New TikTok Trend Has Users Making Tons of Money Acting Like NPCs

A new TikTok trend has encouraged users to behave like NPCs and they’re now making tons of money off of it. TikTok is one of the biggest social media apps out there and it has really influenced the way we consume content over the last few years. YouTube, Instagram, and other apps have all transitioned into promoting the never-ending content scroll with short vertical videos. It’s incredibly addicting and keeps the user on the app for long periods of time as they stimulate their brain with a wide variety of content every minute. TikTok has allowed users to make content that keeps viewers on one video for an extended period of time with live streams, but those have devolved into something pretty strange in their own right.

Over the last week or two, a ton of TikTok live streams have begun popping up with users acting like “NPCs”. If you’re not familiar with the term, an NPC is a non-playable character in a video game that are stereotypically scripted to do little to nothing until the player interacts with them. So, for some reason, TikTok users began doing live streams where they sway, repeat canned lines with weird tones that sound like a bad line reading from a PS2 game, and respond enthusiastically with other scripted lines when a viewer donates to them. The biggest examples of these streams are pulling in tens of thousands of viewers and raking in tons of money as the streamer will usually say the donator’s name out loud, which seems to be a worthy incentive to those who are spending their money. TikTok doesn’t allow users to donate cold hard cash, though. Users spend their money on digital items like foods and inanimate objects which can then be given to a streamer and turned into real money.

It’s really something to behold, but it is also drawing a lot of criticism given the content comes across as very low-effort. Why is this content taking off in such a major way? I really have no idea. However, many are actively cheering on the creators making a boatload of cash off of the trend.