TikTok is conducting a broader test of games in its all-conquering app. The company recently added a way for creators in some markets (including the US) to append one of nine mini-games to a video by tapping the Add Link button and choosing the MiniGame option. When viewers come across a video that links to a game, they can start playing it by tapping a link next to the creator's username.
“Currently, we’re exploring bringing HTML5 games to TikTok through integrations with third-party game developers and studios," a TikTok spokesperson told TechCrunch. One of the games is from Aim Lab, the maker of a popular aim training app of the same name. Its TikTok game is called Mr. Aim Lab’s Nightmare. TikTok's other partners on the initiative include developers Voodoo, Nitro Games, FRVR and Lotum.
Click here on mobile to play Mr Aim Lab's Nightmare! https://t.co/UTHBXLVJuK— Aim Lab (@aimlab) July 28, 2022
None of the games have ads or in-app purchases at the minute and the project is in the early stages of testing. TikTok is looking to find out how (or if) creators craft content around them, and how users interact with the games. As The Verge notes, users can record their gameplay and share it in a fresh video.
Reports in recent months suggested TikTok was readying for a major push into gaming. Parent company ByteDance bought game developer Moonton Technology last year. TikTok teamed up with Zynga for an exclusive mobile game called Disco Loco 3D; a charity game called Garden of Good, through which players can trigger donations to Feeding America, became available on the US version of TikTok in June. TikTok previously tested HTML5 games in Vietnam.
Other major tech companies have made a push into mobile gaming, including Apple, Google and, more recently, Netflix. Zynga, of course, became a social gaming giant with the help of Facebook's massive reach, while Facebook moved into cloud gaming in 2020. It's no secret that Meta is trying to ape many of TikTok's features across its apps, so it's interesting to see TikTok taking a leaf out of Facebook's playbook on the gaming front.