Apex Legends was released out of nowhere on 4 February. No one was expecting that kind of release from Respawn and EA. Even Fortnite didn’t expect that and therefore did not hold their fort as Apex Legends stole Fortnite‘s crown as #1 game on Twitch (by total live hours watched).

As a matter of fact, Apex Legends was viewed live on Twitch for an impressive 122.1 million hours in February, compared to Fortnite’s 82.76 million hours.

Apex Legends Leaps to Number 1 in its Launch Month

According to the data provided by Newzoo, is the first time any recently released game has shot to the top of Twitch’s monthly live viewership ranking, outperforming some of the biggest titles in gaming. Respawn’s approach of using streamers to promote the game resulted in 122.1 million hours of live viewership, with 657K max concurrent viewers.

Shroud alone generated about 10% of the game’s live viewership on Twitch, with 14.0 million hours.

Sky High But Stabilising

With an average viewer count of 210k at any given time in February, the numbers are starting to decline, but the stabilisation is expected.

The game’s initial strong performance was bolstered by the hype and virality of a surprise release, with top streamers helping spread the word. Since then, the hype has been dying down somewhat.

Although Apex Legends and Fortnite are direct competitors, we must keep in mind that Fortnite’s rise was gradual, taking its course over a few months. Whereas Apex Legends bloomed instantly.

Based on the graph, the viewership of Apex Legends shot up starting from 4 February while Fortnite‘s views dropped. However, Fortnite has a spike in viewership around 24 February thanks to the launch of Season 8. We will expect Apex Legends to have the same effect since the first season is starting tomorrow.

Streamers Attract Viewers for Apex Legends Esports

The Twitch Rivals Apex Legends tournament held on Feb 12 and Feb 19, also helped viewership remain high throughout the month. In addition to the official Twitch Rivals channel, the competing streamers also broadcasted the event from their own channels.

This generated 4.6 million hours of viewership with 85% of that coming from streamers’ channels. Shroud garnered 880k hours, while the official Twitch Rival channel on generated half of that, clocking at 449k.

Apex Legends Disrupted The Twitch Ecosystem

With its high viewership, standing at #1, it’s impossible to say that it didn’t leave an impact towards other games.

Let’s see how it affected the other games.

  • Its direct competitor, Fortnite, dropped to #3.
  • Baptiste’s release caused Overwatch to rise one position to #6.
  • PUBG fell three positions, ending at #8.
  • PUBG Mobile, however, rose to #2, beating its full-version cousin.
  • Garena Free Fire taking the #6.
  • Arena of Valor re-entering the top 10 at #9.
  • Standoff 2 stands at #10.



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