The 2020 WePlay! Bukovel Minor, which took place in the second week of January, broke all the viewing records and became the most-watched Minor tournament in Dota Pro Circuit history.
The Bukovel Minor came to a close on Sunday, January 12, when we saw Nigma produce a remarkable performance in the grand finals to beat Royal Never Give Up and claim a US $72,000 pay check, 140 DPC points and a ticket leading to the DreamLeague Season 13 Leipzig Major, which is currently being played in Germany.
While the Bukovel Minor will be remembered for Nigma’s incredible resurgence in form, the Ukrainian Dota 2 esports tournament has also earned a spot in the hall of fame as the most-watched Minor in the history of the DPC. According to esportscharts.com, the Bukovel Minor averaged 93,526 viewers, with 5,494,648 watched hours and 233,124 peak viewers tuning in to watch the grand final series between RNG and Nigma.
The previous viewership record was held by DreamLeague Season 10, which took place in November 2018 and saw 77,629 average viewers and 228,707 peak viewers with a grand total of 5,466,332 watched hours. The Bukovel Minor also came close to reaching the viewership numbers of the MDL Chengdu Major, which saw 106,129 average viewers but with almost the double air time (97h) compared to Bukovel (59h).
The immense success of the Bukovel Minor is easy to understand, considering it featured some great teams and a spectacular grand final bout between RNG and the ex-Liquid roster.
“One of the keys to the success of WePlay! Bukovel Minor 2020 was the stellar performance of the teams,” said Oleh Humeniuk, the WePlay! General Manager.
“We used new technologies and had no creative limits. Everyone who worked on the event loves esports, and judging by the results and feedback the viewers felt it.”
Vitaliy “Nexius” Bozhko, the WePlay! Esports Dota 2 Lead, added: “WePlay! Bukovel Minor 2020 brought together the strongest player lineup in the history of DPC Minors. We are grateful to the participants for the unforgettable matches and the professionalism displayed during the tournament,”
Perhaps the biggest reason why the WePlay! Bukovel Minor was so successful in terms of viewership numbers was the excellent work from the broadcasters and the overall quality of the tournament stream, which concluded in magnificent fireworks.
The casters Jorien “Sheever” van der Heijden, Austin “Capitalist” Walsh and Toby “TobiWan” Dawson made sure to keep the commentary professional yet highly entertaining, which kept the tournament enjoyable to watch even when there was no action on the battlefield.
The Minor tournament was greeted with a massive amount of positive feedback from the community, who were taken aback at the standard of the broadcast for a Minor event. Some even claimed the quality and enjoyment factor was greater than some Major events.
The next WePlay! event in line for 2020 is WePlay! Dota 2 Tug of War: Mad Moon, which will take place on February 19, 2020 with eight teams competing for the lion’s share of $300,000 at Concert Hall VDNG in Kiev. Team Secret, Ninjas in Pyjamas, Royal Never Give Up, Infamous and Natus Vincere are confirmed to compete, leaving only three more spots for directly invited teams.