MSI 2022 had event’s highest peak viewership count through last 5 years, but saw significant drop in average viewers compared to 2021

The power of T1 is no joke when it comes to driving viewership.

Photo by Lee Aiksoon/Riot Games

The League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational has always been one of the most-viewed events of the year since it features the best teams in the world battling for glory and an international trophy. This year, MSI continued to impress with the highest peak viewership count through the last five years of the event’s history, all thanks to Korea’s T1 and China’s Royal Never Give Up.

Last month, MSI 2022 hit a peak viewership count of just over 2.1 million people during the final series between T1 and RNG, according to Esports Charts. The rivalry between the LPL and LCK clearly brought in fans from around the world to watch. T1 are one of the most hyped teams in League history and they also have the greatest player of all time on the roster in Faker.

RNG are also one of the more recognizable teams from the LPL since they’ve been a major player in multiple international tournaments. The five-time LPL champions haven’t won the Summoner’s Cup just yet, but the organization has become the only team to win three MSI trophies and are back-to-back MSI champions. Ultimately, it was the perfect combination to hit new highs.

Although the peak numbers have continuously risen over the past five years, the averages haven’t looked as good. This year, MSI saw just over 588,000 average viewers during the tournament, according to Esports Charts. This is a significant drop when compared to MSI 2021, which had an average viewership of 711,000 spectators across the event.

This drop in average viewership might be explained by the tournament’s lackluster group stage, when fans witnessed a shellacking of different minor region teams against organizations like T1, RNG, Evil Geniuses, and G2 Esports. Games were terribly one-sided and the gap between regions was very evident. During day four of groups, for example, the official Riot Games Twitch channel hit a low of 43,000 average viewers, according to Twitch Tracker.