It is 2019, and if you’ve not heard about eSport then it is either you are not a vast internet user or your interest is not in any way in line with sports, entertainment and to be specific, video games. Sincerely, I don’t think that is possible. 2018 was the biggest year in eSport history yet and I can assure you it is going to a bigger level this year. Taking the viewership of the eSport events as a case study, sine 2016 the audience annual eSport events have attracted has been on the up, a survey recorded that the League of Legends (LoL) World Championship gained 14.7M concurrent viewers as a peak during the final matches. It had a total of 43M total viewers over the 30-day event, this was back in 2016. These results were interpreted to be an up in 5% year-over-year and 19% year-over-year respectively.
In terms of revenue generation, eSport grows year by year, and comparing the rate of the growth of eSport with traditional sport in the US in terms of revenue generation, we can say eSport is in good company. ESPN started covering eSport some 7 years ago while the most popular traditional sport leagues in America are at least 100 years old and despite the very young age of eSport, it is tipped to reach $1.5B in total global revenue by 2020 while the NFL as a case study is about $13B in revenue which to put in mind was founded in 1920, 99 years ago. This is enough prove that the eSport industry is fast growing.
This write up will be incomplete without making a mention of the big games ruling in the eSport industry and how much pricing they offer their contestants. In 2018, the year’s top 10 games awarded more than $130M in pricing, and that was just the top 10. The pricing awarded by the top 3 of 10 alone was more than the total pricing in 2017. Altogether, this shows how drastic the growth of eSport is in terms of pricing awarded.
‘The games’, of course the biggest earners or rather givers of the all is Dota 2, they have owned the top spot in terms of the amount they generate, with an increase every year and an high of $41.26M in total pricing in 2018, even Dota 2 is not convinced of staying atop of the list in 2019. If all things go well for Fortnite in their evaluation for the next year, they could be seeing a huge payout in 2019. Other games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, League of Legends, PUBG, and Overwatch are big spenders too especially in their annual World Championships. Blizzard Entertainment have a lot of games in the eSport business with tournaments that pay a lot in prize pool to its contestants, they can be said to be very big pushers of the eSport legacy. ESport is evolving and it is evolving very fast, soon the whole world will start tuning in to eSport matches like they tune to Oscars, NFL, NBA finals, Grammy’s award, FIFA World Cup Final, UEFA Champions League Final, WWE WrestleMania to mention a few of the world’s biggest and finest sport and entertainment episodes. The kind of funds and technology being generated into eSport are world class, they use technological devices as lucrative as the world‘s leading invention is devices like the console, the PCs and so on. ESport is turning gaming to less of an hobby than a business and way of life, that’s the biggest step anything can make in evolving. People now play games to survive. It serves as a source of living for masses, both the players of it and the employees of the various companies that create these games.
Esport is less of sport and more of entertainment and that what life in this century is about.