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StreamElements has released its October 2022 State of the Stream report. In addition to an overview of the market, StreamElements also covered the month’s top streamers and games.

Post-pandemic normal

According to data partner Rainmaker.gg, livestreaming platforms — particularly Twitch — are settling into a new post-pandemic normal.

While monthly hours watched in 2022 follows similar seasonal patterns to 2021, the monthly totals are down year-on-year. For Twitch, the new monthly baseline appears to be about 1.7 billion-plus hours watched. In October 2021, this benchmark was approximately 1.9 billion hours watched per month.

StreamElements provides a high level overview of livestreaming viewership across Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and Facebook Gaming in October 2022

The pandemic was a watershed moment for livestreaming, introducing millions of new viewers to Twitch, YouTube, Facebook Gaming and more. A drop from pandemic era highs are to be expected as restrictions are lifted, but it was unclear just how large this drop off would be.

Overall, the industry is still wildly outperforming pre-pandemic figures. Before Covid-19, Rainmaker.gg reported that Twitch averaged 1 billion monthly hours watched — a gain of 70%.

Gil Hirsch, CEO and cofounder of StreamElements added, “Twitch has reached an interesting point where we have a clear baseline for 2022 that represents a massive audience while growth has simmered beyond it. This is likely less about livestreaming losing momentum and more about creators diversifying where they are creating content, especially as we see their expansion to TikTok and the collective growth of livestreaming.”

Gaules leads streamers

StreamElements reports the top 10 most watched Twitch streamers of October 2022

StreamElements reports that Gaules was the most watched streamer on Twitch in October 2022. The Brazilian creator co-streamed several esports events for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive — primarily ESL’s IEM Road to Rio. Gaules has become a central hub for Portuguese-speaking viewers, making him a reliable partner for esports event organizers that want to boost overall event viewership.

Similarly, Nix benefited from co-streaming esports. The Russian Dota 2 pro provided his own commentary and perspective on The International, the game’s most important event. Nix streams less consistently than the other streamers listed but TI reliably boosts his viewership.

Finally, StreamElements highlighted the gender disparity in Twitch’s top streamers. Amouranth was the only woman among the top 100 most watched creators on the platform in October 2022. Top female creators, Fuslie and LilyPichu, have left the platform in recent months. Similarly, Pokimane has been streaming fewer hours after a break in August.

Overwatch 2 has strong debut

StreamElements reports the most watched games of October 2022

Overwatch 2 brought in 133 million hours watched on Twitch during October. It was the third most watched category on Twitch and the second most popular game after League of Legends. The latest Blizzard release is only one of four new titles gain enough hours to reach a the top 10 for a month. This was also good enough to beat its predecessor’s peak at No. 5.

Several factors are driving this viewership, but two stand out. One is the the Overwatch League, which held major playoff-relevant tournament matches in October. Another is xQc, who primarily streamed Overwatch 2 in October. As one of the most popular streamers on the platform and a former Overwatch League pro, xQc was able to bring more visibility to the game.

However, it’s unclear how much of this viewership was due to organic interest versus drops. During launch, Blizzard rewarded Overwatch 2 viewers with in-game items including a legendary skin if they watched livestreams for several hours. This practice is common for esports events and game launches to generate buzz and incentivize viewership,

Esports did play a major role in other game’s viewership in October 2022 too. Dota 2’s hours watched grew 76% due to The International. Meanwhile League of Legends grew 41% as October hosted the qualifying stages for Worlds 2022.

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