This year has made it hard to be a happy bean, but AshleyRoboto? She’s thriving. The Canadian streamer is known for her upbeat, energetic streams, which stems from a love of comedy skits and making YouTube content from a young age.
She’s also fiercely proud about being bisexual and strives to uplift others to be their authentic selves. Watching her streams, it’s hard not to be caught up in her infectious positivity and that shows in the kind and caring community she’s built.
Oh and she has great taste in games! Read on to find out more…
When and why did you start streaming?
I started streaming in May of 2017 as a side project to create content. I started making content for YouTube when I was 10, little dumb videos that are lost to time now. I did sketch videos with a friend of mine from early high school, and I tried to start doing YouTube again when I was in college. When I started to work I discovered streaming and Twitch and I thought I might as well give it a try to see what it’s like. With YouTube I felt like there wasn’t a lot of interaction with community and that’s one thing I really wanted. With streaming that’s incredibly easy to do in comparison. I put effort into it and I’m really proud of where I’ve come since then.
What games do you prefer to stream?
This is really different I think from a lot of people, but I prefer shorter games that aren’t super heavily story-based because I think a lot of the story-based games are really long and I have a fear of playing long games on stream. I just don’t like feeling like I’m trapped in a box of a game, so if a game’s going to take two weeks of streams to complete that scares me. Short but with replayability is really cool so I can just toss it in whenever. Or games that are kind of mindless. I want to have games being played that everyone can enjoy without being scared of being spoiled or not understanding what’s going on. I don’t want to punish people for not being able to make every stream.
What makes your stream unique? What can people expect?
A lot of what I get is that my stream has a lot of energy and is really wholesome and positive. I think I have a really close-knit community and I feed off of chat’s energy so much. My outlook really is to just have a little corner of the internet that can be a bright spot in people’s lives. I go into every stream with a positive outlook like “the world might be rough, but at least there’s a little place where you can hang out and have a fun time.” I’ve relied in the past on content creators to be a bright spot in my life when things weren’t so hot for me, so I like to try to be able to be that for others if they need it – repaying a debt to the universe!
You even describe yourself as “a happy bean!” Why is community so important to you?
I think I just thrive better as a content creator being able to bounce off the energy. When I’m recording YouTube videos I really am just alone in a room. And it’s not like I’m not alone in a room while I’m streaming, but I can still get this energy from chat and people hanging out and talking and I can just throw a joke into chat and it will spiral into this ridiculous thing. It’s little moments like that that I love so much. That’s my favourite thing, that it’s not just me making the content, it’s not just me bringing the energy. It’s a group effort of a thing and it’s really awesome to just have people hang out and want to joke around with each other and me.
You’ve also established yourself on YouTube and TikTok – do they support your Twitch stream?
Yeah Tik Tok especially. Tik Tok has been a wild driving force as of late with just bringing my stream to more people wanting to hang out, which is incredible. All I really do with Tik Tok is upload stream highlights so if people find it they’re gonna find highlights from my stream so they already know what to expect. And YouTube is just something I wanted to do for so long. I’m trying to get into making unique content for YouTube. It’s going to be an extension of me and people can see more of my life outside of streaming and get more of the humour I used to put into videos when I was younger. YouTube will help people get to the stream which is still my main squeeze, what I love more than anything. I just think the more content you can put out on more platforms the better, as long as you’re not burning yourself out.
You’re an artist as well, is that something you’d like to do more of?
Oh my gosh I love doing art. When I first started streaming, streaming was my side hobby for my art because I was pretty much a full time commission artist for a good chunk of time and I would do emotes for other people. My laser focus was on my artwork, getting a website out, having more people find me through my art and that’s almost what I was using my stream for at first. And then I just started falling more in love with the playing games and hanging out part of it and the art kinda fell off. But I still always do art for my own channel. I am creatively antsy where I can’t let my assets sit the same for too long because I know I can do better all the time.
How do you find being an out LGBTQ+ streamer?
Obviously when you stream with the LGBT tag you get a lot of homophobic trolls that are just being silly. That doesn’t really bother me so much because I feel very comfortable and loud in my sexuality. I’ve dealt specifically with a lot of biphobia in my life and it used to bother me but now it just gets to a point where it fuels me out of sheer pettiness to just be way louder and more aggressive about it. I feel if I’d been exposed more to people in the LGBT community I would’ve been more out and proud sooner. So the fact that I can do that is really awesome. I know I attract a lot of other people who are in the LGBT community and whenever I get a message that someone in chat’s come out I always make a big deal and celebrate it because it’s a huge step and super scary and super hard. I remember when I came out and was so scared I sent a text message to my parents instead of telling them in person! I felt really alone in it because I didn’t really know anybody. It was just such a scary thing and I think the more you can see other people thriving and being out is great. If you have a place to go where you can be out and you can be proud of yourself that makes a huge difference.
It’s just really cool to have that environment where I know that people can be out and be themselves, it makes me really proud. I feel like if I wasn’t so out and loud and very forthcoming about my sexuality, I wouldn’t have as much of a loving caring accepting community because that’s such a huge part of what’s so welcoming about my community. We’re all sorts of different identities and sexualities hanging out and being open about it. You can feel like you’re totally yourself and you’re not hiding anything.
What’s the best thing about being a streamer?
Oh dear, there’s a lot of wonderful things about being a streamer! I still think it’s having such a caring community. My Discord server, whenever I go in there and someone’s having a rough day there’s a huge dog pile of love and support and if anyone’s having a rough time in stream the same thing happens. The most rewarding thing is to have had a hand in making a community that’s so caring and kind and knowing there’s a place carved out on the internet – that can be such a dark and scary place – that is just so full of love and light.
What have you learned about yourself through streaming?
I have learned that I am a lot stronger than I used to think I was. I feel like my self esteem was really rough when I first started streaming and before that. With a lot of the hardships that have come with streaming, like failures and people coming in trying to tear you down constantly, I feel like I have become a stronger person and realised the potential of my strengths as well. Streaming really showed me how strong and resilient I can be, it’s one of the best things that’s come from this.
Before I started streaming, my circle was small because I’m very much a home-body. I don’t really go out and meet a lot of people in person, so being a part of the streaming community you meet so many people that will help you understand yourself, learn more about yourself and grow as a person. It’s an amazing thing and I think without Twitch I would not be as proud of who I am, because I don’t think I would’ve had the proper exposure, I wouldn’t have met cool people that make me feel comfortable and accepted, and I think that’s a beautiful thing.
What’s the game that defined your childhood/got you into gaming?
Definitely Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask. Ocarina of Time was the first video game I ever played and that super defined my childhood. Playing that and then straight after immediately playing Majora’s Mask really defined what I love. They’re not super long, they’re really cool, Majora’s Mask is a little spooky and I really love that. It’s got a lot of creepy elements to it, it’s got really deep storytelling that’s not super in your face and you can discover something new every time you play. I love subtle spooky things and things that look all cutesy on the surface but are creepy underneath. They’ll always hold a special place in my heart.
What’s your game of the year so far?
Oh Lordy. See this is such a hard question to think about because 2020 has felt like a decade! Honestly I feel like right now, Hades has gripped me more than any other game I’ve played this year. I think I’ve picked things up and then dropped them, but with Hades I want to keep mindlessly playing through it. It’s so much fun, so addicting. I want to play more of this game but I can’t keep playing it for weeks and weeks and weeks in a row!
To find out more about AshleyRoboto, catch her streaming on her Twitch channel.