Why is Ninja So Famous? Understanding the Reasons Behind the Popularity of Twitch’s Biggest Personality

Published 06/28/2021, 2:37 PM EDT
SAN JOSE, CA – OCTOBER 27: Tyler “Ninja” Blevins stands in between games during the Doritos Bowl 2018 at TwitchCon 2018 in the San Jose Convention Center on October 27, 2018 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Robert Reiners/Getty Images)


Back in 2011, Tyler “Ninja” Blevins could have never imagined the heights of fame he would be able to achieve. The popular streamer was trying his luck in Halo 3 tournaments as he started his career. 6 years later, after trying out professional gaming and variety streaming, Tyler discovered Fortnite, and has never looked back since.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Ninja officially starting streaming Fortnite casually in 2017. However, the streamer realized that there is an extremely high potential in streaming Epic Games’ Battle Royale. Therefore, he slowly gave up his explicit ways to cater to a much wider audience. As Tyler slowly started to become the face of the gaming and streaming industry, many doors opened for him, leading to his current success.

Ninja – The family-friendly Fortnite Twitch streamer

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Tyler saw a rapid growth in his followers and subscribers on Twitch once he switched to family-friendly content. He was the new idol for many gaming enthusiasts, a majority of whom were children. Moreover, this also came soon after Amazon acquired the streaming platform Twitch and offered the Twitch Prime service.

LAS VEGAS, NV – APRIL 21: Twitch streamer and professional gamer Tyler “Ninja” Blevins streams during Ninja Vegas ’18 at Esports Arena Las Vegas at Luxor Hotel and Casino on April 21, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Blevins is playing against more than 230 challengers in front of 700 fans in 10 live “Fortnite” games with up to USD 50,000 in cash prizes on the line. He is donating all his winnings to the Alzheimer’s Association. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Many fans who couldn’t pay money to subscribe to Ninja used their Twitch Prime subscription. Naturally, as the popularity of the streamer grew, not only was he an American gaming idol, but he soon became a global figure. Tyler soon rose to the top of Twitch, breaking both subscriber and follower records on Twitch.

Star collaborations with Drake, Travis Scott, Marshmello, and others

Ninja was at the peak of his fame in 2018, almost a year after he started streaming Fortnite. His popularity attracted the attention of various gaming enthusiasts from other industries, such as music and sports. In fact, his collaboration with hip-hop stars Drake, and Travis Scott, NFL star “JuJu” Smith-Schuster, and England soccer captain Harry Kane smashed records on Twitch.

Once Ninja bagged the throne of Twitch by setting a new record for the most live concurrent viewers, he started getting various brand deals. Companies like Adidas, PSD, Red Bull, Uber Eats, and so many others thought of him as the perfect brand ambassador.

SAN JOSE, CA – OCTOBER 27: Tyler “Ninja” Blevins shakes hands with Michael “Shroud” Grzesiek onstage prior to the Doritos Bowl 2018 at TwitchCon 2018 in the San Jose Convention Center on October 27, 2018 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Robert Reiners/Getty Images)

In fact, Epic Games itself chose to partner with Ninja for major events, including its E3 2018 event. This was the moment Tyler teamed up with popular DJ Marshmello for an exhibition tournament and ended up winning the game. His contributions to the Battle Royale game earned him his own skin, which arrived as the first of the many ‘Icon Series’ skins.

ALSO READ: How Much Money Does Ninja Make in a Month and Year? How Is He So Rich?

Ninja continues to ride his Fortnite success

Soon after these events, Tyler slowly grew tired of Fortnite. This also coincided with Microsoft launching its own streaming platform, Mixer. Blevins, being the face of the streaming industry and the most popular streamer on Twitch, was the go-to choice to lead Mixer’s launch.

According to various reports, Mixer shelled out millions of dollars to acquire Ninja’s exclusive streaming services. Moreover, certain reports also pointed out that EA paid $1 million to Ninja to promote Apex Legends once the game came out.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – APRIL 23: Tyler “Ninja” Blevins attends the Time 100 Gala 2019 at Jazz at Lincoln Center on April 23, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Interviews and exclusives followed as everyone wanted to know how a gamer became one of the most influential people worldwide. Even Times reached out to Ninja for an exclusive interview to get an insight into the streamer’s spectacular journey. And who can forget when Ninja flossed in the middle of New York’s Times Square to celebrate the new year?

Watch this story: Most Controversial Streamers

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

How famous is Ninja in 2021?

Mixer shut down soon after it even began its services. Therefore, Ninja had nowhere to go but Twitch. Fortunately, the streaming platform let him retain all his followers, keeping him as the most followed streamer on the platform. However, many argued that Tyler had fallen off the peak he was once at.

Even though Ninja doesn’t average the same views as he did before or represents the same amount of brands he once did, he still holds a massive amount of influence in the industry. Many of his fans and colleagues regard him as an innovator in the streaming industry, and rightly so.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

ALSO READ: Biggest Controversial Moments of Ninja’s Streaming Career

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Shwetang Parthsarthy

858 articles

Shwetang Parthsarthy is an eSports author at EssentiallySports. His love for arguments and games has led him down two paths: being a law student and writing about the world of gaming since 2017. What started as a teenage hobby in the relatively small mobile gaming world with FPS games like Critical Ops and Call of Duty: Mobile, has grown into a professional pursuit with EssentiallySports.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

essentiallysports's Stories