VTuber is an abbreviation for virtual YouTubers. Rather than displaying their faces, they utilize a computer-generated avatar in their recordings.
They typically stay anonymous, concealing their actual selves behind their personas. This unnamed, unknown style of video creation allows anyone to develop an online presence and fan base without revealing their true identities.
Even before they became popular on YouTube, virtual avatars were a part of popular culture. However, it wasn't until the mid-2010s that VTubing became a popular trend, with many streamers making it big on platforms such as YouTube and Twitch.
Streamers such as Pokimane and PewDiePie have all dabbled with this genre. While it has slightly subsided, some Twitch streamers have pushed their following to the next level by becoming VTubers.
Five VTubers taking the online community by storm
1) Gawr Gura
Gawr Gura is an English virtual YouTuber who debuted as a member of Hololive's first crop of VTubers. Other content creators who were part of the initial journey are Ninomae Ina'nis, Watson Amelia, Mori Calliope, and Takanashi Kiara.
As of today, Gura is the most subscribed virtual creator on YouTube, with over 4.06 million subscribers after overtaking Kizuna AI in 2021. She appears in a shark-themed appearance and claims to be a native of Atlantis.
One of the reasons Gura is so popular among fans is due to her gentle and soft-spoken nature. She often plays games such as Minecraft, Overwatch, I Am Fish, and WWE 2K.
The second VTuber to join the list is Puerto Rican-based content creator Ironmouse. She has quickly become one of the most popular streamers on Twitch, with over 1.3 million followers.
Although she was initially an independent creator, Ironmouse has now become a part of the VTubing organization VShojo, among other members like Veibei and Froot.
Most of Ironmouse's time is spent chatting with her followers and playing video games like Among Us, Minecraft, and Rust. She occasionally streams horror games, primarily because she is easily frightened.
3) Usada Pekora
Debuting as the third generation VTubers of Hololive, Pekora is the 2nd most subscribed virtual Youtuber. As of July 2022, she has amassed over 1.97 million subscribers on Google's platform.
Her persona includes a rabbit-themed appearance, and she claims to have a particular affinity toward carrots for obvious reasons. In May 2022, she took a short sabbatical after announcing her worsening throat condition.
Pekora returned to content creation earlier this month. She usually plays games like Rust, Virtual Uno, and Minecraft.
Zenraya has over 330K Twitch followers presently. She is among the most unique VTubers in the community since she has never spoken with her real voice, instead using a text-to-speech generator.
The online star made her debut in 2017, introducing her devilish personality. She often seeks war and aspires to conquer the Earthly realm at some point in the future.
According to VShojo's entry:
"She is very headstrong and tends to yell at everyone around her, but loves meeting new people! She tends to play pranks and loves memes. She wants to rule humanity one day, but she's too much of an airhead to do it."
5) Akai Haato/Haachama
Among the characters of Hololive, Akai Haato is often considered the most bizarre. Her personality is split between the tender and mellow 'tsundere,' Haato, and the chaotic goblin, Haachama.
She has over 1.3 million subscribers, making her among the most popular virtual YouTubers on the platform, like her fellow Virtual content creators. Haato also dabbles in VR chat and video games.
However, owing to her split personality, she approaches games with varying degrees of confidence, depending upon the character.
Note: This article is subjective and reflects the author's opinion.