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Fortnite streamer Ninja abandons Twitch, fans follow

Alex LaFreniere

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Anybody who has even a basic familiarity with the world of the popular battle royale game Fortnite has likely heard the name Ninja.

Tyler “Ninja” Blevins is one of the game’s most popular and celebrated players, boasting a streaming following numbering in the millions. Until recently, Ninja was a fixture on Amazon’s popular streaming platform Twitch. However, Ninja recently shocked the world of Fortnite with the surprising announcement that he would be leaving Twitch in favor of Microsoft’s rival platform, Mixer.

Fortnite streamer Ninja abandons Twitch

Ninja made his surprise announcement simultaneously on his YouTube and Twitter accounts. In the Youtube announcement video, Ninja stated that he had been holding onto the news for some time, and was excited to “get back to his streaming roots.”

The actual details and rationale behind the decision are unclear, but the move is doubtless a major coup for the Mixer platform.

Owned by Microsoft, Mixer has struggled to compete with rivals like Twitch and YouTube. Despite having been on the scene since 2016, Mixer has largely failed to find a foothold, and even underwent a complete rebrand in 2017. Ninja’s exclusivity agreement already appears to be bearing fruit: his Mixer stream already boasts one million followers a mere five days after arriving on the platform.

fortnite ninja tyler blevins
Image courtesy Epic Games

That said, the worry remains that this sudden uptick in popularity could simply be a flash in the pan for Mixer. Currently, fans enjoy a free trial promotion that will expire in two months, leaving subscribers to incur a monthly fee or lose out on certain subscriber perks. Concern remains that after the initial hype expires, Mixer’s popularity will once again dwindle.

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Despite the murky future for Ninja’s Mixer channel, Twitch has taken Ninja’s loss in stride. At one time, Ninja was the most popular streamer on the platform, and remained among the top streamers until his recent departure. Twitch issued the following statement concerning Ninja’s move:

“We’ve loved watching Ninja on Twitch over the years and are proud of all that he’s accomplished for himself and his family, and the gaming community. We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.”

Whatever his streaming future, it’s clear that Ninja’s popularity isn’t going to decline anytime soon. His YouTube channel still boasts an impressive 22 million subscribers and the Fortnite pro made a recent appearance at the Fortnite World Cup in New York. There, he both competed in and served as a commentator for the event.

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