Faker's first Twitch stream sets a record for viewers

South Korean pro gamer Sang-hyeok “Faker” Lee is a very big deal in League of Legends circles. The current SK Telecom T1 mid-laner is one of only two gamers to win the LoL World Championship three times—in 2013, 2015, and 2016—and he also claimed the 2016 Mid-Season Invitational title, having placed second in 2015. 

SK Telecom recently moved from Azubu to Twitch, and Faker's highly-anticipated first stream, which took place on Monday, did the kind of numbers his new hosts will have been hoping for. According to PVP Live, the stream peaked at more than 245,000 concurrent viewers, the highest count for a single streamer of all time. Not a bad way to start.

The stream was Faker's first "real" appearance on Twitch, but he's been seen there previously: He was at the center of an early 2015 controversy caused by "Spectate Faker," a Twitch stream that rebroadcast footage of his matches. At the time he and SK Telecom had an exclusive deal with Azubu, but the footage being streamed was recorded via a third-party client, and therefore owned by Riot. Nobody was happy about it—not Riot, not SKT, and certainly not Azubu—but it was enough to comply with the letter of the law, if not its spirit, although Riot was eventually able to force the stream offline.   

If you missed Faker's live Twitch debut, you can catch a recording below.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.