Sea of Thieves was watched for 14m hours off just 2m hours of play

A summary of the Sea of Thieves closed beta appeared online over the weekend. And it looks to have been a resounding success. 314,021 players logged in to play the beta, a sizeable number given it was only available to those who had pre-ordered the game and that it’s a new franchise. Peak concurrent players hit 35,882 and there was 2m hours played.

But it was an even bigger hit with content creators and viewers. It hit the No.1 spot on both Twitch and Mixer at various times over the beta, and peaked at 269,000 concurrent views on Twitch with over 30,000 content creators being watched for a whopping 14m hours – that’s the kind of marketing you can’t buy (well you can but it ain’t cheap).

Doing the math that’s roughly seven times as many hours watched on stream as actually played. It bodes very well for the game, as drawing top content creators on Twitch is often a first step to huge sales – such as with PUBG. The fact that the game is available on PC as well as console (Xbox One) is a key reason for that success and will be the main driver of sales off the streams.

So it’s a good thing that Microsoft just announced direct software sales via streams on its own Mixer service.

The data comes from a picture, taken from a tweet, posted apparently by a ‘visitor to Rare’ by

About Seth Barton

Seth Barton is the editor of MCV – which covers every aspect of the industry: development, publishing, marketing and much more. Before that Seth toiled in games retail at Electronics Boutique, studied film at university, published console and PC games for the BBC, and spent many years working in tech journalism. Living in South East London, he divides his little free time between board games, video games, beer and family. You can find him tweeting @sethbarton1.

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