TwitchTV Causes Pokemon Anarchy/Democracy Clash

February 25, 2014 7:30 AM

The latest craze that has taken the Internet by storm over the past week is an average of 60,000 people, from all across the globe, all attempting to play the same game of Pokemon Red simultaneously. They are achieving this feat courtesy of a new TwitchTV channel that is called TwitchplaysPokemon. TwitchTV is a website that allows users to stream what is happening on their own screen; Twitch has really taken off over the past few years with major gaming tournaments being hosted on the website and integration with the latest PlayStation is set to come in the future. Many professional gamers now have the ability to play in a random game and show off their skills to the world away from a professional environment whilst also making money; the money is made through advertisements and donations. However, this still doesn’t explain how 60,000 people are playing one game of Pokemon Red.

The way in which the viewers are all having an input on the game is with some simple code that is set up on the streamer’s side of things. With Twitch comes a chat box like most websites currently feature; the difference on this stream to the many others out there is that specific words are taken into account and inputted into the game. The stream that is still up now and has been going uninterrupted for the past 10 days. It has an input window to the right of the game window; in this window you can see the commands that are being inputted, there are only seven possible actions that can be inputted, these are: a, b, up, left, right, down and start. When you type in any of these words it will have a direct input into the game.

This just sounds like it will be unorganised and impossible surely? Wrong. There are two other valid inputs that, although they do not affect the character in the game, actually affect the commands that can be inputted. These two other commands are: anarchy and democracy. There is a bar at the top of the stream that is labelled at the two ends. One ends reads anarchy whilst the other reads democracy; there is a line that is constantly moving in between these two ends based on which words have been typed in the most. If the line is closer to anarchy then every single word that is part of the applicable list is then entered into the game causing total anarchy. However, if the bar manages to cross a dotted line that is high up on the democracy end only the commands that are helpful and that are entered the most are inputted creating a fair democracy that the majority is happy with.

The stream has been going for 10 days now and despite at least 60,000 people playing it throughout these 10 days they have actually made a lot of progress towards completing the game. Despite a few moments of anarchy that resulted in the loss of a Charmeleon and a Flareon the game is progressing nicely and as of this article they have collected 6 badges and actually managed to make it through the timed safari zone. This is such an incredible achievement if you actually think about it and take a moment to watch the group try and navigate Lavender Town. Guiness World Records have also been contacted and I believe that this historical event will be in the next issue of the gaming version.

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