It's hard to imagine how anyone could bring themselves to use mental health in a stunt the promote a career move. That being said, Tyler 'Ninja' Blevins managed to find a way and it's about as tone deaf as you may imagine.
The hugely popular streamer who made his name in Fortnite has been at the centre of a few controversies over the last few years. The one that often sticks with me is his 'it's just a game' tweet where he criticises the phrase as being linked to a weak mindset.
The irony he failed to see in a tweet like this was that his constant raging outbursts at others while playing Fortnite, many of who may well have been young children, was a bigger show of weak-mindedness than any phrase could ever produce.
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I Gotta Get Off, Man
On 1 September, Ninja signed off from his stream in a very strange way, one that cause genuine reason for concern in his community and beyond. The apparent straw that broke the camel's back was the use of rift-to-go's in the current season of Fortnite.
He later tweeted about needing a break and received a mix of replies. Some poked fun at the fact his outburst was caused by something so trivial. Many of his peers, however, saw the tweet and offered their support with there being a communal understanding of what Ninja may have been going through.
Finally, there were a few select tweets that appeared to offer support but also warn that the situation must not be a publicity stunt. The fact that people felt the need to raise this as an issue shows that there was an inherent trust issue within his community from past transgressions.
Just over one week later, on 8 September, Ninja announced his return with a well-produced hype video and the news that he would be streaming on all platforms, not just Twitch.
This pretty much confirms that whatever happened during his previous stream was simply a marketing ploy to help build anticipation for his return.
A lot of work goes into this kind of announcement, meaning it was being worked on prior to if not straight after he disappeared from Twitch claiming he needed a break. The mental struggles he appeared to be facing were nothing more than an act. This now goes down as just another chapter in the polarizing career of Tyler 'Ninja' Blevins.