Esports is a field of betting that has been on the rise and steadily growing. All the kids that have ever played video games are rejoicing now that they know money can be made from one of their hobbies.
Later on, I will be discussing the ins and outs of betting in this arena. The best of the best in terms of websites to visit as well as who the most well-known bookmakers are and where you can find them will be talked about. Last but not least and most important: how to bet.
Before we begin we can discuss exactly what esports mean.
What Are They?
Esports are what as known as “electronic sports”. All the popular games like Call of Duty, Fortnite, and League of Legends would be classified as electronic sports. They involve either a solo player or team trying to complete an objective against or faster than their opposition. This normally takes place over an Internet-based connection.
Now not just any game is classified as an E-sport. The difference between the games I just mentioned and say Assassins Creed is that games like Fortnite attract a lot of attention. Companies seek out players and teams to sponsor and these games have huge tournaments that have thousands of people watching and screaming just like regular sports.
With this in mind, these tournaments bring in the top players in different games because of the rewards like sponsorships and 7 figure prize money for winning a tournament. A large breadth of these players come from Eastern Asia where professional gaming is much more prevalent and is clearly visible in the skill gap between teams from other continents.
As of now, League of Legends and a few other games run the entirety of the market since it is still very young, but it isn’t impossible to find betting in other places. On top of a huge incentive for players to join, viewership for esports has skyrocketed as well. A lot of kids used to watch their favorite gamers on Youtube; now with the advent of other streaming services like Twitch and Mixer which is exclusive to Xbox, big corporations saw the opportunity to cash in on this phenomenon.
The Popularity of Betting on Esports
Initially, the idea of betting on esports did not sound enticing, especially to the sports purists. Watching some nerdy kid play a game that they also used to play and make 6 figures from it sounded infuriating. But many people still watch and have been attracted to it despite previous sentiments.
Starting from 2016, esports has grown considerably and now more companies are offering it alongside their traditional sports bets. Most major books like offer e-sports betting.
How Does It Work?
E-sports betting operates no differently than traditional betting systems. You pick your stake and bet just like you would for basketball or horse racing, it’s all very simple. Even what you win is paid out in the same manner, the methodology is no different.
Is There Any Difference?
The only difference between e-sports betting and traditional betting is what you’re betting on. In sports, it’s a competition of physical and mental prowess between two athletes or teams, whereas in e-sports it’s mostly a mental thing. Don’t count these players out, their reaction times and mental processing speeds are nothing to scoff at.
What’s the Deal?
Of course, I’m sure you’re very skeptical of the mechanics behind all of it. How can you be certain that nobody is working together or will rip you out of your money? To put it simply, there is a governing body for all of this just like any other betting arena.
It has been regulated with its own statutes and codes so everyone is on an even playing field. In theory, the players could collude against the house and we all know they wouldn’t like that, so they made sure that nobody could be screwed.
There isn’t really an incentive to throw a game because of possible striking it rich. Everyone involved has a reason to give maximum effort and come out as a champion whether you’re betting or playing on the big monitor on stage. Furthermore, it would be very easy to tell if a player was giving up. There are millions of people watching via live stream around the world and in the offices of the committees that run everything.
So it’s safe to say that your bet is as protected as any in e-sports and might even be safer than other types of events.
Betting on Your Phone
There aren’t any mobile apps that exist as of this writing that I am aware of but you can just go on a web browser and log on like you would on a computer. Refresh the page to stay updated on any active bets going and see where you stand. In the future, now that it has been legalized across the United States, many companies will be investing in easier to use platforms so that more people can join.
History and Future
E-sports tournaments have been around longer than betting itself. Starting around 2012 was the year that these large tournaments were televised on large services like Youtube and Twitch. The most recent League of Legends Tournament completely sold out Madison Square Garden in New York City and that was live viewing. The fanbase is there already it’s just a matter of finding people who also like to bet on their favorite games as well.
The issue lies in that a lot of the people watching are young kids who don’t have the money or interest to really bet on e-sports, they just want to watch or play. Once these people get a bit older, they either grow out of video games or still don’t have a habit of gambling so it’s a really tight niche market but there’s a lot of room for growth.
Like I mentioned before, the majority of viewers are younger kids and commercials will be playing for these betting sites most likely. It’s a possibility they will look into it since they are impressionable but at the same time, they probably have the most knowledge and will do fairly well.
Looking into the future it is hard to tell how the industry will advance. E-sports is already estimated at a hundred million plus dollar industry and a lot of the money that is thrown around is from players themselves wagering against one another.
If e-sports progresses like regular sports and there’s a bunch of different leagues with different skill levels of players etc then there will be a lot more room for people to bet. Players can get family and friends to potentially support them and smaller entities will probably join the ring in terms of sponsorships.
What the future holds is a mystery just like everything else but with the growth that both industries are experiencing, it is logical to project that many more people will get involved regardless of their experience in the arena.