Source: Linkedin

Stream Hatchet published a study looking back at gaming in 2020, and modern dominance by Riot Games, spiking viewing numbers and how celebrities such as athletes and politicians are now embracing the room are among the takeaways. 

The data intelligence group, which works on streaming monitoring with publishers such as Riot Games and agencies such as UTA, said that while there was no exceptional development last year before the pandemic began, that changed rapidly in mid-March and the gains were sustained even after conventional sports returned in mid-summer.

Live video game streaming in 2020 was up 81 percent from ’19, with the League of Legends of Riot Gaming supplanting Fortnite as the most famous game. 

While Twitch remains the largest player among western streaming services, and doubled its hours watched from the same time in 2019 in Q4 2020, Stream Hatchet says that last year, YouTube Gaming and even Facebook Gaming also saw substantial progress. Microsoft’s Mixer was the one platform that did not.

In the same time last year, YouTube went from 1 billion hours viewed in Q4 2019 to 1.9 billion, supported in part by signing new deals with high-profile streamers such as Valkyrae and with Call of Duty League and Overwatch League’s Activision Blizzard Esports. 

While Facebook Gaming is not seen as Twitch or YouTube, Stream Hatchet claims it doubled its hours seen last year in Q4, helped by social gaming audiences such as PUBG Mobile and Garena Free Fire. 

Other highlights included how women, according to YouGov numbers, are a growing audience group, currently around 30 percent, and that gaming streams funded by corporate brands accrued 355 million hours viewed last year.

Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez also received a shoutout during her stream last year, when she played the famous Among Us game, for winning a peak viewership of 438,000 people.

Source: esportsobserver