Yesterday we had the chance to witness the closed Beta launch of NOICE, a new streaming platform that introduces a new form of viewer interaction: you can put predictions down on what’s going to happen next on the stream and win points by doing so!
What sounds complicated at first is quite easy to understand once you are on the platform, but let’s go into the origins of the Project first. CEO Jussi Laakkonen is an esports fan that missed the social aspect while watching other streaming platforms and came up with the idea to make watching a stream become a group experience.
While there are plenty of plug-ins for sites like Twitch, NOICE is inherently built to support this aspect and make streaming a social event where you can meet people and literally play a game within the stream.
How does it work?
Every game features specific events that viewers could predict, like “Is the streamer going to get an elimination in the next X seconds?” NOICE implemented so called prediction cards with various events on them. You get dealt a deck of cards and can choose to play one of them, if the prediction on your card becomes reality you gather points and advance in the leaderboard of the stream. But of course that wouldn’t make NOICE a social streaming platform, to make it more interesting you are teamed up with other viewers, so you have to work together to make the most out of your available prediction cards and coordinate their use and timing to get ahead in the leaderboard.
Of course there are various features like card-packs, a virtual stream-lobby reminiscent of Habbo-Hotel (in a good way), boosters for the cards, custom cards the streamer can make themselves, special cards that are only viable in certain situations, a season pass and you can level up your individual cards too. NOICE makes watching streams become like a mini-game of its own.
Cool idea for viewer retention
For many streamers retaining viewers is a big headache, having an interesting persona and good content isn’t enough anymore in the highly competitive environment. Many viewers are stream-nomads and wander from content creator to content creator, aimlessly consuming without attachment.
To combat this dynamic NOICE offers a unique experience that draws the attention of the viewers towards the stream, makes it more exciting to watch and offers a social aspect by pitting teams of viewers against each other. At the same time the NOICE-Viewers may get recognized by the streamer for their knowledge about the game, prediction skills and their loyalty, something that many streamers have long exchanged with donation and subscriber shoutouts only.
Possible benefits for Game Publishers
There is also an argument to be made for Publishers. Many games suffer from the content-nomadic lifestyle, where the new game is hot for a minute and quickly gets replaced by the next big thing. With NOICE there might be a chance for publishers to motivate people to consume more of the game’s content through the stream and eventually also make the decision to play it more often, or stay more active within the community.
Will it work?
Of course all of this sounds nice in theory but it remains to be seen if NOICE can attract the critical mass of creators to fill their website with enough livestreams to in turn attract enough viewers to make all these positive developments work. Also, what keeps Twitch and Amazon from implementing a comparable feature, that might not be as thought out and automatic as NOICE, but could dissuade creators and viewers from migrating to NOICE. On top of that, not every game is suitable for NOICE and to onboard new games they always have to develop the according cards etc. (right now, APEX Legends and Fortnite are the main games).
No matter what, the idea behind NOICE is exciting and interesting and competition is always good for the market, so we hope they succeed and manage to build a community-centered creator driven and publisher supported alternative to Twitch.