The “Watch Other People Play Video Games” Channel
Have you heard of Twitch? Twitch is a video platform (a channel in the old country) that broadcasts live gamers playing video games. The Amazon-owned channel also controls more than 90% of video game streaming. According to estimates, the channel serves 2 million viewers at any time of the day.
In this fractured world of TV, niche channels are developing content and delivering large audiences on a consistent basis. While some scoff at the concept, the channel is building huge numbers. In June of 2021, 237,000 people watched someone play Grand Theft Auto V on Twitch.
It’s another of the many channels to stardom and riches that have people buzzing. The best advice I read said, “Think of it like you’re taping a talk show and you’re the host,” Redditor Neon_Nazgul. Watching someone play video games is just like a live sports event on TV. You like the sport, you support a team (or player) and the host is important.
It seems that the real value comes from:
- Learning something about the game as you watch others play.
- The community that is built.
Twitch allows people to comment alongside the game. The streamer’s personality, just like on TV shows, seems to drive connections and make the gameplay entertaining. And like-minded gamers can connect in the chat room while watching their favorite game and gamer stream live.
The channel, besides offering reality TV-quality entertainment and camaraderie also offers some key benefits that will allow Twitch to be relevant in the future. It is a great way to sample a video game prior to purchase. “Sometimes there’s a studio audience, and sometimes you’re shooting something the audience will watch later.” While this is absolutely true, that’s also part of what makes streaming without a significant audience so hard in the first place. It’s a solitary practice where you have to pretend someone is listening, with no idea how long it might be before someone shows up, or if they ever will.
You may not even know you are already buying video game broadcasts. YouTube also has large live-stream gamer audiences as well as a channel called Mixer. There’s so much more to gaming. We now return you to our regularly scheduled programming already in progress.
Mark Mathis III is chief creative & strategy officer, partner and cofounder of AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising.