Smosh Partners With Twitch to Live-Stream Gaming Content (Exclusive)

Ian Hecox and Matt Raub-Publicity - Split - H 2020
Smosh

The sketch comedy brand will be bringing a slate of gaming content to Twitch, such as its tabletop series 'Board AF' which will be resurrected for a live audience.

Sketch comedy brand Smosh has partnered with Twitch to bring its popular channel Smosh Games to the live-streaming platform.

Smosh, which currently has over 25 million subscribers on YouTube, will be moving various shows to Twitch with the goal of re-engaging those familiar with its content and engaging other viewers for the very first time.

"What appealed to me was the [Twitch] audience, and the way it’s so unique to other platforms," Smosh co-founder Ian Hecox tells The Hollywood Reporter. "People that are willing to watch something either passively or interact a lot with people for a long period of time. That’s not something that we have with any other platform."

Matt Raub, vp of Smosh, adds that Twitch brings to the table many different community-based tools — such as watch parties on Amazon Prime — that Smosh will experiment with in a "more rapidfire basis" than the company has previously done.

"On the game side, our demographic is 18-24 and the beauty about what we’ve been doing with Smosh and Smosh Games specifically is we’ve been able to gage our content up with the audience, which is a luxury not a lot of large comedy brands really have," says Raub.

He goes on to say, "A few years ago on the gaming channel we introduced a card game called Bored AF that ended up becoming kind of an overnight success and it’s something that we never would have thought would have really fit. Slower paced, tabletop, board game, RPGs, things like that, so we’re really going to be leaning more into that audience."

When Board AF moves to Twitch, Smosh talent will engage with guests over weekly rounds of board and card games — such as Dungeons and Dragons and Cards Against Humanity.

Smosh will also bring to Twitch deep dives into weird, funny or random memes from the internet; as well as looser format streams incorporating AAA titles like Final Fantasy VII or casual party games like Quiplash from Jackbox Games.

"With the gaming channel going on Twitch, Hecox explains that audiences "won’t be seeing the kind of marathon hardcore gaming that you’d normally expect from a Twitch channel." Clarifying, he says that Twitch encouraged them to step outside of the usual thing that one might find on the platform and find new avenues to explore. "We also want to lean into the internet culture that we do on our other channels," he says.

Smosh, which began operations in 2005, was acquired by Rhett & Link's Mythical Entertainment in 2019. "One of the main reasons we were excited to jump into the process and attempt to rescue Smosh was because of Smosh Games," Brian Flanagan, COO of Mythical, says, adding that it gave the company a logical way to move into a new medium. "We’ve been trying to evaluate how Mythical could jump into mass-market live streaming for a long time," he says, adding that Smosh's gaming channel was the vehicle in which to do so.

Smosh is launching on Twitch on Sept. 2 with a 6-hour marathon in the format of a classic telethon variety show that they've billed as a "subscribathon." Watch the trailer below.