The Twitch Rivals Minecraft Mystery Games tournament took place last weekend, bringing in a peak of 287,176 viewers as streamers competed in three segments of competition for a share of a $50,000 prize pool. The 16 teams consisted of both Partner and Affiliate streamers and attracted an average of 250,945 viewers across nine different languages.
This viewership turnout placed the Minecraft Mystery Games event at No. 14 across all Twitch Rivals events between 2019 and 2021, according to analytics platform Esports Charts. Furthermore, the streamer-focused event came in at No. 3 for events hosted in 2021. The event brought in about 7,000 fewer viewers than the Fortnite Twitch Rivals Streamer Bowl in February, which included the participation of 30 NFL players.
So what has led to Minecraft’s growth?
The average concurrent viewership of many titles saw growth with the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, as many sought entertainment as they adapted to a self-isolating environment. Minecraft witnessed that shift too, as it jumped from 30,516 average viewers in March 2020, to nearly double at 57,061 in April 2020.
However, the viewership numbers stayed stagnant at the roughly 60,000 range for several months. It wasn’t until November 2020 when Minecraft rose from No. 9 to No. 5 on the Twitch global rankings, with an average of 106,454 concurrent viewers, according to statistics aggregator Sully Gnome.
Much of this growth can be attributed to increased interest in Minecraft speedrunning from popular content creators like Félix “xQc” Lengyel, Sebastian “forsen” Fors, Maximilian “Trymacs” Stemmler and Matthew “Mizkif” Rinaudo, along with existing streamers in the space like Thomas “tommyinnit” Simons and Toby “Tubbo” Smith.
A record 931,417 peak viewers for the Minecraft category was reached in January of 2021. Since then, the average viewership has continued to grow as new members like Philip “Ph1LzA” Watson, Turner “Tfue” Tenney, George “GeorgeNotFound” Davidson, Karl Jacobs and RanbooLive have cemented their places as top Minecraft personalities.
It’ll be interesting to see where Minecraft streaming goes from here, as the sandbox title continues to grow with these emerging trends on Twitch.