Today, Twitch dropped some bombs with major announcements at this year’s Game Developers Conference. They revealed their new focus on Developer Success and Stream First which promises to enhance their streaming service experience for both developers and broadcasters.
The Developer Success focuses on those “interested in leveraging Twitch for their products and providing the proper tools and guidance for implementation,” states the official announcement. This is said to include the creation of new services for app partners, including the Twitch Embed API, which allows the embedding of the Twitch live streams and videos directly onto websites. They will also support studios developing Stream First games, which is their other GDC reveal.
Stream First is a new service that allows a deeper engagement between the broadcasters and their viewers. Not only can the viewers engage in the stream through direct influence by assisting in choosing the broadcaster’s path in the game, but also gain in-game experience by simply watching. Community achievements will also be implemented, plus a community co-op feature that allows them to work together to achieve a common goal. Audience call-outs will allow the viewer to gain recognition for assistance and an inclusion of structured audience feedback will also be included in Stream First games.
Stream First games refuse to be viewed as a tacked-on idea after the game’s build, by being designed from the ground up. Twitch has the first Stream First Game demos available for a test drive at the Twitch section of Amazon’s Game Developers Conference booth (South Hall #1224), for those in attendance.
Twitch has detailed the Stream First demos, and a quick look of the innovative ways that the broadcasters and their audiences can play together, as follows:
● SUPERFIGHT – Published by 505 Games, Developed by Pipeworks
SUPERFIGHT is a game of absurd arguments. Players battle with their wits to determine who would win hypothetical fights between characters with superpowers and super problems. Create ridiculous fighters from the cards you draw, argue with one another over who would win in a fight, then let the audience decide the winner. SUPERFIGHT features innovative technology built from the ground up to enable cutting-edge Twitch integration and bring players an unparalleled community experience with four-way live video, integrated Twitch streaming, and voting within Twitch chat. Sign-up today at SuperfightLive.com to receive the latest news on the game, access to the beta, and a free deck at launch.
● Wastelanders – Published and Developed by Schell Games
Wastelanders is a turn-based strategy game built for Twitch, where both broadcasters and viewers play in a live stream. Broadcasters take on the role of a Warlord in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, and lead their viewers in battle against another broadcaster-led team. By watching the stream and chatting, viewers can control warriors on the battlefield, set bounties on opposition Warriors, place land mines, and alter the battle in other fun and surprising ways. With Wastelanders, broadcasters have a new way to interact with their followers as viewers become players on their team. Broadcasters can reward their most loyal followers and subscribers with more chances to play and gain game experience. Wastelanders is in the very early stages of development at Schell Games, led by veteran game designer Jesse Schell, and located across the river from beautiful downtown Pittsburgh.
● Streamline – Published and Developed by Proletariat
Streamline is a fast-paced, arena-based game that allows a broadcaster to quickly create a party for up to 15 of their viewers and immediately jump into one of several game modes, such as a fast-paced game of cat and mouse, with the broadcaster as a Hunter chasing down the other players as Runners or a stream versus stream team game pitting the broadcasters and their communities against one another. Meanwhile, the other Viewers can bet on or sponsor Runners, vote to change the rules of the game, and play mini-games driven by the on-stream action for rewards and recognition using a web browser or a mobile device. This unique second screen experience allows the broadcaster and viewers to interact in a natural and lag-free way and keep the channel conversation flowing without being interrupted by “chat commands”.
“In the last few years, we have seen a great deal of creativity in online interaction methods from the Twitch community, including Twitch Plays games, channel loyalty currencies, and subscriber tournaments, among many others,” said Brooke Van Dusen, Director of Game Developer Success, Twitch. “However, these systems have always been external to the games broadcasters are playing. Stream First games by nature embrace these developments, incorporate features inspired by these creative concepts of Twitch community interaction, and bring about an entirely new genre of video games.”
GDC is shaking up the Moscone Center in San Francisco, California until this Friday, March 18th.