Exponential growth is a sign of success and that is what 2020 delivered.
A review to set the tone for the new year
On the second-to-last day of the year 2020, we talked about how WePlay Esports spent the previous 365 days. Recently, we realized that it was a period full of trying out new things or simply put, a year of firsts.
To learn about our performance in 2020, take a look at some viewership data from streaming analytics provider Streams Charts:
A trio of exceptional events
Last year, we hosted eight events that offered a total prize pool of $1,605,000 to the competitors. Among them was the WeSave! Charity Play online marathon that raised $188,879 for COVID-19 vaccine research and the fight against the pandemic. Altogether, they had 1,141 hours of airtime with 54.77 million viewership hours.
However, looking at all the data from these events, we singled out three tournaments that performed especially well.
A Dota 2 Minor to remember: WePlay! Bukovel Minor 2020
Our first Dota Pro Circuit tournament ever and the first event of the year was WePlay! Bukovel Minor 2020, which went on to become a huge success. But don’t take our word for it, take Esports Charts’ instead. According to their data analytics, WePlay! Bukovel Minor gained a peak viewership of 233,124 and 5,484,237 hours watched, which earned it the title of the most-watched Minor in DPC history.
Held in the Carpathian mountains in Ukraine, it fully captured the holiday theme we were going for. Taking place from January 9 to 12, the Minor had 26 participants competing for a prize pool of $300,000.
The next two events have a thing in common: they were tournaments in new disciplines for the company.
WePlay! VALORANT Invitational
When Riot Games first introduced the world to VALORANT, it went by the name of Project A. Many gamers scrambled to take part in the closed beta while pro players started making the move from CS:GO to VALORANT to begin exciting new careers.
Seeing the same potential in VALORANT that the players did, WePlay Esports was quick to host one of the first tournaments in the new discipline weeks after its official release. Forming part of Riot Games’ VALORANT IGNITION SERIES, WePlay! VALORANT Invitational was able to secure a peak viewership of 54,021 and 687,359 hours watched. After doing some research of our own, we released a white paper to share insights about the event's audience. Our findings also allowed us to evaluate the strengths of VALORANT as an esports title at the time.
WePlay Dragon Temple
At the close of the year, we took our fans and members of the fighting game community by surprise when we announced WePlay Dragon Temple, our first fighting game tournament. This was our second time running an event in a new discipline during the year, and, what’s more, WePlay Dragon Temple was an entirely new genre for the company as well.
A Mortal Kombat 11 event held in December, it featured a $60,000 prize pool with players of varying skill levels and experience from around the world invited to compete for glory, prize money, and our first dragon trophy. According to Esports Charts, WePlay Dragon Temple gained 10,718 peak viewers and 163,401 hours watched over an air time of 29 hours. These numbers made it the second most-watched Mortal Kombat 11 tournament of the year with regard to peak viewers and hours watched. NetherRealm Studios, the game’s publisher, took the number one spot with their premier event, Final Kombat 2020.
What this means is that what WePlay Esports started with Mortal Kombat 11 could lead to even bigger numbers once we are fully established in the fighting game community and earn the trust of its members.
The year of firsts was just the beginning
2020 was an unforgettable year for us all, especially for WePlay Esports and all of our fans, new and old. We added new disciplines, hosted bigger events, and shattered old viewership records. So the big question that is now likely on your mind is, what do we do in 2021? Well, like always, we intend to outdo ourselves yet again. What this means is more fighting game tournaments in more new disciplines, while we continue to provide our loyal Dota 2 and CS:GO fans with even more high-caliber action from their favorite teams across multiple regions.
It’s too soon to provide any more detail regarding our plans but to get all excited for what we have in store for this year, take a look at our 2020 showreel below.
We plan to build upon last year’s momentum to make 2021 an even better one.
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