Anirban Roy Choudhury
Media

Meet the stars of YouTube India's gaming universe

These streamers Aditya 'Dynamo' Sawant, Animesh '8bit_Thug' Agarwal, Chetan 'Kronten' Chandgude and Manasvi 'Manasvivi' believe that the time ahead is going to be very interesting for them, both in terms of revenue and engagement.

In 2019, Tyler 'Ninja' Blevins, one of the most popular streamers on Amazon's Twitch, announced his move to Microsoft's 'Mixer'. Ninja plays video games and streams the same for millions to watch and enjoy. While many may think that it is waste of time, he was reportedly paid $30 million to move from Twitch to Mixer. So, he isn't wasting any time for sure. Mixer has shut its operations and Ninja is back on Twitch now. 

Gamers attract a new set of users, or rather customers, to the streaming platform. That is why Facebook Gaming and YouTube Gaming are trying their best to dethrone Twitch in the triple threat global battle.

Rachell 'Valkyrae' Hofstetter and Jack 'Courage' Dunlop have signed exclusive deals with YouTube Gaming, while Jeremy 'Disguised Toast' Wang has moved to Facebook Gaming. Then, there are Twitch streamers, like Imane 'Pokimane' Anys and Guy 'Dr Disrespect' Beahm. 

In India, Twitch is a minnow. Ruled by Google's YouTube and Facebook, streaming games is relatively new in the country. Yet, there is a streaming universe. And, the stars of that universe, Aditya 'Dynamo' Sawant, Animesh '8bit_Thug' Agarwal, Chetan 'Kronten' Chandgude and Manasvi 'Manasvivi', were the speakers at a panel discussion in the recently concluded Gaming Week. 

All of them said that streaming in India is garnering a lot of traction. "You don't need to be a brilliant gamer to be an engaging streamer," said Sawant, whose YouTube channel 'Dynamo' has more than nine million subscribers. 

'Mortal', a clan that represented India in global championships of PUBG, is one of the most active gaming channels on YouTube in India. Viewers used to tune in to Mortal to enjoy the outstanding gameplay unfold in front of their eyes. However, India banned PUBG and existence became a matter of question for the 'Mortals'. They not only survived, but also grew. 

"What else can you do," is what Namar Mathur thought. It is how new ideas clicked and got accepted by the fans. Mathur is a professional gamer/streamer. "It is a good enough means to earn a livelihood and prosper in life. The opportunities are enough."

On a learning curve, Manasvi said that her fans not only tune in to enjoy the gameplay, but also look for entertainment. "Will people accept me as I am a female gamer, is something that always worried me. They have not only accepted me, but they are the ones who got me a seat with the pros in the industry." 

They are not only gamers, but also influencers. They influence multiple decision making, like which mobile to buy, what kind of makeup to use and which gaming chair is more comfortable.

"There is a well-established ecosystem at play and we have seen many deals go on a retainer. From one brand initiative experiment, to retainer deals, to being in movies, this industry has seen quite a journey," said Agarwal, who, apart from being a gamer, runs an agency that handles top gamers in the country.   

It is not all hunky-dory, things can take a wrong turn too. There are plenty of trolls and they get nasty. "Dealing with them is a task. It affects your mental peace, disturbs you to the core and you feel like giving up. This, according to me, is the biggest challenge that exist today. They allege you of stuff you have not done, accuse you of copying others, and even hacking," said Chandgude. 

Other panellists don't seem to find the trolls that tough to handle. "I don't even look at them and, if I do, I simply filter them out, never letting them reach my thought process," said Sawant.

Adds Mathur, "The trolls are taken care of at the moderation level and, therefore, a nasty comment which contains objectionable stuff would never be displayed."

Overall, the streamers echoed each other and believe that the time ahead is going to be very interesting for them, both in terms of revenue and engagement.

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Posted by afaqs! on Thursday, February 11, 2021