The lights are on
Power Member - Level 10
Most of you have probably heard about the Twitch Plays Pokémon stream that is going on now. My website Leviathyn has a slew of thoughts on the matter, but with the recent news that the stream has just beat Pokémon Crystal, and will soon be starting on Pokemon Emerald, I think it's time to look beyond the Pokémon series and think about what Twitch should play next.
It is important to note that you can't really just throw out any game. Pokémon works so perfectly because it is, in many respects, the perfect game for this idea. When you die in Pokémon, you lose no progress. You simply wake up at the last Pokécenter you were at with all your items, experience and Pokémon intact. If a particular spot gave them trouble, they could always brute force past it. You could not, for example, throw Final Fantasy X or Halo 3 up on a Twitch feed and expect them to make any sort of progress, whether they were playing in anarchy or democracy.
With that said, I've put a lot of thought into games that could work. Whatever your thoughts on the Twitch Plays phenomenon, you can't deny that it is one of the more unique and fascinating trends in gaming recently. Here are four games that should also be given a shot.
This one seems like a no brainer. We know we can pretty much throw out anything with 3D movement requiring an analog stick, much less two, so I think it might be best to continue thinking retro. We don't even need to change systems from the original stream, let's keep it with the Gameboy! Tetris makes sense because the community could basically endlessly replay it. That could also be a curse, because I think people like the idea of an endgame on these streams, but I could see people setting an arbitrary score limit, or just interested parties jumping on to see if they could help improve on the current high score. There would be no need to bring democracy in either, it would probably fair even worse, and some people have already rallied against democracy anyway, saying it ruins the idea in the first place. That's an argument for another day, but I for one would be interested to see how high a score the crowd could get.
Think with me here. Two Twitch streams playing each other in Pong. My mind just blew up. This would be cool, because you just know that each stream would form its own team and personality. If a Pokémon stream could create a whole new religion (The Helix is dead! Long live the Helix!), just imagine what two warring factions could accomplish. The best part is this would never need to end. Who says the streams have to play to a set number? They could simply battle for the rest of eternity. Only two commands are needed, so you can't really mess it up, and unlike Pokémon, it would remain interesting to watch the entire time. This needs to happen, if only so I can pick a team to root for, and by proxy, against. How cool would it be if, after a month or so, both teams fought to a draw, or, I suppose, a blowout.
I'm going to run with this competitive idea for a second. Imagine two streams playing each other in Street Fighter II. Set it up to where it just constantly send them to the character select screen immediately after the match, and lets them duke it out. At their core, the controls are easy enough to work for this, albeit probably not the advanced combos. Taking it one step further, one stream should be set to anarchy, and one to democracy. Remove the need for arbitrary teams, the battle lines are already drawn! Even more interesting to think about, who would you give the edge too? My first thought is democracy, because they could pick what character they want, and throw hadokens or whatever all day (remember, democracy allows for multibutton commands as well). But then again, button mashing is a perfectly acceptable strategy as well. Tell me you wouldn't want to see that. I don't know if they logistics for this could actually work, but it really would be a wonder to watch.
Minecraft could work with a few caveats I think. While survival mode would certainly be viable, I believe creative mode would be more interesting to watch. The ability to destroy blocks with a single swipe would lead to much faster changes, and having access to every block could really make things interesting. This would lend itself well to the democracy/anarchy dynamic as well, as surely some group of people out there would actually like to see if they could build something cool. And who know, perhaps anarchy could design something amazing all on their own. I could see the camera becoming an issue, but if it was set-up in third-person view at the right angle, and never touched thereafter, it could conceivably work. I think, for the sake of the stream, it would make sense to assign left and right to turning, as opposed to strafing. Otherwise simply turning around could become an exercise in futility. And again, this would lend itself well to multiplayer, with one character in democracy and one in anarchy. Except this time, they are working together.
How would you like to see these games crowdplayed by Twitch? Do you have any games you would like to see attempted? Leave a comment with your thoughts!