The history of organized sports dates back to the 8th century BC to the Greek city of Olympia. These games resulted in the Olympic games as we see people from around the world gather for multiple sporting events every four years. As time passed, more games got famous, and people got interested in seeing players from around the world play it together.
With a new millennium, the gaming industry saw a boom in a very unique and unprecedented style of gaming. Since computers became more powerful to handle larger amounts of data, video games came to the fore inviting interest from millions of people worldwide. The widescale development in internet technologies also complemented the development of games as it now allowed people around the globe to play against each other.
The proliferation of better-equipped smartphones was another factor that put the gaming growth on steroids. Now anyone anywhere in the world could play a game of their choice by just owning a smartphone.
The gaming development only got better with time as we see new technologies such as augmented and virtual reality getting incorporated. As the gaming scene mushroomed, we also saw the development of a new way of people talking to each other that might sound like codewords to the rest. So, if you hear someone asking, “how to rank up in valorant,” they are not speaking an alien language, instead, talking about their favorite game named Valorant.
The burgeoning of gaming led people to organize international gaming competitions, so enthusiasts from around the globe could compete and entertain many viewers. The e-sports phenomenon has been reaching uncharted levels, and hence it is becoming pertinent to talk about it in further elaboration.
What is esports?
Esport is the organized gaming in which many players from around the world participate and compete for a prize. Millions from around the world watch their favorite players gaming together. However, unlike normal sports, esports does not involve huge stadiums or grass pitches, which is a positive since it involves less investment.
People watch it mostly from the comfort of their homes, and only the participants and organizers are physically present at the tournament site. The prize money is sometimes over 1 million dollars as the phenomena burgeons inviting the interest of significant advertisers; we will see it rise exponentially very soon. One of the esports games League of Legends attained about 43 million viewers in the year 2016, and it has only been growing ever since. The developers of the game Riot Games are now taking a step further and coming up with first-person shooter game Valorant soon. Judging from the quality they usually produce, we can expect it to do wonders as well.
Many gaming enthusiasts not only participate in the events but also Livestream their gaming experience for the fans to watch and learn. Youtube is one of the most common platforms used for this purpose, and you can find tons of such videos there. If that doesn’t quench your interest, you can head to Twitch, a dedicated esports live streaming platform on the web. Dota, Leagues of Legends and Counter-Strike are some of the most-watched online games.
According to a 2019 report, the esports industry generates an annual viewership of 453.8 million, and the revenue generated will reach over 1.1 billion dollars. That is a 26.7% increase in the previous year, so you can imagine what will be the esports scene in the coming years if it keeps growing. With this projection, by the year 2023, at least 15.5% of the total internet users will be watching esports once a month.
Is it really sport?
People who do not understand the gaming world might ask this question, but gaming is a serious attraction. Much like any other sports, esports has professionals, participants, and commentators well-known in the community.
Esports also has comparable prize money to many other sports competitions, which is the case with its online viewership. The FIFA football game is so famous that the football agency even organizes its eWorld Cup inviting top players from around the world to participate. Now, the Olympics association is considering including a whole event dedicated to esports in the next Olympic games. The US government, too, recognizes the full-time players of some games as “professional athletes.”
The famous sports media group ESPN is now launching a new esports vertical named “OverWatch.” Most of the players advise that you need hours of practice to be competitive in esports, much like any other sports. So, yeah, we can safely say that esports is an actual sport, though naysayers will still not acknowledge it, but who cares about them?
Invest in esports?
Many investors are thinking about investing in the platform with such a growing audience and interest of the advertisers. Now is the best time to invest before the industry mushrooms to something untouchable, though investors sometimes find it hard to understand its complexity. The best way to understand it is by gaining exposure to public markets. Many public companies trade in esports, and considering investing there, might be a good idea.
The online world’s gaming scene is reaching unprecedented levels as we see bigger participation from the people as well as the organizers. With a blooming audience, the esports tournaments are becoming equivalent to other forms of sports more prevalent among the people. It also requires a great deal of patience and practice to master the skills, and only a few people around the world manage to do so. With more interest from all quarters, we can only expect e-gaming to become more competitive with time.
Interesting related article: “Why invest in esports?“