ONE Esports MPL Invitational 2023 suffers viewership drop

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ONE Esports MPL
Image credit: ONE Esports

Mobile Legends: Bang Bang’s ONE Esports MPL Invitational 2023 has become the least popular MPL Invitational to date after recording a peak viewership of just under 575,000.

The Southeast Asian event, which took place in the GBK Basketball Hall in Jakarta, attracted an average of 165,198 across its 51-hour airtime, according to Esports Charts.

This year’s event was less popular than the first ONE Esports MPL Invitational in 2020 (723,856 peak viewers), with the tournament’s 2021 edition remaining the most popular invitational to date. The tournament, which was held online, had a peak viewership of just over 1,700,000 and an average viewership of 341,464.

ONE Esports MPL Invitational 2023 was the first event of its kind to be held offline. Moreover, this year’s edition expanded even further, featuring teams from North America, MENA and China.

The Mobile Legends showcase was also the first time a ONE Esports MPL Invitational crowned a non-Indonesian team with RSG Philippines winning the lion’s share of its $100,000 (~£80,000) prize pool. RSG Philippines took down fellow Filipinos, ECHO, in the Grand Final.

Despite no Indonesian team making the Grand Final, Indonesian-language platforms had the most popular broadcasts with a total peak viewership of over 300,000. This beat out Bahasa Malaysia (127,000) and English (120,000) language platforms. Indonesia is the title’s most popular region with its franchised league, MPL Indonesia, typically generating peak viewership figures above the 2 million mark. The county’s latest season is currently the fifth most-watched esports event of 2023.

It is worth noting that the event’s popularity in China cannot be fully documented given that Esports Charts cannot track viewership on Chinese platforms.

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Compared to other popular esports, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang is unique in that fact that a large portion of its viewer base watches through TikTok. The site had a peak viewership of 207,000 for this event coming second only to YouTube (309,000). This is a huge shift from its 2022 edition which had a peak viewership of almost 500,000 on YouTube and barely over 100,000 for TikTok.

This esports calendar year featured a huge amount of popular Mobile Legends: Bang Bang events, with the M4 World Championship amassing a peak viewership of over 4 million. Despite this event becoming the least popular ONE Esports MPLI in regards to peak viewership, these numbers are still incredibly promising when compared to other esports.

Dafydd Gwynn