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One of the most common questions we get from game developers is, “How do I make a successful game on Twitch?” In an effort to answer this question, Twitch is delighted to introduce Developer Success, a new initiative devoted to helping developers leverage Twitch within and alongside their applications. For game creators, we will do this in three ways: help developers present their games to viewers and broadcasters who may be interested in them, ensure that viewers who watch on Twitch are encouraged to return and play the game they are spectating, and create new opportunities for developers to generate revenue on the platform.
Live streaming as a medium is still in its infancy, and we’ve barely begun to scratch the surface of its potential. Game developers use of Twitch as a platform is still growing and there remains a lot to explore. Originally, games were played with just a few players, maybe with some friends hanging out and watching. With the rise of streaming, now games are being played in front of crowds of thousands or more. But, as it stands, broadcasters occupy two distinct interactive ecosystems every time they stream: one with the game and another with their audience.
We don’t believe it has to be this way. We think games, broadcasters and their audiences should all be part of one singular experience. And for games that take this perspective, the possibility space is enormous. This approach allows new gameplay avenues to open up for a more diverse future for games.
We believe that tackling this possibility space requires core game mechanics that leverage the interconnection of audience, broadcaster and simulation (the game). By designing features that focus on and meaningfully utilize these relationships, games can continue to evolve our understanding of community, of multi-player, of synchronous experience and strengthen the bonds we form as players with those around us.
We call this development approach Stream First. Stream First games are designed, around the relationship broadcasters have with their viewers and the games they play. And we’re excited to announce our inaugural Stream First studio partners at GDC: Pipeworks Studio, Proletariat Inc and Schell Games.
Luckily, game developers don’t need to shoot in the dark when it comes to developing Stream First game features. The Twitch community has already been extending methods of engagement on the platform for years, inventing a variety of new ways in which they interact with their online audience that we feel game developers can learn from.
In a follow up to this post, we’ll look at some of these areas of engagement broadcasters have been utilizing and their potential applications to games.
If you’re lucky enough to be attending GDC, Twitch’s Developer Success team will also be taking part in the following GDC presentations:
When: Tuesday, March 15 from 1:20 pm — 2:20 pm PDT
Where: Room 2000, West Hall, Moscone Center
Overview: Join Brooke Van Dusen, Director of Game Developer Success, as he shows game developers how to build a game for a live video and chat community. Brooke will go beyond creating a game for broadcasting and into specific ways broadcasters are already integrating game systems into their communities, and how developers are taking cues when designing their own games.
When: Friday, March 18 from 1:30 pm — 2:30 pm PDT
Where: Room 305, West Hall, Moscone Center
Overview: Join Kathy Astromoff, Vice President of Developer Success, as she demonstrates how game creators can incorporate broadcasters and their audiences into their game design, discovery, and monetization strategies. Kathy will present case studies with data that will reveal best practices on designing the broadcaster-audience relationship into games.
Developers interested in learning more about Twitch Developer Success and Stream First Games can visit dev.twitch.tv, visit South Hall Booth #1224, or watch the video of our announcement event on Twitch.
For Twitch Developer news, follow @TwitchDev on Twitter.