June 13, 2024

Gaming frat home and influencer group FaZe Clan goes again to its roots, apparently. Co-founder Richard “Banks” Bengston assumed management of the group late final 12 months, and on April 27, he determined to purge 17 members in a devastating reboot that left content material creators shook by the decision-making.

Since March 4, the principle FaZe Clan account had been silent on X/Twitter. However Banks, who returned to the group after it was acquired by the model advertising and marketing firm GameSquare Holdings, Inc. in October 2023, snatched up the keys to the gaming collective’s social media channels. And on April 27, he posted a short video saying that the slate had been wiped fairly clear.

Banks clarified on his X/Twitter account on the identical day that a lot of the people of FaZe Clan have been kicked. As an alternative of roughly 30 individuals, the group has been diminished to only 14 core creators, together with controversial streamer Nickmercs. “Everybody else is out,” Banks stated. “That’s the roster.” Because of this 17 FaZe Clan members—like Call of Duty players Agony and Bloo, each of whom had been a part of the collective for a minimum of a decade—had been booted. Even Warzone streamer Kalei, the only real lady member of FaZe Clan, was kicked.

Twitch streamer Logan posted a 5-minute clip to X/Twitter, accusing Banks of “dropping the ball” for “killing the bottom of the fucking firm.” Banks responded to Logan in an 8-minute video, explaining that the FaZe Clan reboot has been in “a very long time” coming and the decision was all about the core family.

“I can’t apologize for doing what feels proper. I can’t apologize for wanting this to be enjoyable once more. I can’t apologize for attempting to do proper by the model,” Banks stated. “As a result of, in all honesty—myself included—if it was the best determination to step away, or get the fuck out of the way in which, I’d do this in two seconds as a result of I’m indebted to FaZe Clan. I’ve seen FaZe mismanaged and abused and fucking the life sucked out of it for therefore lengthy that, like, all I need to do is, I need to see the model run, and win, and thrive as a result of it deserves to. It’s modified so many fucking individuals’s lives. It’s a fucking tremendous vital factor. FaZe belongs in historical past books and in a museum, not on a bag of fucking pizza rolls.”

Based in 2010, FaZe Clan began out as a collective of buddies capturing the shit, each figuratively and actually, as they grouped up collectively to share movies of themselves enjoying video games on-line. FaZe Clan ballooned not too lengthy after hitting the scene, rising into a large esports group that competes in Name of Responsibility, Fortnite, Rainbow Six Siege, Tremendous Smash Bros. Final, and Valorant tournaments worldwide. However in recent times, the group has struggled—FaZe Clan misplaced practically $55 million in 2022 alone. And when it went public on the inventory market in January 2023, its worth was a measly greenback, prompting rapper Snoop Dogg to bail out from investing and Wall Avenue to put a hearth beneath FaZe Clan’s ass to get its shit collectively. Despite these monetary woes, FaZe Clan stays considered one of, if not the, hottest gaming group. Perhaps that’s why Banks feels just like the collective belongs in historical past books and museums.

Kotaku has reached out to FaZe Clan for remark.

That is simply the newest controversy FaZe Clan has been engulfed in. Final 12 months, the gaming collective was lambasted for signing Stranger Issues star Grace Van Dien, which resulted in her leaving the group. Nickmercs additionally received FaZe Clan in hassle final 12 months when he went on an anti-LGBTQ+ rant that noticed Activision pull his Name of Responsibility pores and skin.