Esports is simply another name for competitive video gaming. Unlike the kind of
console and PC gaming that takes place at home, esports sees two or more or
players pitted against each other in established tournaments. This can involve
individual players or teams taking on competitors in co-operative games or
individuals playing the same title, with the highest scorer being crowned the
victor. Another key element of esports is that it is a spectator event. Before
high-speed broadband was readily available to the masses, esports events were
limited to live tournaments and fixtures. Although these are still popular, with
live tournaments attracting tens of thousands of attendees, online live streaming
has led to an esports boom.
As of 2021, the estimated worldwide audience for esports stands at more than
470 million. In the US alone, more than 90 million people are occasional or
regular viewers of esports. This viewership is significantly higher than the kind of
audiences that established sporting leagues like Major League Baseball and the
NBA bring in.
Why Do So Many People Watch Esports?
There are many reasons for the increasing popularity of esports. One of the key
reasons why so many people engage with esports as spectators is that there is a
significant market for video games across the globe. It is estimated that there
were more than 2.6 billion gamers worldwide by the end of 2020, with this
number likely to increase by more than five percent by the end of 2021. Many of
these players are passionate about their console or hardware of choice, while the
biggest video game titles have fan bases in the tens of millions. Those already
heavily invested in a specific title or genre are likely to engage with live
streaming of their favorite titles for entertainment. However, watching esports
also gives the more committed player the chance to learn new techniques to
improve their own gaming abilities. In fact, some surveys indicate that as many
as 89% of regular esports viewers are watching streams and events for
As a Spectator Sport
Although an interest in video games usually goes hand in hand with esports
viewership, the celebrity culture that surrounds the industry and its players is
also attracting attention. Many of the biggest esports players in the business
have their own streaming portals and YouTube channels and have built up
considerable followings before engaging with tournament competition. Fans are
likely to follow their favorite gamers as they progress from these channels and
move into live tournaments or competitive live streams.
Esports may not carry the same physical risk as traditional sports, but that isn’t
to say it isn’t a high-stakes venture. The biggest esports tournaments often
carry prize funds totalling millions of dollars, so qualifying rounds and final event
fixtures can provide edge-of-your-seat viewing. As esports becomes more
readily accepted as a competitive sport, things like sports betting options are
also becoming more commonplace. However, those looking to successfully bet
on the outcome of an esports fixture needs to do their homework beforehand.
Esports platforms like 1337PRO are always worth investigating prior to parting
with any hard-earned cash. It is essential that you follow the previous
tournament activity and playing performance of teams and individuals before
betting on an outcome.
Gaming Community & Culture
Esports also helps foster an already active gaming community. Although live
events can allow video gaming enthusiasts to meet in person, live streaming
platforms can still encourage thriving communities. The best esports streaming
platforms not only allow viewers to follow the action onscreen, they will also
allow audiences to communicate with each other. This usually takes the form of
text-based chat, so not to distract from what’s happening on the screen or any
live commentary that may be running alongside the broadcast itself.
Other Reasons for Watching Esports
Video game enthusiasts may also look to esports as a realistic career prospect.
Although becoming a top-tier esports professional takes considerable skill and
extensive training, it is largely more accessible than standard sports. Unlike
conventional sports, those with disabilities or physical limitations can still fully
engage in competition. Esports is also accessible to all ages, meaning much
younger players and those who have arrived to the video game later in life can
still achieve to join in the action. Regardless of the reason for watching esports,
the fact is that esports is now more accessible than ever before.