Microsoft Signs Exclusivity Agreement with Ninja

Posted on August 1, 2019 by Brad Sams in Games with 22 Comments

Microsoft has made a significant change to how it will start promoting Mixer, the company’ game streaming service. The company is going after Twitch all-stars with the hope that they can bring some life to its own platform.

Announced today, Richard ‘Tyler’ Blevins, also known as Ninja, will be moving exclusively to Mixer. If you are not familiar with his work, and that’s ok, he is the largest Fortnite streamer on Twitch and he is now dumping that service for Mixer.

Clearly, Microsoft is paying out for this and this isn’t some newfound success for Mixer. After Microsoft cut some of their original programming staff in late June, it looks like they are turning those dollars into sponsorships for their game service.

There are some big unknowns though, first being if this is ‘forever’. Blevins states that he is moving away from Twitch but it would be more logical if his contract had a timespan that dictated when and where he could stream. Meaning, this contract will eventually expire and he could go back to Twitch at some point but we don’t know how long the lockup period is but it seems unlikely as it is indefinite.

It will be interesting to see how this impacts Blevins’ game streaming career as it’s quite obvious he found massive success on Twitch. But, this doesn’t mean all his supporters will move over to Mixer and if they don’t, what are the long term ramifications from this move?

That being said, I suspect he has likely considered what could happen by moving to Mixer and it’s more than likely that Microsoft is paying a significant amount of money for this move as well. It will also be interesting to watch to see if Microsoft goes after any other Twitch personalities like Shroud or Dr. Disprect but for now, the company is spending big money to try put Mixer into the limelight.

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Comments (22)

22 responses to “Microsoft Signs Exclusivity Agreement with Ninja”

  1. yoshi

    After the Mixer layoffs I was wondering if Microsoft was getting ready to move away from the platform. I guess I was way off. Hopefully this helps Mixer to see some success. It would be nice to have some strong competitive platforms in the streaming world.

  2. PeteB

    RIP, Ninja. This will amount to a retirement parachute payout for him. Mixer will never go anywhere.

  3. codymesh

    reading people's responses to this I realize that there are fanboys for live streaming sites lmao

  4. zeratul456

    "Dr. Disprect"

    You may want to check the spelling on that.

  5. Bats

    Bad move. REALLY BAD move by .............. Blevins.

    So bad it's laughable. SO how much is Microsoft paying him? If he's getting paid by Microsoft, then it's fine. However, to ditch a well known streaming company like Twitch for a virtual newbie with an horrendous track record of services is very very odd. That's like someone saying, I am going to start selling products thru Shopify and not Amazon because I can make more money.


    • seancookie101

      In reply to Bats:

      100% mixer paid ninja to use mixer exclusively. i would think between $10-$30 million which would be completely worth it for ninja. and then he will probably get paid something yearly by Microsoft. now if its a bad move for mixer, we dont know yet. if ninja can make Mixer a much bigger platform, then yes. but i doubt that will happen. its a really good move my ninja anyways. Mixer would have to sign a lot more big streamers. ninja is way passed his $500k+ a month earnings. so taking this contract is probably the best for him.

    • lvthunder

      In reply to Bats:

      Of course he's getting paid by Microsoft. That's what the agreement is about.

  6. mikebaz

    I don't follow this space at all - like not even in the slightest - so I have no idea who for example "Shroud" or "Dr. Disprect" are - but I'm surprised it took this long for this kind of thing to happen.

    What is Ninja's reputation as a streamer as far as language, etc.? Asking because I'd have to think that would be part of any such agreement and that it would be part of selecting who to invite to this particular party.

    • jimchamplin

      In reply to mikebaz:

      That's literally the last thing that viewers of these streams care about. They're not fond of Nazis, Republicans, and white supremacists, but you can drop f-bombs all day and the audience won't bat an eye.

    • Skolvikings

      In reply to mikebaz:

      Except in his "After Dark" late night streams, Ninja runs a PG stream. No swearing allowed. He never used to be that way originally, but has really cleaned things up in the past year. I let my kids watch.

      • mikebaz

        In reply to Skolvikings:

        cool. thanks for the info. That feels like a defensible position - PG stream except for something officially not. As long as he doesn't go all Notch on "After Dark" it should all work out :)

  7. Thom77

    "I am getting back to my streaming roots" = "Mixer paid me a **** ton of money"

    By the way, Mixer could of paid Ninja to troll everyone and announce this even though its not true, and it STILL would of been worth more then they paid .... BECAUSE HARDLY ANYBODY HAS EVER HEARD OF MIXER. This announcement, by itself, has provided Mixer with exposure nothing else could of even come close to .. forget anything that happens in the future ... this announcement made the gaming community say two things .. First, "Ninja is moving to Mixer!!!?" and second, "Wait, what the hell is Mixer?"

    I would suggest it might not even matter if Ninja succeeds or fails at this point on Mixer .... the purpose of this contract, from Mixer's perspective, has already been successful. Anything more, is icing on the cake.

    • seancookie101

      In reply to Thom77:

      that makes no sense. Microsoft being an established company is not going to pay someone to troll. think about the backlash after everyone figures out it is a publicity stunt. thats not the way Microsoft would advertise their platform

      • Thom77

        In reply to seancookie101:

        I'm not suggesting he is trolling. I was only pointing out that if in a hypothetical situation that Ninja was paid to do a publicity stunt for Mixer and never actually streamed one time on Mixer, that it would of been worth it because now people are googling Mixer and checking it out which I am proposing is the actual worth of this contract to begin with, not the actual streaming itself.

        • seancookie101

          In reply to Thom77:

          ofc Mixer is trying to grow its platform and getting ninja is a good attempt of trying to get the platform to explode. but will mixer actually be big because of ninja, we are going to have to see. i personally doubt it, i think there is going to be hype around mixer for a month or so and the platform will have more viewers altogether. but i dont think this will make them competitive with a platform like twitch.

  8. remc86007

    I am surprised there haven't been more of these contracts thus far. The amount of potential viewership gained by moving some big names over to Mixer surely outweighs the cost of the contract. This seems like a winning strategy for Mixer, and a problem for Twitch.

    • luthair

      In reply to remc86007:

      This has actually been tried by failed streaming sites like and hitbox. It might get some of a streamers die-hard fans to tune into their stream but viewers won't be checking out other mixer streams. Twitch had already won this market before Amazon bought them, they are as powerful in gaming streaming as Youtube is in online video. Microsoft also risks blowback, when Facebook paid ESL One for exclusive streaming rights it blew up in their faces pretty badly.

      This is also risky for Ninja himself long term, not being on Twitch makes him effectively invisible and limits his ability to attract new viewers.

    • lvthunder

      In reply to remc86007:

      It just means Amazon will have to give these people cash as well.

  9. james_wilson

    Looks like Ninja's channel on Mixer will involve a costed subscription? Charge people to watch a 'character'. Interesting.