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Worlds 2023 Play-In Stage Boasts Big Viewership — A Breakdown By Team and Region

The biggest League of Legends event of the year, the World Championship, is underway and it’s looking to set some new records in the esports scene. The Play-Ins saw some incredible viewership that’s pointing towards a massive Finals.

The Play-Ins during Worlds are notoriously lower than other parts of the event since most of the popular teams from the bigger regions skip the Play-In stage. Despite this, Esports Charts noted a pretty hefty viewership, hitting over 1.3 million peak viewers during the PSG Talon versus Team BDS match on Day 6. Many other matches hit over 1 million, including LOUD vs. GAM Esports.

Worlds Play-In Stage Viewership Broken Down By Regions

BDS received so much viewership due in part to the French European roster being the sole representative of the EMEA region during the Play-In stage. The EMEA region tuned in to support BDS, making them the most-watched team of the entire Play-In stage.

While the majority of the viewers were tuning in to the French broadcast, Team BDS was also the most-watched team for fans who spoke Turkish and other languages from the EMEA region.

Similarly, GAM Esports had massive support from Vietnamese viewers. Their match against fellow Vietnamese roster Team Whales was the most-watched match of the Play-In stage for Vietnamese-speaking fans, with over 300K hours watched, according to Esports Charts. In fact, the Play-In stage had reportedly doubled the average Vietnamese viewers than that of non-Vietnamese teams. The only other match to have more views than this was the Worlds 2022 Grand Final between T1 and DRX.

While GAM Esports was the first team to qualify for the main event, it was a much sadder moment for Japan’s most-watched team, Team Detonation. With 58.6K viewers, the squad was the most-watched in the region but was then disqualified from Worlds.

For Portuguese-speaking viewers, the most-watched team was LOUD. The squad had 42% more viewers than the second-best-performing team in Portuguese-speaking average viewers during the Play-In stage, which is quite impressive.

Overall, most viewership during the Play-In stage has come from non-English channels. But all of the big teams are set to come back for the main event on October 19, so expect even more viewers from all languages to come pouring in. Some are even predicting, based on Play-In viewership, that the Grand Finals will beat last year, which had a peak of around 5 million viewers.