And another BitSummit has come and gone in Kyoto. As with last year, I’m quite sad I couldn’t be there, and seeing so many of my friends (through social media) have a blast — during and after hours — was a pain. But I am happy to see that it looks like it’s been the biggest edition so far, and I am looking forward to catching up on what happened on the main stage through the Twitch archives (I think everything was streamed). Big ups to the gang for putting on what is one of the most exciting developments in indie gaming in Japan in recent years, and I’m sure we’re going to see them coming in strong again for the next edition. The photo above (tweeted by Jeremy Parish) is of the opening speech by James Mielke, the event’s founder and creative director.
I’ve known Mike Sheetal for most of my life in Tokyo. One of the co-founders of the design/advertising agency UltraSuperNew, he switched gears a bit last year by founding a new game-oriented creative agency called Playbrain (bringing him back to his game dev roots). This week saw the launch of a new project by that agency, a game community site called Dekki. The site is still in its early stages, but is already home to a Hearthstone community, with more coming soon. They’re also producing two web shows on Twitch: Dekki World in Japanese and Dekki Does Japan in English.
The other day I got a link to this article about the Twitch integration an indie dev (Robot Loves Kitty) was using for a game called Legend of Dungeon, by way of a separate free client that you can download (from Steam), called Legend of Dungeon: Masters. I was curious, and so immediately gave it a try, and was completely sucked into the simple experience of chatting with other watchers, having the player we were watching interact with us, and then contributing to the game by sending items or creatures his way. I’m not a big Twitch watcher at all, and so wasn’t expecting to get drawn in like I did, but I found myself really enjoying it. It was also fun when one of the devs popped into the chat, and answered questions we had about what was going on – most of us in the chat seemed to be experiencing it for the first time. If you’ve been curious about what Twitch viewer integration can be like, and where the fun lies, give this a try.