The Game Awards 2016 Viewership Spikes Thanks in Large Part to China

That's up 65 percent compared to last year.

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Last week's Game Awards 2016 was a big success in terms of viewership. Officially announced figures for the show reveal that it racked up 3.8 million views online, up significantly from past years. In 2015, the show reached 2.3 million viewers, and a year before that, it had 1.9 million.

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Show creator and organizer Geoff Keighley told Polygon that it was "encouraging" to see The Game Awards' reach grow both in the US and abroad. "Our goal is to bring this show to as many gamers as possible, and this unique distribution approach continues to pay dividends. The interest and response to the show in China was especially exciting to see," he said.

Keighley's production company worked out a deal with Chinese internet giant Tencent (which owns League of Legends developer Riot Games and a portion of Epic Games) to stream the show in China. The country was hugely important to the overall viewership spike, accounting for almost 1 million viewers. According to a report, the number of gamers in China exceeds the US population.

The Game Awards brought a lot of big news and trailers, while Blizzard's Overwatch took home the overall Game of the Year award.

The awards show was formerly hosted by cable TV network Spike before shifting to an online-only format.

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