Tyler Blevins, better known as Ninja, won’t be participating in the 2019 Fortnite World Cup. He and his partner, Malachi Greine (“Reverse2k”), failed to qualify for this year’s event.
The duo earned a total of 64 points in the qualifying matches, 25 less than the minimum requirements for qualifying. The matches weren’t streamed due in part to Ninja’s poor health at the time, and both Ninja and Reverse2k took to Twitter afterwards to thank their followers and graciously admit defeat:
64 points w/ ma boy @Reverse2k_ we Didn’t qualify but if you guys saw our start… LOL 15 points 4 games in and then we turned it up. I will be at the World cup in NYC no matter what though!
And thank you @FortniteGame for the opportunity.
— Ninja (@Ninja) June 22, 2019
The Fortnite World Cup isn’t just a for-fun event, either. This year’s competition is for a hefty $30 million prize.
Those who don’t follow eSports a great deal have undoubtedly still heard of Blevins, thanks to his prolific streaming career and recent appearance as the first eSports star on ESPN magazine. He’s also credited with making Fortnite as popular as it is, with over 14 million followers on Twitch and more than 600,000 concurrent viewers.
However, that fame and success comes with a price. Blevins told CNN last year that while he earned $10 million in 2018 and helped boost Epic Games’ profits when Fortnite was lagging, he also had to stream for 12 hours a day to retain his viewers.
That equates to over 7,000 hours on Twitch for the length of his career so far. It’s also cost some quality time with his wife and manager, Jessica, with Blevins mentioning the two hadn’t been on vacation together since their honeymoon eight years ago.
It’s a side of streaming we don’t often hear much about. With crunch in the video game industry starting to get a lot more attention, it seems the focus shouldn’t stop there and should extend to those who keep us entertained by playing those games as well.