eSports has taken the world by storm in recent years where millions of fans tune in to witness their favourite teams battle it out online while playing their favourite games. The gaming events for eSports are increasing in popularity, with thousands of spectators from across the globe making their way to several events to witness the fierce competition. With so many fans flooding to these spectacular tournaments, game events have recently been hosted in popular football stadiums, while millions of fans also tune in online.
What Exactly Is eSports?
eSports is essentially a broad term that describes organised, competitive online computer gaming. It’s often played by professionals or world-class teams with a decent fan following. eSports has existed as early as 1970 where a group of young individuals sat around an Atari console. It managed to explode in popularity since then with larger events taking place every year as the crowds just keep in growing. The eSports phenomenon now caters to 40,000 fans within a football stadium along with millions more that stream it online. The most popular games include Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, League of Legends, Counter Strike: Global Offensive, Dota 2, and Half-Life 3.
How Big Is eSports?
The eSports events scale can easily be matched with traditional sports like basketball, cricket, and football. Each eSport event is sold out in a matter of days or hours and those that are unable to make it to the event simply stream it online. Its estimated that by 2020 there will be over 70 million people watching the eSports final.
It should come as no surprise that these massive eSports events bring in quite a few sponsorships too. Coke Zero started a partnership with Riot Games in 2014 with their Challenger series. The Challenger series is basically designed for amateurs to try and get a spot in the professional league. Nissan has partnered up with League of Legends, Red Bull has joined forces with Dota 2, and there are many other sports betting companies that are joining the honeypot when it comes to eSports
What About Money?
The winners of these competitions don’t just walk away with a shiny metal cup or an esteemed title. They also manage to rake in enormous paychecks as each event will feature a large prize pool that is up for grabs for the best gamers in the world. During The International Dota event of 2015, the Evil Geniuses managed to walk away with a staggering $6.6 million in prize money. Syed Sumail Hassan, a 16-year-old team member of the Evil Geniuses, managed to make himself #1.33 million richer from one single event.
The tournament based out of Seattle was initially launched as early as 2011 and is considered a major worldwide event for Dota fans across the globe. The Dota tournament provides a total prize pool of more than $18 million for the winners. That’s mightily impressive for playing video games.