The LCS Lock In tournament was a refreshing change from the league’s regular format, which saw North America’s top League of Legends teams duke it out on the Rift for a grand prize of $150,000 plus a $50,000 donation to a charity of choice. Riot has now published the viewership figures from the event, confirming that the broader League of Legends community was also receptive to the experience.
Across the full three weeks of play, the Lock In had an Average Minute Audience of 196,000, with fans collectively tuning in for more than 9.4 million hours – a 43% increase from the first three weeks of the 2020 LCS Spring Split. With teams making superstar signings during the offseason, especially Cloud9’s acquisition of Luka ‘Perkz’ Perković and Team SoloMid’s $6 million deal for Hu ‘SwordArt’ Shuo-Chieh, it’s no wonder that fans were eager to check out this year’s rosters in action.
The Lock In final between Team Liquid and Cloud9 was a five game banger, with the latter nearly pulling off a reverse sweep after going two games down. However, it was Liquid that took home the grand prize as an Average Minute Audience of 246,000 English language viewers looked on. A peak of 372,000 viewers was recorded across English language broadcasts.
With the inaugural Lock In performing solidly, it would be unsurprising to see Riot make it a more regular fixture. The Lock In was also beneficial for LCS sides, as the results from the tournament had zero impact on their regular season standings, and ultimately no repercussions for their Worlds hopes. As such, it allowed teams to get a few extra weeks of on-stage experience with their 2021 rosters, without the pressures of the regular split.
The 2021 LCS Spring Split kicks off on February 5th at 2:30PM PT / 11:30PM CET with LCS Countdown! Thank you for watching with us all weekend and have a great night! #MadeByMany pic.twitter.com/GYlq6OD6l1
— LCS (@LCSOfficial) February 1, 2021
With the 2021 LCS Spring Split now truly underway, teams will be eager to get their own back while fighting for their place at the top. For Liquid on the other hand, the pressure is now on to replicate its Lock In form.