The Gizmoplex and Community-Building

WARNING: Long post ahead.

I loved the recent preview of the Gizmoplex and have been geeking out about the potential it has to bring old and new MSTies together while keeping the franchise fresh indefinitely. Below I am making a list of feature suggestions that try to balance community-building, site “stickiness”, development feasibility, and revenue opportunity.

Community-Building Features

  1. Livestream Event Dynamic Group Seating. Probably my most complex and expensive feature request, which requires some explanation. This idea is based on the communal feel of attending a live event, but less about 1 seat in a theater of individual seats and more about 1 table in a theater of multiple tables. Some live venues, like City Winery, use this approach today. You buy three tickets and your party gets sat at a table that seats 6, 10, or whatever. This approach, done virtually, similarly allows you to enjoy the show with people you know, while welcoming in strangers with shared interests. It would also keep the co-viewing experience manageable by actually being able to keep pace with a chat. In theory a 3-person party could set their table size to 10 and the other 7 seats would be filled at random by other parties, who would all share a chat. Or that 3-person party could set their table size at 3 and not accept random people. Or that 3-person party could not set a table at all and let themselves be placed at any table with space. You get the idea. This would have to come with a number of settings to pull in users from your friends list, allow the removal of users if a table host prefers, the ability to switch tables, etc. But the whole goal is the opportunity to make friends that you’ll come back to the Gizmoplex with again and again. Precedence for this exists in the form the old Chat Roulette or Omegle sites (unsavory as they may have been).
  2. This was from another thread, but an arcade. Likely filled with silly Flash-esque games, but make sure there is a high-score leaderboard for each! Even better if a Chuck-E-Cheese prize counter existed to trade earned tickets/points for virtual junk that you can put in your corner of the Gizmoplex.


  1. A Friends List. It should have basic functionality that shows Currently Online, Last Online, and allows DMing individuals and small groups. Perhaps user tagging/notes as well.
  2. A user Bulletin Board that all friends of a user can view at any time on a user’s profile. This would be for watch party hosts to post upcoming events they’ll host in their corner of the Gizmoplex. Users that host watch-parties are the power users that bring people back to the platform when there isn’t an official event, so they need features that will let them do their thing.
  3. User avatars. Maybe these are highly customized Cambots (with bodies?) based on the preview. But ideally they’re not just 2-D images, but 3-D “characters” that wander the Gizmoplex and occupy the seats whenever possible. did a pretty great job of this. This also has potential for driving engagement/incremental revenue through accessories earned through badges, sponsored items/outfits, etc. And it would be cool if your avatar could cross paths with the bots somehow.

Fresh MST3K-adjacent Content
These ideas are more through the lens of the Gizmoplex as a community theater or one of those mom-and-pop incubator places where creative ideas are born, tested, and refined. The Gizmoplex definitely has to succeed as “the place for MST3K” first, but to keep things feeling vibrant, keep people coming back, and ultimately provide avenues for additional revenue, these ideas feel true to the vibe of the Gizmoplex to me. Some light moderation and talent vetting would be required.

  1. Open Mic: Live stand-up or musical performances from special gusts or even the community. Could even be from otherwise-not-broadcast small venue improv groups.
  2. DIY Videos: Think bot-building, cosplay, writing, or the Arts & Crafts corner of this forum in short video form. Users could teach or just show off.
  3. Extended World of Riffing: Give guest-riffers, lesser-known groups or users a chance to show off their skills.
  4. Other Watch Parties: There are copyright considerations here, but I’m a huge fan of services like Kast that let a small group of friends virtually watch something of their choice together. Perhaps there is some room for fair use in a user’s invite-only private theater.

Lastly, work those industry connections. How cool would it be if established comedians and performers saw the Gizmoplex as one of those hole-in-the-wall small venues where they could test ideas and material? They could pop in on a whim, run through some stuff, and pop out. They could have their own custom accounts/avatars and appear on friend lists too. I’d tune in to see Dana Gould be weird or Felicia play violin, but throw in side projects from the talented crew we get to meet in the backer emails. And the only way people can ensure they can catch those moments are if they’re a pass-holder.

In conclusion, MST3K as a franchise should definitely be the centerpiece of the Gizmoplex, but there is so much potential for the approachable, cozy, DIY spirit of MST3K to shine through in the theater itself. That warmth and familiarity are what have kept many of us coming back for years and what separate it from just another media franchise.

Thanks for reading and I can’t wait to see the Gizmoplex launch and evolve!


Some great ideas!

A forum section is set up to allow folks to make feature requests and a voting system so other forum members can vote on those ideas. Staff can then prioritise potential improvement to the Virtual Theater based on those votes. I suggest you add your ideas to that forum (one idea per post is probably best) so folks can weigh in on your ideas.



That sounds like one of the best ideas I thought of in a while!!! How cool would that be for the Gizmoplex to be more interactive in the future?! But I’m not sure if there’s gonna be a budget for those.