Twitch streaming was more popular than ever in 2021, as streamers new and old stepped up their game across the platform to bring viewers the content they love in gaming, IRL, and a variety of events and shows. As part of Dexerto’s Best of 2021 series, we’ve ranked the best 5 Twitch streamers this year.
Despite competition from rivals like YouTube and Facebook, Twitch remains the primary destination for livestreaming gaming content, and more than ever, livestreaming of any kind.
Picking out just five streamers from the hundreds of thousands that go live every single day on the platform is not an easy task, but these five made it a bit easier, standing out from the crowd with what they achieved in 2021.
There were also plenty of names that just missed out on our ranking, and we’ll also be highlighting the best 5 breakthrough streamers soon too, so keep an eye out for that if you’re favorite is missing here.
For this ranking, we have only ranked English-speaking streamers, as this is what the Dexerto team watches, but our Spanish site will be ranking the top Spanish Twitch streamers this year too. This is our list of the best Twitch streamers in 2021.
5 – NICKMERCS
Nick ‘NICKMERCS’ Kolcheff is on this list as much for his on-stream performances as his off-stream activities. On stream, fans have come to expect thoroughly entertaining content from Nick’s boisterous personality, as well as high-level gameplay on whatever he chooses to play. While Nick started off the year dominating the Warzone streaming charts, he seamlessly switched over to Apex Legends, where he maintained a number one spot.
But, we must also mention his massive successes with the MFAM BBQ, a community event unlike any other in the streaming space, meeting face-to-face with fans, and giving away lots of cash too. In total, he spent over $360,000 of his own money for the event. The MFAM community also regularly runs competitions and tournaments, giving Nick’s channel a much more community-focused feel that sets an example for other superstar-level streamers. Nick has also landed various sponsorships this year, including Under Armour and Apple Beats.
4 – RichCampbell
RichCampbell might not have the follower count of some of the others on this list, but this has been a standout year for many reasons. Shifting his focus away from hosting and casting at esports events, Rich has established himself as a full-time Twitch streamer this year, and quickly become a favorite in various communities.
His follower count has more than doubled this year, and has done so while streaming a massive variety of games. Rich is a true entertainer, meaning no matter what he’s playing, or doing, there are always laughs to be had. He’s played a big role in the resurgence of FFXIV on Twitch, and collaborated with the likes of Asmongold, Mizkif, and the OTK group on various streams and projects. Although he’s been streaming for a long time, 2021 was Rich’s best year on Twitch, and he is bound to grow exponentially from here.
3 – Fuslie
Fuslie’s 2021 reached a pinnacle when she joined 100 Thieves as a content creator, but even before that, Leslie Fu was having the best year of her streaming career. Having been a streamer since 2015, Fuslie grew quickly, and by the end of 2020, was averaging around 2,000 viewers a stream.
Branching out from League of Legends in 2021, her viewership rocketed to triple this, and some months, she averaged more than 10,000 viewers. Fuslie is also notable for her impressive track record with landing sponsorships, such as Charmin, Lexus, and Samsung Galaxy. With her 100T connections and collaborations with other big names, in 2022, Fuslie is positioned to go right to the very top.
2 – Ludwig
It might seem odd now to have a YouTube streamer on this list of the best Twitch streamers, but there’s no way we could leave Ludwig Ahgren off the top spots after the groundbreaking year he had.
There are plenty of trendsetters on Twitch, like Sodapoppin, Summit1g, Amouranth, and more, but Ludwig set off one of the biggest Twitch trends ever all by himself: the subathon. Love them or hate them, subathons are now an ingrained part of the Twitch meta, and it’s all thanks to Ludwig.
He broke Ninja’s 2018 record for the most active subscribers, with over 280,000, and it could have been even higher had he not capped the subathon at 30 days. And, it was for good causes too, with lots raised for charity along the way.
After his subathon, Ludwig went from strength to strength, and the following he now commanded allowed him to secure a lucrative deal with YouTube Gaming, which Twitch didn’t match, and thus resulted in his exit from the platform.
1 – Mizkif
The best Twitch streamer of 2021 is Mizkif. While the competition was high, Mizkif excelled for numerous reasons, his average viewership tripling, involved in the big moments across the year, innovating with his stream house, the OTK organization, and still maintaining the appeal that grew his audience in the first place. Now averaging as many as 40,000 viewers, Mizkif has skyrocketed to the upper echelons of Twitch, and in a unique fashion.
Mizkif started out as a cameraman for ICE_POSEIDON, before really taking off as a streamer himself in 2018. He might not yet have the same viewership as xQc, but it could be argued that Mizkif has become the face of Twitch in 2021 – a remarkable achievement considering the short period of time he’s grown, and without the advantages many other top streamers have of being pro players or building up an audience for a decade.
Most impressive, is Mizkif’s role as a content leader, setting up or being an integral part of various events, shows, and trends. While some accuse him of ‘drama farming’, it’s testament to how smart Mizkif is about what makes for good content, and exactly what viewers want to see. He’s cracked the streaming code in 2021.
Remember, this ranking is only for English-speaking streamers on Twitch, and if you want to check out the rankings for Spanish streamers, head over to Dexerto Spain.
Also, be on the lookout for more in Dexerto’s Best of 2021 rankings, dropping throughout December.