Live-streaming, esports, and gaming news highlights for the week of September 7, 2020
Ninja is officially back on Twitch
TL;DR - Ninja, who’s been AWOL since Mixer’s collapse in July, has returned to Twitch. Arguably the most popular and well known streamer in the world, Ninja built his empire as a content creator over several years on Twitch. In this new deal, he’ll be exclusively streaming on Twitch for the next few years at a minimum. During his break, Ninja streamed only a couple of times, once on Twitch, and once on YouTube. In the associated press release, Ninja pledged to do more to help underrepresented content creators on the platform, something many streamers have pleaded with Twitch to do for years.
Twitch launches esports competition feature to select group of streamers
TL;DR - Twitch unveiled this week a new feature it’s calling Versus - a collection of tools that gives streamers the ability to organize their own esports competitions. The closed beta is open only to collegiate leagues, developers, Twitch Rivals competitors, and a handful of one-off streamers. Twitch is waitlisting the feature for those not included in this first wave.
KingRichard signs exclusive streaming deal with Facebook Gaming
TL;DR - Twitch streamer KingRichard, who’s amassed over 38M views and is a seven-time Apex Legends tournament winner, has signed on exclusively with Facebook Gaming. Naturally, the specifics of the deal were not shared, however we do know the deal was orchestrated by Loaded, a content creator talent management agency which scored big when Online Performers Group went under. KingRichard’s content will shift fully from Twitch over to Facebook Gaming and Instagram under this new deal.
WWE dials back its streaming ban after backlash
TL;DR - The WWE issued a statement this week in regards to its announcement the week prior, that its performers would be prohibited from using third-party streaming platforms. Under this new directive, the wrestling organization’s performers will be allowed to stream on platforms like Twitch and YouTube but only using their real names, not their in-ring names. They’ll also need to inform the WWE that they have these accounts and intend to live stream. The WWE also defended the original mandate, citing the importance of protecting its intellectual property, just as Disney and Warner Bros. do.
Nvidia working with Twitch to bring higher resolutions to streams
TL;DR - According to a recent statement by Nvidia, they’re working with Twitch to bring 1440p / 120 FPS streaming to the platform. Most notably, they intend to do this with only a marginal increase in bit-rate. It’s unclear how Twitch would use this functionality - whether 120 FPS would see any usage, or if frame rates would stay as they are but resolutions would jump to 1440p. Twitch has experimented with higher resolutions in the past, but this would mark the first time it was more broadly available. No word yet on when users can expect to see this hit the platform.
Twitch upsets streamers by fixing SUBtember glitch
TL;DR - When Twitch’s annual SUBtember event kicked off this year for its fourth installment, it inadvertently included a bug that allowed existing subscribers to score a sweet discount by canceling their current subs. The event is meant to promote NEW subscriptions, and thus shouldn’t apply to viewers extending their monthly commitment. Discounts vary, but could be as much as 30% off the standard $4.99 / month. With the bug, subscribers could cancel and resubscribe, thereby securing the discount in the process. The platform is allowing those that exploited the bug to keep the discount, however. Some streamers were quite miffed by the fix, arguing the bug was actually better for their channels. Twitch was unphased, and has no plans to change the terms of the promotion.
“Sign in with Apple” feature may soon vanish for Fortnite players
TL;DR - Last week, Apple announced it would disable the “sign in with Apple” feature from Epic Games accounts. Epic has responded as Epic does, with a series of social media posts and a tutorial on its website, walking users how to log in with other credentials. Epic later issued a clarifying statement, saying Apple would allow the feature to stay indefinitely. To date, Apple has removed Fortnite from the App Store, and disabled Epic Games’s developer account. Epic may be taking a beating right now at the hands of Apple, but there’s a lot left to be settled in court, which is set to kick off September 28th.
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