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League of Legends was the most popular esport of 2020 by viewership

According to new viewership statistics from the Stream Hatchet report, League of Legends dominated the esports industry for 2020, proving once again why it is the undisputed king of modern esports.

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When it comes to the topic of esports and which is the best, there are many different ways that you can measure such a proposal. Of course, the main thing that must be considered is that opinions about esports and video games are completely subjective, meaning that when it boils down to enjoyment, which is the best etc., there are no actual quantifiable ways to measure this as it differs from individual to individual.

Having said this, there are other ways that can be quantified and so we can use this as a barometer to draw comparisons between esports. If one wants to do research on “which is the best esport”, then it would make sense to look at viewership statistics for each one and then compare.

Whether it be CS:GO, Dota 2, Rocket League or League of Legends, we are fortunate enough that this research has already been done for us. A new report by the Stream Hatchet that looks at the growth of streaming and esports throughout 2020 has helped us settle this debate on which esport is indeed “the best”, and the results may not surprise you.

2020 was one of the weirdest years in modern history, as a global pandemic halted the world and caused everyone to stay indoors due to worldwide regulations and lockdowns. Additionally, several major sporting events were postponed or even cancelled due to Covid-19, but where we lacked the presence of Dota 2’s The International or the highly anticipated Rio Major for CS:GO, LoL Esports was able to thrive.

Riot Games made the decision to continue with the plans for the annual World Championship tournament for League of Legends, only for the logistics of the tournament to be modified to suit the guidelines of Coronavirus rulings. All matches were played in one studio and there were no live crowds, apart from the grand finals where spaces were very limited.

The Stream Hatchet report takes an in-depth look at everything going on in the world of esports and online entertainment, crunching the numbers and putting together a list of the top five most viewed esports events of 2020.

(Image Credit: Stream Hatchet)

Due to the fact that the competition was heavily suppressed, LoL Esports absolutely dominated the scene and crushed all other competition, including several online tournaments for the year for other esports.

All top five positions for the most viewed competitions of the year were awarded to League of Legends and distributed amongst its annual Worlds tournament and various pro leagues. 

Worlds was inevitably the biggest attraction, with 1.41 million hours watched, blowing every single other event out of the water. This was then followed by the LCK Summer and Spring seasons, LEC Summer and finally, rounding it out in fifth, the LCS Summer split.

Despite the fact that other major esports competitions were completely cancelled for 2020, it is not uncharacteristic for LoL and Worlds to be on this list and take the top spot for most viewed esports competition.

League of Legends has been dominating for a few years now, long before the world was plagued with this pandemic and the esport has been sporting incredible numbers and viewership statistics for quite some time.

It should also be noted that 2020 was a unique year and we also were able to witness the rise of mobile gaming, plus other breakthrough esports like online Chess, which took the world by storm this year.

Nobody knows what 2021 has in store for us yet, but we are all hoping that we get to see some of our favorite competitions and tournaments reappear this year. Whilst 2020 has allowed the indoor gaming/online culture to thrive from one aspect, on the other hand, there is no better feeling that watching pros to the craziest things live on stage, and that feeling is unparalleled. 

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