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Getting Banned Remains Best for Boosting Viewership – Weekly Twitch Top 10s, April 26 – May 2 – The Esports Observer

Ever since the early days of Dr Disrespect, few things have driven viewers to a Twitch channel faster than a streamer returning from a ban. In the last few months, Félix “xQc” Lengyel has leveraged this fact to boost his own viewership multiple times, coinciding with the rise of Grand Theft Auto V on the platform.

Twitch’s Top Channel – xQc

The bulk of GTA viewership on Twitch stems from a roleplaying server called NoPixel where streamers play a character within a set game world — speaking and acting as that in-game avatar rather than commenting on their gameplay as they typically would during a broadcast. It’s a unique experience for viewers to see their favorite streamers essentially acting out improv scenes within the game. Lengyel has been banned from this server for various behaviors on four separate occasions, each time returning to the server in a triumphant, highly viewed broadcast.

The most recent ban was meant to last until the middle of May and could have been the end of Lengyel’s tenure in GTA. Instead, the ban was once again reversed early, and once more Lengyel returned to huge numbers. With the help of this unban energy, Lengyel was able to yet again surpass 7M hours watched.

Twitch’s Top Content – Just Chatting

The drama surrounding Lengyel’s access to the leading GTA server along with a myriad of other opportunities for streamer collaboration has kept the game in an extremely unique position – challenging Just Chatting for the throne on a consistent basis. For months, the catch-all category of Just Chatting had been unchallenged with no game able to approach its consistent 60K+ hours watched outside of extreme circumstances. 

GTA has recently set that 60K benchmark as its new normal, maintaining that figure for nearly all of April. Just one month ago it was difficult to imagine any game could consistently keep League of Legends out of the second-place slot, but GTA is making a case for establishing a new hierarchy on the platform.

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