Last week Twitch Plays Pokémon took over the web.
The premise is simple: an emulated game of GameBoy classic Pokémon Red is live-streamed on Twitch.tv, with every viewer able to type commands in the chat box, which are then interpreted into moves within the game.
Last week I summarised what had happened in the game's first four days, and now as we enter day 11 here's what's been happening since.
As last week's article was published, the mysterious anonymous forces behind Twitch Plays Pokémon (TPP from now on) had briefly stopped the game. They had done so to introduce Democracy mode, which tallied up the inputs of players over a 10-second period before executing the most popular move.
This didn't go down well, so the game was stopped again and the voting period reduced to five seconds. It was better, but people wanted the mass confusion of before, they wanted anarchy.
Eventually the powers that be allowed users to vote on whether to use the Democracy or Anarchy method. People gravitated toward Anarchy, as it was much more fun, but Democracy would have its uses too.
Democracy played a key part in finally getting Red (the controlled-character's name) through the spinning platform puzzle of Team Rocket HQ and on toward the Lift Key, which would take them to Team Rocket boss Giovanni.
In the midst of this two-day effort to get through the HQ, defeat Giovanni and acquire the Silph Scope, the team headed back to the PC and managed to release their Flareon – which had come to be known as the "false prophet" thanks to its role in bringing about the release of other Pokémon in the team.
Back in the HQ players encountered trouble when they accidentally used Rattata's Dig ability, which took them all the way to the start. Once the team had returned and defeated Giovanni, Dig was used again before players could acquire the Silph Scope. The Rattata was then nicknamed Dig Rat.
Finally returning to grab the Scope, the team moved on to the fighting dojo, which they progressed through easily, earning one of two fighting Pokémon – a Hitmonlee or Hitmonchan. They went with Hitmonlee, called him C3KO and promptly released him back into the wild.
Onwards the team went to the Pokémon Tower, an area littered with ghost types many of the Pokémon were useless against. Here Dig Rat evolved into a Ratacate and assumed a new nickname – Big Dig.
Big Dig was key in defeating the final trainer in the tower, but he then dug them out and back to the beginning before they could grab the Poké Flute. After many hours they worked their way back in and attained the Flute, which is used to awaken the sleeping Snorlax blocking a road later on.
TPP awoke the Snorlax, began to battle it, but soon ran away.
Onwards they marched to Fuchsia City and the dreaded Safari Zone, an enclosed area that players pay to enter and who are encumbered with a set amount of steps. In the Safari Zone are two items the players needed to find, and with a limited number of steps and thousands of simultaneous inputs it proved difficult to navigate.
Eventually, thanks to Democracy, they did it – and suddenly finishing the game seemed a lot more likely. During their efforts they also diverted to the Fuchisa City gym to defeat Koga and nab their fifth badge.
Following the Zone they entered the Silph Company, defeated Giovanni once more, acquired Lapras, a Pokémon they had been seeking for some time and were awarded the Master Ball.
Day 10 saw TPP defeat Sabrina's gym in Saffron City with ease thanks to their super-powered Pidgeot, referred to as (and earning the title of) Bird Jesus. Following this a plan was devised to use the Master Ball to capture one the game's legendary birds, Zapdos.
Typically players use the Master Ball to capture Mewtwo at the end of the game, but Reddit users decided Zapdos would be a better tactical decision – as difficult as it might be. Defying all the odds, and doing so even in Anarchy mode, TPP captured Zapdos. It was a crowning moment of the game – but it brought about the darkest period for days.
When Zapdos was caught he was sent to the PC, so TPP decided they needed to get him out.
Venturing to the PC has ended badly before, and this time they had trolls to deal with. A Redditor discovered that a StarCraft 2 player by the name of Destiny was amassing 2000-3000 people to attempt to troll TPP and release Bird Jesus.
They were unsuccessful despite coming close numerous times. However, over the course of an entire day spent battling the PC, the team lost Cabbage (an Oddish which had evolved into Gloom), Dig Rat, and Dux. Three key team members in one go as well as many others.
Eventually they won through, but without anyone able to use Cut they devised a plan to go back through early parts of the map and make their way south from starting point Pallet Town, on their way to Cinnabar Island.
The end is in sight, with just a few more objectives left between the team and the dreaded Victory Road. This morning they completed their journey to Cinnabar and ressurected the Helix Fossil, the God-like object TPP players have been worshipping.
Helix is ressurected into the Pokémon called Omanyte, and he was sent to the PC - meaning another trip to it, and the possibility of releasing many more Pokémon in the process.