ABOUT Waffle

My story, from past to present

Early Years

I was born in Chicago, Illinois, in a Lake County hospital. My Father is an software architect and my Mother is a nurse. I was the last child my parents had. They had two kids before me. My Brother, who was born 8 years before me and my Sister, who was born 2 years before me. I grew up in a house full of pets. In total we had 5 dogs, 2 cats, and 2 hedgehogs.

I grew up in a financially decent household, but my parents were very strict with spending. This included not buying any video game systems. Naturally because of this I began to pursuit sports. I tried just about every sport out there and stuck with most for about a year or two. My favourite sport was gymnastics. I started gymnastics at a very young age of 4 and continued with the sport till I was 17. I also played a lot of lacrosse because my brother was on his college's lacrosse team and we would practice after school. Sadly gymnastics took up to much of my time so I gave up lacrosse. I reached level 10 in gymnastics which is the equivalent of Olympic level. I specialized in the rings and pommel horse. But after I stopped gymnastics I stopped doing sports all together.

The Years of Console Gaming

I was around 10 years old when my family decided to move to a different state. We moved from Illinois down to North Carolina. Because of this I lost all of my friends and had to start my social life over. As a fifth grader it wasn't hard to make friends. I quickly became friends with a group of friends who played a lot of video games. The main game we played was Halo. We would all get together and system-link 2 Xbox systems together and play LAN games on Blood Gulch. That was first game I got really addicted to. Not just to be good, but mainly to beat my friends. I continued with this mindset for a lot of games. But everything changed when I discovered PC gaming.

PC Master Race

I've always had a huge interest in taking things apart and figuring out how they work. I actually took apart the family computer when my parents were out to see all the parts. My Mother was not happy but as my Dad loves computers, He couldn't be happier. My early years on the computer comprised of simple games such as LEGO Island and Space Putt Putt. Around the time I was 13 in 2006 I discovered a game called World of Warcraft. At the time I didn't realize what this game would do to my life but I was very interested in playing it. I got my Dad to bring home a new PC from his work and got to install World of Warcraft for the first time ever.

The Days of Warcraft

In 2006 I had installed World of Warcraft. Quickly this game had a huge influence in my life. After about a month of playing I was still bad at the game. Sadly even after a month I only had one character who was over level 20. On the other side of things I did have about 15 other characters all over varied combinations of race and class. It was at this point that I was picked up by a guild called Crimson Thorn. I didn't know anything about raiding at this point and was not even close to max level. I didn't realize it at the time but this group of very dedicated people invited me into one of the best raiding guilds of our realm. They gave me so much advice and help through levelling my Warrior. The top tank of the guild said once I reached a high enough level he would teach me how to raid. Sadly I would never reach that, because when I was level 55 the next expansion would get released. About a month after the expansion was released I stopped playing. Eventually I would come back and continued to level to 70 but right before I hit max level the next expansion, Wrath of the Lich King, came out. Again just like before I stopped playing shortly after the expansion came out. It was at this point in my life that I met my friend Spencer. Spencer had a sweet gaming PC he built himself in order to play CounterStrike 1.6 and Source. We both got back into WoW right before the next expansion, Cataclysm, would come out. He quickly got to level 80 and I would finally hit max level for the first time. Not on my Warrior but on my Death Knight. The next few years after Cataclysm came out on and off for me. I came back at the very end of Cataclysm with a goal. My goal was to get a Realm First. Ever since the very beginning of play WoW I've never really been able to accomplish any goal. So after a lot of research and preparation I decided on going for Realm First: Zen Master Fishing. Don't get me wrong, fishing is easy but it is also boring. For some reason I just really enjoyed it. After maxing my fishing level I prepared for the next expansions launch. Mist of Pandaria launched and I was ready to go at midnight. I fished like crazy for 3 hours straight and at last I hit level 600 fishing. The Golden Aura surrounded my character and a messaged was broadcast throughout all servers. "GiantWaffle has achieved the first Zen Master: Fishing" I've never been happier with myself in a game than at that very moment. Shortly after I lost interest in the game I haven't really played it much since. I found a new form of entertainment for PC Gaming, and that was Live Streaming.

Discovering Streaming

After I stopped playing World of Warcraft I started playing about Blizzard game called StarCraft. Even if indirectly StarCraft had a huge effect on my gaming career. I was terrible at the game, but that only gave my the will to get better. It was at this point that I started using YouTube a lot for tutorial on how to cannon rush and 4-pool. Even more importantly this introduced me to HuskyStarcraft who was the first Game Caster I had ever met. Husky and StarCraft had such a profound effect on me if made me go to MLG: Raleigh in 2009. At MLG I got to met HuskyStarcraft and HDStarcraft. Being around the players and being a part of such an amazing event really gave me a brand new perspective on the gaming world. Truly that day was the day I decided I wanted to be a StarCraft Caster, but I was really bad at StarCraft. In my head I had the thought that you don't have to be good at the game to be able to cast it. Around this point I found out about a man named Day[9], an extremely popular player and caster for StarCraft. I started watching his tutorials for StarCraft to learn how to cast games. I gave Casting a few tries but naturally gave up. The following 2 years I returned to MLG: Raleigh because the atmosphere was just too incredible to miss out on. At MLG: Raleigh 2010 I got to meet Day[9] in person and I gave me so much respect for the guy. I decided that I would do what he did, Live Streaming.

Determined to Stream

I decided I was going to start Live Streaming but the only way for me to do that would be to get or build a new computer. I decided to build one but I didn't have enough money to do it. Luckily it was around Christmas so I asked for a Video Card and CPU from my parents and with that help I was able to build my first custom PC. With this PC I was able to stream at a 480p Quality. Not the greatest but I was really proud of my PC. The first few months of streaming went horrible and truthful I don't know why I stuck with it. I was known for giving up on things really quickly and made fun of for that quite a bit. For some reason I stuck with it for about 5 months. At this point I was streaming my StarCraft 2 Games and had about 5 viewers. 5 months and all I had was 5 viewers, but something felt so good about live streaming. Around this time I decided I would stream something besides StarCraft. That game happened to be a game I didn't play too much, MineCraft. I started with Vanilla Minecraft, which means it was the plain game with no mods. I streamed this for a few months and gained about 10 more viewers. Still not much of an outcome for all of the time I've invested in the stream. I decided I would change things up and see what all the rage was about for Modded MineCraft. I found a couple awesome mods called Buildcraft and IndustrialCraft. Using these two mods I changed my MineCraft experience forever. My very first Modded MC stream was a creative build for a Nuclear Reactor and did it ever work. During the build I had 80 viewers! As you watch the numbers go up and up your stomach starts to turn and it just felt incredible. I knew I was on to something. I streamed Modded MineCraft for a few for months and got up to about 150 viewers. It was at this point that I met a guy that would bring my stream to a whole new level.

Towelliee's Community

At this point not only would I stream quite a but I would also watch a lot of stream. My favourite one to watch was Towelliee. Towelliee had a channel that had something that I hadn't really experienced before, a community. A whole group of thousands of people that for the most part got along and had a really good time together. I met a lot of people through his stream and the most important person I met was a guy named Lirik.

The Summer of DayZ with Lirik

I found Lirik's channel from Towelliee's group of streamers called "The Hammer Squad". A group that I am now apart of. Lirik played a lot of Battlefield 3 on stream and I would follow him into server and try to beat his score but he was always better than I was. Soon after my discovery of his channel he discovered a zombie survival game mod called DayZ. The summer was just around the corner and I decided to start playing this game too and maybe find him on some server when he was streaming. Well that's is exactly what I did and that exactly what happened. Lirik was kind enough to invited any of his viewers to join him in his server one day. I first met him on Green Mountain on the west side of Chernarus. I didn't know at first but we would become best of friends over the next few months. I eventually got to go on TeamSpeak with him and play actively in his squad when we was streaming. We got along really well and eventually we just started playing DayZ together everyday. Both of us would stream it and people could watch two different perspectives. This helped my channel really get a lot of popularity. By viewer numbers went from 150 viewers to almost 500. Lirik and I would go on to play over 4 months of DayZ. After those months we started a event called Night Streams. After our classes we would stream with each other and play random games. We had to have played over 100 different games during these streams. Mainly the Night Streams would be competitive games of his stream vs mine. I would win some and so would he but the most important thing I got to experience was the influence a community could have on your stream. Everyone from both his stream and mine would get so involved in the games. It really showed me how important a good community was for your stream. A few months after these Night Streams started then came to an end. Lirik and I parted ways and I decided that it was time to go back to MineCraft. My max stream viewers were about 500 and that was about to change.

Catching Up to the Present

I decided I would start streaming Modded MC again seeing how much fun I had playing the game. It started off slow at first with about 400 viewers at this points. I found out about Mod Packs that included a ton of MineCraft mods all in one package. I installed one called Feed the Beast and started an adventure that continues till this day. I loved everything about Modded MineCraft. There were suddenly so many possibilities in this game. Endless machines and devices to make to do things that didn't even have to be done. When you enjoy something your audience also enjoys it. My viewers started to rise to almost 800 viewers. At this point I started noticing something in the Minecraft Stream Universe. It was the fact that everyone seemed to be streaming the same thing. Just this one big mod pack. I decided I was going to change that, because being unique really brings in a lot of viewers. I discovered a mod that would change my modding life forever, GalactiCraft. GalactiCraft was everything I never knew I wanted until I saw it. It added planets and moons to MineCraft. Not only that but it added Rockets/Spaceships and Moon Buggies too. Everything about it screamed awesome! I quickly put a mod pack together and start out on a adventure that would my stream to a point I never thought I'd reach. My big project was a Moon Base that we worked on for months. Over these months my streamed gained a lot of attention from the community. Bringing my viewer count up to over 1200 viewers. I never thought I'd reach this point, but I still wanted more. Shortly after we finished the Moon Base GalactiCraft went through a major update and added a new planet to the game, Mars. I set a huge goal of build an enormous Mars Base that would put our Moon Base to shame. With this project still going on the interest of the community has grown with me.

You Are Here

At this point I'm hitting average viewer counts of 1500 to 2000 viewers. I've had a max viewer count of over 3000 people. Just saying that number is astonishing. I never thought I'd make it this far with streaming. I was known for giving up and never completing anything, but for some reason I stuck with it. Even till this day I don't really know what kept me going for the first 7 or so months. Now I know what it is. It's my viewers, supporters, and fans. Everyone who has ever been part of the stream or involved themselves in the community we've built has kept me going. Now it's stronger than ever. This are on a positive slope and I will not stop here. This is only a stepping stone of where the stream will go to and I can't wait to take you along for the ride.

If it was not for you, this community would not be successful.

From the bottom of my heart... Thank you. Thank you all.