What Is Backseat Gaming?

Updated · Mar 04, 2023

If you're a fan of streaming services like Twitch, then you may have noticed a trend taking over the platform: calling out backseat gamers.

Some people don't mind this type of behavior, while others find it frustrating. But either way, backseating is definitely generating some buzz among streamers.

This guide will help you understand what that is and how to avoid doing it.

What Is Backseat Gaming?

Backseat gaming, by definition, refers to the action of someone watching another person play a video game and offering continuous commentary or suggestions. It is more prevalent when the advice is given in person, but streaming is so popular that it happens in companies that watch together as well.

It can be helpful for those who want to improve their gameplay or hear another person's thoughts, but in almost all cases, it's quite irritating.

The term is primarily popular on Twitch, YouTube, and other streaming platforms gamers use.

How to Tell if You Are a Backseat Gamer?

If you enjoy playing video games, it's natural to want to share your passion with others. However, it's important to ensure that you're not acting as a metaphorical backseat driver.

That's when you provide unsolicited commentary while someone else is playing a game. It may be anything from giving directions, evaluating the performance, or spoiling the story.

Not only is this behavior annoying, but it can also ruin the game for everyone involved.

So if you're wondering whether you might be backseating, here are a few undeniable signs to clarify the meaning of the term.

  • You tend to give advice, especially when no one has asked for it.
  • You get easily frustrated when people don't follow your suggestions.
  • You have trouble enjoying a game if you're not the one in control.
  • You usually think you know better than the person playing the game.

If any of these sounds familiar, chances are you're guilty of this unpleasant behavior.

Why Is Backseating So Annoying?

There are a few reasons why people get so frustrated with backseat gamers:

  • First, it's intrusive; when you're trying to concentrate on a game, the last thing you want is someone else talking in your ear and telling you what to do.
  • It takes away the game's challenge; generally, people play to get the feeling of achievement, but that's taken away if someone else navigates them all the way.
  • It's often rude; it's one thing to offer advice when asked to, but another to take over someone else's game.

How to Avoid Backseat Gaming?

You can do a few things to ensure you're a pleasant company while someone else is playing:

  • First, be aware of your behavior. If you find yourself constantly offering unsolicited advice, try to hold back.
  • Don't share your opinion on every little thing. Let the player enjoy the art of gaming.
  • Respect other people's gaming experiences. If someone doesn't want your help, don't force them to accept it.
  • And finally, if you can't help being that way, then maybe it's time to find a new hobby.

While there's nothing wrong with being passionate, you should respect other people's experiences.

And in case you can’t help yourself with commenting on games, maybe you should try playing in front of a camera, debating on air your and your opponents’ next moves.

What Is Backseat Gaming in Twitch?

Twitch is a live streaming platform that has become incredibly popular in recent years among gamers. It allows viewers to interact with the streamer, and sometimes, the interaction takes the form of backseating.

Viewers will often offer their opinion on what the streamer should do next, give tips and advice, and essentially try to take over the game.

While this can be helpful in some cases, it's important to remember that not all streamers want or need the help.

If you're not sure whether or not a streamer wants your input, it's always best to ask.

To Wrap Up

Knowing how to define backseat gaming can help you not do it and respect other players' efforts.

It's important to be aware of your actions and how they might affect the game or person you're playing with.

Games are to be enjoyed by everyone, so try to avoid intruding your opinion and just have fun.

Marina Stanisheva
Marina Stanisheva

With charmingly infectious enthusiasm, Marina is always thrilled by forthcoming challenges. Thanks to her knack for gathering useful (and not so much) information, she is here to get you any answer you need.