Fortnite pro Turner "Tfue" Tenney is one of the biggest and most well-known streamers in the popular Battle Royale game Fortnite – but he didn’t get to almost 9 million followers overnight. Here’s how he pulled it off.
Turner "Tfue" Tenney is a 22-year old Fortnite player and streamer – that much is known to most esports fans. Most of them are also aware of the number of tournaments he has won… and even more so of the controversies he’s caused and/or been involved in. There is a lot of juicy content in Tfue’s career, and every moment of it so far has been exciting.
Considered one of the best Fortnite pro players in the world, he has won a number of tournaments, and well over 1.3 billion views on YouTube alone.
But let's take a look at the beginning of Tfue and what brought him to where he is today.
The Story of Tfue
The phenomenon of Fortnite is as much of a legend as Tfue is for playing the game. Fortnite’s Battle Royale mode came out of nowhere and skyrocketed to being the most popular game on the planet in no time at all.
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Everyone was playing, everyone was competing – yet only one person could stand at the top of that 100-player list. Tfue was determined to be that someone, and to get there his own way. His own way included plenty of scandals, profanity, and more awesome Fortnite-moments than we can count – despite his humble beginnings.
The Eye of the Storm
Tfue wasn’t allowed to play video games growing up – where some StarCraft II pros, for example, grew up playing their game, Tfue grew up playing nothing. He didn’t get access to video games until he was in his teens. He and his three siblings were all home-schooled, making his experience growing up even more different than it already was.
He and his older brother quickly took to filming absolutely everything they did – which mostly consisted of by-the-beach sports and activities. Wondering where video games come in yet? Well, so were we. The first game Tfue played was Runescape, which took a backseat to his sporting activities – he was a competing skateboarder all the way to 2012.
It was Tfue's brother that ultimately led him down the path to esports – by having a YouTube channel. The two uploaded various kinds of videos – from sporting successes to pranks they played, to embarrassing fail videos… but most of all, videos of them terrorizing unassuming beach visitors in their area.
Tfue ended up starting his own channel in 2015 and he was looking for some different content than what his brother was posting – he settled on gaming, and this is where his story finally, truly began.
Get to the Game!
The first game Tfue played on his streaming channel was Call of Duty – and he was good at it. His early uploads consisted primarily of Advanced Warfare highlight reels which he played with a scoped rifle – but soon, that wasn’t enough anymore. He branched out and started playing Destiny – a lot. That was where he really started becoming a "streamer". He partnered with Twitch and started making some money – not enough to live on yet, but enough to consider it as a career.
Battle Royale shooter H1Z1 also made an appearance in his stream, and given its popularity, it quickly took up much of his time. Tfue made a new frenemy – no other than Tyler "Ninja" Blevins. They were both big names in the Battle Royale genre, and they were both good – so a rivalry was born.
Tfue himself added PUBG to his repertoire, and quickly made a name for himself, in no small part due to his incredibly good aiming skills… and his lively, loud streaming style. By 2017, he had tens of thousands of fans – a fraction of his audience today.
Being one of the best Battle Royale players in the world already, it wasn’t a surprise that Tfue jumped on the bandwagon as well – Fortnite made it into just about every aspect of pop culture, as it skyrocketed in fame. The game became synonymous with Battle Royale… and Tfue became synonymous with winning in Fortnite.
It was around this time that Tfue became a full-time Fortnite streamer – as did many others. He was unique in several ways – one of them being his rejection of the many, many skins that Fortnite offered. While most players eagerly collected them and switched between their favorites, Tfue used the default appearance of the characters.
He eventually became all but synonymous with the blonde Jonesy default skin that he even cosplayed as and got a tattoo of – it seemed like nothing could stop him.
While it seemed that way, it wasn’t the entire truth – his "no f***s given" attitude landed him in trouble more than once, even as the esports side of his career really started to take off. So make sure to stick around and learn more about it in Part 2!