WowGrandma78, the elderly streamer who’s been broadcasting on the platform since January 2020, celebrated her 80th birthday last month. To honor her eight decades around the sun, WowGrandma78 is hosting a multi-day sub-athon on Twitch, which entered day 15 as of this writing. It’s unclear whether she plans to stop anytime soon, but Kotaku had the opportunity to catch up with her in between breaks to chat about streaming, World of Warcraft, and life off the Amazon-owned platform.
WowGrandma78 isn’t a new streamer. She’s been on the platform every night since 2020. There was never a plan to become a full-fledged content creator, but she was convinced by an ex-WoW guild member.
“I said whose going to want to watch an older person play a game, “WowGrandma78 told Kotaku over Discord. “[I left that guild for personal reasons], but it was he who got me going. I finally, one day, got a camera, and a friend came over and showed me how to set up OBS. I took it from there. Another streamer helped me make the graphics for my home page as I was clueless.”
And off she went, racking up hundreds of streaming hours on the back of World of Warcraft, Blizzard’s MMORPG, which she’s been playing for nearly 20 years now. WoWGradme78 has played other MMOs but found them difficult to stay invested in as other folks leave. As such, WoW remains her game of choice.
“I like the environmental graphics, I love raiding, and I guess dungeons as they have forced those on us lol,” WowGrandma78 said. “I love my characters. My second and main alliance [restoration] druid has 767 days played on her. You get attached to these digital characters.”
While WoW might be her main game, it was by no means her first one. WowGrandma78 told Kotaku that she “wanted to learn to build computers in 1998" so she could play the games she saw at the time. This included Starcraft, and later Warcraft 3 and Runescape. She’s since been hooked on WoW to the point where she has five different druids, a hybrid shape-shifting class capable of filling multiple roles, she switches between.
When she’s not kicking orc ass, WowGrandma78 is busy taking care of her poodle Zoey, spending time with her large family, or “lurking” on other stream to give the players credits. Hey, streamers gotta support each other.
“I have directed children’s musicals since 1979 till the pandemic,” WowGrandma78 said. “I directed a school musical last fall. In the past hiking and mountain climbing were my addiction, [but] now it’s streaming and [WoW]. I usually have five or so streamers up while I’m streaming.”
Her first subathon may be nearing its end—unless more folks subscribe to her Twitch channel. WowGrandma78 called the subscriber marathon “overwhelming” because she never expected it to blow up. But she says she’s loved it so far and that the support has been “astounding.” Still, she’s dedicated to the platform and might even consider another subathon for her 81st birthday.
“I plan [to] keep on streaming as long as I can,” WowGrandma78 said. “I have not missed one day of streaming since I started. Even when I flew to my son’s for the summer, I bought a PC and set [it] up there [so] as soon as I got there, I got the stream ready to be on. People say for me to take a day off. I may have to one day, but for now, I’m good with [seven] days a week.”
And if you’re wondering if she should change the “78" in her branding:
“We have decided not to change the 78 as it [was] my age when I started streaming [and] viewers thought it should stay the same,” WowGrandma78 said. “They are happy to know me by that.”