Tyler “Ninja” Blevins is undoubtedly the most popular gamer in the world. As the first gamer to reach mainstream celebrity status, advertisers like Uber Eats, Samsung, and Red Bull have flocked to Ninja. Stream Hatchet examined the flow of Ninja’s Twitch popularity.
- We averaged total session views and total session followers month by month. Ninja’s average viewers has decreased by 23% since the March
- Although Ninja’s average session views increased following the Drake stream in April, average followers gained per session decreased by 24%.
- Ninja’s average session views has begun to stabilize, average viewers increased by 11.3K from July to August.
Formula 1 locked in footwear and lifestyle brand New Balance as the Presenting Partner of F1 Esports Series. In addition to activations around the three Pro Series live events as well as branded digital content, the brand will be fully integrated into the F1 Esports Pro Series Championship, inlcuding New Balance socks and shoes.
Fathead announced the addition of the Golden Guardians, the North American League of Legends Championship Series affiliate team of the Golden State Warriors, to its inaugural line of esports team merchandise. “Fathead has had a long-standing relationship with the Golden State Warriors through the NBA, and we’re excited to expand our partnership to include the Golden Guardians.” said Fathead CEO, Robby Hogle. “We know first-hand how passionate the Warrior’s fan base is, and we look forward to helping the Golden Guardians build a similar fan base with our product.”
Automobile manufacturer Toyota detailed plans to launch new esports tournament taking place in Bangkok, Thailand, that will showcase CS:GO. The tournament reportedly become the first international event hosted in the country and will feature a $100,000 prize pool this November, titled Toyota Master Bangkok 2018.
This week FanAI looks to answer an age old question – what is more important in all-star game fan votes, popularity or performance? Before the OWL All-Star Weekend, over 55,000 fans cast their vote for the Atlantic and Pacific teams starting rosters. FanAI looked to Winston’s Lab season 1 player rankings (an Overwatch Community statistics authority) as a measure of performance, and Twitter audience size data as a measure of popularity. The data points were then charted for all OWL players and tested against median performance and social reach. The final output shows that the starting players all had a greater than the median amount of twitter followers and almost all had performed above the median in season 1 of the OWL. This indicates that both performance and popularity were equally important in earning fan votes in the case of the OWL.
The Overwatch League and Twitter struck a new multiyear deal to bring highlights and livestream content to the platform, with plans that kicked in with Overwatch League All-Star Weekend. Meanwhile, starting in Overwatch League’s 2019 season, Watchpoint, a weekly preview show covering upcoming Overwatch League matches, will be streamed live on Twitter via @overwatchleague. In addition, Twitter will drive Overwatch League’s distribution of near real-time highlight clips from every match of the Overwatch League regular season, playoffs, Grand Finals, and All-Star Weekend.
European caster Andy “Vedius” Day broke the news that English-speaking casters will not be calling the action from the live venues at the 2018 League of Legends World Championship until the finals taking place at Incheon, South Korea. Instead, the casting crew would operate from the LA studios. Executive Producer Dave “RumbleStew” Stewart stated, according to Cybersport, noted that “This is a pretty familiar model both in traditional sports broadcasts and even for some of the coverage we’ve done in the past.” He added that, “While there are many cost and efficiency advantages to using an already decked out local studio, there are admittedly some challenges for the casting team. However, the team we’re using is highly professional and we expect them to deliver at a very high level.”
Splash Damage is partnering with FACEIT to launch a competitive ecosystem for fast-paced, free to play shooter, Dirty Bomb. Players from Europe and North America are now able to compete in Hubs on the FACEIT platform. “We strive to bring the FACEIT experience to new communities. The platform offers a competitive structure like no other where the community can come together to collaborate and compete,” said Michele Attisani, CBO & Co-Founder of FACEIT. “We’re also big fans of Splash Damage and the experiences they gave us through games like Return to Castle Wolfenstein and Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory which played a big part of my gaming career, so we’re excited to be working on Dirty Bomb and utilizing our technology to provide players with more ways to play.”
FunEase, a joint venture between FunPlus Sports and NetEase, announced that it will showcase esports slate, Rules of Survival Global Series, exclusively on Facebook. Content will include streams of RGS North American and South East Asian divisions in at least 5 different languages. According to the release, FunEase’s approach “combines innovative tournament formats, advanced multi-language broadcasting, exciting content and the total prize pool of $1 million in the 2018-2019 season alone.”
After a Kotaku report detailed internal sexism and misogyny at Riot Games, the developer posted its plans to change the culture at the company and was already taking action against specific complaints, noting that “As a company, we’re used to patching problems ASAP, but this patch will not happen overnight. We will weave this change into our cultural DNA and leave no room for sexism or misogyny. Inclusivity, diversity, respect, and equality are all non-negotiable.” Early steps being taken to address the issues include: expanding the culture and D&I initiative; revisiting cultural definitions; third-party evaluation; offering a revised investigation process; reevaluating recruiting; training; an staffing up for D&I.
Gamescom reported another record year for attendance with approximately 370,000 people taking part in this year’s festivities, representing 114 countries in Cologne. “World premieres for the opening and a plus for the numbers of exhibitors and visitors underline the great relevance and attractiveness of Gamescom for gamers and the games industry,” said Felix Falk, managing director of Game, the association of the German games industry and event sponsor.
The NPD Group reported that stateside consumers spent about $19.5 billion on video game products in the first six months of the year. That marks a 40% uptick over spending from January-June 2017. First-half spending on hardware marked the highest in seven years, up 21% to $1.7 billion.