Your virtual pet on Twitch! Give it treats, play games but don't let it die!
We just wanted to have fun, we took our obvious inspiration from a classic keychain toy, but we also really enjoyed playing The Sims, Pokemon, and Neopets. The development soundtrack was almost entirely lo-fi hiphop radio, that's the kind of vibe we're going for. We wanted to create something that both the streamer and the viewers could interact with, and build a relationship on. Also we wanted something to do s̨̻͎̈͌̓i̮̫̣̬̳̤c̞̣̱ͩͥ͒́̏̚͘k̮ͧ̐̂ͨ͌ͅ ̉̏̋̆̃̇ͪ͏̗̻̖d̬͖̥̱̱͖a̴̗̦̹̒̾̐ͬ̃̍b̨͓̭̦̦̰͋̈́̿ș̗̜̻̜̟̜̓̀͗̾ͩ̈́̈͢ everytime we got a sub.
What it does 🐶
Installing the Tamagucci panel extension will grant you new Channel Points and a browser source to give your pet a nice cozy position in the broadcasting program. The streamer then names the pet, a favourite so far has been 'Poggers'.
In the panel, viewers see the pet, its name, age, stats, cafe, and global ranking amongst other streamers. The creature's HP bar slowly depletes, but thankfully viewers can use their channel points to provide Hydration or a Treat and restore HP! This will also start a little animation and a sound effect if enabled by the streamer.
Viewers are able to begin a vote for a Rock Paper Scissors match. Eventually, this will be integrated with the voting API, but for now, the extension communicates through Twitch Chat to make a decision. We can't wait to see Twitch Chat vs 'Mr. Chewbarka' in a blood-feud over rock, paper, scissors.
How we built it 🛠️
Elixir server, React client. As we have the pet in two places, the server controls the pet 'sprite', so we can be sync'd across the panel and the OBS. We commissioned a supremely talented pixel artist @miles_a_art to create our v1 pet, and we are very happy with the results.
Challenges we ran into ☠️
No plan survives contact with the enemy - well, in our case, friends.
Involving streamers within the product design process to make sure we are developing something other people wanted. We had significant user feedback from initial testing, and not much of it was positive, so we put our nose to the grindstone and worked to steadily improve our extension. Taking criticism is never easy, but I am proud of how our team reacted to the feedback and came up with solutions. Tamagucci wouldn't be this great without the help of streamers/testers/goodpeople like GlitchKraft, xSiiri, and Moonlightmei.
Accomplishments that we're proud of 🏆
Tenacity, cool look/feel, really great feedback from users (finally). We think we made quite a cozy little pet, and we are happy with that.
What we learned 📚
Trust the streamers! These people know what they want and are passionate about making a cool experience for viewers, so of course we all want the same thing! Talk to them early, talk to them mid-way, and talk to them late!
What's next for Tamagucci 📈
Oh, we've got iterations and iterations! We think this is the absolute base model of Tamagucci. We have endless features (and creatures) we'd like to add. More channel points games, experience bar, new food, new items, new pets, new pet colours, pet clothings, location changes, fishing, playing with the pet, growth chart, evolutions, personalisation, customisation, stock market, battles, businesses, raids, marriages, and hangouts are only scratching the surface of what we think we can do with Tamagucci.
Thanks for hosting a fun and interesting hackathon, we really enjoyed making Tamagucci come alive, so thanks for the extra motivation.