The world of video games is bigger and more dynamic than ever. The entire global movie and music industry is not reaching total gaming revenues. Also, with the advent of mobile games, more and more people of various socioeconomic and demographic profiles are joining gaming – which we can already call a global phenomenon.
But how did this phenomenon come about and what are the reasons why competitive gaming is treated as a sport today? Here are some answers.
Gaming As A Sports Category
Most young people have experienced gaming at least for a moment. However, for some, the hobby has grown into a life vocation. Why is gaming such a phenomenon and how is it spreading so fast? What does the world gaming scene look like today and why are so many people into gaming?
In the last few decades, the flourishing in the information, communication, and business spheres of life – has enabled the development of new, unimaginable social subsystems and communities. One of the first communities was Spacewar and SpaceInvaders – which attracted more than 10,000 participants across the United States and then gained worldwide popularity. Of course, this is a community that has started doing so-called e-sports.
The Prosperity Of eSport
The real boom of sports began in the 1990s after the lifting of all restrictions on the use of the Internet for commercial purposes. That was the time of the development of the first organizations of professional sports e-tournaments in Starcraft, Quake, and Warcraft.
The new form of adventure and experience that gaming provides has united players, participants, and followers – leading to the development of the first serious prize pools. Somewhere around 2000, the prize pool for the CPL-organized tournament was worth $ 15,000.
Increase In Prize Funds
The exponential increase in prize funds that followed attracted more and more new players – enabling the competition of the best among the best players. On the other hand, game publishers were joined in the gaming eco-system by the first serious sponsors and advertisers.
Since then, the entire gaming industry has recorded an unimaginable upward trend and continuous growth. That is evidenced by the scope of the tournaments, which, ranging from ten tournaments in 2000, today reaches hundreds of tournaments a year.
Reasons For Competitive Gaming Became A Sport
1. Number Of Players And Prize Funds
The number of gamers in the world exceeds the dizzying figure of 2.7 billion, while the number of spectators who actively follow sports exceeds half a billion, and the prize funds of the most elite sports tournaments exceed $ 30 million, which is a growth of 200,000% within 20 years.
2. Formation Of New Leagues And Celebrities in Gaming
Today, international eSports tournaments are organized around the world. High school eSports leagues are becoming equal to other sports leagues and the best gamer students are awarded scholarships.
According to CNBC, Live-stream – eSports ratings exceed even the major sporting events like the American Superbowl. Even celebrities from various industries (music, sports, and film) are interested in personal investment in the development of eSports. Many celebrities including Drake, Steve Young, Michael Jordan, The Weeknd, and others – are very much into this industry.
3. Developing A Competitive Spirit
As in any other sport, eSport develops what we call a competitive spirit. Not only does this motivate us to practice more and put in the extraordinary effort – but it also teaches us some other virtues like fair play.
The development of these features is also characteristic of other sports – so it is not surprising that competitors in eSports spend hours practicing or taking tips and learning how to use upgraded features or boosters. You can see more about it on this website or specialized eSports and gaming platforms and channels. There, you can revive your competitive spirit, and learn from the best as well.
4. eSport Influences The Development Of Further Trends
eSport has gained popularity today. However, it has not yet reached the level of development everywhere as in the most developed countries – and the drivers of world gaming trends. The primary reasons for the underdevelopment of regional sports are the insufficient involvement of European key organizations for regional sports competitions, lack of human resources for the implementation of gaming projects such as national leagues – and most importantly, finance.
Yet such challenges are increasingly becoming a thing of the past. In Europe, the development of numerous gaming campuses and sports arenas has largely begun. We can see the success of this program in the presence of domestic and regional players in the world’s best sports teams. However, they are also ambassadors and promoters of the countries they come from.
5. Competitions Influence The Formation Of Gaming Communities
The most important drivers of eSport competing and tournaments seek to bring gamers, amateurs, or professionals to this new community. They have the aim of popularizing video games and developing a competitive spirit – while positioning themselves within the existing structure of the fast-growing gaming industry. The trend in the popularity of games regardless of the console or platform on which it is played is still relatively stable.
Therefore, most players, like the international eSports scene, are based on genres such as MOBA and FPS dominated by famous games such as League of Legends, DOTA2, CS: GO, Fortnite, and COD games.
Is eSport Truly A Sport?
The most common question that arises directly from the name eSport is this above. Gamers will say it’s a sport for so many reasons. The truth is, you have the equipment, you play, you collect the points – and you have to be trained to play on a professional level.
Therefore, eSport is in theory no different from, for example, darts. To be accepted as an official sport – we should go beyond the framework of a sport. However, we haven’t yet succeeded in that mission. As things stand today, there are shifts in the perception of sports – and maybe someday there will be an Olympics. But today, eSports is, at least officially, a form of competition, not a full-fledged sport.