Valve’s huge eSports tournament, The International, pulled in record numbers of viewers last this month.
As reported by Polygon, Valve has released the viewing figures for its Dota 2 International 2014 tournament earlier this month, revealing more than 20 million people watched the competition.
At its peak “well over 2 million” viewers tuned in at the same time, which is double from last year’s record. The matches during the tournament were viewable in multiple places online - via Twitch, in-game, and even on ESPN.
As Polygon points out, League of Legends is still top of the running for viewers, with 32 million in total for 2013, and ‘8.5 million peak concurrent viewers’ of its season finals, according to developer Riot Games.
Even without the numbers you can tell eSports as a whole is growing rapidly. I remember watching The International 2013 last year, and whilst it was still a big tournament at the time, the coverage and exposure of this year’s competition has been massive in comparison – from multiple gaming and news outlets covering the results, to the prize pool hitting over $10 million USD, compared to last year’s $2.8 million.
As the viewers and players of these types of games grow, where could we see eSports in 10 years time? Only time will tell.