If there’s anyone that made a name for themselves this year playing Epic Games’ hit Fortnite, it’s Tyler “Ninja” Blevins. After one unforgettable celebrity gaming session with superstar Drake, Blevins has been cast into the spotlight, with thousands of fans watching his sessions and various promotions landing in his lap.
But that left a few people curious- why just Fortnite? Is it possible that “Ninja” took a paycheck from the company to play the game exclusively? This question recently came up during an interview with Wired, as part of their Autocomplete series. You can see the whole video above, with the question popping up midway through.
At one point during the interview, the question “Does Ninja get paid by Fortnite?” came up, with a curious fan wondering if it was, in fact, an endorsement set up by Epic Games. But it turns out that this wasn’t the case.
Blevins replied, “I have to really think about this, because I don’t want to misspeak. I don’t think I’ve been paid by them to do anything, ever. Other than what they’ve done for everyone like the Support-A-Creator code, and they didn’t pay me for that. So no, Fortnite has not paid me.”
That said, the interview hasn’t exactly gone over smoothly with everyone over on the YouTube front. While it does have nearly 200,000 likes to its credit (based on over 6.6 million views thus far), it also has 116,000 dislikes, with a number of critics feeling that “Ninja” dodged the Fortnite payment question. But fans have been quick to spring to his defense, calling the claims “ridiculous.”
Fortnite has helped “Ninja” spring to bigger success, including a tie-in campaign with Samsung (who brought the hit game exclusively to its devices on the Android front when it launched), an appearance on the TV show Ellen; and a forthcoming New Year’s Eve event, which kicks off on December 31 and features Fortnite sessions to go alongside the annual ball drop into 2019.
Say what you want, but “Ninja” represented himself well in the interview; and you might just learn a thing or two about him. Be sure to check out the full clip above.
(Hat tip to Dexerto for the info!)