Which games are rising on the Twitch charts? Which titles are sliding? We bring you the hard numbers and reaction, every week, in the GAMESIGHT power rankings!
Note: The following rankings are based on a combination of both gross and percentage change to viewership and total streams. As such, dominant and stable titles near the top of the charts will not always, or often, appear. To compare to last week's rankings, click here.
1. Tropico 6
After releasing on the final day of the previous week, Tropico 6 exploded up the charts, with the tenth largest raw increase of total viewership during that time, a 661% improvement over the previous week to go along with a 289% rise in total streams. No other title came close to reaching similar relative increases, which is why it finds itself at the top of our list of rising titles for the week.
This is, of course, partially a matter of timing. With only one day in the previous week to accrue viewership, all the title had to do was improve on its first day's performance to achieve real growth. And, man, did it ever. Reaching peaks of over 25,000 viewers on both days of the weekend, the game has since gone on to hit peaks of approximately 10,000 viewers, often multiple times a day. This is very impressive start for a game in the city-building and management genre, and speaks to how highly the series is regarded in that space. We expect to see Tropico hover around these very respectable numbers for some time, with players often returning back in the future as expansions and updates are released.
2. Risk of Rain 2
After appearing our rankings of the top new releases last week, Risk of Rain 2 continues its climb and emerged as one of the most rapidly growing titles on Twitch. Over that time, total viewership increased 258% to go along with a 210% increase in total streamers, with the latter reaching 17,298 creators.
This is more than just the buzz created through Gearbox's main-stage appearance at PAX East. Risk of Rain 2 is a cooperative title, built upon the experience of struggling and discovering with friends. That's why it was such a big deal that the game was released with a special 2-for-1 deal, where you received an additional free copy for your friend. That's a big reason why, in addition to shooting up the Twitch charts, the game has already amassed over 650,000 players. This release has been a great example of how you can leverage an event into a big launch, even for a smaller title, and how good-will moves like the second game giveaway can yield big dividends.
3. Counter Strike: Global Offensive
The Star Series iLeague Season 7 CS:GO tournament was held this past week in Shanghai, and it saw an enormous influx in viewership for the title. Over the course of the professional tournament, which had a $500,000 USD prize pool, Counter-Strike viewership increased by 132%, the second largest raw increase in total hours on all of Twitch, second only to titan League of Legends.
It's interesting to note that, while this increase in viewership was because of the tournament, the game also was streamed by 8092, or 15% more total creators during that time, an indication that the event also increased general interest in the title, and got more people playing. Time and time again we've said it: if you can create a title that really matters in the competitive gaming space, your title can sustain a community of players, creators, and viewers that lasts seemingly into perpetuity. For many studios and publishers, it's really the holy grail. This is just the latest example that hammers home that fact. And, wouldn't you know it, our next title is yet another example...
Stage 2 of the Overwatch League regular season began on April 4th, with matches taking place over the next four days, and, as you can see in the image above, it again exploded the game's viewership numbers on Twitch. The first two days alone were enough to account for a 75% increase in viewership over the previous week, which, like CS:GO above, also saw a modest increase in total streamers, again rising by 15%. Much of the commentary here is the same as above, so we won't repeat ourselves. But, suffice to say, even with all the other titles currently rising up the charts, Overwatch has cemented itself as a fixture in the esports space, and its events will continue to be a big deal on Twitch moving forward.
Okay, this is cheating a little bit; the huge increase you can see in the graph above isn't from people playing the original Borderlands, but rather the newly remastered and released PC edition announced by Gearbox at their PAX East presser. But, while this is technically a new release, it seems inappropriate to include it in that category below. This is a classic game, and we see this more as an update bringing old fans back to something they love, rather than diving in to a brand new experience.
With that being said, compared to the other versions of Borderlands which were being played during the previous week, viewership increased from 44,358 total hours to a whopping 904,892 hours. Total streamers increased by nearly ten times, from 796 channels to 7882. This really speaks to how long a fan base's love can sustain itself, even as sequels and competitors are released and years go by. The power of nostalgia is great, particularly for gamers, and giving them an opportunity to experience their favorite titles again, with improve graphical fidelity and quality of life changes, usually leads to great results. That's why remasters are so popular. There's still a lot of interesting details that have to be ironed out for the Borderlands franchise; the limited Epic Store exclusivity for Borderlands 3 has been a hot topic, and how the game does upon release is going to be something we watch carefully. But, for now, this simple re-release is the series's big story on Twitch, and it's a positive one.
Top New Releases
1. Totally Accurate Battle Simulator
Released into early access on April 1st, Totally Accurate Battle Simulator has actually been around since 2016, after the first version was created during a week-long game jam. Both an open and closed alpha were released towards the end of that year, and it has been in active development ever since. Additionally, a spin-off parody of the battle royale genre, Totally Accurate Battlegrounds, was released in June of 2018. Point being, while this title might be coming out of nowhere for some, many have been long waiting for this, the first version to be released in a commercially complete state.
From it's release through the end of the week, the game was viewed for a total of 391,758 hours across 974 streams on 579 channels. What's more, viewership is spread relatively evenly across those channels, with only ten creators accruing more than 10,000 hours of viewership. The future of this game is unclear to us, because of its unique genre and the potential for frequent updates and expansions as it makes its way through early access, but, for now, it's doing well for itself on Twitch. We'll be keeping a close eye on it in the coming weeks to see just what kind of community it can build.
2. Super Dragonball Heroes World Mission
The mechanics of collectible card games have come to the universe of Dragon Ball with the release of Super Dragon Ball Heroes: World Mission, and in its first two days on Twitch the game was viewed for nearly 32,000 hours via 1228 streams across 418 channels. While this is a respectable showing for a release, it comes nowhere close to either other titles in the CCG genre, or even other Dragon Ball games. It's still growing, with the arrows all pointing up, so we expect its audience and streamer-base to increase with time, but it seems like, for now, it'll remain more of a novelty for fans of the show and manga series than a big hit with CCG players.
This multiplayer sci-fi survival game, sort of like Don't Starve on an alien planet, was released on April 3rd, and over the course of the week accrued over 48,000 hours of viewership across 184 streams on 59 channels. Published by Daedalic Entertainment and created by the small AtomicTorch Studio, this charming early access title lacks the polished look of titles from larger studios, and, as far as we can tell, has received almost no marketing. Truthfully, it makes this list based on the performance of a single streamer, Forsen, whose three hour play sessions is responsible for nearly 39,000 of the games total hours. We're likely not going to see this title on our lists again, but it's an impressive demonstration of how larger creators can help rise even the smallest titles closer to the top of the pile. Not ever week sees enormous AAA releases, and during those times without them its especially important to get your smaller title into the hands of larger creators.
4. Notmycar: Battle Royale
Notmycar, a free-to-play battle royale, was released at 11 AM on the final day of the week for these rankings. In its first 24 hours, it was viewed for a total of 15648 hours via 375 streams on 273 channels. Viewership was also well distributed across those channels who were playing the game, with only five creators being responsible for more than 500 hours, and none getting more than 2700.
Battle royale is a crowded, crowded genre, so it doesn't strike us as particularly likely that this game will continue to rise and rise until we discuss it alongside other titans like Fortnite, Apex Legends, or even PUBG. Still, it was an impressive first day for a small, free title that, frankly, not a lot of people knew was coming. Maybe it will surprise us in the coming weeks. We'll be watching.
Supraland is a first-person 'Metroidvania' puzzle adventure game, and it was released near the end of the week on April 5th. In two days, it was viewed for a total of 22,308 hours through 116 streams across 47 channels. These numbers were concentrated mostly near the top, with 13,518 coming from just one channel, and only three accruing more than 1000 hours. Compared to the rest of the new releases, this was still good enough to take the final spot, but without attracting other larger creators, it seems unlikely that this game will mature into a real fixture in the streaming space. We love it when smaller games surprise us, so we hope the coming weeks see more creators picking up the game and showing it off to receptive audiences. As it stands, it seems unlikely that we'll be seeing this title in our rankings again in the future.
1. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
A substantial falloff in Twitch viewership is standard for any single-player game once the initial burst of its release has come and gone. That's especially true for a title as popular as Sekiro, because when you're reaching peaks of over 200,000 simultaneous viewers, there's nowhere to really go but down. Such was the case in the title's second full week on the platform. Over the past week, the game's total viewership fell by 48.43%.
But, as we discussed in our previous rankings, From Software titles are special. While most streamers tend to move on from most single player games, eventually, the studio's previous titles from the "Soulsborne" have long leveraged their difficult-but-fair gameplay, the wide variety of potential play-styles, and their rich, intricate lore into a constantly engaged online audience of creators, players, and viewers. You can see the same happening here, as at the same time viewership fell by the metrics listed above, the total number of streamers playing the game only just under 22%. The title is still being broadcast by a peak of over 1200 creators a day. These are all the signs of a quickly developing community, one which will branch out into the world of speed-running, as well, to remain a constant presence on Twitch, in some capacity, for a long time. It may be seeing the largest reduction in viewership for the week, but it's still in a very solid place.
2. Battlefield V
When Battlefield V introduced their version of a battle royale in the form of the update Firestorm, it was quickly picked up by a large number of streamers, reaching a peak of over 130,000 viewers in its first day. It has not reached anywhere near those numbers since, and after reaching the top of our rankings last week, it saw a 68% reduction of total viewership while being broadcast by 29% fewer channels. Additionally, the daily peak of total streamers has fallen to under 500 creators. Playerunknown's Battlegrounds, for comparison, has been averaging a daily peak of approximately 1400 streamers.
This entry in the ever-growing field of battle royale titles and game modes was late to the game, but it's clear that viewers were excited at the prospect of such an experience in Battlefield. That excitement translated into a brilliant first week of viewership. While there's still a healthy number of streamers playing the game, it has not maintained much of the momentum with which it hit the scene. Should it stabilize where it is now, it might represent a solid foundation upon which to build an ongoing community of players. If it continues to recede, however, it's unlikely to stick around.
3. The Walking Dead: The Final Season
The final entry in this long-running series was finally released two weeks ago. After the shuttering of its studio, Tell Tale, earlier this year, it wasn't certain we would ever see the conclusion of Clementine's traumatic journey, but Robert Kirkman himself, and its studio Skybound, promised to see the story to its end. When it came out, it had a respectable first few days on Twitch, but, in general, these games aren't the sorts of titles that do well in streaming. These are intimate stories, long built on dialogue options and old-school adventure mechanics, and it's just the sort of thing players would, typically, rather experience themselves.
So, once those who did want to experience the game through the lens of a streamer had done so, the viewership numbers for the title hit the floor, and over the last week it lost 75% of its viewership and 52% of its streamers. It's the latter, one of the largest percentages of qualifying games, that really hammers home how short the game's lifespan on Twitch has been.
4. Generation Zero
One of the top new games of the week in our previous rankings, the open world action game from Avalanche Studios lost nearly 70% of its viewership from its first week, though it coincides with only a 29% drop in total streamers. While it seems that novelty was enough to attract a fair number of viewers at its introduction, it quickly faded, and creators with sizable audiences have all moved on to other things. Still, 2278 streamers played the game last week, so a community of players still does exist. It appears its reach on Twitch will be somewhat limited, but it's a positive sign that it's retaining streamers at a much greater rate than it is viewers.
I'm really not trying to pick on Anthem. The title has already had its fill of bad press and negative attention. But, once again, the sheer volume of its losses force us to place it here at the final spot in our falling games for the week. Over said week, it's viewership fell by 32%, and it was broadcast by 15% fewer creators. While competitor The Division 2 averages peaks of over 1000 streamers a day, Anthem is sitting at under 100. It seems, at this point, that there isn't much that could save the day for Bioware. Barring a complete redesign and a huge marketing push, like we once saw with The Old Republic, it's likely that we've seen the last of note from Anthem.
To compare to last week's rankings, click here, and be sure to check out the first in our ongoing series breaking down Auto Chess. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn for all the latest blogs, announcements, and game marketing news from the team at GAMESIGHT!