Download VODs via API or other means


I have been looking around for a few days but I have not found a reliable way to download Twitch VODs from the API. Simply because I think it’s not supported.

During my digging I have found alternative ways to achieve it, using the same method as the “TwitchLeecher” app (that uses “usher” and old Twitch API calls).

So my questions are:
Has anyone successfully achieved downloading VODs?
Is there some hidden old (but still supported for years to come) Twitch API to do it?
If not, is anyone familiar with the method used by “TwitchLeecher”? Can I consider it as a viable option to develop a tool that needs to download VODs?

I would appreciate any insights (and not just a “This is not supported” answer).


That’s not possible through the API


TwitchLeecher, and similar apps, violate the Twitch Developer Agreement, and are at risk of legal action being taken against them, some of which have already been shut down. I’m not a legal expert and can’t give out legal advice, so I strongly suggest you consult a legal professional if you wish to develop tools that violate legal agreements.

Hello @Dist

Obviously I do not wish to violate any agreement at all.
The initial idea was to develop a cool tool that would allow streamers to easily upload their videos to Youtube and make some simple video edition (like split in sections of 30 minutes, add to Youtube playlists, …).

I guess it’s not possible at all then, which ends my (short) life as a developer on the Twitch API (unless I get some other ideas in the future).

Thanks a bunch for the answer!

see also this uservoice

Upvoting uservoices help tell Twitch what we want.

The Twitch VOD system already lets Editors of a channel do this. (Cept maybe the YouTube playlist part)

Hello @BarryCarlyon

Thanks for the link. Although it seems to intend to allow downloading Clips, where my “project” was more about VODs (unless I missed something there).

From my tests, when uploading a VOD from my own Twitch channel to Youtube, I can only directly upload and not split the video into segments from the Twitch UI. But maybe it’s because my VOD is only 3 minutes duration?

Anyway, that was only a small portion of my ideas for the “project”.
On the top of my head:

  • Allow adding an appropriate thumbnail for the VODs on Youtube
  • Allow uploading a bunch of VODs related to the same game in a “one shot”, creating a playlist at the same time
  • Automate the upload (to some extent / based on rules / ?). (But maybe Twitch would not allow that kind of automation since it ‘leaks’ the content out of their platform).

Side note: I’m a huge fan of your work by the way man, as a long time viewer of the CohhCarnage channel.
Some of the features you have are really impressive (the pixel detection for cut scenes, to mention one among others).

Good point, thats my pre coffee can’t read talking :smiley:
Probably need a separate uservoice for doing that via the API. (There probably already is one, I just don’t have it’s link to hand)

Since right now it’s a manual task if you are an editor. (It’s not always a good idea to chop automatically in case you end up slicing a cutscene in half or something)

probably yes. I believe what usually happens is a editor will make the vod be split into as many highlights as needed of the required length and upload those to YouTube from Twitch via the inbuilt connection.

That’s youtube API

YouTube API too

Basically you just need the ability to get the VOD from Twitch (automagically) then you can do what you want since most of what you describe is YouTube API not Twitch API.

Made the uservoice Extend videos API to allow editors (and above) to automate downloads – Twitch UserVoice

:slight_smile: Am programmer will program for food :smiley: And making cool stuff is cool :tm:

Yes most of my ideas involve the Youtube API which is pretty complete (I know that for a fact, having played with it for other developments).

I was just answering to:

The Twitch VOD system already lets Editors of a channel do this. (Cept maybe the YouTube playlist part)

By mentioning how I think I could provide a much “deeper” service that what is already there.

Also, for having tested the VOD export feature a little bit, the user experience is really not great:

  • Click on “Export”
  • Youtube OAuth popup
  • Connect, allow permissions
  • The popup closes and nothing happens in the Twitch UI? Or I missed it?
  • Do it all a second time because it felt like it didn’t work
  • Go to my Youtube channel, notice I have 2 videos uploading
  • Feeling dumb

I totally understand how that feature is not a priority for Twitch since it moves the content out of their platform though.

Anyway, thanks for creating the UserVoice for me!
I hope they add that feature relatively “soon” ™.

In the mean time, maybe I will think of something else to work on (or maybe not, I’m not too good on the “idea” part, the “implementation” part is more my thing :smiley: )

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