The League of Legends World Championship (Worlds 2017) turned out to be one of the most watched esports events in history.
Posting on the official website this week, Riot Games shared a new infographic to reveal how the overall viewership has greatly grown over the years.
The grand finals between SK Telecom T1 and Samsung Galaxy attracted more than 58 million unique viewers from around the world. The figure is far more than what we saw in previous years. The grand finals from last year, for example, registered 43 million unique viewers. The one before that had 27 million, which was actually a decline to the 32 million a year further back.
The semifinals between SK Telecom T1 and Royal Never Give Up in Worlds 2017 registered more than 80 million unique viewers, which is a mighty achievement for Riot Games and League of Legends in general. Even more impressive is the fact that more than 1.2 billion hours of the annual championship event was watched as a whole versus just 370 million last year.
Unfortunately, the total prize pool could not surpass the 5 million threshold. The community contributed $2,696,970 to bring the final pot to $4,946,970 in total.
Worlds 2017 was hosted in China, a country that accounts for a large portion of the global player-base. In that light, the attendance and viewership for the prestigious tournament was already expected by many to receive a significant boost.
A recent report claimed that the the Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) has “broadly increased” year-over-year for League of Legends. Disregarding the increase in player-base, it is interesting that the average player is now spending more in the game than before.
League of Legends, hence, is not only succeeding for the casual community but also the esports crowd as well.