FORTNITE’S biggest celebrity makes more cash than most Premier League footballers, according to a new report.
American gaming star Tyler “Ninja” Blevins makes up to £10.3million a year streaming to millions of fans around the world.
That’s a higher salary than both Harry Kane (£10.2million) and Virgil van Dijk (£9.4million) – two of the Prem’s top paid footballers.
It’s also an arm and a leg more than England rugby captain Owen Farrell, one of rugby union’s highest earners, makes in a year (£750,000).
The earnings of Fortnite megastars was revealed in a recent Bloomberg report.
Ninja, 28, earns his bumper salary through a lucrative contract with Microsoft-owned streaming site Mixer.
The deal, signed in August, saw the Chicago resident make a surprise move from rival streaming service Twitch.
It was worth a reported £30.9million over three to five years, or up to £10.3million a year.
Fellow Fortnite star Michael “Shroud” Grzesiek makes a similar sum with Mixer, according to Bloomberg.
The Canadian had 7million followers on Twitch before he announced his move in October.
What is Fortnite, anyway?
FORTNITE is an online video game played by up to 250 million people across the world.
In it, 100 players compete on their own or with a small group of pals to grab weapons, gather resources and build defences, before fighting it out to be the last man (or team) standing.
Matches take about 20 minutes, and you can drop into a new game within seconds of your previous one finishing.
It’s bright, it’s cartoony and it’s fiendishly compelling.
Skill is rewarded but luck also plays a huge role, meaning no two games are ever the same and everyone feels like they have a chance of winning.
Fortnite has also made its developer billions.
In Europe it’s rated 12+, meaning it’s suitable for those aged 12 and up.
The battle royale mode is free to play, but there is also a story-driven single player and co-op mode called Save The World that players have to pay for.
Pop culture crossover events are very common because of the game’s huge audience.
These involve players being able to buy themed outfits for the movie, TV show or brand, as well as getting some themed activities in-game to do too.
These might be new places to explore, new challenges to complete to win themed accessories, or new game modes that are loosely related to the theme of whatever is being crossed over with.
Ninja amassed over 14million followers on streaming platform Twitch before he made the switch.
Figures from Capology, a site which estimates the salaries of top sports stars, suggest Ninja and Shroud make more cash than most of the Prem’s top players.
The pair’s annual incomes comfortably beat those of Harry Maguire (£9.9million), Alexander Lacazette (£9.5million) and Roberto Firmino (£9.4million).
However, they’re bested by players like Paul Pogba (£15.1million) and Mesut Özil (£18.2million), as well as the Prem’s alleged top-paid star, David de Gea (£19.5million).
And neither come anywhere near the financial might of football’s highest earner, Lionel Messi, who pulls in around £60million a year.
It’s worth noting that these figures only encompass the base salaries paid to players by their clubs.
Many make a boat-load of extra cash through paid sponsorship deals with sports brands and other big companies.
However, this is also true of Fortnite gamers.
Ninja recently signed a multi-year clothing deal with Adidas. He’s due to release his first line of trainers later this month.
Companies are betting big on competitive gaming – also known as “esports” – a rapidly growing industry worth billions.
Streaming sites like Twitch and Mixer rake in cash via paid subscriptions and advertising revenue.
Twitch, owned by Amazon, boasts 15million daily users and is worth an estimated £3billion.
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In other news, we reveal the secret ways that Fortnite is getting kids hooked.
The Epic Games boss revealed he tried to cancel the hit game before it was released.
And find out how pro Fortnite players like Ninja actually earn their cash.
Do you think Fortnite streamers are paid the right amount? Let us know in the comments!
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