I remember when I went to GamesBeat last year, I attended a panel hosted Twitch, The Revolution Will Be Streamed: How Video Is Transforming Video Gaming. This was a great insight on how developers on all levels of industry were responding to the successes of streaming. When the panel went to questions the person next to me asked Twitch what their plan was for mobile. (37:25)
Sean Day response to the question was “Mobile market is largely about consumption...I highly doubt there will be professional puzzlejuice player." They all recognized mobile as extremely important to the success of Twitch, but really only saw it an avenue for viewers to watch their content through.
Day said “so much of the really successful content is around hardcore games with lots of depth.” I totally agree, but hardcore games can be played on mobile devices and aren’t just exclusive to consoles and PC. Many video companies are releasing more content built for mobile devices that have tons of depth.
Since I live in Silicon Valley all I hear about is mobile games, but we are already seeing AAA companies taking advantage of what mobile devices have to offer to their hardcore games. Battlefield 4 had Commander Mode built with tablets in mind. Games like Watchdogs and The Division also plan to take advantage of mobile devices.
So it came to me no surprise that just a little over 4 months since this Gamesbeat panel about streaming that Twitch announced support for mobile broadcasting. More game developers are creating great content that aren't necessarily technology advanced, but still rich in gameplay. To many viewers this content is just as engaging to watch.
Hearthstone will soon be released on mobile devices. Hearthstone is already one of the most successful games on Twitch, so allowing broadcasters to stream on the go is a win for everybody. Though broadcasters might not stream on the go I think recent events proved how surprising Twitch can be.
Twitch plays Pokemon has taken the streaming community by surprise. This channel provides the same interactive experience enjoyable on the PC and mobile devices. Who knows what else might spring out of the streaming community, but mobile should be ready to be a part of it. This is just a glimpse of what an interactive community can accomplish.
Granted broadcasting on mobile devices will have challenges that must be addressed. Broadcasters will still find it easier to stream on computers and many might not even want to broadcast that often. Still giving them many more options might spawn new ways to interact with the streaming community.
Streaming has changed the video game industry for the better. More gamers have access to enjoy gaming content without having to actually play the games themselves. As much as many of us enjoy playing games we do not always have the time and energy, but still want to interact with a live community. Streaming video games is still very young in the gaming industry and I am excited to see how it adapts to the future with all that is happening in this rapidly changing environment.