Thousands of Overwatch Fans Spend Christmas Eve Staring at Jeff Kaplan

Giving entirely new meaning to pop star Mariah Carey’s catchy Christmas jingle, around 350,000 viewers tuned in on Twitch to collectively gaze at Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan relaxing in a leather chair while a fire crackled ambiently in the background.

He is accompanied by a basic Overwatch mug (likely filled with creamy, cold dairy milk) and a tiny Pachimari plush.

In a remarkable feat of mental fortitude, Kaplan resists the temptation of devouring a plate of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies that lies just inches from his hands.

At one stage, he is assaulted by a boom mic and loses his glasses, but presses on with his mission.

The viewership figures—which apparently peaked at roughly 39K—have not been falsified. So if you were of the belief people only wanted to play Overwatch during the holiday season, this marathon stream is incontrovertible proof of the contrary. It also demonstrates an effective manipulation of one of the most important pillars in narrative design: suspense. Silence is golden. Kaplan and co have out Kojima’d Kojima. Is this merely a stunt, or a covert marketing tactic to further drive up numbers in the 35 million strong playerbase? Please share your theories below.

As part of Christmas celebrations, Blizzard Entertainment recently rewarded Overwatch players with five free lootboxes to be used in the Winter Wonderland event, which runs until January 1.