IEM Rio 2022: More hype, Less viewership

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Published  15 Nov, 17:46
Reading time  ~3  mins

When the crowd roared, and the drums hit, CS:GO fanatics could only stand up and clap for a nation that embraced and breathed Counter-Strike for many long years as their hearts beat faster with every frag & moment. They created a beautiful story and captivating scene that we will forever remember.

‘Come to Brazil’ was a dream. Fortunately, that dream came true, bringing the most joy, excitement, and surprises we’ve ever witnessed in your favorite first person shooter's favorite first person shooter history.

Crowd watching the IEM rio 2022 CSGO tournament. Source: https://twitter.com/ESLCS/status/1591214871181692928/photo/2 Crowd watching the IEM rio 2022 CSGO tournament. Source: https://twitter.com/ESLCS/status/1591214871181692928/photo/2

Source: ESL

It was a phenomenal Major, without a doubt. However, it failed to attract the viewership the last two Majors had.


IEM Rio 2022 peaked at only 1.4 million viewers, while PGL Stockholm 2021 & PGL Antwerp 2022 peaked at over 2.7 million & 2.1 million.
Though the peak viewers dropped in this Major, The average viewers numbers were close compared to the last two majors, with around 550,000 viewers.

What created a buzz around the community was the crowd in the Jeunesse Arena only showing up and cheering for the Brazilian teams, even at the Challenger and Champions Stage. Which created an unpleasant sight for the million fans watching at home as the arena was half empty. That could be the result of many reasons but what’s certain is that Brazil cheered for Brazil and not Counter-Strike.

Although an underdog story is a pleasant and welcome surprise, The drop in viewership can be explained by the absence of the top teams with massive fan bases, such as FaZe Clan, G2 Esports, and Team Vitality on top of NaVi who got knocked out in Quarter-Finals.

Big organizations attract more viewers, even from other communities, due to their big following & presence and having the best players in the world, with only three out of 20 top 2021 players making it to the semifinals.

Crowd pictured outside IEM Rio 2022 source: ESL Crowd pictured outside IEM Rio 2022 source: ESL

Source: ESL

IEM Rio 2022 brought a unique experience for the fans who attended the event with an amusing fan fest around the Arena led by Gaules during the Champions Stage. A double-edged sword that pulled a lot of fans but, unfortunately, outside of the arena. Unexpectedly, fans favored the outside atmosphere with the sunny spring weather over the arena itself, which can explain the low attendance during most games.

The cheaper tickets with easy access to food alongside the big hangout spaces & signing opportunities are all factors that made fans choose to stay outside; ESL has certainly underestimated the influence Gaules has on Brazilians as most of the gatherings were around him creating an engaging, fun experience for fans that have waited a long time for such opportunity to attend a CS:GO event which possibly had him relocated inside to fill up the empty seats in the arena.

Viewership comparison of IEM Rio 2022 vs. previous from RIZE Viewership comparison IEM Rio 2022 vs. previous from RIZE

IEM Rio 2022 was an underwhelming Major. However, we can’t deny that we’ve witnessed some of the most incredibly passionate fans providing a unique experience for players and fans worldwide.

ESL will return to Brazil in 2023 for the upcoming IEM circuit; the exact dates are still TBA hoping for an excellent tournament where everyone will cheer for Counter-Strike.

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CS Virtual Trade Ltd, reg. no. HE 389299 Registered address and the principal place of business: 705, Spyrou Araouzou & Koumantarias, Fayza House, 3036, Limassol, Cyprus
Copyright © 2022 BLIX.GG. All rights reserved.
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