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#IDARB Brings Big League Tomfoolery To Your Living Rooms

#IDARB Brings Big League Tomfoolery To Your Living Rooms

Filed inside: Games

With due diligence and some…careful selection, however, #IDARB (I Drew A Red Box, I get it now) grew into something consideably more curious.

See, taken as I’ve described above, #IDARB is an entertaining experience, if one that’s a tad underwhelming. So, just as the devs let the internet at large shape the game’s development, the internet plays just as big a part in matches of the game.

Think of it as the next logical step in the Twitch Plays Pokémon phenomenon. Where TPP was—at its core—a social experiment, one that allowed tens of thousands of participants to play a single player game together, #IDARB is like hosting a championship sports game in your room with spectators via Twitch—and those viewers have an influence on the game as well.


The game utilizes the Xbox One’s integration with Twitch.tv to allow viewers of your stream to use a special hashtag code and special series of characters in order to modify the game as it’s being played. A viewer might, for instance, turn out the lights temporarily, turn the ball into a bomb, make everyone into clowns (and the arena into a circus of flashing lights), and a number of other things. My presenter was quite taken with the feature, expressing only disappointment that it couldn’t be experienced live on the floor. That being said, he was excited to say that while some of these mods would be fairly obvious, there would be a number of “secret” ones he was convinced wouldn’t be discovered for quite some time.

The game encapsulates the feel of a large-scale event as much as it can, and is certainly shaping up to be the next game your neighbors will be able to blame for your insanely loud parties at night. Every goal is met with raucous celebration—mostly from players. Dramatic shots are replayed to truly establish the inferiority of those on the losing end. Ads for other games are plastered about the back of the arena (but these are not paid ads, just ads for projects the devs’ friends have been at work on). There’s an entire halftime moment which gives player stats and uses the Kinect to have the room cheer on their team, mostly by producing the most noise.

You’re given plenty of opportunities to create an iconic look for yourself and your team, as well. While there are certainly a lot of built-in choices that are fully entertaining (I played as a cartoony rendition of Grover Cleveland from the “Dead Presidents” team, my opponent played as a duck). You might elect to be a team composed entirely of breakfast foods or pirates, at your leisure. There is also a full character creator in the game so you can make a team of your own and become notorious in the #IDARB world. You can even give the creator a try at the game’s site here.

IDARB Teams and Creation

The game is being developed as part of the ID@Xbox program, an attempt to allow qualified game developers to self-publish their games directly onto the Xbox One with relative ease. It’s a real testament to the growing dedication to the indie developer as one who is more willing to take risks in the modern age and make truly entertaining experiences—not just by offering deep, somber narratives and underlying themes, but also by building pure experiences like #IDARB seems to be.

It’s as telling about the devs and their dedication to making games as it is of the state of gaming at large in that this is what the internet wanted, in a sense: the devs were the smiths that laid the foundation, and the internet described to them the shape, #IDARB was the result.

IDARB Victory

So consider bringing a little spectacle to your Xbox One in the future—though there’s no release date quite yet. If you haven’t picked up a Wii U for Smash Bros. and don’t like traditional sports games, #IDARB might just be what you’ve been looking for.


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Written by Ray Allaire -The Reasonable Gamer

Writer, game designer, and gaming analyst. Practitioner of all nerdy arts: Games, tabletop, TCG, and all. Twitter: @mateusrayje

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