YouTube Gaming has been retired, company blames "brand confusion" for the demise of the service

YouTube Gaming has been retired, company blames "brand confusion" for the demise of the service

After three years, YouTube has unexpectedly shut down its separate destination for gaming.

Back in 2015, the company launched YouTube Gaming, a new hub dedicated to gaming creators, content and streaming.

However, YouTube is now closing the app and reintegrating gaming back into its main site.

Brand confusion

YouTube admits that the marketing of Gaming was off from the start. Speaking to The Verge, YouTube director of gaming Ryan Wyatt said that "there was confusion with the YouTube gaming app" initially.

Despite the platform having over 200 million users visiting the site for gaming content daily, the purpose of YouTube Gaming as a destination was consistently unclear.

“When we launched the YouTube gaming app, I think there was a lot of brand confusion in the market of like, ‘Well, is this just a live gaming app and experience? What’s gonna happen to gaming on YouTube versus YouTube gaming app?" Wyatt added.

“And so we’re hoping that this time around, with us moving it to YouTube [proper], it’s a clear signal to the community that we care very much about gaming, that we want gaming on YouTube... to continue to thrive and be a big part. I think we had a big misstep and confusion there.”

Gaming will still have a separate tab on the site, and it'll bring up a personalised collection of gaming content from subscribed and trending creators.

In addition to this, games will also have their own page, which is something seen over on other streaming platforms. Each game page will highlight popular creators and videos playing said title. Instead of subscribing to a creator, users can instead subscribe to a game page.

YouTube is also working to spotlight rising creators. This new gaming destination will have a curated 'On The Rise' section for YouTubers that are trending or growing rapidly. The picks will rotate every week, but will only be available in the US to start with.


Danielle Partis is editor of and former editor of She was named Journalist of the Year at the MCV Women in Games Awards 2019, as well as in the MCV 30 under 30 2020. Prior to Steel Media, she wrote about music and games at Team Rock.