Twitch gameplay is a type of video gameplay scenario that tests a player's response time. Action games such as shooters, sports, multiplayer online battle arena, and fighting games often contain elements of twitch gameplay. For example, first-person shooters such as Counter-Strike as well as Call of Duty shooters require quick reaction times for the players to shoot enemies, and fighting games such as Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat require quick reaction times to attack or counter an opponent. Other video game genres may also involve twitch gameplay. For example, the puzzle video game Tetris gradually speeds up as the player makes progress.
Twitch gameplay keeps players actively engaged with quick feedback to their actions, as opposed to turn-based gaming that involves waiting for the outcome of a chosen course of action. Twitch can be used to expand tactical options and play by testing the skill of the player in various areas (usually reflexive responses) and generally add difficulty (relating to the intensity of "twitching" required).
Fast chess, chess played with short time limits between moves, is an example of adding a twitch gameplay element to a turn-based game. Conversely, checkpoints and extra lives are common game mechanics in twitch gaming that attempt to reduce the penalty for errors in play, adding an element of turn-based gameplay. Traditionally, however, the term "twitch game" has been applied to simple arcade, console, and computer games that lack an element of strategy and are based solely upon a player's reaction time.