Twitch Plays Pokemon, the phenomenally successful social experiment that relied on Twitch users to dictate the commands in Pokemon Red via chat, could end up turning the streaming service into a gaming platform, according to its vice president.Twitch has been around for some time, allowing gamers to livestream their sessions online while allowing viewers to comment on that via the chat system.
Last month, however, one of the boldest and most intriguing experiments popped up on the service, in the form of Twitch Plays Pokemon.
The premise was quite simple, as Twitch users were able to dictate the commands for the player in Pokemon Red by typing the appropriate word in the chat system.
The result was a huge success with over 100,000 viewers watching and contributing to the playthrough, which recently saw Twitch beat the end-game fights and achieve some pretty successful moments.
While talking about the bold experiment, Twitch Vice President Matthew Di Pietro told MCV that it generated a lot of entertainment but also helped the service fine tune its chat system.
"It has delivered a huge and sustained audience for days on end and captivated the attention of the entire Twitch community. The incredibly high volume of chat activity has helped us to hone our chat system to deal with massive loads like we’re experiencing."
"It has also made us all think deeply about creative social experiments that can be done on Twitch. This is one of the most interesting things we've seen on Twitch since we launched, and we hope to see more experiments like it."
Di Pietro also emphasized that Twitch could end up becoming an actual gaming platform, not just a service to stream gameplay footage online.
"Twitch Plays Pokemon is an interesting proof-of-concept though. We encourage everyone to think about new ways to leverage Twitch’s platform and community for creative gaming endeavors. This is unique in the history of Twitch. And when you consider how game developers might capitalize on features and functionality like this, the sky is the limit."
New games are already starting to take advantage of the Twitch chat function, as Daylight will allow Twitch viewers to trigger sounds in the game, while Dead Nation organizes polls about what things should spawn in that session.
As such, expect to see plenty of new Twitch-based features to appear in future video games as time progresses, especially since the service is already incorporated in the PS4 console and will debut in the Xbox One in the near future.