2.76 billion hours of esports content watched in 2023, Stream Hatchet report finds

11 January 2024

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UPDATE 12/01/23: This article previously reported a 75% increase from 2019. However, Stream Hatchet and GameSquare have since corrected their report to clarify there’s been a 75% increase from 2020. The article has been changed to reflect this.

GameSquare Holdings, in conjunction with its wholly-owned analytics platform Stream Hatchet, has published its annual gaming and esports trends report for 2023.

The report highlights that esports viewership in 2023 totalled 2.76bn hours watched, marking a 75% increase from 2020. This is also a slight increase on last year’s 2.65bn hours watched.

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According to data recorded by Stream Hatchet, one-third of the esports content watched in 2023 came through creators’ co-streaming channels, showing powerful and rapid growth for creator-driven content and events.

The report in particular highlighted the impact of co-streamers Nix (Dota 2), Tarik (VALORANT) and Scump (Call of Duty) on their respective title’s esports events. Overall, co-streaming viewership has increased by 10% from 2020.

League of Legends, which already broke the record for the most-watched esports event last year, was also the most live-streamed game at 1.6bn hours watched.

Outside of the esports sector, other key findings include content creator Ibai ‘ibai’ Llanos having the highest average viewership in 2023 with 77,000 people. The most-watched female streamer was Samy Rivera (rivers_gg) with an average of 23,000 viewers.

Earlier in 2023, Stream Hatchet released the Esports Live-Streaming Trends Report for the first quarter, signalling increased numbers for co-streaming and creator-driven content. This is consistent with the latest report which states that creator-driven events registered higher average viewership than some top esports events.

Justin Kenna, CEO of GameSquare, commented on the report: “Live streaming is a powerful driving force in the evolution of the creator economy.

“Our data shines a light on today’s most impactful audiences, changing the landscape of the way brands should be interacting with their consumers. Creator-driven events have had a meteoric rise, signifying the gaming and esports community’s desire for more immersive and personalized experiences.”

Davide Xu