Thousands upon thousands of people spent over two weeks playing Pokémon Red version, which was originally released in 1996, collaboratively over Twitch.
The button commands they entered into the chat box were all received by the game, which then had to sort those commands out and try to figure out what the hell players wanted it to do.
Accomplishing even the simplest tasks took an enormous amount of cooperation and luck. And although democracy occasionally gained a foothold, anarchy always won out in the end. But still, much was gained from this.
This was their religion
The most amazing thing about the whole affair is that it has literally spawned a religion, whose followers worship Omanyte, a Pokémon that no one ever gave a shit about until now. They call him Lord Helix, because in the game Omanyte is revived from the helix fossil. Their devil figure is Omanyte's counterpart Kabuto, who comes from the dome fossil.
They even have a Bible: The Book of Helix. It's 27 pages long, and you can read it here. Like the Mormon bible, it's free online. It contains chapters with names like "The Genesis of Red," "The False Prophet," and "The Scope of Silph."
These were their triumphs
At some point during Twitch Plays Pokémon the goal shifted from beating the Elite Four and becoming the Pokémon League champion to reviving Lord Helix from the helix fossil so that Omanyte could join the party.
Doing so was a trial, but it wasn't their only triumph. They also managed to capture the legendary Pokémon Zapdos (using a Master Ball, but still—it's impressive enough that they even still had the Master Ball at that point). They even managed to "release" the false prophet Flareon, who corrupted the innocent Eevee and prevented it from learning ever learning Surf, which they needed to progress.
(A Pokémon being released from the PC, and thus deleted from the game, is death to followers of Helix and Dome alike.)
And yes, they beat the Elite Four and became the Champion.
These were their gods
Dozens of Pokémon were unintentionally released, and some, like the Charmeleon Abby and the Ratata known as Jay Leno, were dearly missed. But when all was said and done and the followers of goodly Lord Helix had amassed their perfect pantheon, these were their gods: Lord Helix, The Almighty; Bird Jesus, The Messiah; Battery Jesus, An Angel; The Fonz, A King; Air Jordan, A Prince; and the lowly but noble All-Terrain Venomoth.
(An Omanyte, a Pidgeot, a Zapdos, a Nidoking, a Lapras, and, of course, a Venomoth, for the sane still reading.)
This is what they inspired
See below for some of the best art and funniest memes inspired by Twitch Plays Pokémon.
GIF via Alamy
GIF via ColourmeFred
GIF via Kotaku
GIF via Topchickenz
GIF via Topchickenz
GIF via Wooden Plank Studios
Image via Whoaconstricter
Image via XKCD