Last Updated: October 4, 2021
Curious about raiding? Officially introduced in the 2017 TwitchCon keynote, raiding is a vital part of the live streaming culture. So whether you’re a new creator dipping your toes in streaming or a viewer that wants to know more about this aptly named feature, we’re sure you’ve wondered how to raid on Twitch.
Well, you’ve come to the right place!
In this nifty little raid guide, we will cover the ins and outs of raiding, including:
- How to do it
- How to manage and configure raids
- The benefits of raiding
- The differences from similar features, like hosting
By the end of it, we’ll sure you’ll know how to raid someone on Twitch.
So, let’s dive in!
What Is a Twitch Raid and How Does It Work?
Let’s start with the basics. Raiding is a powerful feature that enables you to send your live audience to another channel after you finish your stream. Of course, you can also use it during your broadcast, but any incoming viewers will only see your stream and not the raid target’s one. That’s why it’s best to utilize it after a broadcast.
Simply said, Twitch raids let you share and prolong the fun by redirecting your viewers to someone else’s stream.
It’s also a great way to build a sense of community with your fellow live streamers. Raiding is a fun communal experience that lets streamers support each other.
You can imagine the benefits of raiding a bigger channel and having that channel notice you and raid you back! A boost in follower numbers is only one of the possible merits of raiding. We will cover those benefits in detail further down in our guide.
For now, let’s focus on the collaborative aspect of raiding, which makes it similar to hosting.
Twitch Raid vs. Host
Hosting and raiding help streamers spread the word about each other and reach wider audiences. Given how similar they are, it’s easy to confuse the two. But they’re not the same!
First, we need to point out that it’s also possible to host someone during a raid on Twitch; when you’re offline, your channel will also host your raid target’s channel.
Now, let’s compare the two:
- Hosting doesn’t redirect your audience. Hosting directly embeds the target channel’s stream on your page, and your audience stays put. On the other hand, Twitch raiding means that you send your viewers to someone else’s video stream. So, it’s like a reversed situation!
- Hosting is generally more of a passive tool. Usually, it’s meant for showcasing content you like during your offline hours (and you can set it up automatically, thanks to the Twitch Auto-Host feature). But raiding is a direct call to action where you send your Twitch raid viewers to spread some love. Raiding is also more of an event, surrounded by a bit more excitement and urgency.
- Hosting is useful during your offline time. Livestreamers often host each other’s videos when they’re offline. Raiding requires different timing: it’s best to start a raid nearing the end of your stream.
How To Raid Someone on Twitch
Before you start the raid, it’s wise to give a heads up to your viewers and tell them about the targeted channel. That way, everybody knows what’s going on.
Now, there are two ways to start a raid.
You can type in the Twitch raid command: /raid, followed by the name of your target.
Or, simply click the Raid Channel quick action on your Creator dashboard and pick your target.
So far, so good! So, what happens next?
A pop-up message with a 10-second Twitch raid timer will appear, which also tracks the number of raiders participating. After 10 seconds, you can click the Raid Now button and execute the raid.
You might notice a purple bar at the bottom during your countdown and wonder why it’s there. If that bar depletes and you didn’t click “Raid Now” or “Cancel,” it simply means that the raid will start automatically. Neat, huh?
Remember, you can always type /unraid or cancel the raid during the countdown if you change your mind about it.
Twitch raid viewers will also see a message with a countdown and the Join prompt. At the end of the countdown, they’ll be transported to the raid target channel. They can leave the raid anytime by clicking the Leave button on the message. So, no worries – at this type of raid, nobody’s held at gunpoint to stay!
You can start or join a Twitch raid on mobile too.
Everyone on the target channel will be notified about the raid and its size. The message will look like this: “<Your channel> is raiding with a party of <number of raiders>.”
Moments like these can be pretty exciting for smaller channels, especially if the raid is big. The bigger the raid, the bigger the surprise.
And now you know how to raid on Twitch! We told you it would be easy. Still, there are a couple more things to keep in mind when you’re raiding.
Let’s talk about raiding etiquette.
Always try to make it a positive experience for everyone involved. This is important, considering the “dark past” of raiding when people used it as a trolling and harassing tactic. We’ve all heard stories of wild 4chan raids on unassuming streamers, which can quickly turn an enjoyable experience sour. So, try to keep things friendly and fun for others!
Also, it’s best to ask live streamers you don’t know for their permission to raid them. Usually, they will enthusiastically give you their blessing, but it’s good to check just in case. Sometimes spontaneous Twitch raids can be a great thing and a pleasant surprise for the target channel. However, they can be overwhelming. So your surest bet is to plan ahead and ask for permission.
One more thing.
Let the raided channel know you’re part of the raid by writing a raid message in their chatbox. Keep it short, and try to be your best entertaining and charming self!
What Are the Benefits of Raiding?
Twitch raiding is a mutually rewarding activity at heart.
You raid one streamer, they might raid you back, and then somebody else, and so on. As you can see, it all started with you reaching out to someone, which led to a chain reaction of good vibes. It only takes one act of generosity (like raiding someone) to transform it into a stream of followers, subscriptions, and donations, which is good for the entire Twitch raid community.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that you should raid someone and expect a pay-back of sorts. But if you want to maximize the chances of someone reciprocating your efforts, you should try to Twitch raid a channel that’s similar to yours in both size and content. Raiding bigger and smaller streams has its benefits, too.
Let’s have a look!
When you raid live streamers with a bigger following, you might get lost in the noise. However, you might get exceptionally lucky and hit the followers’ jackpot thanks to them.
On the other hand, if you raid streamers with a smaller following, they will be deeply grateful. To those streamers, that one raid can mean a lot!
That’s why raiding is also a way to level the playing field in live streaming.
As we all know, even the first steps of setting up your stream may seem daunting. You need to think about many things, from streaming software to lighting. On top of that, it can be tough to make a name for yourself in a sea of 9 million-plus unique streamers monthly!
Thankfully, raids are a great way to draw in a new audience, expand your network, and support your existing one.
How To Configure a Raid?
Raiding may seem like a chaotic activity, but don’t worry! You are always in charge of who can raid you and how. The Twitch raid settings have got you covered.
Let’s take a look at those options.
Who Can Raid Me?
You need to know that by default, you are open to all raids and raiders. That means that anyone can raid you anytime.
Don’t like the sound of that? Fortunately, you have the option to manage any incoming Twitch raids. Head down to your Creator Dashboard and click the Stream Settings.
Scroll down for a bit and find the Raids section.
There you can choose between:
- Allow all raids (default)
- Only allow raids from friends, teammates, and followed channels
- Block all raids
Depending on how adventurous you feel, you can customize your Twitch raiding experience and have fun in your own way.
Who Has Raided Me?
You might want to check your recent raids in case you missed any notifications. To do so, click the cog on the lower right corner of your chat – your Chat Settings. There, take a look at the Tasks section and click on Review Recent Raids, and make sure you didn’t miss anything. Useful, right?
What About Chat?
Let’s say you didn’t expect a raid on Twitch to go rogue, and you have people spamming you or doing the chat equivalent of throwing tomatoes at you. What to do in such a situation? Relax: you can restrict their chat input! Once again, the cog of Chat Settings is your friend. Click on it, and check the Channel Modes section.
You can find different chat modes there, each useful in its own way:
- Emotes-Only Chat: Prevents anyone in your chat from saying anything (mean). Think: “Stick and stones may break my bones, but emotes will never hurt me!” Basically, it makes trolling harder for hateful Twitch raiders.
- Followers-Only Chat: Restricts chat privileges to your followers. If you click on it, you can additionally customize how long everyone needs to be following you to be eligible for chat (e.g., “Followers can chat if they have followed for at least 10 minutes”).
- Slow Mode: Requires users to wait between sending messages. You can customize the waiting time to last from three seconds to two minutes.
- Subscribers-Only: Restricts chat privileges to, you guessed it, your subscribers. This option is available to Partners/Affiliates only.
Can I Report or Chat Ban Twitch Raiders?
Sure you can!
If all else fails, you can pay a visit to Chat Settings again and click on Review Recent Raids. Look for your culprits there and select their appropriate sentences: Report or Ban. They won’t be raiding your channel again any time soon.
Raiding on Twitch is an enjoyable and flexible way to grow your viewer base, make friends with other streamers, and strengthen your existing bonds with fellow streamers and your audience. Here, the “big fish” can help the “little fish”, instead of eating them.
We saw how raids can ease the growing pains of new channels and aid them in their breakthrough. For those reasons, they are an indispensable networking tool for live streamers.
Now that you know how to raid on Twitch, there is nothing to stop you from making someone’s stream blow up with activity and cheering them up. And hopefully, they will return the gesture and make your day as well.