Twitch announced today that it would chip in the necessary funds to help Choice Chamber meet its crowdfunding goal. The game, which lets Twitch viewers comment on live play-throughs to determine what monsters the hero/broadcaster will fight and how difficult the game will be, had seemed poised to miss its $30,000 target.
As of yesterday, Choice Chamber had raised less than $15,000, and Kickstarter tracking site Kicktraq said it was “trending toward” only $18,000 raised before time ran out. However, with Twitch pledging something like 15 grand to help the project succeed, Kickstarter backers may be more encouraged to open their own wallets, knowing that they’re betting on something that’s now much more likely to deliver.
“By pledging a match, we’re helping to spur additional donations from gamers eager to see it come to fruition,” said Brooke Van Dusen, Twitch director of business development, via email. “A one-off donation or investment wouldn’t accomplish that multiplier effect.”
It’s an unusual, perhaps even unprecedented exit for the independent game, which would have been one of the many that fail to crowdfund every year.
“The game itself would not be possible without the convenience and simplicity of Twitch’s broadcasting and chat features, and this whole dream wouldn’t be happening were it not for their help and support,” Choice Chamber co-developer Michael Molinari was quoted as saying in a press release.
Twitch has been running with the idea of games that can be influenced by viewers’ comments ever since the social experiment Twitch Plays Pokémon took off earlier this year. In TPP, though, thousands of commenters directly controlled the protagonist of the classic Nintendo games, while Choice Chamber is about controlling everything except the player.
In a recent interview with Re/code, CRO Jonathan Simpson-Bint said the company wants to be seen as an outlet for “cultural creation.” In other words, Twitch wants to be a place where new stuff happens that could only happen there, a la Twitter or Reddit or YouTube. Letting people stream games is one way to make that happen; directly funding those games is now another. Update: And so is selling them directly.