My thoughts from the floor.
Last year’s Twitchcon, its second ever event, opened my eyes to a whole new side of gaming, a movement driven by its stars, and adored by its community. I left that event with a greater understanding of the sector and a deep appreciation for the event and Twitch’s community. You see, Twitchcon was nothing like I had ever seen. I have been lucky enough to travel to the likes of E3, Computex, GDC, EB Expo and PAX Aus over the years, and I have never experienced a show with such heart, soul and, well for a lack of a better word, niceness. A calm yet passionate crowd, with everyone just happy to be at the Mecca of Twitch, celebrating Twitch and its community.
Fast forward 12-months and I’m here again. The show in both its footprint and crowd have grown immensely. As I walked through its doors I wondered, could the event hold onto its vibe despite thousands of more attendees, more booths and corporate sponsors and more community with differing opinions and lifestyles, and the simple answer – yes it has!
There is no denying that Twitchcon is a love fest for Twitch. Everyone who is here is a partner, affiliate, streamer or community member, but I think that’s what makes it so special. Twitch is an ever growing online community that plays out of hundreds of thousands of hours online, so to be able to bring that into the real world is something really special.
As we showcased yesterday, Twitch has once again used their keynote to highlight improvements and expansions, all of which focus on the streamers and the community as opposed to the company itself, and Twitchcon is no different.
I spent today soaking in all that is this event. I watched on for the first round of the H1Z1 All Star Invitational finals alongside an arena of devoted fans hung on every shot. I walked the expo hall floor, which would have to be three to four times the size of last years. But most impressively for me, I took the time to speak with attendees and streamers, listening to their motivations for attending the event, and it all came back to that thread of community and networking among likeminded people.
This event allows streamers to connect no matter what their partner status or how long they have been doing it for. A wave of Australian and New Zealand streamers have once again made the pilgrmige over in an effort to broaden their knowledge and look to establish new relationships on a global scale. And, last but not certainly least, this event allows the dedicated viewers a chance to meet their heroes, something I saw as I passed line after line in the Meet Ups section.
To me, Twitchcon is like no other event on earth, and its one I hope to keep coming back to for years to come.