The 2023 Southeast Asian Games has broken the record for the highest-viewed female esports event ever, recording 1.37m peak viewers during its Mobile Legends: Bang Bang (MLBB) women’s tournament.
According to esports data platform Esports Charts, the tournament — which was ultimately won by Indonesia — also garnered an average viewership of 305,165 across its near 21-hour air time.
To put this in perspective, the second most viewed female esports event — the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Women’s Invitational — recorded a peak viewership of 392,405.
Moreover, VALORANT’s VCT Game Changers 2022 figure of 5.4m hours watched was also surpassed by the SEA Games event, which recorded an impressive 6.3m hours watched.
Overall, eight of the top 10 female esports events are MLBB tournaments, with VALORANT the only other title making the list.
The 2023 SEA Games is taking place over the course of May, with esports once again being an official meddled sport. Alongside Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, other titles such as VALORANT, League of Legends: Wild Rift, Crossfire and PUBG: Mobile have also hosted meddled events.
SEA Games’ esports success also goes beyond the title’s female category, with the Men’s tournament garnering 1.46m viewers and 368,223 average viewers.
PUBG Mobile’s event is currently still underway, with the tournament recording 639,519 peak viewers and 188,964 at the time of this writing.
The success of MLBB’s female event continues what is becoming a successful year for the mobile title, particularly from a viewership standpoint. Earlier in 2023, the game broke its viewership record when the M4 World Championship recorded 4.27m peak viewers.
Additionally, MLBB recently received domestic approval to operate in China.