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February 27, 2017

Spectators no more: New feature lets you buy games on Twitch

by John_A

Why it matters to you

Twitch has long allowed users to watch the action. Now, by selling games directly, it’s giving them a chance to be a part of it, too.

Don’t just watch others play games on Twitch. Play them yourself, too. On Monday, the Amazon-owned live-streaming video platform announced its entrance into the computer video game market. While the company has never been on the sidelines as far as gameplay is concerned, it’s now solidly in the fray in the business aspect of the industry as well. Now, when you watch a stream of a game, you’ll have the option to buy the game or in-game content (if it’s available on Twitch) via a new “buy” button. It’ll appear below the video on the channel page, if you’re looking for it.

“Ever since our first baby steps onto the internet, our goal has been to make Twitch the ultimate hub for gaming on the web. What started as a simple streaming platform has become a living, breathing social community,” the company wrote in an announcement. “Soon we’ll be taking another step to further strengthen the community and benefit streamers and viewers alike. Twitch has always been the best place to watch, share, and play games. Soon, it will be the best place to buy games as well.”

More: Get ‘The Banner Saga’ and its sequel free with your Twitch Prime membership

Twitch is also offering revenue share to streaming partners who have opted into the new program, so if you buy a game, the streamer gets 5 percent of the revenue. That means a new way for you, the video game fan, to support your favorite streamer, simply by buying a game via his or her channel. Moreover, any purchase you make over $5 gets you a Twitch Crate, described as “a digital loot box with a special reward like a game-specific emote, a chat badge, or some Bits.” Each Crate will be different, as the contents are randomly generated.

All games purchased on Twitch will be available for download and play with the Twitch launcher, or through existing services. At launch, partners include Ubisoft, Telltale Games, Digital Extremes, Hi Rez Studios, Double Fine Games, Fred Wood, 11Bit, Jackbox Games, tinyBuild, Raw Fury, Devolver Digital, Gambitious, Trion Worlds, Blue Mammoth Games, iNK Stories, Versus Evil, Proletariat, Paradox Interactive, Vlambeer, and Campo Santo.

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