TikTok NPC Streaming refers to a newfound TikTok trend, where content creators are mimicking video game NPC dialogues and idle animation motions during a LIVE stream.
NPC refers to Non-Player Characters in video games, who can be interacted and spoken with, although their responses and actions are all scripted, robotic and severely limited, compared to a real life human being.
Often, TikTok creators are repeating a certain “voiceline” or action, when receiving a gift, depending on the gift itself, trying to make a realistic impression of these video game NPCs.
The trend started on TikTok in 2022, and by summer 2023 it grew viral, with compilations, videos and even news articles swarming the internet with “TikTok NPC Streaming”.
😕 i’ve never been more confused in my entire life dawg…… pic.twitter.com/Y43gcySN1k
— God’s Child (@marlolifts) July 12, 2023
“TikTok NPC Streaming” can be traced back to Japanese TikTok user @natuecoco, who first started acting like an NPC in her LIVE streams and TikToks.
The popularity of this trend was boosted in February 2022, when @naturecoco and @satoyu0704 did a TikTok LIVE duel, competing for gaining as many gifts as possible, while both of them were acting like video game NPCs, reacting to their gifts.
In the following months, @natuecoco became popular online as a “real life NPC”, embracing the role in her subsequent LIVE streams, as well as popularizing the trend among other TikTok creators.
By 2023, more and more TikTokkers – many would label them E-Thots – got on the “TikTok NPC Streaming” bandwagon, mimicing the movements and behavior of characters found in the virtual world of video games.
One of the most successful creator, who adopted the trend was Fedha Sinon, also known as @pinkydoll, who shared a successful YouTube compilation of her “TikTok NPC Streaming” footage on April 7th, 2023, garnering over 157 thousand views in about three months. Since then, she became the main icon of the trend, with her content swarming the internet.
The “TikTok NPC Streaming” trend got worldwide attention in July 2023, when the videos of @pinkydoll and @cherrycrush_tv, became massively viral both on TikTok and other social media sites, like YouTube, Twitter and Instagram.
A notable tweet, which kickstarted this newfound attention was shared by @marlolifts on July 12th, 2023, giving voice to his disturbed confusion. The tweet was shared, commented and liked by countless other users, spurring discussions about the phenomenon online. News outlets, like The Guardian, CNN and Business Insider have all written about the trend, while YouTube and the rest of the social media sites were also swarmed by content and discussions about it.
“TikTok NPC Streaming” is yet another trend, which shows the absurdity and alienation of online existence, which is now more familiar with robot like NPC behavior, than real life human ones. One might ask, if this is due to the increasing number of people globally adopting an online lifestyle, reminiscent of Hikikomori.
- KnowYourMeme – NPC Streaming
- The Guardian – ‘Ice-cream so good’: how are TikTok creators making money from bizarre gestures and phrases on a loop?