2017 eSports TV Ratings: FIFA on ESPN2, ELEAGUE Street Fighter Tops 300K

2017 ESPORTS TV RATINGS: FIFA CHAMPIONSHIP ON ESPN2, ELEAGUE STREET FIGHTER TOPS 300K

Vitality Rockyy Wins the 2017 FIFA Ultimate Team Championship in Berlin (Photo: EA Sports)

Vitality Rockyy Wins the 2017 FIFA Ultimate Team Championship in Berlin (Photo: EA Sports)

TNL Take: After last week's EA Madden NFL's 2017 Championship on the NFL Network, this week saw EA's FIFA Ultimate Team 2017 Championship take place in Berlin on ESPN2 as well as ELEAGUE's Playoff Preview show for this Friday's Street Fighter V Invitational Playoffs.

Here's how they performed:

TNL Infographic 040: 2017 eSports TV Ratings (Infographic: The Next Level)

TNL Infographic 040: 2017 eSports TV Ratings (Infographic: The Next Level)

Vitality Rockyy (Photo: Team Vitality)

Vitality Rockyy (Photo: Team Vitality)

  • EA FIFA: After 32 players battled it out in Berlin over 2 days, Corentin “Vitality Rockyy” Chevrey won the 2017 FIFA Ultimate Team Championship taking home $160,000.  With a full season of competitive play, $1M+ dedicated to FIFA prize pools and a Saturday 11AM time slot on ESPN - still failed to draw a lot of viewers with only 40,000 total and 19,000 in the 18-49 demo.

For comparison, last years 2016 FIWC (FIFA Interactive World Cup) - the big FIFA finals if you will - drew 46,000 total viewers on Fox Sports 1, which has almost the same household penetration as ESPN2.

This year's 2017 FIWC will be provide a decent baseline to see EA's efforts in relation to TV viewership.

 

ELEAGUE's Street Fighter V Invitational Playoffs (Photo: Turner)

ELEAGUE's Street Fighter V Invitational Playoffs (Photo: Turner)

  • ELEAGUE Street Fighter: The fighting game continues to grow with this week's show hitting 330,000 total and 177,000 viewers in 18-49.  This makes it ELEAGUE's highest rated show for 2017 and the 4th highest rated show across their various programming since starting in 2016.  

The "preview/highlight" shows tend do perform well in addition to only being 1 hour and ending at 11 PM; which would help increase the viewer numbers as well.  

This weekend's playoffs will be another good test to see if can now beat the 350,000 viewer mark.

 

Including replays, 2017 has now seen 25 eSports programs on TV at the end of May - whereas 2016 saw 22 in total.

2017 eSports TV Ratings: Madden Championship, Street Fighter Soars and FIFA

2017 ESPORTS TV RATINGS: MADDEN CHAMPIONSHIP, STREET FIGHTER SOARS AND FIFA

2017 Madden Champion Skimbo (Photo: EA Sports)

2017 Madden Champion Skimbo (Photo: EA Sports)

TNL Infographic 038: 2017 eSports TV Ratings (Infographic: The Next Level)

TNL Infographic 038: 2017 eSports TV Ratings (Infographic: The Next Level)

  • EA MADDEN: This weekend saw the conclusion to EA Madden's 1st Season of competitive play with Michael "Skimbo" Skimbo taking home the belt along with $100,000. While the total viewers were ~100,000 less than last year there are two potential reasons: 01/ Last year's Championship was on ESPN2 which is in 15M+ more households than the NFL Network /02 The 1st Madden Championship on TV, held on Tue afternoon and with no other eSports competition probably added to the allure.  

The 48,000 viewers in the 18-49 demo was the #2 ranked show on NFL Network for Sunday.

 

  • ELEAGUE STREET FIGHTER: This week saw Turner's ELEAGUE Street Fighter series soar to 221,000 total viewers and 145,000 in the 18-49 demo making it the #2 ranked show for the year and even ahead of ELEAGUE's Counter-Strike Major. Will be tough but would great to see the 5/26 Championship reach the 300,000 total viewers mark.

Even more impressive, ELEAGUE beat the English Premier League in BOTH total viewers and the 18-49 demo. For the Twitter "comments", the EPL afternoon slot is better than ELEAGUE's 10PM start time in addition to being....the English Premier League which got $1B from NBC Sports for a 6-year rights deal.

 

  • EA FIFA: The 5/6 Europe Regional ratings were updated garnering 83,000 total viewers and 46,000 in the 18-49 demo. This weekend is also the conclusion to EA FIFA's 1st Season as well as the finalists battle it out in Berlin.

Q2 2017 eSports TV Ratings: Street Fighter Falls, FIFA on ESPN2

Q2 2017 ESPORTS  TV RATINGS: STREET FIGHTER FALLS, FIFA ON ESPN2

ELEAGUE Street Fighter (Photo: ELEAGUE)

ELEAGUE Street Fighter (Photo: ELEAGUE)

TNL Take: Q2 eSports TV ratings and news over the past week:

TNL Infographic 036: Q2 2017 eSports TV Ratings (Infographic: The Next Level)

TNL Infographic 036: Q2 2017 eSports TV Ratings (Infographic: The Next Level)

  • EA FIFA: Ratings for the Regionals for Rest of the World and America's was updated for the end of April. The America's Regionals saw a significant drop to 63,000 total viewers from the Miami Regionals in February that saw 96,000. Miami did have a better programming slot (Sunday evening) vs. the America's (Sat night). This weekend's European Regional numbers will show if that trend continues.

 

  • ELEAGUE STREET FIGHTER: Street Fighter continues to befuddle having increased total viewership by 100,000+ between 4/21 and 4/28 to 291,000 - but then dropping from 291,000 to 160,000 for this past week's episode on 5/5. Will be interesting to see where Street Fighter ends up as it winds up it's inaugural season on 5/26.

Although Street Fighter only garnered a 0.09 rating in the 18-49 demo - it still beat the English Premier League on NBC Sports Network against a 0.07.

 

  • ELEAGUE COUNTER-STRIKE: Turner also announced a 2-team only Counter-Strike $250,000 event featuring the Finalists of the January Major (Astralis vs. Virtus Pro) on June 16. Not only is this the largest prize pool for a 2-team only event, it will be shown on both Twitch at TBS. Why is that interesting?

Because last time not only did it break Twitch viewership figures, but "beat" TV as well. 

ELEAGUE Major: Twitch vs. TBS (Chart: The Next Level)

ELEAGUE Major: Twitch vs. TBS (Chart: The Next Level)

 

  • EA MADDEN: This Sunday 5/14 will see the conclusion to EA Madden NFL 17's 1st eSports Season with the Madden Championships on the NFL Network at 9PM.  If the Madden Championship beats the Madden Bowl total of 190,000, EA's Madden has a shot at ending up in the Top 5 for the first half of 2017.

Q2 2017 eSports TV Ratings: The CW Is #1 Again

Q2 2017 ESPORTS TV RATINGS: THE CW IS #1 AGAIN

Q2 2017 eSports TV Ratings: The CW Is #1 Again (Photo: The CW )

Q2 2017 eSports TV Ratings: The CW Is #1 Again (Photo: The CW )

TNL eSports Infographic 034 (Infographic: The Next Level)

TNL eSports Infographic 034 (Infographic: The Next Level)

Here's what stands out so far in Q2:

Another reason the numbers are higher: the time. Last year's Mortal Kombat event was on Monday Prime Time and same for H1Z1; on a Thursday night at 9:00 PM.

One additional point on H1Z1, if you compare the 18-49 ratings vs. the NHL Playoffs which basically ran head-to-head (yes, on fewer total households compared with the NBC Sports Network), it's still just about even - 0.2 vs. a 0.3 for the NHL.

H1Z1 18-49 Demo Ratings vs. the NHL Playoffs (Photo: Showbuzzdaily.com)

H1Z1 18-49 Demo Ratings vs. the NHL Playoffs (Photo: Showbuzzdaily.com)

NHL Playoffs 18-49 Ratings (Source: Showbuzzdaily.com)

NHL Playoffs 18-49 Ratings (Source: Showbuzzdaily.com)

  • Turner's ELEAGUE has now had 5 episodes of Street Fighter and seems to settling in around the ~300K Total Viewers and 100K+ in the 18-49 demo.  As nothing has been announced yet on Counter-Strike Season 3 or Turner's potential next league, it will be interesting to see if they continue to give it the same time Friday late night time slot.

 

  • The only other addition was EA's FIFA Regionals and waiting to verify the numbers but with 17 programs through 4 months compared with just over 20 for all of 2016, we're off to a good start.

 

Also want to pour the bottle out for the good man behind SportsTVRatings.com who will no longer be providing Nielsen data I hunger for on a weekly basis on his site. He patiently taught me so me so much about how to - correctly - understand TV ratings and separate the sensational headlines from the truth. You will be missed sir and this one's for you.