Game 1 of VCT Champs Istanbul has broken all viewership records for international Valorant tournaments.

Chinese team Edward Gaming’s international Valorant debut has broken viewership records in Riot’s FPS game. The first match of the VCT Champs Istanbul tournament saw over 786,000 viewers eagerly waiting to watch the highest level of Valorant competition.

VCT Champs Istanbul is currently underway with 16 teams from all across the world competing for the glory and title of the world’s best Valorant team. The teams come from all over the world and also mark the first time we will see a Chinese team, Edward Gaming, in competition.

According to Esports Charts, the peak viewership before the conclusion of Map 1 was just over 760,000. The number climbed to 786,000 by map 2, where Edward Gaming had a dominant performance over Paper Rex. 

What’s driving up the VCT viewership numbers?

There are many reasons for Valorant’s popularity and the high viewership. Riot Games has teamed up with several popular content creators for official costreams. Besides Twitch, the VCT Champions Istanbul are also being streamed on YouTube as well as regional broadcasts.

In particular, the Japanese streams have been wildly popular as the game has been gaining traction in the region over the past few months. With teams like Zeta Division performing exceptionally well in recent times, the interest in Valorant has only grown in the region.

Meanwhile, community streamers such as TenZ, Tarik, Mixwell and others have only served to bring top-tier Valorant esports to their fanbase. These community streams often bring competing or even higher viewership than the official channels. 

Welcome Sign for Valorant esports

It’s a great sign for the growth of Valorant esports which saw slightly lower viewership during Copenhagen. With some of the more popular teams facing early elimination at VCT Masters Copenhagen, the tournament’s viewership saw a decline compared to other international events. 

However, the surge in viewership during this event could only be a sign of things to come. With a major region such as China showing renewed interest in the game, it bodes well for the future of the FPS title.

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