Snapchat debuted a gaming platform that allows you to challenge your friends to real-time, multiplayer games directly in the app. They announced the new feature this week at their first branded press event, Snap Partner Summit in Los Angeles.
On the purpose behind the gaming platform, Snapchat’s Head of Gaming, Will Wu, stated:
“We wanted to build something that makes us feel like we’re playing a board game with a family of over a long holiday weekend. Something that makes us feel like we’re sitting with friends, controllers in hand, looking at the same screen”
Based on their acquisition of the gaming platform “PrettyGreat” in 2017, many have speculated that Snapchat had been working to add gaming functionality to their feature set.
They recently added interactive mini “games” using their augmented reality filter lenses, but there hasn’t been a true “gaming” platform until now.
The addition of gaming to Snapchat appears to be another attempt by the platform to increase user engagement and time spent on the app. Over the past year, they added exclusive series, coverage of major events, and more – so adding games in the mix seems like the next logical step.
How Does It Work?
Users can browse and challenge their friends to play available games by opening up a chat window for the friend (or group of friends) they want to play with and clicking the rocket ship icon. (Note: Despite this being launched this week, at the time of publication, I was not able to access this feature in my own app. Snapchat support responded “Certain features roll out at certain times. Keep an eye on your device’s app store for new updates”)
More specifics can be seen in this promotional video:
One of the games that have many users (i.e., me) excited is the Bitmoji Party game. It is very similar to the well-loved Mario Party game – where a group of up to 7 users competes in a series of games, all in which have different challenges.
You can also have up to 24 friends speculate and rotate in, similar to if you were playing at a real-life get-together.
Early reports of Bitmoji Party show that it seems to mirror the best aspects of Mario Party, while also adding in the fun personalization of playing with each user’s customized Bitmoji.