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A Game that Lets You Become a YouTube ASMR Idol

ASMR you ready to become a star?

Jordan Mallory

All images courtesy Pandateam

We all dream of becoming renowned Youtube influencers like our own Patrick Klepek, but for most of us, the time investment is just too unrealistic an ask for our responsibility-soaked lives. Thankfully, as with most unattainable aspirations, there is a video game available to help sate that desire: ASMRstar.

The player is tasked with finding objects around their home with which to make interesting sounds, in the hopes of inducing an ASMR response in their simulated Youtube audience. Once each video is released, comments stream in and let the player know how well the ASMR community responded to the combination—scissors might prove very popular, but the foghorn maybe not so much.

There isn't really a fail state as far as I was able to glean, it's more about playing around and seeing what combinations of items elicit which responses. The PC in the house can be used to check up on how your channel's stats compare to other prominent Youtubers,' which, like the comments, are randomly generated and pretty dang funny. In contrast, the titles of your videos are of your own doing. I am the only one to blame for releasing a video called "Wet Cat ASMR Soothing Biaural [sic] Hot GFE - - -".

ASMR, for the uninitiated, is an acronym that stands for "Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response." If you get weird tingles down your neck, shoulders and/or spine during, say, a haircut, or when someone nearby is preparing food, you may experience ASMR. Whether this sensation results in pleasure or discomfort depends on the person, but there are enough people who find it relaxing to support an enormous Youtube community of ASMR content creators.

Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response is not a medical term, despite the clinical nature of the wording. Rather, the term was invented by a cybersecurity professional named Jennifer Allen, according to a 2016 interview conducted by ASMRUniversity.com. There has been no significant scientific research performed on ASMR as a condition or syndrome, though there is an enormous amount of anecdotal information across the internet. ASMR is also not explicitly sexual in nature, but a subset of erotic ASMR content does exist. This is also true of nearly everything else in the world.

ASMRstar definitely isn't dragging the concept of ASMR or its Youtube culture, but it's not gung ho on the whole thing either. It's coming from a place of slightly confused neutrality, taking a step back and saying that it may not understand what the kids are into, but that's okay. You can also take a shower in this game, for absolutely no reason that I was able to discern, and the fridge says "FRIG" on it real big, so, solid work all around.

ASMRstar is available on itch.io as a pay-what-you-want download for Windows and macOS.