The League of Legends (LoL) 2018 World Championships was by far the most viewed esports event of this year with a whopping 74.3 million total viewers, according to a report by the Esports Charts (ESC).
The LoL World Championships, or known more simply in the LoL esports community as ‘Worlds,’ is the culmination of each competitive season for the game. Each year, the best teams from the different regional esports leagues are gathered to vie for the right to be called World Champions.
This year, it was the Chinese team Invictus Gaming that took home the Summoner’s Cup, as they swept their European opponents Fnatic 3-0 in the Grand Finals. The champions also bagged over $800 thousand in prize money.
The ESC got its figures for the tournament from the total hours watched on both YouTube and Twitch, and the viewership for Worlds 2018 was shown to have grown by 2.5 million from last year’s tournament.
For its sheer popularity, Worlds 2018 was even given the Best Esports Event award during the Game Awards 2018 earlier this month.
There’s little surprise that Worlds 2018 topped the esports viewership charts as LoL remains one of the most popular esports titles in the world.
This year’s championship was also the first time that a Chinese organization ultimately emerged victorious, further increasing LoL’s popularity and influence in one of the biggest esports markets in the world.
The opening ceremony of Worlds 2018 also received a lot of fanfare worldwide, as LoL’s virtual K-pop group, K/DA, premiered a debut music video with over 90 million concurrent viewers tuning in for the performance.
The success of Worlds 2018 can only bolster an already thriving LoL esports scene, even as it enters its ninth competitive season.
LoL seems set for even more growth in the coming year, so it may not be too far-fetched to say that Worlds 2019 may end up topping the viewership record set this year.