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Twitch Plays Pokemon captivates with more than 6.5M total views

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Twitch Plays Pokemon, the channel supporting a massively multiplayer online co-op version of the original Pokemon Redfor Game Boy, surpassed more than 6.5 million views total and continues to grow.

The channel now provides a FAQ that dubs Twitch Plays Pokemon a "social experiment." By offering commands via Twitch comments, viewers are able to fight for control over the game's main character. Through slow and sometimes counter-intuitive cooperation, players have been able to earn four badges, capture 12 Pokemon and spot another 71. Notable events, as provided by a document tracking the game's progress, include entering the S.S. Anne, exploring the Rock Tunnel and buying Soda Pop. Players have also released the party's Charmeleon and Rattata into the wild, removing them from the available lineup.

According to statistics from the channel, the number of viewers continues to consistently climb. At the time of this post, more than 75,000 viewers were tuned in to watch the frantic stream of commands. The game's total number of button presses is more than 2.5 million.

Twitch Plays Pokemon has since spawned a subreddit and several imitations, including Twitch Plays Pokemon: Crystal Version, Twitch Plays Pokemon Plays Tetris and Twitch Plays Whatever. A photo posted on the Twitch Plays Pokemon subreddit reveals that the stream has been brought to the attention of Guinness World Records via Facebook.

The channel is offering a subscribe option for $4.99, though interested parties are warned against subscribing "with the expectation of special treatment."

"Subscribers do not get to bypass the slow mode restrictions on chat," the FAQ reads. "The reason for this is because unlike most Twitch streams the chat is an critical component of the content. I think it's best if everyone has the same capacity of input."

For more on Twitch Plays Pokemon, check out our interview with the creator. You can watch the stream below, which currently features players passing through Team Rocket Headquarters. Players still need to gain four badges before they can tackle the game's final trainers, the Elite Four.