The term eSports refers to professional video gaming events (regional and international) in which gamers compete against each other. The space is snowballing, and for those establishing an iGaming business, we created an article discussing the industry’s past, present, and future.
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A History of Video Game Competitions in a Nutshell
Although most people believe the 90s marked the beginning of video games, the story began decades prior.
Alexander Shafto Douglas, a scientist from Cambridge, introduced the game ”XOX” in 1952, which allowed players to compete against the computer. The first multiplayer game appeared six years later, called ”Tennis for Two.”
However, it was in 1972 that a team from Stanford University organised an “Intergalactic Spacewar Olympics.” Spacewar was the product of the joint work of Steve Russel and a couple of other computer scientists from MIT in the 60s.
Six years later, Atari gave the world Space Invaders, and the first significant eSports tournament – Space Invaders Championships – was organised in 1980. Over 10,000 gamers participated in the competition.
Video game enthusiasts will remember the beginning of the next decade with the “Nintendo World Championships.” Also, it was evident that the future of video game competitions lies in networking and PCs.
Fast forward to the new millennium. In 2000, Seoul was the host of the first “World Cyber Games,” while the first eSports event with a one million dollar prize was the “CPL World Tour” in 2005.
When discussing the eSports scene today, we think about professional competitive video gaming. Although playing video games is always competitive, it differs when you play for fun and engage in a professional competition.
The scene changes daily, with the number of gamers growing by the second. Such movement results in an increasing number of new teams, leagues, and tournaments worldwide. With everything listed, eSports are like traditional sports.
Aside from playing video games, eSports fans also like to be in the audience, supporting their favourite gamer(s). Finally, people bet on traditional sports, which is also possible in eSports.
While big prizes have been awarded to those taking part in the different competitions, punters have also been able to get in on the action and earn some money on the side by betting on their favourite esports via betting websites found online today.
Much care is taken to ensure that the betting experience is as fun as the playing being watched. Companies like GiG (Gaming Innovation Group) have been offering technological innovations to drive countless betting sites and provide a secure betting experience for a variety of sports, virtual or otherwise.
Most Popular eSports Game Types
It is safe to say that almost all video games can fall under an eSports umbrella. Still, Real Time Strategy games, Multiplayer Online Battle Arena games, Combat, and First-Person Shooters are mainly designed for competitive video gaming.
- Real-Time Strategy games are designed for individual and team play. It includes combat and resource management. In such games, players build a variety of strategies to attack and overcome the opponent while defending their base.
- Multiplayer Online Battle Arena games are similar to strategy games. Players are in a team, each controlling one character but working together with other team members to defeat the opposing side.
- Combat games are among the oldest in the gaming space. They comprise fights in which each player, controlling one character, fights against another player in one of several rounds.
- First-Person Shooter games have also existed for decades. In these games, a player uses various weapons to fight another player over a variety of stages.
The most significant eSports events are:
- The International
- League of Legends World Championship
- Dota Major Championships
- ESL Pro Leagues & ESL One
- The Intel Extreme Masters
The titles no one should skip when betting on eSports are:
With a player base of over 150 minion members, League of Legends is one of the most popular games worldwide. However, the popularity of the game is not limited to gaming circles. On the contrary, it is also one of the most popular games among eSports bettors.
Even though it was launched over 10 years ago, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is still one of the most popular video games and a household name in eSports. The millions that enjoy playing the game have praised it for its gameplay and faithfulness to the established series and it makes it enjoyable to watch, take part in and bet on.
FIFA may not be as dominant in the eSports space as League of Legends or Counter-Strike: GO, but it is still one of the most recognizable titles among gamers.
In addition, FIFA is a great betting option, especially if you are a traditional sports bettor because betting on it is like placing a wager on a classic football match.
As observers, we can argue whether eSports will reach the same popularity as traditional sports. But, according to Statista, the global eSports market reached $1.38 billion in revenue in 2022 and is forecast to grow to $1.87 billion by 2025, which undoubtedly confirms that the space will continue to flourish, becoming a marker worth considering for both gamers, bettors and iGaming companies.