A lot of surprises have emerged from the gaming industry over the past few years. One of them is the companies that are diversifying into the industry. The news of Amazon, an online retail company buying Twitch, must have come as a shock to people in 2014.
Facebook’s interest in the entertainment niche is not different. Well, that must have worn out now that they have rebranded to Meta, a tech company providing communications and entertainment solutions to internet users. And when we thought we had seen it all, guess who decided to shock us with their gaming interest. TikTok.
How it began
The rumor was confirmed by their partnership with a mobile gaming giant that goes by the name Zygna in November 2021. They both created an HTML-5 based game, “Disco Loco 3D”, a game only available for playing on TikTok.
When the company was interviewed about the game, they claimed that they are experimenting and testing for their users’ reactions to games. However, they have recently told Techcrunch that they are meeting with other gaming studios and developers to make more.
Disco Loco 3D is a casual game in which you collect dance moves while competing with friends, avoiding obstacles, and gathering coins as you walk down a catwalk. The game is similar to Zygna’s “high heels.”However, Disco Loco 3D is not the first-ever game from TikTok. Early 2021, the social media giant released their first game, “Garden of Good.”
Garden of Good was developed in partnership with an American nonprofit fundraising organization. The game was specifically created for fundraising, not for testing its community reaction to games. In the game, TikTok users tend to a garden till it flourishes to earn points. With these points, they could make TikTok donate to the fundraising organizations for feeding Americans.
Game streaming on TikTok
A service that will bring in more users and revenue to TikTok is game streaming, and it would probably be one of their agendas as they experiment with the game industry. The reason for this is that the platform is gradually becoming the next Facebook or Twitter where gamers promote their streaming channel and business.
Presently, TikTok is already a big promotional site for game content creators. Most of them decided to test the platform during the pandemic when gaming skyrocketed, and some already have millions of followers. Max Dressler and Jason Waud are two of the big streamers on the platform, and they have 4.1 and 2.8 million followers on TikTok, respectively. They acquired most of their followers by sharing gaming and comedy content.
The famous Tyler Blevins, aka Ninja, is also making a big fanbase community on TikTok. He currently has more than 7.4 million followers with over 17.3 million likes. In an interview, Jason Wilheim, a YouTuber that started a channel with the call of duty games and is currently the CEO of TalentX Gaming, said, “These TikTok stars are the next big content creators, and there are opportunities for them in the gaming world.”
He also emphasized the fact that very soon, the platform will grow so big and favorable for gamers to the extent that a content creator will have the confidence to contact Xbox to cut a deal with them. This implies that TikTok will be more supportive of game content creators than every other social platform. And it will get to a stage where the video games console creators will readily make a deal with influencers on TikTok to advertise their products.
TikTok is not losing this opportunity. In January 2020, the social network collaborated with Epic games to create their Fortnite emote. And in May of the same year, TikTok and Collegiate Starleague organized an Esport competition in which interested Tiktokers submitted a game video of Fortnite, League of Legends, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, or Rocket League.
TikTok is obviously the next big social platform for gamers and could be more for them if they add a video gaming service. With time, they could displace Twitch from the leading position.
How it’s going and the Future of TikTok gaming
TikTok is not backing out. Just recently, the social platform created a window program called TikTok Live Studio. It’s planned to serve as the window-based TikTok live-streaming application. The program is currently under testing, and it’s available to only a few thousand people in the Western market.
It’s still unsure if it will ever find its way to the global market. However, the reviews of those that have used the program reveal that it’s a great app with some amazing features but needs some extra upgrades. With the program, game content creators(streamers) could play games from their desktop, console, and phone to their audiences.
Also, using the app, streamers can chat with their audience during live streaming. They could also seek donations and tips during events. And maybe before the program hits the market, they would have added more features like streams scheduling, moderator assignment, joint live streaming with another gamer, and keyword filtering.
Aside from the testing of the Live Studio program, TikTok is still collaborating with Esport groups to organize more online games and competitions. And from the look of things with TikTok Developer, it’s possible that we will have more TikTok games in the future.
Bytedance, the creator and owner of TikTok and some other tech software and platforms such as Douyin and Jinri Toutiao, is also diversifying into games. Douyin, the china TikTok app, has previously included a mini game in the app. Besides, the company, through Nurse, its gaming arm, acquired a major mobile game studio called Moonton.
Moonton is a big developer in the game industry, and it’s popular for the game “Mobile Legends.”This game is competing with titles like “Honor of Kings” developed by Tencent and “League of Legends” developed by Riot Games. Moonton is not all that Bytedance got going in their gaming ambition. In 2020, Bytedance partnered with Gravity to release “Ragnarok X: Next generation.”
TikTok is a social media for teenagers and, over the years, has grown to become a video-sharing giant platform. Why shouldn’t it consider gaming? In fact, it has the tenacity to compete with the likes of Facebook, Twitch, and YouTube on live streaming of gaming content. We hope to see more from them.
If you enjoy this content, please share it with friends and relatives on your social media platforms.