As VTubers continue their ascent on YouTube and Twitch, there’s plenty to watch in 2023. We’ve compiled a list of the best VTubers you should tune into this year, from big agency stalwarts to rising stars in the indie space.
VTubing is an ever-growing medium, with new stars debuting every day on Twitch and YouTube. It can be a handful to keep up with, especially when you take big agency events and the vast amount of independent talents into account.
Heading into 2023, many VTubers have locked in new resolutions of cool content and big dreams. We’ve honed in on a few of those in this list, highlighting some of the best VTubers you should watch this year.
Ninomae Ina’nis is one of the biggest VTubers in the world. Part of the original Hololive EN wave, Myth, she has forged a dedicated following over the last two years.
However, she took a step back from activities at the tail end of 2022 to work on some underlying health issues and make sure she can continue her dream of being a VTuber.
With her return set for January 8, 2023, it’s going to be a big year for Ina, and there’ll be plenty of hype around what she’s been working on in the background. Her down-to-Earth personality and insane skill at art has drawn many people in, and her return from hiatus will only bring more takodachis into the fold.
Elly is a high-octane, high-energy VTuber starting off 2023 strong. Following on from a December 2.0 debut, she is now pushing through a long subathon and gearing up for a big year.
A full-time streamer focused on gaming content as well as creating original music with her punk rock band (The Aliens), she fell in love with the medium after playing GTA RP for a number of years: “It was a chance for me to be creative and try something new while thriving in an industry I’m passionate about that supports my hobbies,” she said.
Eccentric as anything, watching an Elly stream is a bit like being on a heist, which fits her lore perfectly. After all, she is a crime boss and the leader of the Syndicate (her fan base name). That “chaotic good” energy extends to her self-belief and motivation to stream.
“VTubing is my life now,” she said. “I have a 10+ year plan and a ton of goals to crush. I want to take over the world and get my name out there, entertain people while making them laugh and feel good, and continue to expand my content universe.”
If you love her vibes, it’s not too late to join the Syndicate: “This past year has been huge for me, but I ain’t gonna stop now, there’s so much more I want to do! From new outfits, lore, original music, and big secret reveals, I’ve got so much to share.
“Come along on this ride with me, let’s get into trouble!”
Part of NIJISANJI EN’s latest wave XSOLEIL, Meloco Kyoran is the one piquing fans’ interest the most. The bilingual Japanese-English VTuber has slid right in with the in-jokes and memes of the mega-agency, and is already pumping out some amazing content within weeks.
She is an incredibly talented singer — one listen to her Phantom cover is justification enough — as well as an avid gamer (she stunned fans with a Golden Cauldron in her first Getting Over It stream).
Ever since debuting just a few weeks ago she has exploded onto the space with near-daily streams, and those don’t seem to be stopping as NIJISANJI’s latest generation continues to take over screens on YouTube, with Meloco leading the way.
Mizuzu Neo is quite the unique VTuber. You could maybe compare her to Zentreya, the VShojo star who pushes her voice through a speech-to-text-to-speech program, and previously just used a chatbox to communicate with her stream. But that doesn’t really do her justice.
Mizuzu is physically mute, but that doesn’t detract from her chaotic stream experience. She often streams interactive activities and games with her chat, rather than playing and typing at the same time.
She has come up with plenty of “random challenges”, as she put it to Dexerto, including “forcing Twitch Chat to fight itself in an AI tournament, using my own Python code to give chat control of my PC every time I die, and giving chat control of my game.
“My favorite part about streaming and being a VTuber is that I really can truly be myself despite not owning a voice,” she said.
“I can proudly say now, everyone calls me ‘loud’ because my attitude speaks way louder than any words I could possibly say. I learned and decided I don’t need a voice to be myself or to stream, cause regardless of what I can’t do, I’ll always be me and just keep experiencing crazy things I want to do together with my community.”
She’s been on a steady climb since April 2022, but in 2023 she plans on ramping it up with even more interactive elements on stream, coded by herself. If you want to get in on the fun, she’s worth checking out.
Haruka Karibu is a well-known name in the Twitch VTubing world. The loving caribou (not a moose) has garnered a massive (cult) following in her couple of years of content creation, grinding towards the top to cement her place in VShojo as their newest addition in December.
Her skit content is some of the most memorable you’ll see from any creator — VTubing or otherwise. The way she can effortlessly flow from pre-recorded to live is something to behold. But her streams are a lot more than that, and she has big goals for 2023.
“[I’m] here to share my journey to nailing every dream and passion that I’ve desperately wanted since I was a little brat,” she told Dexerto. “From personal goals such as doing more VA work, getting better at singing to lead a concert to community goals like supporting the disability community and more, you name it!”
She planned on starting off 2023 with a massive subathon before illness got in the way, but keep your eyes peeled for when she’s well and ready because it’s going to be the Year of the Moose.
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MythicDuo (Flare & Umbre)
Flare and Umbre are a VTuber duo, with the couple streaming together and sharing their gaming adventures to the world. Having previously existed as facecam streamers, they hopped on the VTuber train at the start of 2022, and their December redebut caught the eyes of many.
Combined they are MythicDuo, “Adventurers by Day, Streamers by Night,” and give off a very comfy vibe no matter what they’re doing on stream. Flare describes it as “chaotically wholesome” when they’re together, but that’s not always the case.
“She’ll focus more on PlayStation games while I focus more on Nintendo and from time to time we’ll stream together some fun multiplayer games,” he told Dexerto.
What it does mean though is basically, they’re three channels in one. Prefer the solo content of Flare or Umbre, you can choose to watch that. Like them as a couple on stream with their perfectly in-sync dynamic? Keep an eye out for their collab streams — or just listen out in the background for them chiming in on each other’s solo broadcasts.
That’s the magic of MythicDuo’s content. There is an element of surprise for new viewers when someone new is on stream the next day, and that’s something they love sharing with their community. “We complete each other,” Umbre said. “If you don’t enjoy the content of one, you can enjoy the content of the other. We bring different things to the table.
“Sometimes people will come in and prefer one over the other,” Flare continued. “But I don’t think we’ll ever separate our channels because we are a duo, [and] that makes our content even more interesting in my opinion.”
Onigiri has long presented some of the most innovative VTubing content on Twitch. Using an intricate motion capture setup, she’s able to immerse her 2D VTuber self into her 3D IRL space, cooking for her community with her ‘floating’ hands.
She’s the first to admit “it’s not fancy”, but her extended description tells otherwise: “I am one of the few VTubers that do a type of pseudo-AR style of cooking content… and I utilize that to my advantage to do more immersive yet interactive cooking streams where I can still cook and interact with my IRL space, but maintain my 2D model,” she told Dexerto.
You could describe her relationship with her community as love-hate, stating “they keep me on my toes for sure with all the banter that goes around.” But it’s also what keeps her going.
At the tail end of 2022 she ramped up the creativity, being one of the only VTubers to do dedicated IRL streams on a regular basis, taking her chat with her around Japan, or even just walking her dog Pompom.
She plans to do more content like that in 2023. With a new outfit debut timed for Lunar New Year and big plans for the first half, the future is bright for Giri who will continue serving up dishes for Twitch for as long as she can.
“There’s going to be a few life changes that I can’t quite talk about right now,” she teased, “but it’s definitely something I’m looking forward to.”
Serafina, who is part of AuroraLiveVR, swooned the hearts of many at the end of 2022. Her cover of Golden Hour by JVKE went massively viral, accruing nearly 2 million views at the time of publishing, and then the following came shortly after.
A demigod descending from “Virtual Egypt to communicate with humans”, she is a very skilled multilingual VTuber — speaking Chinese, Japanese, and English. While she primarily streams on Bilibili, she has slowly picked up YouTube streaming to bring her content to a wider audience.
“I sing in four different languages in multiple styles,” she told Dexerto. “Mainly I stream karaoke and zatsudan [Just Chatting]. I have an original song planned to release this year as well.
“I wish I could play video games [on] stream, but I get severe motion sickness and vertigo playing games, so the only game I can play is Genshin Impact without getting dizzy. There will be less streaming of games, but I love Genshin Impact!”
She’s still learning English, but her streams are still amazing experiences. Her singing voice is one of the best in the VTubing space — and that can be appreciated regardless of a language barrier. With plenty of goals riding the high of her late 2022 boom, Serafina is one to watch this year.
“In 2023 I will try my best to improve and expand my singing capabilities to deliver better musical works, particularly original songs. I also want to improve my English and Korean abilities, stream more [on] YouTube, become closer with my worshippers, and get to know everyone better! I want to meet all of you!”
Chibidoki had an explosive second year on Twitch in 2022, with the cute cyber girl VTuber keeping up her consistent growth from her debut year in 2021. She’s a perfect mix of chaos and ‘innocence’ that keeps everyone entertained and on their heels.
Almost every day you can catch her live, either in a collab with her friends or streaming solo, getting ‘abused’ by her chat throwing random objects at her.
She just debuted a new model at the end of 2022, and has promised big things for 2023. It’s also time to wait and see what she does with that promised furry model too. Don’t think we forgot: we’re watching and waiting.