We recently had the chance to sit down with Main Menu member Kasper to discuss his career on Twitch along with his upcoming Charity event Kasper and Friends: Quest for the Cause IV. Quest for the Cause IV launches on December 11th and features a wide array of broadcasters supporting the Game Changer Charity. Kasper gave us some insight on why he started the Charity Event along with some background on himself. Check out the full interview below.
Interview by: Chris
Images From: Kasper
Streamer News: Hey Kasper, could you please introduce yourself and tell us about your Twitch channel?
Hi, my name is Daniel – but most people refer to me as Kasper – and I am the owner/founder/content creator on iKasperr.tv or Twitch.tv/iKasperr. I started broadcasting back in the summer of 2012, really looking for an outlet to enjoy video games and to hang out with friends, but I find myself, over 3 years later, doing this as my full time career.
Streamer News: How did you first come across Twitch? Did you start wanting to be a broadcaster? Or came across it as a viewer?
At a young age, I was an active gamer. At the age of 14, I was actually an active member of the CyberAthlete Amateur/Professional League for Pro-Am Call of Duty on the PC. I wasn’t anything special, but I did take part in online tournaments and made a bit of a name for myself before they crossed over into Call of Duty 2, which is when my computer could no longer handle it and I had to quit.
But it wasn’t too long after that when I was introduced to the world of Twitch from watching various MLG events – even though it was broadcasted through their domain, some of the professional gamers for Starcraft 2 and Halo 3 and Halo Reach would talk about their personal channels – so I started watching them, wanting to be them.
So I definitely started as a viewer, but quickly turned into a streamer myself.
Streamer News: That’s really cool that you have been active in the gaming community for so long. On top of your Twitch channel, you are also part of Main Menu, how did you get involved with the team?
It was about a year into my broadcasting career – even though my channel was relatively small, I was starting to make waves across the variety section as I won the Binding of Isaac League Racing Season 2 tournament (hosted by Crumps2) in 2013. This was the same tournament that CobaltStreak won the year before, which is how we met.
So because of my interactions with both tehMorag and CobaltStreak (two of the three founding members of Main Menu) via the Binding of Isaac tournament, I was able to meet them at PAX Prime that year – which probably led to their interest in me as a broadcaster.
A couple months after I won the tournament, they had both approached me to join the team – and even though I was un-partnered at the time, I most definitely said yes. 🙂
Streamer News: Of course, Main Menu is a great team to be apart of. It is one of the most consistent teams out there, we are big fans. This Friday December 11th, you will be kicking off Kasper and Friends: Quest for the Cause 4, can you tell us the background behind the charity event?
Sure – So Kasper and Friends Quest for the Cause began as a solo project in 2012. One of the reasons why I decided to flock to broadcasting is because I saw the power that existed behind the broadcasting platform. Even though it was much smaller back then, charity events such as Awesome Games Done Quick had also existed and did fairly well – not the millions of dollars that they’ve raised in recent years, but still more than enough to make a difference.
As a child, I had lost one of my closest friends to the battle against Cancer. We had met in the hospital ward, where I was just beginning treatment for my own illnesses. We had grown close over the months and when she had passed, I knew I had to survive so I could someday see a day cancer-free. So, that being said, I not only overcame my own adversities, but I wanted to find a way to be proactive in that search for a cure – thus, fighting or Questing for the Cause.
Streamer News: Kasper, that is an amazing way of turning a negative situation into a positive situation for years to come. How much has Quest for the Cause contributed in the past events you have held?
Our first year in 2012, it was just me, a couple local friends, and a 24 hour event, so we weren’t expecting much – but we were able to raise just over $3,500 for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
2013 was our first year where we decided to include other communities across twitch – and our passion showed as our 72 hour event raised $21,676.12 for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.
Last year, in 2014, we went as ambitious as we could and expanded the event to a week-long marathon, including over 50 broadcasters and we were able to raise $53,456.05 for the American Cancer Society.
Streamer News: The growth over the years is quite significant. This year you have an all star broadcaster team across Twitch. We know people can sign up, but what is the process of who gets picked to be part of Quest for the Cause?
Honestly, a huge part of it comes down to availability. This year, we had just under 200 broadcasters signing up for roughly 60 spots – so to try and fit all of those broadcasters into a schedule, a lot of it came down to who was available when. We always struggle with the morning/EU time zones, so when I have a broadcaster that says they’re literally available 24/7 for the cause, they instantly have a better chance of getting in.
But even though we have (currently) 66 broadcasters that foster over 2.7 million followers on Twitch combined, many of those broadcasters are smaller, unpartnered, and often have less than a year of broadcasting experience. The grassroots of this event started with the idea that I was a small broadcaster, reaching out to others to help support my cause. In that 2013 year, I think, followers wise, I was the 3rd smallest broadcaster to take part – in my own event! I always want people to know that just because you’re smaller doesn’t mean you don’t have quality content to offer – and that you can make a difference as well.
But aside from all of that, it comes down to passion. Yes, this event does garner a lot of exposure for those smaller broadcasters, but I’m always looking for people that have the right mindset and want to make a difference. It’s fine wanting a bit of exposure – because I want to help those broadcasters out – but at the end of the day, I want what’s best for the charity.
Streamer News: Agreed, along with the Quest for the Cause IV event, you also made a special song with Agent Whiskers, what was it like composing a theme song for the event?
It’s always a blast working with musicians – and Agent Whiskers is one of those talents that is very unknown in the broadcasting world. Last year, we got to work with the ever-so-amazing Popskyy and was our first time having a theme song made for the event – but this year, we wanted to try our best to help put a spotlight on someone a little less known.
It’s always interesting composing a song for the event because we always want to capture 2 things that traditionally contradict each other: Hype and Inspiration. If you have too much hype in a song, it can overpower the inspiration; but if you have too much inspiration, you can often lose the hype. So I tried my best to give Agent Whiskers as much creative freedom as possible and I think he did a fantastic job capturing what the event is about.
Streamer News:Yeah, the song is super catchy and fits with the brand perfectly. What is your overall plan for Kasper and Friends for the future? Will it still be an annual event? Or do you plan to do it bi-annually? Have you met your personal goal with it? Or do you feel there is still ways to go?
The final weeks leading into the event is always the hardest for me to answer this question… because in the back of my head, all I’m saying is “it hurts so much…” just with all of the time and effort that goes into planning. Even though we started planning this year in September, we still find ourselves trying to piece together the final technical and physical parts of the event. But that being said, the moment it turns December 21st, and our event + overtime is over, I always say to myself “I cannot wait for 2016.”
There’s always room for growth – and the growth between last year and this year has already been astonishing. We already have some plans for what we want to do with the 5th event, and I can honestly and openly say that I cannot wait for 2016 to come… But let’s focus on rocking 2015 first. 🙂
Streamer News: For sure, we can’t wait to watch this year. We are sure you will destroy last years goal and set a new mark!With that being said, what is your favorite moment from the past few events?
I can only choose one? haha – my favorite moment, if I can categorize a bit, is seeing just how far these broadcasters are willing to torture themselves for the sake of myself + charity. Just the other day, I had at least a dozen of my broadcasters say to me “you know, I’m only eating this hot pepper / taking a pie to the face / going against all my morals and beliefs and playing a scary game because I love this event and I love what you’re doing.” It’s an uplifting feeling to know that people that I consider part of my extended Twitch family are willing to do these things – and to do it for both myself and for charity. That is always going to be my favorite moment and memory from any of these events.
Streamer News: Thank you Kasper, we appreciate you taking the time to talk about Kasper and Friends Quest for the Cause IV, we cannot wait to watch the event over the next week. If you have any shout outs, please feel free to do so now.
I’d like to give a shout-out to my broadcasting team that I have been a member of for the past 2 years – Main Menu. We’ve grown a lot over the past year, and they have been absolutely stellar individuals to work with. I’d also like to thank the communities – all of them – for believing in me and Quest for the Cause. We always have such an amazing turnout and it always astonishes me to see just how far we can push ourselves in the name of charity.
And finally, if I could give a special shout-out to TinyPixxels and Sereniko – they are the two people that have to deal with me on a daily basis, but if it weren’t for them, this event, and probably my entire broadcasting career in general, never would have existed. So if there is anyone to thank in this world, it’s those two.