Worlds have always been the heart of League of Legends esports competitive scene. Nevertheless, we can understand the tendency of discipline’s growth while watching other regular tournaments. We observed Mid-Season Invitational 2018 recently, now it is time for Rift Rivals.
Last year’s Rift Rivals Green was the tournament between teams from LCL and TCL leagues. Vietnamese teams from VCL joined them this year. The result is astonishing — the audience of the tournament became two times bigger. If only the teams from Vietnam reached the final, the amount of viewers would be even bigger.
Rift Rivals Purple suffered greatly from the VCS departure to another region. It is important to know that the Vietnamese watch the League of Legends tournaments using Garena Live and Youtube. That is why if we take into account only Twitch viewers then the amount of viewers didn't change much compared to last year.
Rift Rivals Red with teams from China, South Korea and LMS region (Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau) gathered much more viewers compared to the previous year. Chinese fans continue to demonstrate high viewership after the enormous success of Worlds 2017 and Mid-Season Invitational 2018. The amount of viewers almost doubled. Even the number of non-Chinese spectators increased slightly. There is one funny fact — the Chinese club Royal Never Give Up appeared to be the most popular team of the two past Rift Rival Red.
The situation in South America has also changed — the amount of viewers decreased a little. All 6 teams are different compared to the previous year. Most likely it is a key to the problem — this region lacks stability.
Rift Rivals Blue had a lot of problems this year. The biggest one-two the most popular North American clubs Team SoloMid and Cloud9 didn’t join the competition, that is why the tournament lost a lot of viewers compared to the last year.
EU LCS Summer 2018 and NA LCS Summer 2018 didn’t end yet, but we can already see that much fewer people from Europe and America watch League of Legends esports events. LCS Summer 2017 also totaled fewer viewers compared to the Spring season, but the fall was not so significant. All we can do right now is to wait September to understand what is going on and what can happen on Worlds 2018.