The year 2020 has been a significant time for the esports segment. There was a period last year when professional sports events like the NBA, the EPL, and the NHL were canceled or postponed because of the pandemic. With that, only a few pro sports events were available to follow and people had to find other exciting live events to tune in to. Many have turned to esports tournaments for this.
Esports is defined as a sports competition through playing video games. There are many popular esports events today including Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Call of Duty League Championship, Overwatch World Cup, League of Legends Invitational, and many more.
The Result of Esports Popularity
The existence of such tournaments also gave birth to esports betting. With this, gamers and fans can place their bets on different bookies including some of the NBA, EPL, or IPL betting sites that punters frequent to place their pro sports wagers.
As these tournaments get bigger and gain more followers, the competitions become tighter and more serious. Professional esports athletes can now earn millions of dollars if-then win certain tournaments. Last year, the biggest prize pool for such events was from DOTA 2 tournament with a prize pool of over 35,000,000 US dollars.
Counter-Strike: GO’s prize pool also reached 20,000,000 US dollars. For League of Legends, it was for 9,000,000 USD, and for the popular battle royal game Fortnite, the prize pool hit 7,000,000 USD. These numbers show how serious and big esports tournaments have become.
Newzoo has reported that in 2020, the global esports market size was able to reach 1.1 billion US dollars. The report noted a growth of 15.7 percent compared to how the market did in 2019. They are now projecting that by 2023, the market will be worth 1.6 billion US dollars.
Esports Over the Years and Amidst the Pandemic
Esports has been around for a while now. Its origins can be traced back to 1972 when a Space Invaders Championship was held with 10,000 participants. Since then, other well-known games like Starcraft 2 tournament became popular. And today, hundreds of game tournaments for users that use devices like gaming consoles, PC, and even mobile are getting more popular around the globe.
What seems to dominate the esports segment right now is still PC users. However, mobile gaming is quickly getting bigger. This is mainly because there are more mobile users than PC and gaming consoles worldwide. It is estimated that there are now over 4 billion smartphone users worldwide.
While 2020 has been tough for other industries, it was when the gaming sector, including the esports segment, experienced significant growth. With the absence of professional sports events, many people turned to game and esports betting. With this, gambling companies have also started to give gaming tournaments more attention.
Now, even if professional sports events are already back, it’s still not doomsday for esports companies. Well, even before the pandemic, this gaming sector has already been growing. It’s just that the pandemic boosted its growth last year. And so, 2021 promises to be a better year for this industry.
What to Expect This Year
Many gaming companies have already announced the esports events that they will have this year. Some of the tournaments to look forward to are the ESL Pro Tour 2021/21 StarCraft II, League of Legends World Championship 2021, FIFA World Cup 2021, and The International (DOTA 2) 2021.
There are only a few countries where the market is big for gaming tournaments including China, the United States, South Korea, and India. When it comes to the similarities or the common denominator of the esports market in these countries, it appears that the mobile sector is quickly stepping up.
Many predict that mobile is the future of gaming, in general, and if this is the case, it simply means that we will be seeing more mobile game tournaments in the coming years. Mobile gaming is becoming more popular than ever because people nowadays heavily rely on their mobile devices.
Mobile technology also continues to get better. Smartphones are becoming cheaper yet powerful. Who would have thought that battle royal games like PUBG and Call of Duty Mobile can be played on small devices when console gaming started? The availability of the 5G connection is also expected to have a positive impact on the gaming sector. Players can expect that mobile games will be more than they are today.