In a stunning move that could change the streaming landscape, Tyler “Ninja” Blevins has left Twitch to stream exclusively on Mixer.
According to the Associated Press and other media outlets, Ninja officially announced his move Thursday, via this Tweet:
— Ninja (@Ninja) August 1, 2019
He would add:
A little more! pic.twitter.com/SMQEygjNiE
— Ninja (@Ninja) August 1, 2019
“I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunities Twitch has provided me,” Blevins told The Associated Press. “But as I looked at the next step in my career, I wanted to be somewhere that empowered me to push the boundaries of gaming and achieve bigger goals within the industry. Mixer provides me with more ways to connect with my community.”
Ninja is without a doubt the most recognizable face and brand in the streaming industry, and one of the biggest celebrities in the gaming industry as a whole.
He’s earned millions broadcasting himself playing Fortnite and other video games on Twitch and YouTube.
Ninja has over 14 million followers on Twitch, and the platform has hosted many of his pioneering stream moments, including a Fortnite event in March 2018, featuring rappers Drake, Travis Scott, and NFL player JuJu Smith-Schuster, that catapulted the game into a pop culture phenomenon.
Blevins will host his first Mixer live stream Friday from Lollapalooza music festival in Chicago. He has publicly invited Kyle “Bugha” Giersdorf, the inaugural Fortnite World Cup winner, to join him.
Within 40 minutes of the announcement, Mixer was the top trending topic on Twitter in the United States, and Ninja’s Mixer page had over 28,000 subscribers.
Twitch expressed their thanks for Ninja’s contributions in a statement to the AP: “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.”
Jeremy from the Quartering offered a solid summary of Ninja’s big move and its impact:
Mixer launched in 2016 but hasn’t come close to matching Twitch’s popularity.
To give some perspective: Microsoft, the parent company of Mixer, reported 10 million monthly Mixer users last year, compared to well over 100 million for Twitch, which launched in 2011.
Mixer is widely regarded as being a friendlier overall community than Twitch, and offers a simple user interface and integrated co-streaming.
Ninja’s move could spark a growth spurt for Mixer, especially if some top Twitch partners follow him to the platform.
Keep in mind that Blevins first emerged in the streaming community eight years ago while playing Halo, and he’s stated many times that he is a huge fan of the Halo franchise.
Given the future releases of Halo: Infinite to both PC and Xbox, and Halo: The Master Chief Collection to PC, it’s a safe bet that Microsoft will capitalize on Ninja’s brand recognition.
Ninja will very likely be the face of the Halo community on Mixer in the future.
Twitch has had some well publicized controversies lately.
From allowing the Artifact game category to be overrun by hackers who streamed porn, mass shootings, and pirated movies for nearly a month with no action taken, to the ban of Dr. Disrespect, to the most recent scandal with Alinity, losing Ninja definitely hurts Twitch.
In contrast, this gives Mixer instant credibility and star power that will spark some much needed competition to Twitch in the streaming market.
No matter what happens, the game streaming world is changing. Is it for the better?
Share your thoughts in the comments.