KingJae’s journey to Twitch Partner lead him from music to professional gaming and finally to full-time streaming. His drive to keep improving was key to achieving his goals, but he credits his community for helping him become what he is today. Now, our second TwitchCon Europe Ambassador is here to share his story about staying determined.
While growing up in South London, KingJae ran a online music channel for upcoming artists and played games as a side hobby. Even though he was working with admired artists like Stormzy and J Hus, he felt he could accomplish more.
“I saw all these great talents arise, so I wanted to measure my own success,” he said. “That was possible when I started to focus 100 percent on [pro] gaming.”
But like with most good things, success was not immediate. He competed in Tekken Tag 2 tournaments for six years, but had a hard time finishing Top 8 in any competition. His break came in 2013 with two Top 3 placements in UK-based tournaments, which fueled him to keep playing and get his name out there. Around 2015, KingJae learned about Twitch and started streaming.
“I knew that a lot of streamers played other games, such as shooting games and so on, but there were not as many that played fighting games,” he said.
Even though he’d found a niche to fill, his path to Partner wasn’t easy. He was declined a few times, so when one of his friends achieved Partner, he decided to go all in.
“The fact that he got it, it gave me the energy to go 100 percent. I left my normal nine-to-five job and went on to keep streaming loads and putting myself out there more, and it paid off,” he said. “I eventually got the Twitch partnership. I was really happy and grateful when I got it, and I was really proud about my progress. First I could not get it, but I tried so hard and I never backed down.”
His motivation and will to succeed are a huge part of his success, but KingJae never forgets that his community is the main reason for him being at the top. Throughout his years of competitive Tekken, he has traveled the world and connected with his community in the U.S, Korea, Japan, India, and more. Whenever he travels, he’s amazed at the impact his streams have had on the people he meets. One of his favorite examples is when KingJae went to Las Vegas and met Knee, considered by many to be the greatest Tekken player of all time.
“I remember I was doing a vlog with a couple of friends when I was out there,” he said. “Somehow they came in contact with Knee, but Knee and I did not know each other. He said to one of my friends that he had watched my streams. I was confused, but very humble at the same time.”
“I was in Netherlands recently” he continued, “and a lot of people came up to me and asked for pictures and signed arcade sticks. And then there was one guy. When you play fighting games, you flip coin to decide what side you are going to start on, and he had made a KingJae coin for me with my logo and everything. That was such an amazing experience.”
KingJae’s unique personality has helped him building a fun and welcoming community. He believes it’s best to be yourself on stream and says interacting with chat is crucial for keeping streams interesting.
“I think I have a different personality compared to other streamers, and I engage a lot with my chat,” he said. “People that watch my stream, they are giving me their time, so the least I can do for them is respond back. No matter if you are big, small, or in the middle, if you do not interact with your audience, your stream is not going to be successful.”
KingJae is going to TwitchCon Europe!Get your tickets now to meet him and the other Ambassadors.