MSI bracket stage sets viewership records for second consecutive day
The League of Legends 2023 Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) bracket stage has just begun, yet the viewership numbers have been record-breaking.
MSI Viewership – Breaking the 1 million mark already
According to stat site Esports Charts, the viewership numbers for MSI have already peaked at more than 1 million on two different occasions: once during the series between G2 and Gen.G (1,376,630), the other between MAD and T1 (1,460,761).
In other words, the bracket stage has surpasses one million viewers in all the matches played in the bracket stage. These are promising signs for League esports: only the semifinals and grand finals of previous MSI editions did better in terms of viewership numbers.
To make a comparison, the 2022 MSI was only able to beat T1 vs MAD’s numbers during the final between RNG and T1 (2,194,104). The 2021 MSI achieved the peak viewership of 1,839,876 in the finals once again, when RNG came out victorious over DK.
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The new format helped generate interest in the competition
Riot Games implemented major format changes starting this year. Not only did they add more teams to the competition, bringing the total number from 11 to 13 but they also included second seeds from the major regions.
On top of that, it created double-elimination brackets, giving teams more chances to showcase their gameplay. By adding more best-of-series, there is more room to create high stake matches and upsets. While that hasn’t happened so far, it has still increased the interest in the matches.
The publisher also did a great job organizing the schedule. By having matches starting during the mid-day in London, both European and Asian viewers have an easier time tuning in for the games. Unfortunately, NA viewers have been affected the most, with matches starting in the early hours of the day.
Riot also gave co-streaming rights to some of the major personalities, further fueling the passion of esports fans and giving them a chance to interact with their favorite streamers.
Overall, League viewership, despite an initial drop in domestic competitions at the start of the season, seems to be higher than ever. With more bracket matches to come, as well as the presence of superstar teams like T1 and JDG, there are all the assumptions to see numbers increase over the upcoming days. There are still many series to play and with the finals always registering the highest numbers, we might be seeing a new all-time record for MSI.
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