The League of Legends tournament, produced by Riot Games, brings in more viewers than any other esport tournament in the world, reaching record numbers. The 2019 LoL World Championship had over 100 million viewers. It broke records with a 21.8 million Average Minute Audience (AMA). The competition takes place through the spring and summer seasons and concludes with the final League of Legends World Championship, which includes the best teams from around the world. The League of Legends 2020 World Championship marks the 10th anniversary of the tournament and it was set to take place in Shanghai, China before the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted its course. The League of Legends tournament may not have the greatest prize money in comparison to other tournaments, but it brings in the highest viewership in comparison to any other Esport tournament.
The Fortnite World Cup, first debuting in 2019 hosted by Epic Games, had extreme success last year all over the world. The 2019 Fortnite World Cup was the first large-scale tournament for Fortnite since the game released in 2017. It took place in the Arthur Ashe Stadium in Flushing, NY. It's success was great, and viewership on Youtube of the tournament put it in the number one spot at the time. The World Cup had one of the highest prize money available than any other tournament with a total pool of $30 million. This prize pool was the largest in Esport history. The 2019 World Cup made national news when the Solo winner, Bugha, won $3 million making him the highest earning Fortnite player in the world and a multi millionaire at age 16. The 2020 Fortnite World Cup was canceled due to COVID-19 and all of its previous physical events scheduled will be taking place online.
The International is a tournament for the Esport game, Dota 2, hosted by the gaming group, Valve. The International holds the title for the tournament with the highest prize pool, which was just over $34 million dollars in 2019. The International has been an annual tournament held by Valve since 2011. The tournament consists of 18 teams where entrance for the first 12 is given exclusively from results of the Dota Pro Circuit. The remaining 6 teams compete based off of regional brackets for the spot in the championships. The International 2019 had the most viewers of any Dota 2 championship, with 1.1 million viewers on Twitch over the grand finals. In 2019, the tournament was held in Shanghai, China. The 2020 International championship has been delayed indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as many Esport tournaments have as well.
The Intel Extreme Masters World Championship tournament has been organized annually since 2006, by ESL and Valve. The tournament is sponsored by Intel, and combines different Esports like League of Legends, StarCraft II, Counter Strike: Global Offensive, and Player'sUnknown Battlegrounds. The tournaments have been held in countries all over the world, and have had 13 seasons thus far. In 2019, the finals were held in Katowice, Poland and had a prize pool of over $2.5 million dollars. This event had 174,000 attendees, making it the world's most attended esports tournament in the world and the most watched ESL CS:GO tournament of all time. Each Esport game played at the tournament had its own prize pool and teams, which makes this the most unique Esports tournament to be held.
The Overwatch World Cup is an annual tournament hosted by Blizzard Entertainment for the Overwatch gaming league. The Overwatch tournament consists of 20 teams from all over the world competing for the World Championship. The tournament first began in 2016 and South Korea has held the lead in the three first wins, with the United States team winning in 2019. Each team earns money for qualifying and participating in the tournament. In the 2019 Overwatch World Cup, the prize pool was $205,000. The tournament was streamed for viewers to watch all over the world, primarily on the Overwatch League's twitch account. Each match and the final match could be watched on Twitch. The 2020 Overwatch World Cup has not been adjusted yet in its time frame and no announcements have been made about it moving to online or being canceled.
The Evolution Champion Series, known as EVO for short, is a fighting esport game event, including multiple games like Tekken 7, Super Smash Bros, and Street Fighter V. The tournament has no exclusivity and offers every player the option to register and have a chance to win the championship through a double elimination strategy. Since its start in 2005, it has been hosted in various locations in the Las Vegas area. In the 2019 Evo tournament, there were 14,321 entrant players, each player choosing the specific fighting esport game they want to participate in. Super Smash Bros typically has the highest number of player entrants out of all the fighting games in the tournament. The 2020 Evo Championship will be held online in August due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The CoD World League Championship is a tournament held for gamers of Call of Duty, hosted by Activision. The tournament has been held yearly since its start in 2013 and holds 32 teams each year. In 2019, The Call of Duty World League Championship had a prize pool of 2 million dollars. The 2019 tournament was played on Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 for Playstation. Held in different cities across the United States, the most recent one was held in Los Angeles, California. This year, the Call of Duty released a new way of gaming, Call of Duty: Mobile, a free-to-play game powered by Sony Mobile. The 2020 Call of Duty World League Championship will be played on this platform and has 1 million dollars in total prizes. It is sponsored by Sony Xperia. Gamers are able to participate by qualifying for the Championship online.
The Free Fire World Series is the biggest tournament held for the mobile game, Free Fire. It is hosted by the game developer, Ganera. In 2019 The Free Fire World Series took place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with a total prize pool of $400,000. The 2019 Free Fire World Series was the first of its kind since the battle royale based game was released in 2017. The tournament hosts 12 teams which qualify by being number one seed in their respective region. The Corritheans, a team from Brazil, brought home the championship in 2019. The 2019 tournament averaged over a million viewers, streaming on Youtube and Facebook worldwide. The twelve teams that participated ranged from different countries and regions all over the world. The 2020 Free Fire World Series is set to be in Brazil again, and as of now has not been given any changes to its time frame.
The HALO World Championship is a tournament held by the developers, Microsoft and 343 Industries. Part of the Electronic Sports League (ESL), the HALO World Championship began in 2014 and has been held annually since then. The World Championship is the largest tournament for the game, HALO, bringing in the most views for the game. In the 2017 HALO World Championship, total viewership reached its highest number with 13 million viewers across all streaming platforms, with Twitter holding the highest number of views. The championship is played on the most recent HALO game available, with HALO 5 being its most recent and popular release. For 2020, the HALO World Championship will be held on a new platform, the HALO MCC: Pro Series, allowing for both professional and amateur players to participate in the online tournament series. Players must register to play and pass through the qualifying round to make it to the invitationals, leading to the championship.
The Hearthstone World Championship is the main large-scale tournament and finale for the Hearthstone Grandmasters system. The event is organized by Blizzard Entertainment and includes 16 players each from 4 different regions to compete for the title of the Hearthstone World Champion. In 2019, Hearthstone released 4 million dollars in prize money across all the competitions leading to the World Championship. The 2019 World Championship had a prize pool of 1 million dollars, which was divided between the finalists based off of ranking. In 2020, the Hearthstone World Championship was moved online and is going to be live streamed primarily on Youtube for fans to watch.
The top eSports in the world are League of Legends, Fortnite, Dota 2, Counterstrike: Global Offensive, Hearthstone, Call of Duty, Overwatch, and Free Fire. All of these eSports hold the most popular tournaments and competitions, having the highest viewerships during their live streams and attendance in person. In the professional gaming world, these eSports take the lead, having the highest earning players with high popularity and streams.
The esport with the biggest prize money is Fortnite. With the 2019 Fortnite World Cup having a prize pool of 30 million dollars, Fortnite broke the record of the biggest prize pool for a tournament, in the history of esports. In just their first year of competitive play, Epic Games, the developer of Fortnite, provided 100 million dollars of prize money. This allowed Fortnite to have many different competitions and tournaments, with the World Cup having the greatest prize pool of all.
The most watched video game tournament is the League of Legends World Championship. The 2019 LoL World Championship took the lead with the most viewers out of all eSport championships with 3.9 million peak viewers, topping the Fortnite World Cup Finals and Free Fire World Series. The League of Legends World Championship is mostly watched live on Twitch, Youtube, and Facebook. Their viewership amongst all platforms landed them the title of the most watched video game tournament.
The biggest game in eSports is Dota 2. Released in 2013, Dota 2 is one of the longest standing eSport games that has not lost popularity around the world. Developed by Valve, Dota 2 is most popular in North America and Europe, but is played all around the world. Their annual tournament, The International is one of the longest standing annual tournaments that continues to drive the highest viewership and attendees.