Lets Play: Twitch Plays Pokémon Emerald
Twitch Plays Pokémon
) is a series of social experiments that started in February 2014 in which commands representing buttons on an original Game Boy Advance (Up, Down, Left, Right, A, B, L, R, Start; with Select being re-enabled later on during the event) are entered into a chat on Twitch
, and then translated into a game of Pokémon via an IRC bot. In short, thousands of people are fighting over a controller. Throughout its life, Twitch Plays Pokémon
has spawned hilarious characters, memorable moments, and even a few religions.
With the the first
and second experiments
successfully finished, a third run started on March 22, 2014note
, in the next generation of the series, Pokémon Emerald
This time around, the mob followed the adventures of a young girl named A (also known as Camila A. Slash and colloquially known as A-chan
). But from the moment A chose a Torchic (named "Zexy") instead of the mob's preferred choice of a Treecko, A has shown a surprising... disregard
for her legion-esque masters. Does this have something to do with the strange temporal distortions
that heralded the start of her journey?note
Will it be the mob leading A, or will she
be the one leading them
After 20 days, 21 hours, 56 minutes and 102
attempts, mere 3 hours before running out of timenote
, A finally managed to defeat Wallace and became a Hoenn Champion. Emerald
was promptly followed by Twitch Plays Pokémon FireRed
The official stream can be found here
- The stream's official subreddit can be visited here.
- For the archived progress of the game, go here.
- For live updates, go here.
- There is a recap page found here.
Twitch Plays Pokémon Emerald contains examples of:
- Alliterative Name: Brendan Birch.
- Alphabetical Theme Naming: A, Brendan, and from the Dogz Fashion intermission, A's supposed daughter Z.
- Anti-Climax: After hours of struggling with the Lavaridge Gym maze, M4 proceeded to literally steamroll Flannery's team into submission with a single Rollout combo.
- Reaching the 8th and final gym took a full two days of work, thanks to lots of required plot events and some tricky puzzles that required long segments of democracy. Just making it through the cracked floor puzzle in the gym to fight the leader took several hours. When they finally got to Juan, Tentacruel and Wingull went down... and then M4 pulverized his entire team with Rollout. She lost less than 15% of her health.◊
- Anti-Frustration Features: The layout of the stream has changed slightly, and it now features the Pokémon in the active party, their level(s) and HP at the bottom of the screen. This saves you the effort of either waiting for the Mob to (accidentally) enter the party screen or looking for a site that documents the game's progress.
- Apocalyptic Log: The Recap page quickly turned into one.
- Arc Words: "Let's turn this region UP-START-DOWN."
- Arch-Enemy: Wattson may be defeated, but it still took more than twenty attempts to defeat him and he's still always there to mock A and the voices. Calls have been made to return to him after beating the Elite Four and get revenge.
- A-Team Firing: A heroic example- during double battles, none of A's Pokémon's attacks land a solid hit. In some cases, the attacks wrap around to hitting one another.
- Badass Adorable: All of the team members. The rule of thumb is, if a Pokemon's evolution is less adorable then his current form, he's probably not going to evolve. That is why Virgin Marill evolved, while Zexxy and Gandhi did not.
- The rule was ultimately discarded at the playthrough's climax. M4 Moe is still moe and Vileplume is also quite cute, but the rest of her Pokémon are.... Mightyena, Graveler, Tentacruel, and Hariyama.
- Be Careful What You Wish For:
- Good news, everyone, the PC is now docile and barely lethal, just like you wanted! Oh, as a side effect, it can take up to ten hours to change your team. Hope you enjoyed claw cranes as a child, because you're gonna seeing them a lot.
- Hey people who wished for Zexy to be released and/or unevolved! Both happened!
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: There is a lot of◊ this between A and Brendan◊. Given that May and Brendan are friendly enemies, unlike Red and Blue, this was pretty much a given.
- Bittersweet Ending: A finally defeated Wallace, the mob got their urn, and everyone was reminded of the Pokemon long released.
- Book Ends: A's journey ends as it began - fighting against a clock.
- On more meta level, the playthrough both started and ended with the stream freezing and massive rioting.
- Boss in Mook Clothing: Every double battle. Mainly due to A's Pokémon usually doing their best to kill each other while completely ignoring their enemies.
- But Thou Must: A was given 3 days to defeat the Elite Four, as per the Admin's Cosmic Deadline. When she failed, the Admin granted her 3 more days to try again.
- Button Mashing: Most of the times, the Pokemon is going to use the first attack on the list, because of the A-spam. This can be either a blessing (in case of Virgin Marill and Rollout as her first attack) or not, as in case of everyone else.
- Creating PokeBlocks, using all of A's berries and having a absurd number of misses (over 850).
- Cannon Fodder: Poochyenas are here to waste PP of A's opponents and tackle them a bit, then die and let the more leveled team members handle everything.
- Call Back: During the first run, Red ignored the Mob's wishes of either getting a Thunder Stone or a Water Stone for Eevee, instead choosing a Fire Stone. In this run, while the Mob argued over getting Treecko or Mudkip, A chose Torchic, leading some people to declare it "the second false prophet".
- Zexy seems to be a fountain of this. He calls back Lazorgator due to his inability to evolve, Flareon due to being picked over other two starters, thus leading to hate, and now like Abby, has been released.
- Cerebus Roller Coaster: Perception of lore and mood of the game has changed radically during the game (a big, fat thanks to YMMV for that one) and nearly came the full circle. A is off, but the interpretation how much off, and whether or not it's Played for Laughs is what matters the most.
- Darker and Edgier: While Red and AJ were portrayed as two ordinary kids being controlled by the Mob, initial lore decided to make A a killer and anarchist trainer who not even the Mob can control. Cold blooded killer A◊
- Denser and Wackier: However, after a while the Mob decided to distance the lore from the epic journey of Twitch Plays Pokemon Red and the grim quest of Twitch Plays Pokemon Crystal, so a new interpretation of A was born - one that can be only described as every flavour of nuts - still insane. Here you can behold the insane sociopath A.
- Lighter and Softer: Things changed after the anniversary of Bloody Sunday - during which A, defying everyone's fears, did not release any pokemon, and instead spent a day capturing poochyenas and enjoying sights of Mauville. This event became known as Lovely Sunday◊ and gave birth to a wacky and fun version of A. However, fun and games did not last long because of the appearance of...
- Knight of Cerebus: Or, rather, two. The first took a form of Gym Leader Wattson. More then twenty clashes with him brought despair to the Mob and resulted in release of Zexy, which nearly killed morale of the Voices for three days. After the long-awaited victory over Wattson, Trapinch was caught, which resulted in a split between those who wanted to get him in the party and those who did not want to go near the PC after recent events. The fight resulted in Birdcop being released, which finally resulted in...
- Cerebus Syndrome: The police theme, which started appearing right after Birdcop's release, was dark - the very first artworks of A-team as police force depicted a funeral and a violent interrogation of Trapinch, but not nearly as dark as initial serial killer lore. But then the endgame suddenly filled the Mob with panic and despair even greater then after Mauvile. The countdown to FireRed began as A was struggling against the Elite Four and failing to beat it. The artwork is taking it to its the logical conclusion.
- Chekhov's Gun: The clock from the beginning of the game, apparently. According to some, the Doomsday Clock counting down to A's failure was replaced with the one at her house to buy her more time.
- Cosmic Deadline: Once again, the Admin placed a Race Against the Clock on the protagonist's adventure. When the initial deadline failed, it was extended.
- Darkest Hour: The timer to FireRed almost ran out twice. The first time, the streamer extended the time limit. The second time, A finished off Wallace with only three hours remaining on the timer.
- Despair Event Horizon: When Zexy was released the whole Mob crossed this point. It didn't help that the Mob had to rely on a Water type to defeat the Electric type gym that they spent days on at that point.
- The Determinator: You may defeat A as many times as you want, but she will be back. She will be back every time, each time throwing everything she has on you, until you are defeated.
- The Mob became The Determinator during the final 3 days of the run. They endured a horribly underleveled party, a countdown to FireRed, and frequent attacks by bot networks. Yet they kept coming up with plans to beat the Elite 4.
- The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: The creator added L and R inputs in the intermission between the previous run and this one.
- Subverted when the creator brought back Select. Sure, it makes sense for registering something like the Bicycle, but it also led to the multiple soft resets that led to a string of 7 new characters before Select was re-disabled and A chosen.
- The new combo system brought back Select, but it avoids soft resets when Start is around its input.
- Difficulty Spike: Compared to the previous generation. Since Democracy was disabled, progress was much harder, making this generation closer to Red in terms of difficulty, and just like in Red the strongest member of the party was released. In addition, this generation is plagued by the curse of Double Battles. At least the PC is somewhat easier to use, and though the starter was released a mass extinction event like Bloody Sunday never occurred.
- However, as of Day 13, Democracy Mode finally returned.
- Early Game Hell: Yet again. Not made any better by the sudden jump in viewers.
- The stream spent hours with only a Torchic and no other Pokemon. This was even worse when they ran away from the battle with the Pokemon that everybody really wanted: a Ralts.
- Egocentric Team Naming: The A Team. It's based on the name of their trainer, but primarily it's a pun on the television series of the same name.
- Eleventh Hour Superpower: Democracy finally came back to help with a puzzle that would have been borderline impossible without it.
- Eleventh Hour Ranger: A♀NIIIc33 ("Annie") the Hariyama. During the fights with the Elite Four, it was determined that XX the Wingull would be borderline useless, so during a bout of democracy, XX was deposited into the PC and the mob set back off towards Victory Road (after losing to Phoebe and Glacia several more times and eventually managing to buy two ultra balls) to catch a replacement mon, with many voices hoping for a Lairon and others suggesting Sableye or Golbat. The replacement they got was Annie.
- "End of the World" Special: A theory about the ending to segue into Fire Red is that A, the avatar of Anarchy in a world post-Helix, remade the world to run on Insane Troll Logic. (Or that Bill did.)
- Epic Fail: Got its own page about 30 minutes into the run. Here We Go Again.
- There was a thread on Reddit which tried to predict what will happen to the Master Ball. The opinion was split between "it will be used to catch a Zubat/doge/Oddish" and "it will be wasted in the trainer battle". It ended up being wasted on a trainer's Zubat a mere nine minutes later.
- Expy: Some players suspect that Lass Haley was this playthrough's equivalent of Youngster Joey.
- Gameplay and Story Integration: For the first eight hours anyway. Zexy has a lonely nature, and the mob spent nearly eight hours with the game until they finally caught a second Pokémon. ...And then a third. And a fourth. All three new friends for Zexy were caught in the span of five minutes.
- When A gets more Pokemon, we get to find out why Zexy is lonely nature. They get into a double battle where we find out he has a habit of attacking his own side in the middle of combat. Hard to make a good impression that way.
- "GOOD BIKE" turned out to be Dewford's default trendy phrase. As soon as the mob learned that, they made it into a meme of their own.
- When the run turned blind, the mob blamed Wattson.
- Fission Mailed: Twitch didn't make the 3 days limit to Fire Red, and the stream was paused. Then the streamer announced that he would extend the limit by a few more days.
- A Fool and His New Money Are Soon Parted: The money earned by battling was usually spent on Pokeballs. Said Pokeballs will be most likely spent on attempts to steal a Pokemon in a trainer battle - wasting both money and precious turns.
- The Safari Zone, all money was lost by entering and exiting the area multiple times while flooding the PC with Oddishes and other Pokemon, which has been interpreted as A spending all her money on weed, or just really, really loving Oddishes for some reason.
- Godwin's Law: As usual, references to you-know-who are made quite often. Not for the sake of comparing him to anything or anyone, but just because people can. For the same exact reason, sometimes certain members of the mob will spam text art of a swastika. Somebody even wrote lore about him.
- Gonna Need More X: A has caught multitudes of the same Pokémon, such as seven Poochyena, five Natu, and twenty-nine different Oddish.
- Green Thumb: Most of the mob also decided they wanted a Treecko before the stream began, to stick with the pattern of getting starter reptiles who are the same color as the cartridge of the game they're playing.
- Subverted, as mashing of the A button got us Zexy the Torchic.
- A's sudden interest with Oddishes, having caught twenty-nine of them in the Safari Zone.
- A's love of Grass-type Pokémon (by virtue of having the part-Grass-type Pokémon Vileplume in her Pokémon party) netted her TM19, Giga Drain, as a gift from a woman on Route 123.
- Hero Killer: Zigzagged with the new PC. It was treated as such at first, but then the mob discovered that it's a lot harder to release Pokémon in Generation 3 and dismissed it as nonthreatening. Little did they know, it was all a trap. R.I.P. Zexy.
- Heroes Gone Fishing: The world is being flooded? The legendary pokemon fight over dominance, threatening to take the Earth with them? A is ready and willing to save the world! But first, she must relax and fish for a few hours.
- Heroes Love Dogs: A caught seven Poochyenas, plus a Mightyena. She usually had one in the party too, but not always. One's even spending time in the daycare right now. A is often considered to be an older version of the little girl in the DogZ game played during the intermission, and it is thought her interest in Poochyena stems from her losing two dogs to the hivemind's lack of coordination before the game started.
- Hope Spot: The Admin extended the timer to Fire Red by 4 more days.
- Hot Springs Episode: Well into the fifth day, after seven or so hours unsuccessfully trying to navigate the Lavaridge Town gym, A took a relaxing break in the hot springs with two old women.
- Hurricane of Puns: After the fifth Poochyena was caught, the fandom exploded with doge puns - and it's not like they were not made before.
- Involuntary Group Split: There's been a number of times when A accidentally deposited most of her Pokemon, leaving her with only one.
- A's team has been dubbed "the A-Team" (what else?). The guy called Mr. T isn't part of it.
- The mob loves its anarchy. A goes ahead and ignores the mob's commands◊, like a true anarchist◊.
- Zexy Chicken, womanizer extraordinaire, had a Lonely Nature.
- After catching a septet of Poochyena, one of A's 28 Oddish is named AARF.
- Within ten minutes of acquiring the Master Ball, after it was nearly used on an Electrode, A wastes the item on a Team Aqua Grunt's Zubat◊. Now consider the game's message (used to chide A) when the player attempts to use Poké Balls on Trainer-owned Pokémon, juxtaposed with the actions of Team Aqua:
: "Don't be a thief!" After their organization stole a submarine...
- A was originally seen as the embodiment of Anarchy, but by the end she came into the command of an elite police force theme.
- Just in Time: With three hours remaining on the countdown, the mob finally took down Wallace, defeating the Elite Four and ending the game.
- Legend Fades to Myth: Due to a Statue of (what seems to be) a Pidgeot, a Poké Ball, and a Tablet appearing to show random button presses in the Lilycove Museum, much of the mob theorized that Twitch Plays Pokémon Emerald is set in The Far Future when the events of Twitch Plays Pokémon Red have become myth, with the Pidgeot being a statue of Bird Jesus and the Poké Ball being the Master Ball that AA-j the Zapdos was captured in.
- Loads And Loads Of Oddish: A caught thirty Oddish (one of which became Vileplume), plus several Doduos, Natus, Girafarigs, and Pikachus... and that's just the ones from the Safari Zone. A squad of Doge and a few dozen other 'mons round out the nearly 100 Pokémon in A's possession. Well, mostly the PC's possession.
- Because one of the Oddish was captured before beating Wattson, A wound up coming just one short of tying Ash's record of thirty Tauros captured in the Safari Zone.
- Mind Hive: The Mob's theory this time around was that the voices are supplied by the seven Ret Gone characters from before the game started.
- Near Villain Victory: If you consider the bots and spammers to be villains, then the extension of the three-day time limit to seven days is the second-chance window for the Mob to turn things around.
- Noodle Incident: So, did A apologize to Abra? Or did Abra apologize to A? And most importantly, what was the reason for apology?
- One-Letter Name: The protagonist is named A.
- Once an Episode: The game is reset, getting rid of potential protagonists.
- One Pokémon (in this case Torchic) is not liked by the Mob, who clamor for its removal from the team.
- A much loved member of the team (also Torchic) is released.
- Perpetual Poverty: While in Petalburg constant white-outs meant that A's funds were quite low, and considering that Zexy was her only Pokémon and she threw all her Poké Balls at other Trainer's Pokémon, she could certainly use more funds. The mob tried to escape her poverty and have her heal before going to Petalburg Woods, but she went in anyway and whited out again.
- A was down to literally 1 Pokebuck before defeating Roxanne, due to the mob's strategy of "wade in, train Marill on two Geodude, get whited out by Nosepass". And then Roxanne's prize money lasted about half an hour before A spent it on 7 Poké Balls (which, to be fair, are far more useful than keeping the money and losing it in an inevitable white-out).
- She accrued a decent amount of cash after defeating Winona, having around 10,000 Pokémon Dollars. They then went to the Safari Zone and used it all, 500 Pokémon Dollars at a time, to capture 28 Oddish and a variety of other seemingly useless Pokémon.
- Power Perversion Potential: Due to the possibility of using the R button, it makes SELECTBRA◊ possible.
- Punctuation Shaker: M4 Moe's given name.
- Puzzle Boss: The Elite Four were this for the mob. They are fairly resistant against the mob's standard die-and-grind tactics, requiring them to actually consider things like elemental weaknesses and the effectiveness of different techniques.
- Redshirt Army: There are 28 Oddish stored in the PC. None of them have any individuality or canon names, except the one that A brought with herself and evolved into Vileplume.
- Recurring Element: While this run did a lot to distance itself from the first experiment, there are still some similarities, for example:
- Again, there is one Mon that ends up eating up most of the party's Experience Points and causes some VERY divisive bickering among the Mob in the process - in this case Zexy the Torchic (not unlike Bird Jesus or LazorGator) and, to some extent, M4 the Azumarill.
- Race Against the Clock: The 72-hour time limit for defeating the Elite Four.
- Recycled Premise: The players of Crystal Version attempted to create a military theme early on, but it didn't stick. Come mid-Emerald, however, military-themed works are suddenly quite popular, in no small part because the current team leader actually has the name of an assault rifle. Efforts were soon made to differentiate Emerald's theme by focusing more on a police motif, however.
- Replacement Goldfish: Taken up to eleven. After releasing her Oddish by accident, A went to Safari Zone the very next day and caught TWENTY-NINE Oddishes and one Gloom.
- Also serves as a common complaint about Shedinja.
- Ret Gone: Seven different protagonists have been wiped out due to the multiple game crashes and resets. Among the lost are Milton, Slasha, !!, Camilla, Hazel, Reid, and T. They will be missed.◊ What's happened to them is anything from being runaways of the mob, victims of homicide by the mob or by the current player character, or them living on as Composite Characters with the current female hero and male rival.
- On a meta-level, Treecko can be considered this, considering how much the mob wanted one. There was even lore being developed before the run of Emerald STARTED.
- Psycho serial killer A can also be considered this, as a large portion of the Mob rejected this idea in light of later events. Whether she was completely retgonned or simply exists as a repressed part of A's mind is up for debate.
- Save Scumming: Of a sort. When Mr. T was selected as the player, the Mob began spamming L, R, and SELECT in an attempt to reset the game and choose the female player.
- Running Gag: A won't stop catching Poochyena until she fills the entire PC.
- Abra tried to use Teleport! But it failed!
- Now Oddish has Poochyena outnumbered by more than 4 to 1. At least one of them is named "AARF."
- A having the urge to go fishing or biking in the strangest of places.
- Sequel Difficulty Spike: Whilst the mob were able to defeat the Elite Four in Red and Crystal within 24 hours each, it took them almost a week and 102 attempts this time, due to improved AI, team rosters, and team flexibility.
- Sequel Escalation: Let's see:
- The first experiment was known for Red spending hours stuck within single buildings. Here, EVERY Pokémon Center harbors this danger.
- Red was a plagued hero, AJ was a dark yet troubled anti-hero. A-Chan is sometimes interpreted to be insane and kill-crazy.
- Not to mention Red's story was about Religion and reviving the gods, AJ's was about Humanism (or 'Monism) and dethroning the gods, now A's is (thus far at least) about nothing more than spreading anarchy.
- A has more Pokemon in the PC than Red and AJ combined.
- Red managed to throw his Masterball at Zapdos. But then AJ wasted his on a run-of-the-mill Goldeen, As for A-chan? She threw hers at... An Aqua Grunt's Zubat just MINUTES after finding it.
- Shaggy Dog Story / Aborted Arc: This happens a lot.
- Shout-Out: A's first three Poochyena are occasionally called Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed.
- Sidetracked By The Golden Saucer: Before the game's even started, some of the mob already wants to partake in making Pokeblocks, competing in Pokémon Contests, and other side content.
- Can also apply to all the side games being streamed before Emerald began. With attempts made to postpone Emerald in favor of finishing games like Mother 3, Catz, Dogz, and Telefang.
- Stealth Prequel: Some have placed Petz (specifically the Gameboy Advance version of Dogz) in this category as Camila A. Slash is portrayed as a grown version of the little girl from that game and paints the stressful time she had with the two dogs in a very different situation. And after A decided to catched five Poochyena, this became a lot more likely.
- And then when the playthrough ended, the streamer went to run that version of Dogz yet again during the intermission. It's been all but confirmed now.
- Take a Third Option: The mob argued over whether to get Treecko or Mudkip for weeks. Instead, they received Torchic, who was immediately the object of hatred for a large portion of the mob. Hmm... doesn't that remind you of another Fire-type in the series? The comparison only strengthens when you consider their ultimate fates.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: This comic has Brendan deliver a small one to A after she pushed one too many of his buttons.
- This Looks Like a Job for Aquaman: Wattson's defeat with Zexinja. The very purpose he was brought into team was defeating Wattson, but he kept losing due to accidentally being sent out against Voltorb and Magnemite, thus failing to fulfill this purpose. After some level grinding, Virgin Marill ended up defeating every member of Wattson's team save for Manectric. Shedinja was completely immune to Wattson's Manectric, thus he beat him and fulfilled his destiny. Afterwards, Zexinja ended up accidently deposited into PC, from where he was never withdrawn out of fear to release him.
- Timed Mission: Subverted. The timer for FireRed was rapidly ticking down, eventually leaving the Mob without enough time to defeat the Champion. Unsurprisingly, this resulted in rioting in the chat. With three seconds left, however, the stream was paused, and the streamer said he didn't intend for the timer to be a hard limit, adding three days to it. While the extra three days could still have been a hard limit, it seemed unlikely.
- The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Shows up in one of their better runs against the Elite Four when Glacia froze Annie and defeated her after she swept Sydney flawlessly.
- Unfriendly Fire: Fittingly, due to their terrible aim, The A-team simply can't win the 2vs2 battles without beating each other half to death first. The most famous example of that happened when Virgin Marill defeated her entire team with Rollout, one by one.
- The Unpronounceable: The Virgin Marill's name is M —-/'/'4. Trying to pronounce that will result in severe tongue injuries, so the Mob settled down on calling her M4 Moe or Virgin Marill.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: A completely ignored Archie stealing a submarine in favor of going to the Trick House.
- Archie was defeated, but summoned Kyogre to flood the world. Steven told A to meet him at Sootopolis... but she went fishing instead.
- Villain Decay: Somewhat. The Gen I and Gen II PC struck swiftly and took lives of Pokemon in a bat of the eye. The Gen III PC takes a long time to navigate and has been mostly "safe" due to the difficulty of doing anything with it, but complacency frequently leads to tragedy, as Zexy's release proved.
- Villain Protagonist: Initial lore shaped A as this, but...
- Zig-Zagged: A lot of people disagree with the straight psycho approach to A. The more commonly accepted depiction of A (regardless of your preferred origin story) portrays her as complete anarchy, able to disobey◊ and subvert the mobs expectations seemingly at whim. On the anniversary of Bloody Sunday, when all of her Pokemon were in the PC, not a single pokemon was released. In fact, because of the especially chaotic nature of depositing and withdrawing Pokemon this generation, "Lovely Sunday◊" is often interpreted as A wanting to spend time with all her Pokemon and not being able to decide which ones to take◊.
- And then the Zig Zag got subverted to nearly Base Breaking levels. As others see Lovely Sunday as A intentionally doing the opposite of what the Mob wants just to further spread chaos and show who's really in charge this gen.