Watch 15K people play the same Pokemon campaign together in multiplayer

Twitch viewers able to issue commands using chat and control Ash together

Listen, stop whatever you're doing, because whatever it is won't be nearly as entertaining or as fascinating as this.

Right now, over 15,000 people are playing the same Pokémon game collectively, and streaming it on Twitch. Every single person tuned into the TwitchPlaysPokemon stream is able to directly control the character by typing directions and commands into the chat stream.

The game is running thanks to a combination of technologies including VisualBoyAdvance, a Game Boy emulator, Python code and JavaScript.

Speaking to Polygon, the creator, who from Australia and wishes to remain anonymous, said he didn't expect it would be as popular as it has been.

"I didn't really have any plans for it from the beginning," he said. "I just wanted to put it up to see how people would respond. I put it together and put it up on a dedicated server all within a few days."

"Originally I was creating my own version of SaltyBet, another Twitch stream that has a strong focus on automated viewer interaction, but after interest in that type of content died down I decided to do something different."

The developer says Pokémon was suited to this type of experience as it could function as a turn-based game, but also picked it because he's a fan: "I have a strong enthusiasm for all video games," he said, "but I do have strong nostalgia for the first two generations of Pokémon."

"I'm going to let it continue to run 24/7, I'd like to see the Elite Four beaten, but I have my doubts about it being possible without much better coordination."

Since the chat is an endless stream of new comments with thousands of people trying to get their way we thought it'd be impossible to even get Ash out of Pallet Town but, amazingly, the internet horde of players has already beaten Brock, Misty and Lt. Surge, earning the Boulder, Cascade and Thunder badges.

According to an on-screen time counter, the campaign has been going for over two days. At the time of writing it looks like the players are trying to save, an ordinarily easy, simple task turned into a 15 minute ordeal thanks to the participation of thousands of people over the internet.


Watch live video from TwitchPlaysPokemon on