Tyler "Ninja" Blevins is has shocked almost everyone by announcing that, for the time being at least, he will be streaming on YouTube with him taking to the platform for the first time on 8th Wednesday, at 12 pm CT.
Fifteen minutes after he went live Ninja already had 137,000 viewers, markedly better numbers than in his Mixer days.
The move isn't entirely a surprise, as a test stream mistakenly appeared yesterday showing that Ninja was preparing to stream on the platform. Whether Ninja stays on the platform is not year clear as an exclusive deal, like the one when he moved to Mixer, doesn't appear to have been made.
According to Rod Breslau, Ninja is "currently in negotiations with streaming platforms and no exclusive deal has yet been signed, including YouTube." So an eventual return to Twitch doesn't appear to be off the cards yet.
sources: Ninja is currently in negotiations with streaming platforms and no exclusive deal has yet been signed, including YouTube. today's YouTube live stream from Ninja is all on his own. maybe he'll stream on Twitch too.— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) July 8, 2020
Ninja shocked the gaming world when he signed for Microsoft's Mixer platform in August of last year, the move was supposed to herald a shift in streaming world, with Microsoft hoping to make in-roads into a sector dominated by Amazon's Twitch platform, it was a failure in all respects, even with the COVID-19 pandemic which saw digital platforms grow as the world's population were told to stay indoors, Mixer failed to increase their market share.
That isn't to say nothing changed, Ninja's move started a battle between the platforms, a situation that was given the moniker the "streaming wars", in this climate streamers' audiences became a hot commodity and many of the industry's biggest players signed multi-year deals with guaranteed income.
- Read more: Ninja reportedly paid $30m to end Mixer contract as streaming platform merges with Facebook Gaming, shroud receives $10m
Mixer announced their closure last month, with Microsoft cutting a deal with Facebook Gaming to merge services. This gave the opportunity for partnered streamers as well as those on big contracts like Ninja and Michael "shroud" Grzesiek to not only walk away from their deals but get substantial payoffs for doing so.