Stream sniping is when players log onto a streamer’s Twitch channel, look at what they’re playing and then queue in that game and attempt to join the same lobby as that streamer. They will then watch the channel while playing the game in an attempt to locate and attempt to either kill or grief that streamer in-game. This is a form of cheating that can get players banned from some games if it is proven to be true.
Stream Sniping on Twitch
In some instance streamers have stopped playing a game because they felt that stream-sniping was too prevalent, such as when Shroud decided to stop his stream after he was repeatedly targeted by a stream sniper who has figured out how to hack into PUBG and make his car fly. In an attempt to avoid stream snipers, streamers often either change their in-game handles or have multiple accounts.
Stream sniping is an extremely controversial topic, with many players in the gaming community feeling that streamers baselessly report other players when they lose to real skill shots. The best example is with Ninja, whom many people feel is too trigger-happy with reporting other players. However, as stream sniping is difficult to prove unless the same player consistently appears in the same lobby as the streamer, action isn’t usually taken against those who are reported.
The Problem with Stream Sniping
But arguably the biggest problem associated with streaming sniping has less to do with streamers and more to do with the negative impact that it has on the games themselves. For instance, stream sniping first became popularized on PUBG back in 2017. It started with the usual form of tracking down streamers, monitoring their inventory and attempting to kill them, but slowly evolved to include more creative forms of trolling such as Stream Honking. Stream Honking entailed tracking down streamers while in vehicles and then honking their vehicles horns repeatedly so as to distract the stream and make it difficult for them to hear where their opponents were.
The problem with these instances, is that it puts the game developers in a difficult position as the streamers are their main advertisers, while the community is there main source of income. This makes it complicated for developers to know who to side with, as they will receive slack from someone either way. While PUBG initially used to ban players immediately when they were reported by a streamer, they have since adopted more lenient policies that require more concrete proof before banning a player for stream sniping.
When Streaming Gives You Lemons
However, some players, such as SypherPK and TSM_Daequan have deliberately set up stream snipe lobbies with their viewers for fun. This entails their specifically encouraging their viewers to log into their game of choice at the same time and telling them the exact moment to press ‘play’ in order to increase the chances of their being matched with their viewers in the same lobby. Normally this is so that fans can play against their favorite streamers, but they also occasionally do so to organize fun, non-killing shenanigans, as Electra did below.