The Smash Bros community was rocked to its core alongside the fighting game community and esports in general, as multiple top players and personalities got outed for sexual misconduct, in almost every case admitting to the allegations from the victims.
(Picture: Facebook Gaming)
One of the most shocking cases revolved around Gonzalo "ZeRo" Barrios, a retired player turned content creator that, statistics wise, was the most recognizable face in the scene with over one million subscribers on YouTube.
The 25-year-old admitted to sending suggestive messages to an underage girl, including soliciting nude photographs, prompting his sponsor, Tempo Storm, to drop him (while providing means for rehabilitation), as well as Facebook Gaming ending his exclusivity contract with the Chilean. Now, Twitch has officially decided to permanently ban him from its platform as well.
While ZeRo dumped Twitch for Facebook in December 2019, his channel remained active and was still partnered with the platform, possibly still making the former Evo champion a small amount of money.
In an interview with Inven Global, Tempo Storm's CEO, Andrey ‘Reynad’ Yanyuk admitted that he doesn't completely discard the possibility of ZeRo making a return to content creation.
“I think ZeRo is a very different person today than he was when he wrote some Skype messages at 19 years old. He's had a lot of personal growth over the past few years that I've personally seen, so I'm optimistic about his ability to recover.”
Whatever the future holds for ZeRo, one thing’s for sure — it won’t be on Twitch, and quite possibly, in gaming content creation as a whole.