life addition. Devices that can rotate their camera output are now supported, and anyone on an Ice Lake or newer Intel CPU now gets Custom Quantization Matrix support, although that’s only applicable if you’re using Intel’s Quick Sync Video in the encoding options.
The real headline, though, is the ability to now record Vulkan-based games. That’ll come in super handy for anyone streaming DOOM Eternal later this week, if you’re trying to stream Quake 2 RTX at a decent frame rate, or games like Total War: Three Kingdoms, X4: Foundations, Red Dead Redemption 2, Detroit: Become Human and anything from this list.
You’ll get a prompt for the update automatically when launching OBS Studio, or you can download the latest version for PC, Mac and Linux direct from the OBS site.