Analyzing Wild Rift Esports' Performance in SEA vs MLBB

John Dave Rossel
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<div class="paragraphs"><p>Analyzing Wild Rift Esports' Performance in SEA vs MLBB</p></div>

Since the open beta release of League of Legends: Wild Rift in Southeast Asia (SEA) back in October 2020, its esports scene has been steadily growing in viewership. The Wild Rift SEA Pentaboom Showdown, a celebrity showmatch where SEA influencers and streamers compete against each other, garnered the most attention with over 38k peak viewership. While the numbers may not look too satisfying when compared to Moonton’s biggest tournament, the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Southeast Asia Cup (MSC) 2021, which peaked at around 2.28 million viewership, according to Esports Charts, Riot Games continues to improve Wild Rift’s esports scene and deliver a quality experience for both the audience and esports pros.

Both Wild Rift and Mobile Legends may have different in-game mechanics and gameplay that sets them apart from each other but what they do have in common is that they both are competing for that lucrative mobile MOBA esports market. Despite still being in open beta, Wild Rift is currently gearing towards an impending international championship tournament. With regional championships like the Wild Rift SEA Icon Series, Wild Tour Brazil, and the Wild Rift Summoner Series for North America (NA), Riot Games is committed to bolstering its mobile MOBA’s esports ecosystem to its full potential. The same thing can be said for Mobile Legends as it continues to expand to new regions by hosting tournaments like the Mobile Legends Professional League (MPL) in Brazil and Cambodia and tournaments like the M3 Arabia Major for the Middle East.

The esports performance of Wild Rift in the SEA region

Riot Games is pouring a lot of effort into bolstering the Wild Rift esports scene in SEA. This is because the mobile esports penetration in the region is quite high. According to a report from Statista, China has the most number of smartphone users in Asia for May 2021 with over 911 million users. This is followed by Indonesia with 160 million mobile users.

The first official Wild Rift esports tournament circuit in SEA, the Wild Rift SEA Icon Series 2021: Summer Season grabbed the attention of many esports organizations in the region. Organizations such as EVOS Esports' Thailand team, Alliance’s Singaporean team, the Philippines’ Bren Esports, and Indonesia’s ONIC Esports flocked to the inaugural Wild Rift esports circuit, racing to be one of the first to grab the mobile esports’ championship title.

The tournament comprised eight regions with each region having its regional cup, hosted by various tournament organizers alongside Riot Games. According to data from Esports Charts, the all-time high for Wild Rift esports was during the SEA Icon Series 2021: Summer Super Cup grand finals. The match between SBTC Esports and EVOS Legends achieved 25k viewers.

Official Wild Rift Esports Circuits Viewership and Prize Pool

On the other hand, in Mobile Legends’ most recent MPL season, the highest performing regional league was the MPL Indonesia Season 7 with a jaw-dropping peak viewership of 1,838,907. With Myanmar having to cancel its esports league due to the country’s ongoing political issues, the previous season had only four regional MPL tournaments.


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