After fans feared he was taking time off to deal with a mental health crisis, streamer Tyler “Ninja” Blevins returned to announce he would now be streaming everywhere.
Last week, Ninja tweeted “I just need a break…I don’t know when I’ll be back or where”, deleted his profile pictures on all platforms and changed his usernames. display as “User not found”.
This followed a livestream in which Ninja appeared to “rage stop” playing a game of Fortnite, ending by saying, “I gotta take a break from the stream, man. I’m going to lose my mind, mate…, I don’t know when i’m gonna be live next, but i gotta get down, man.”
Many assumed that Ninja’s actions were signs of burnout and a mental health crisis.
Then, last night, Ninja tweeted, “I took some time off but now I’m back…and I’ll be live EVERYWHERE tomorrow at 12 CST,” along with a video announcing his return.
This means Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, YouTube and Twitch.
Took some time off, but now I’m back… and I’ll be live EVERYWHERE tomorrow at 12 PM pic.twitter.com/k2nt1BVUuN
— Ninja (@Ninja) September 8, 2022
Prior to the announcement, some fans speculated that Ninja’s exclusivity deal might have ended two years after he returned to Mixer’s platform. In fact, this return appears to be in line with Twitch’s updated exclusivity policy.
While fans will welcome Ninja’s return, the streamer has come under fire for his handling of the announcement.
In a blog postesports journalist Jacob Wolf accused Ninja of “obvious and disgusting use of signs of mental health and burnout as a marketing ploy after less than a week off”.
“There are big mental health issues in the streaming community and using it as marketing (poor marketing, you think) is a blot on an otherwise intriguing plane,” wrote Twitch reporter Zach Bussey.
That said, Ninja came awfully close to this. The poorly acted sanity crisis was dumb and unnecessary. There are big sanity issues in the streaming community and using it as marketing (poor marketing, mind you) is a blot on an otherwise intriguing plane.
— Zach Bussey (@zachbussey) September 8, 2022
“At the end of the day, no content creator should ever aspire to be what the hell has become of a ninja. It’s really embarrassing to use mental health as a marketing strategy,” said YouTuber TheTacticalBrit.