In the last month or so, Grand Theft Auto V role playing has taken Twitch by storm.
If you aren’t familiar, role playing is when players effectively become their characters. You create an identity for your character and you live out their life as that particular character would. You’re no longer you; you’re the actual character in the game. It’s a niche interest in gaming but it’s become one of my favorites.
For a fairly long time, much like a lot of people, I disregarded role playing as the sort of weird side of the gaming community. While there are certainly people who take their role playing super seriously, I’ve come to discover that it’s not all like that. The kind of role playing that has become popular on Twitch is serious in that you remain in your role and follow server rules but it’s loose enough that it’s more about having fun than anything else. It’s serious, but it’s not. If something happens that breaks role playing, it’s generally laughed off in the form of a joke rather than the wrath of the server admins coming down on you.
The premise of the role playing here is fairly simple; it’s the police against the civilians. Most players will join in as civilians, where they can screw around and do whatever they want. Other players who have taken the rules of the server a bit more seriously get to play as the police officers. As a police officer, you patrol the streets looking for trouble and responding to calls. It’s all fairly straightforward and easy to understand.
When you create your character, you decide what kind of person that character is and then you play the game how that character would react to the situations that you come across. Then when you come back to play the next day, you pick right back up where your character left off. This results in all sorts of crazy storylines and relationships depending on what you happen to come across as you’re playing. It’s fairly simple to wrap your head around the concept but it’s one that you really just have to get involved with to understand.
The great thing about the role playing community on Twitch is that it’s a constant stream of content. Because of the nature of the gameplay, there are constantly new storylines going on as the players come up with new ideas and new players get involved. You could sit down and watch a role playing stream for four hours on two different days and see two totally different things. Sometimes people get a little salty but for the most part, everyone gets along really well and the community is really good; which results in genuinely funny and entertaining streams.
Personally, I’m a big fan of Timmac and I’ve watched him for a long time because he’s an exceptional role player and entertainer. Tim’s a long time Twitch role player who’s been rolling with a crew of GiantWaffle and PmsProxy in Grand Theft Auto on a near daily basis for quite some time now. Every night I sit down for who knows how many hours and laugh out loud following how their characters’ story develops. They’re always up to new shenanigans every night as they encounter other crews rolling around Los Santos and all sorts of other nonsense. It’s limitless entertainment.
The real star of Grand Theft Auto role playing has been one Sheriff Eli Thompson. Eli’s rise to stardom has been incredible. Eli role plays as a police officer and not only is he damn good at it, he’s fucking hysterical. Whenever Eli rolls up on the scene, it sucks everyone into the stream because you know shit’s about to go down. Sometimes he gets so into it that even starts yelling at the NPCs roaming around the game world. I can’t remember a single time where Eli showed up and I didn’t laugh out loud. In fact, he’s become so popular that he currently has (as of writing this) 20,521 followers on Twitch and he hasn’t even started streaming yet. Hell, people have donated to help get him a new gaming computer so he can stream in the highest quality possible. You can check out his YouTube channel or the handful of clips listed below featuring the brilliance of Eli’s RP.
If you really got some time on your hands, you can check out the collection of clips Timmac showed off on stream one night while the server was down.
Twitch role playing is really one of those things that you just have to sit down and watch some time to really appreciate how entertaining it is. For a long time, Arma was the popular platform for role playing before the recent rise of Grand Theft Auto. Like anything else, sometimes the role playing goes stale and there’s a bit of a lull in the content before it becomes revitalized with new characters/stories. But when it’s going, it’s absolutely worth watching.
Role playing is just one of those things that you shouldn’t knock until you try it. I even find myself inching further towards actually jumping in game and trying it out myself now. I would encourage everyone to check out the many different streamers and see if you can’t find someone you really like in the community because it’s worth it. Maybe it’s not for you, and that’s fine too. But there’s no denying that the recent popularity of Grand Theft Auto role playing has taken over the Twitch scene.
Thanks to Shaggy Dankweed for all the pictures used in this blog post.