All you need to know about the global phenomenon of the gaming world.
Ninja is arguably the world’s best-known gamer. With 20 million YouTube subscribers and the most followed name on Twitch, he has proven to be a global superstar.
But how did a 27-year-old from Illinois become such a worldwide phenomenon…?
Tyler Blevins, otherwise known as Ninja, was born in Lake Villa, Illinois on June 5, 1991. He currently lives in Chicago, the city where his family moved to when he was just a one-year-old.
A keen sportsman, he played football at school as well as being a regular gamer. After graduating, he opted to pursue the latter passion professionally by playing Halo 3 back in 2009. But it was with Fortnite that he gained greater global notoriety.
Ninja in numbers
Ninja recently passed the 20 million mark for subscribers to his YouTube channel, has 12.4m followers on Twitch (and was the first Twitch user to pass 10m) and 375m views in all. In addition, he boasts 3.66m followers on Twitter.
In addition, he broke the record for the number of concurrent viewers on Twitch – 630,000 – when he played the rapper Drake at Fortnite on March 14, 2018. It was a record he later went on to break that mark with 667,000 during a charity event in Las Vegas.
Ninja is married to Jess Goch, the couple met through their joint passion for gaming. She started by playing Mortal Kombat with her brother growing up.
By college, she was regularly playing Halo 3, which brought her into contact with Ninja while attending a tournament as a spectator.
They have been dating since 2013 and got married last year, holidaying on the Caribbean island of St Lucia, Ninja’s only holiday in eight years.
The team behind Ninja
While Jess acts as Ninja’s manager, the team behind making him a global success actually runs to 15 employees, admittedly not all of them full-time. Such roles range from personal assistants to a social media manager.
Ninja regularly does gaming events for charity. In February, he raised $100,000 for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. He also donated $1m to charity after winning a Pro-Am event this year with music producer Marshmello, and recently appeared on TV chat show Ellen to help raise money for her foundation.
Did you know?
Ninja became the first ever gamer to make it onto the front cover of ESPN when he headlined an edition back in September under the headline ‘Fortnite legend Ninja is living the stream’.
Did you also know?
Ninja loves doing impressions in his free time, among his notable impressions is that of American actor Matthew McConaughey.
Ninja takes over New York City’s Times Square on NYE
On December 31, 2018 Ninja will be livestreaming a Fortnite New Year’s event exclusively on his Twitch channel (twitch.tv/Ninja) at the most famous New Year’s celebratory spot in the world – Times Square. Ninja will set up shop in the Paramount building that sits just above the heart of Times Square, in view of the iconic Ball Drop. Special guests will be revealed throughout the night. With the help of friends, he will stream for 12 hours straight—starting at 4pm EST and ending at 4am EST—covering when the clock strikes midnight for many of the world’s time zones.