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YouTube Gaming has had quite a year. The video game-centric vertical of the online video giant, which officially launched in 2015, posted its biggest numbers yet, topping 100 billion hours watched globally in 2020.

“Despite the ups and downs [of 2020], many have turned to gaming on YouTube as a way to find connection, entertainment, and to share moments with friends and loved ones during these trying times,” YouTube said in a post on Tuesday morning.

Of the 100 billion hours-watched figure, a 10th was attributed to live gaming streams. Minecraft was the top live game watched in 2020, as well as the overall most-watched title on the platform. Other major drivers of viewership included RobloxGarena Free FireGrand Theft Auto V and Fortnite.

YouTube Gaming also held several live events which garnered millions of views. Travis Scott’s live in-game concert event in Fortnite in April accrued 16 million views while Junes Brawl Stars: Brawl Talk – Summer of Monsters mobile game event attracted over 750,000 concurrent viewers.

Xbox and PlayStation also utilized the platform to generate excitement around announcements and new releases. PlayStation’s PS5 – The Future of Gaming Show has over 15 million views, while the Xbox Games Showcase has garnered just under 1 million views.

The platform also streamed a number of esport events for Call of Duty League, Overwatch League, League of Legends Esports, Garena Free Fire League Clausura and Arena of Valor. Esports on YouTube Gaming has an aggregate 87 million views, 70 of which are for Garena Free Fire League. League of Legends returned its K-pop group K/DA to release the music video for the song “MORE”, which has over 52 million views to date.

It was also a banner year for content creators on the platform. With over 40 million active gaming channels on YouTube, several creators saw their subscriptions soar. Over 80,000 creators hit 100,000 subscribers, while more than 1,000 creators reached 5 million subscribers and over 350 creators reached 10 million subscribers. U.S.-based family-friendly channel FGTeeV was the top page for the year, though YouTube did not share specific viewership numbers for the channel.


In addition to growing their own audiences, creators on the YouTube Gaming platform also raised more than $1 million for COVID relief, the CDC Foundation, the World Health Organization, United Nations Children’s Fund and more.


Photo courtesy of YouTube