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Four of the West’s biggest esports events generated 190m hours of viewership in 2018

Four of the biggest esports events in the West generated 190.1 million hours of viewership in 2018, according to research by Newzoo.

The esports market intelligence site gathered live viewership data across Twitch and YouTube Gaming to determine the numbers for the League of Legends World Championship Finals 2018; the ELEAGUE Major: Boston (CS:GO); The International 2018 (Dota 2); and the Overwatch League Finals.

Excluding the OWL finals, which were in their first year, viewership was up 6.9 per cent across the three other events.

The biggest tournament of the four was the League of Legends World Championship Finals, which boasted 81.1 million total hours watched. The second-most-viewed tournament (by esports hours) was the ELEAGUE Major: Boston with 54.1 million hours watched across Twitch and YouTube. The 26.8 per cent increase in viewership for the latter event was the largest year-on-year increase out of the big four.

The first edition of the Overwatch League Finals delivered 5.6 million hours watched across Twitch and YouTube Gaming in 2018. The vast majority of these came from the official Overwatch League Twitch channel. Twitch paid a reported $90m for exclusive third-party streaming rights to the Overwatch League earlier this year.