Stream Asteroids (Twitch game)

#1

This week I finished ‘Stream Asteroids’, a co-operative stream game for my Twitch channel. When I go BRB, my viewers can each control a little spaceship. Players input commands in the chat to move their ship on a 10x10 grid (e.g. a3, c7, etc). Their ships automatically fire on the nearest asteroid. When asteroids are destroyed, they drop xp. If collected, this can be spent on upgrades (damage, ship speed, fire rate, etc). The hard part is moving out of the way of asteroids when stream latency means movement commands are delayed by multiple seconds.

The game was made in 10-14 days. It relies on reading and parsing new chat lines in BotChatLog.txt generated by the Streamlabs Chatbot. So no API calls! Probably a very unorthodox solution, but if it works - why not?

The game has proven a success! My viewers have provided valuable feedback, and I find them still playing the game even after I have left the stream for 10+ minutes.

10 Likes

#2

Awesome! Really clever!

3 Likes

#3

Absolutely amazing. I love the idea!

This is part of the charm if you ask me. Changing the course of a huge chunk of metal in outer space should take a bit of time. It reminds me of Objects in Space and the way it more resembles almost a turn based strategy game than a real time space sim.

3 Likes

#4

Thank you! And good point - I’ll bring that up next time somebody complains when crushed by an asteroid!

3 Likes

#5

This is really cool. You could try contacting Twitch devs and ask if you can write an article for them talking about the implementation / features then publish on their blog (maybe do the multiple game idea below first).

This seems like a viable business opportunity. You could make branded games for Twitch channel AFK / breaks and sell that for $50+ a license.

You could make a whole bunch of these games, and then make a dedicated channel for them with leaderboards. Kind of like Mario Party. Leaderboards and other stats over multiple games. You could sell cosmetics (like killing particles / death particles / skins where appropriate / in game avatars). Lots of possibilities. Think big!

7 Likes

#6

You’ve got some nice ideas!

I don’t know how much you know about Twitch, but I think they’d not be interested. There already is a stream game ecosystem with a full API, and my implementation effectively sidesteps it entirely. I don’t think I’m breaking any rules, but they’re unlikely to want to promote it either.

The thought had crossed my mind, but I’m not sure there would be sufficient demand. Custom branding is a good idea though as it could justify a higher price point. I would also probably not consider selling a game that relies on something as janky as parsing a chatbot’s log. A minor change from Twitch or Streamlabs could break it! I’d need to do a proper Twitch API implementation.

Unfortunately the Twitch Plays category is a bit of a disappointment, as there aren’t usually many people there (unless it’s something like Twitch Plays Pokemon). That could also be due to the quality of the games on offer, not sure. It’s funny because the lack of people there either means it’s a non-starter, or that it’s an unexploited segment.

Microtransactions are of course a key part of the Twitch API, but I am actually also able to do it using my chatbot implementation.

I am probably at some point going to make another game like this, but something more suitable for the stream latency. Thinking a basic turn based procgen dungeon crawler (will need to have a look at @klaytonkowalski’s tutorials for some of it!). At that point I can evaluate whether it’s a niche worth exploring.

5 Likes