The Twitch Emote ‘How To’ Guide

Becoming a Twitch Affiliate brings with it a lot of benefits, one of them being the ability to generate custom emotes. As you will see, creating emotes is not that difficult, but making it cool requires a bit of creative flair and culturing aware of the Twitch community. By following our tips, you will soon be able to create cool emotes that your followers will want to use. Let’s get going!

How to Make Great Twitch Emotes

Everyone can create emotes, what’s tricky is making ones that people will want to use regularly, this is definitley not an exact science, some emotes are stupidly popular, for even more stupid reasons. Here are some tips that might save you some time, or help you get creative.

  1. Have Chunky Design

Since emotes are small, you should avoid adding small details to them. Your goal should be that they are easily recognizable, even from far away. No attempts at fine detail.

  • Work On Different Themes

It’s important to be aware that your followers are using various themes. Therefore, you will want to create an emote that will work equally well on light and dark backgrounds. You can do this by using both light and dark colors in your emote. It’s also a good idea to create an outline that will make an image sharper.

  • Be Simple

It’s very easy to just start cramming things in your design, but, in many cases, less can be more. For example, take a look at the most used emotes, and most of the time, it’s very simple.

  • Reflect Wishes From Your Audience

Your Twitch fans are your greatest asset, and finding out what they want is the key. Take a look at your chat, what are your viewers asking for, if they like an emote, go with it, and keep the joke going as much as possible.

Are there any popular phrases your viewers and subs use? If yes, try and create an emote around it, and let them be the source of the joke, making them feel special and more likely to keep subbing you, or start subbing you. 

What kind of games do you play? – try and connect emotes to references in the game.

Go random, it’s just a wild shot in the dark, but you might hit one that your viewers like.

  • Have a Strong Theme

Create emotes that use similar colors, themes, and humor to form your branding. If you like sleek and minimal, then don’t go for Minecraft style or World of Warcraft. Make them fit your personality. When you find the right branding, make it obvious, and keep it consistent.

  • Link Together

Emotes will often be used in conjunction, so it’s good to create a series that might tell a story from left to right. For example,

You can sometimes create a wider image by using more than one emote side by side, for example, a sword handle and a sword tip. So, when other emotes are placed in between, it looks like it is being stabbed.

  • Be Usable

Different emotes will be used in different contexts. You should focus on ones that are used most often, such as welcome emote, love emote, death emote, etc.
Add significance to your emotes, you don’t need to wait until someone tells you the meaning, or to copy someone else, start your own emote style, and then people might start copying you.  

  • Be Funny And Unique

People come on Twitch to engage in the community, spice your emotes with silly humor is a great way to get some interaction and some laughs. Hilarious emotes are well received. Think about all of the emotions people experience while watching your stream and make emotes that fit for each moment.  

How To Get Emotes

Don’t worry if you aren’t particularly skillful in design or can’t come up with ideas – we got you covered. Here are some ideas to get you started.

  1. Make Face Emotes

It’s a pretty popular thing today to use a photo of someone’s face, shrink it and make an emote. This video shows you exactly how to do this.

  • Hire An Artist

On freelance sites like Fiver, you can find tons of affordable artist that can make design for you. If you are willing to spend a bit more money for premium quality, you can also search for artists on Tumbler and Twitter.

  • Trace Artwork

You can try emulating existing emotes you like and spice them up with your own flair, it’s always better if it is original. Many videos on YouTube will show you how to make emotes in Illustrator, Gimp, and Photoshop.

  • Cut Out Existing Image

You can also use the above programs to cut out the part of the existing image and use it on your stream.

  • Use an Emote Maker

Lastly, you can use an application that designs emotes for you. We are in the process of making one, so you can follow us on Twitter to find out when it comes out.

Twitch Emote File and Format

Before starting to create your emote, it’s important to know what rules you should follow. You must submit each emote in 3 sizes: 28 x 28, a little bigger at 56 x 56, and 112 x 112 pixels. If you upload in other resolution Twitch will re-size your emotes, which can easily mess up your design. You’ll need to save them in PGN format. Lastly, your emote should be less than 25 KB, as that is the maximum file size.

How to Make Emotes Not Blurry

To create high-quality emoticons, use software like Photoshop and Gimp. MS Paint is not good enough, as you cannot create transparent backgrounds.

As you resize the image, you might notice that some important details get lost. A good trick to make your emotes sharper on a lower resolution is to thicken the important parts of them. When exporting, you should use a hard edge version of bilinear filtering. Or, which we personally love, use pixel art emotes.

Use Pixel Art Emotes

Pixel art at 28 x 28 pixels will look totally sharp. If you are exporting it via Photoshop, select the nearest neighboring filtering and you will get it exactly how you’ve designed it.

How to Add Emotes on Twitch

Once you have your emoticon, it’s very easy to upload it. Simply, go to Dashboard > Affiliate or Partner Settings > Emotes and click on Upload Emotes. If you want to delete your emote or swap it for another, click Edit and select the ones you don’t like.

How to Type Twitch Emotes

To send out your favorite Twitch emote, simply go to chat, and click on Emoticon in the right corner. This will open the list of all the available emotes that you can send once you subscribe to the particular streamer.

However, there is also a list of dozens of cool Twitch emoticons that everyone can send.

Twitch Turbo users also have the option to switch between Monkey and Purple Faces. They are visually pretty distinct but have the same shortcuts like the ones above.

If you want to go all the way, you can also try inserting special admin emoticons, aka faces. The list of them is extensive and ever-growing, and it might take you a while to learn the whole of Twitch’s dictionary. Pay attention, because all of these shortcuts are case sensitive. 

How to Get More Emotes on Twitch

Both Twitch Affiliates and Partners can get additional emoticons by acquiring more subscribers. If you are Twitch Affiliate, you can earn up to 5 slots by getting 50 subscriber points. Once, you become a Twitch Partner, this list can rise to 60 slots – if you earn 10 000 points.

How to Add Twitch Emotes to Discord

All of your emoticons can also be linked to Discord, so your gang can continue talking in your special language. To connect Twitch with Discord, go to User Settings > Connections and click on the Twitch logo. Just follow the simple process to authorize your Twitch account and you are good to go.

How to Use Twitch Emotes on Discord

Next, you will need to create a server. To do that, just click on the + sign, enter your server name, choose your icon, and pick your desired region. Click to the dropdown menu next to your server’s name and click Server Settings. Click Integrations, make sure that the Sync is on and click on Force Sync. Now you can easily use your custom emoticons on Discord.

How Long Does it Take to Get Your Emotes Approved

Usually, new Twitch emotes will be approved within 2 days. However, this will also depend on the number of emoticons submitted. If it’s a holiday season, you can expect it to take a little bit longer. However, if you are a Twitch Partner in good standing, your emote will be immediately approved. To be in good standing, you will need to adhere to all Twitch rules for at least 90 days.

How to Enable Gif Emotes

To be able to see gifs, you will need to install BTTV. Go to BTTV Settings and click enable BTTV Gif Emotes.

How to Make Custom Twitch Emotes

To showcase how easy this is, we will be making an emote in a free program GIMP.

  1. Find Image

To keep it simple, we will get an image from Google. Simply type in something like „cool icon“ and scroll through until you find the one that you like.

  • Upload it Into GIMP

Go to File > Open and locate the image you want to use as an emote.

  • Outline and Cut the Image

If you are using a more complex picture, you will want to outline the part that you want to keep in. You can do this by selecting a Free Select Tool. Your outline doesn’t have to be perfect, as the image will get smaller, but don’t slack on it either. If you are confident in your skills you can just click and drag. Otherwise, it’s useful to click and follow the straight lines.

Once you have created the outline, hit ctrl + X to cut it out and ctrl + V to create a new layer. Right-click on the image on your right and click on To  New Layer.

Now just click on the eye next to the old layer to hide it. This is the image that you will have in your emote.

  • Tweaking the Resolution

Now we need to resize the image in 112 x 112, 56 x 56, and 28 x 28 pixels. It’s important to start with the highest resolution, so we don’t have to redo some stuff. Right-click on your layer and select Scale Layer.

Put 112 for both width and height by deselecting chain-looking thing on the right. For quality put Cubic and hit Scale.

  Now, zoom in with the Magnifying Tool. You will notice that the image is getting blurry, but don’t worry as this is a really small image. Select a Rectangle Tool and select the entire yellow square.

Go to Image and select Crop to Selection.

  • Exporting

Go to File > Export as and select the folder where you want to save the emote. Under the name, write .PNG instead of .jpg. Hit Export twice, and your image will be set.

If your picture is over 25 kb, you will need to compress it. You can do this by opening Word and going to Format > Compress Picture, and voila! Don’t forget to save it.

The process is identical for the other 2 dimensions, just repeat the steps 4 & 5.

Top Programs to Make Emotes

When making emotes, it’s important to use quality software. We would recommend these programs:

  1. GIMP

 GIMP is a popular open-source image editor similar to Photoshop. It’s very intuitive and packed with features. It falls a bit short in comparison to the above software, but it’s more than enough for beginners.

  • Photoshop

What more is there to say about the world’s most famous image-editing software? Photoshop offers a rich set of tools that will give your emoticons better illustration style. On the downside, it’s somewhat expensive.

  • Adobe Illustrator

One of the good things about Illustrator is the option to create vector designs, which will simplify the whole process. This is why people usually use Illustrator in combination with another image editor software.

How Do You Get Sub Emotes

Sub emotes are reserved for people who will subscribe to your channel. There are 3 tiers, and if you are Affiliate, you will be able to unlock up to 7 sub emotes by earning subscription points. So, it’s in both of your interests that you get more subscriptions.

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