Even as the coronavirus pandemic brought the world to a standstill in 2020, the gaming and esports community on Twitter all around the world, including Southeast Asia, only continued to grow as most of us were forced to stay at home and quarantine.
Over 2 billion tweets about gaming were posted on Twitter throughout last year, which is a first for the gaming community on the platform, according to the 2020 recap on the official Twitter blog.
The three-most talked about topics on the gaming category on Twitter notably included tweets about gaming, gaming news, and esports.
While Facebook remains the most prevalent social media platform in Southeast Asia, more and more gaming and esports fans in the region have gone to Twitter to follow and interact with teams and players from the West, where Twitter is the preferred platform for the gaming communities there.
This is apparent when looking at the list of the most-talked about esports teams on the platform for some of the countries in Southeast Asia, which was provided to Yahoo Esports Southeast Asia by Twitter.
For example, the lists of the most-talked about esports teams on Twitter last year for the Philippines, Singapore, and Malaysia was mostly comprised of Western teams — OG, Team Secret, G2 Esports, Fnatic, Team SoloMid, Cloud9, Team Liquid, and FaZe Clan.
Only two Asian teams appeared on those lists, South Korea’s T1 (#1 in Singapore and Philippines) and Gen.G Esports (#2 in Singapore, #3 in Philippines).
The prevalence of certain Western organisations among Southeast Asian fans can also be attributed to the fact that they are operating teams competing in games that are popular in the region.
T1, Gen.G Esports, G2 Esports, Team SoloMid, Cloud9, Team Liquid, and FaZe Clan have teams which compete in League of Legends, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, and Valorant, and have widespread reach on social media.
Meanwhile, OG (#2 in Malaysia and Philippines) and Team Secret (#1 in Malaysia) stand out because they don’t quite have the same global reach in social media that organisations like FaZe Clan and G2 Esports have.
Instead, their overwhelming popularity in Southeast Asia can be attributed to the fact they operate two of the best teams in Dota 2, which remains one of the most biggest esports titles in the region.
Team Secret also expanded in Southeast Asia last year, operating two PUBG M teams in Malaysia and Thailand, a League of Legends team in Vietnam, teasing an Indonesia expansion and now recruiting for a Wild Rift team based in the Philippines.
Southeast Asia’s communities solidify Twitter presence
The 2 billion record number for gaming-related tweets was a 75 per cent increase from the figures posted in 2019. The number of unique accounts that authored said tweets also grew by almost 50 per cent.
The gaming and esports communities in Southeast Asia, one the biggest and most active regions in those two industries, certainly contributed in the growth of the global gaming community on Twitter.
Of the countries that tweeted the most about gaming in 2020, Thailand ranked fifth while the Philippines ranked ninth globally.
If the list were restricted to only include countries in Asia and the Pacific, then Thailand would rank third with the Philippines in fifth.
For comparison, the list of countries that tweeted the most about gaming globally in 2019 included Thailand at fourth, Indonesia at eighth, and the Philippines at tenth.
As Southeast Asia and the rest of the globe begin to adapt to a new world shaped by the coronavirus pandemic and its lingering effects, the region’s gaming and esports communities should only continue to grow.
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