Using eye tracking technology in gaming and Twitch streaming isn’t a new practice, but it is an evolving one. FPS fans are always chomping at the bit to hone their reaction times and as pro esport scenes continue to grow, so does the audience of players who are interested in knowing how proven champions direct their focus.

Not yet seen an eye tracker? This little blue bubble on shroud’s stream shows exactly where he is looking in-game:

Streaming with an eye tracker has always been a concept I’ve wanted to explore on Gaming Careers, but until recently eye tracking hasn’t really been up to snuff for me to recommend as part of a Twitch streamer’s toolbelt. The technology has always been improving, but I sometimes viewed (heh) eye tracking as both an asset and an obstacle to an everyday Twitch viewer. Sure, it’s great for learning how the pros do what they do, but what about someone who’s just looking to kick back and relax with a chill stream?

My friends at Tobii have made these concerns a thing of the past. With over 18 years in the business of creating eye tracking technology, Tobii has created a new division devoted to making eye tracking a future-forward feature for Twitch streamers. They’ve done this by combining their years of experience with a mindset for what’s best for the whole Twitch community: Great eye tracking technology for Twitch streamers who want to use it and the option for Twitch viewers to customize and even deactivate the same technology if they don’t want to see it.

Tobii is thinking towards the future of streaming and it’s proven with their newest product, the Tobii Eye Tracker 4C. I’ve partnered with Tobii to see what this eye tracker can add to a Twitch experience, and to also explore how Twitch viewers can customize their eye tracking experience to fit what they want to see.

Video Guide

As with all of our guides, below I have included a full video tutorial if that is your preferred method of learning.

Tobii Eye Tracker 4C ships with two magnetic strips, making it easy to mount to any monitor

Setting Up Your Tobii Eye Tracker

The Tobii Eye Tracker 4C works best when it’s mounted below your monitor, onto the monitor bezel. Before you go digging out the duct tape, the Tobii Eye Tracker 4C ships with two magnetic strips that’ll remove the need for any extra material. You’ll only need one of these strips, by the way.

Once your device is mounted on your monitor and plugged in via USB, your hardware installation is complete. As for software installation, there are three programs you’ll need to download to get your Eye Tracker working like a dream. We won’t be hopping all over the web; these three programs are all found on Tobii’s website

The software you’ll be using is the Eye Tracking Core Software, Tobii Ghost Software, and the Tobii Ghost Twitch extension

The Tobii Eye Tracker works by using infrared light to calculate where your eyes are looking

Downloads on Deck

The Eye Tracking Core Software is how the Tobii Eye Tracker will learn to function properly, both with your computer and your face. I don’t mean that as an insult, believe me. The Eye Tracker needs to be configured to work with your eyes specifically, if it’s going to work as intended.

As you download the software, the Eye Tracker will run through some of its required initial setup. Follow the prompts to align your monitor’s display with your mounted Tobii Eye Tracker 4C. When this is complete, you’ll be treated to EYEBALL CALIBRATION. Admittedly, that’s just what I like to call it since it sounds science fictiony. As you move your eyes around the screen to help the device calibrate to your movements, I hope you’ll feel pretty futuristic yourself.

After these initial steps are complete, the Core Software will ask you to customize the visualization and functionality of your Tobii Eye Tracker 4C. 

Earlier I mentioned that Twitch streamers will have the option of customizing how they view your Eye Tracker from their end, but there still needs to be a default appearance to how your Eye Tracker is displayed to new viewers. 

Before you start taking estimated guesses, use the Preview slider found on the Visualization side of the panel to enable your Eye Tracker. It’s a lot easier to change the look of something if you can actually see it, right?

With the Preview enabled, you can change the shape, size, and color of your Eye Tracker to fit your wants. It’s always best to make the default appearance of your Eye Tracker fit the aesthetic of your streaming presence, whatever that may be. Don’t have one? It’s never too late to start building that brand

Colors are important, but I would also like to make note of the Responsiveness slider found within the same Visualization section. Take a look at how fast the Eye Tracker follows your eyesight. Does it seem too sluggish for your tastes? Perhaps too jumpy? Adjusting this Responsiveness slider will change the speed at which the Eye Tracker will react to your eye movements. I’ve chosen to turn my Responsiveness as high as it can go, but play with this setting to find the speed that works best for you.

Now let’s take care of your lovely Twitch viewers, for which you would do anything. A portion of your Twitch viewers may want to change the appearance of how your Eye Tracker is presented on their end, and some may even want to turn it off entirely. You wouldn’t deny them that; you’re no monster. 

To the left of the Visualization panel, you’ll see the Twitch Extension section that will allow your Tobii Eye Tracker to integrate with Twitch, giving your viewers the ability to customize and toggle your Eye Tracker’s appearance. Click Connect to Twitch and complete the authorization forms to connect to Twitch.

But your integration isn’t quite complete. Head over to Twitch and log into your Twitch account to finalize the integration with your Tobii Eye Tracker. 

From your Twitch Dashboard, click on Extensions and search for “Tobii Ghost”. Click on the extension that appears. If you’ve been following the steps, you should be greeted with the pleasant words, “Extension Installed Successfully!” There are only a few small steps left to take before your Eye Tracker Twitch Extension is fully configured.

Return to Extensions where you should now see “Tobii Ghost – Eye Tracking” listed as installed to your Twitch account. Installed, but not yet quite activated. Using the drop-down menu found within the Tobii Ghost extension, activate the extension by setting it to “Overlay 1”, your primary overlay.

Unlike most overlays we’ve built here at Gaming Careers, this overlay won’t be a permanent member of your Twitch stream, we just need it to get the latency of the eye tracker set to the same as your stream

Setting up the Overlay and Syncing Latency

We’ve successfully connected Twitch with the Tobii Ghost extension by giving it an overlay to find, but you may have noticed we haven’t actually built that overlay in your broadcasting software. All of our work has been done within the Tobii Eye Tracker 4C or Twitch.

The final steps for bringing together the great union of the Tobii Eye Tracker and Twitch is to create an overlay within your broadcasting software and syncing the latency between your Eye Tracker and your Twitch stream. Don’t worry, this is easy to do, if not a bit tedious.

syncing the latency of our eye tracker

Open up whichever broadcasting software you use to stream to Twitch; it won’t matter if you’re using OBS or SLOBS.  

Add a new Source to your broadcasting software and select Game Capture from the drop-down. Name it whatever you like but “Tobii Ghost” is probably a safe bet here. 

Now, in the Source window that will appear, use the drop-down menu for Mode to change from “Capture Any Fullscreen Application” to “Capture Specific Window”. For the Window option that will appear below Mode, use the drop-down to select “[SSOverlay.exe] Tobii Ghost”. Finally, further down in the window, check the box next to “Allow Transparency”. Click OK to save your new overlay.

Whew, alright, the overlay is built. Now, what do we use it for? 

Unlike most overlays we’ve built here at Gaming Careers, this overlay won’t be a permanent member of your Twitch stream. You’re only going to use this overlay to compare the response times of the Eye Tracker 4C and your actual stream, and then you’ll tweak some settings to make the Eye Tracker move in real time for your audience. This is called latency syncing. 

It’s time to go live! With your new Tobii Ghost overlay active, start streaming to Twitch and make sure your streaming setup will allow you to view OBS and your Twitch channel at the same time.

Immediately, you should notice that a notification will appear for any viewer joining your Twitch stream. This is an introductory alert from Tobii that will catch them up to speed on what an Eye Tracker is and what controls they have over the Eye Tracker as a viewer. Give it a skim and close the message out. 

On your Twitch stream, you should now see two Eye Trackers moving (as best they can) together. This is the overlay from OBS (or whatever streaming software you use) and the Twitch Tobii Ghost widget showing the same Eye Tracker movement, but at different latencies. Let’s change that. 

A good tip is to first change the color of the Eye Tracker on the Twitch stream from the widget that your viewers will also have access to. The option to change colors will be found in the Tobii Ghost tab that’s placed on top of your Twitch stream. Choose whatever color; you’re only doing this to make it easier to differentiate between the Eye Tracker overlay and the Twitch extension.

After a new color is selected, it’s time to sync latency. Open your Tobii Ghost application and under Settings, take note of the Latency to Twitch section at the bottom.

NOTE: Sometimes you’ll adjust to the point where your Twitch Tobii Ghost extension is actually moving quicker than your actual Eye Tracker in OBS. If this happens, pull the slider towards the right to even things back out again. 

This process may take a minute or two to get just right. But you’ll only have to do this once, so take the time to make these two Eye Trackers seamless in their presentation.

The slider found in that section is how you’ll sync the Eye Tracker overlay with the Twitch extension, but I can’t tell you exactly where you should move the slider. Twitch never releases the actual metrics of what the latency is between your actual gameplay and when it goes live, and your latency will differ from mine or anyone else’s. So you’ll have to make a minigame out of it! 

Move your eyes across the screen and note the lag between your gameplay’s Eye Tracker and the Twitch extension. Use that slider within the Latency on Twitch setting to find that sweet spot where these two Eye Tracker displays move as one.

You can now disable or remove the Tobii Ghost overlay within your broadcasting software. No need showing the same thing twice now that your Eye Tracker is streaming at the same latency on Twitch

One and Done

Your initial setup is complete and your Tobii Eye Tracker 4C is now always ready to go every time you go live on Twitch. Here are some helpful tips that simply build upon what you’ve already accomplished.

  1. Remember to choose the default colors and shape of your Eye Tracker to fit your Twitch stream presence. While viewers will always have the option to augment your Eye Tracker’s presentation from their end, many viewers will likely stick with your default settings. So make it look good!
  2. If you’re a Streamlabs or StreamElements user, I suggest adding a command to your Chatbot that will inform your viewers what exactly this mysterious orb that’s floating around your gameplay actually is. Eye Tracker technology is always rising in popularity, but you’re sure to have some viewers who have no idea what they’re seeing! Let the people know!
  3. When everything is setup to your liking, you can disable or remove the Tobii Ghost overlay within your broadcasting software. No need showing the same thing twice now that your Eye Tracker is streaming at the same latency on Twitch! I would recommend only disabling the overlay and saving it in case you ever need to make changes in the future.

Like What You See?

If this rundown on the Tobii Eye Tracker 4C has piqued your interest, maybe it’s time to consider adding this awesome gadget to your Twitch streaming toolbox especially when considering all the potential content additions it brings to your Twitch stream. The link below will take you to your local Amazon store so you can check the price in your currency, or you can buy one from Tobii’s website itself.

Tobii Eye Tracker 4C - The Game-changing Eye Tracking Tool for Streaming, PC Gaming & Esports
  • STREAMING - Improve your streams and videos by showing your viewers where you’re looking on your flat screen with the Tobii Ghost...
  • IMMERSIVE GAMING - Intensify your gaming with exclusive immersive features available in a wide range of compatible games (150).
  • SECURE LOGIN - Windows 10 offers native support for a range of gaze-based interactions and secure login through facial recognition using...
  • AHEAD OF THE MARKET - The only eye tracker that provides simultaneous eye and head tracking, making interacting with your device more...

Perhaps you’d like to see more of the Tobii Eye Tracker 4C in action before you make the leap yourself. A grand idea! Tobii keeps a great directory of Twitch streamers currently live using Eye Tracker in their streams. If I could give myself a quick plug, I plan on using the Eye Tracker with many more streams to come over at the Gaming Careers Twitch channel. Stop by sometime!