Generating a whopping $493 million market revenue last year and US$325 million back in 2015, global eSports has paved its way to becoming a serious worldwide popular sport.
MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) games have offered the most popular and successful titles. Games such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, League of Legends and Dota 2 are a few of the games featured in professional tournaments. These competitions offer prize money to their competitors and provide live airings of the tournament.
It’s really thanks to the promotion of media platforms for online streaming that eSports tournaments have grown exponentially. Their growing accessibility online made more and more people aware of these kinds of games.
If you’re an amateur gamer who is aspiring to join the next international eSport tournament, you better make sure you have the right gear to maximize your gaming techniques. Investing in a good gaming mouse is just as important as investing in an anti-lag computer. But of course, you don’t want to spend your hard-earned money on the wrong products. One way is to read product reviews from sites like AuthorityAdviser before buying any gaming peripherals.
1970 – 1980
The first recorded eSports tournament was in the 1970s. To be exact, it was on October 19, 1972 when the earliest known eSport tournament took place. Held at the prestigious Stanford University, the game was called “Spacewar.” Bruce Baugmart won the melee tournament while Robert and Tovar E. Maas won the team game.
The prize was a 1-year subscription to Rolling Stone, an American magazine that centers around popular culture.
Video game tournaments and players gained more audience in the 1970s to 1980s as websites and magazines including Time and Life began featuring the sport. The most renowned player in history was Billy Mitchell who held the record for gaining the highest scores in 6 games. He was featured in the Guinness Book of World Records in the 1985 issue.
1990 – 1999
With internet connectivity increasing, many PC games were rising. In 1988 the third internet game called Netrek could accommodate sixteen players. It was the first of its kind to make use of metaservers to find servers that could source multiplayer games. In the year 1993, Netrek was dubbed “the 1st online sports game” by Wired Magazine.
Large-scale eSports competitions in the 1990s including the Nintendo World Championships in 1990. It toured all over the United States and conducted its championships in California at Universal Studios.
2000 – Present
It was really in the 2010s that eSports grew immensely. It gained a huge increase in prize money and viewership. Large tournaments were already held before the 21st century but it was in the 2010s that these eSports tournaments grew tremendously. To put things into perspective, in the year 2000 about 10 competitions were held. In comparison, 260 tournaments were held in 2010.
It was during the 21st century that the Major League Gaming, Intel Extreme Masters and World Cyber Games were founded. These are the most successful tournaments with the most prize money.
The 2010s were the years when televised eSports were at peak. A lot of different countries aired certain eSports competitions making more people aware of the popular but controversial sport.
It has been speculated that the coming 2018 Asian Games will include eSports as a medal event. The IOC or International Olympic Committee is also considering eSport to be included in their 2024 Summer Olympics mentioning the need to include these games to keep up with the younger generations.
Although there are a lot of controversial debates in classifying eSports as a “true sport” many believe that this should be recognized as a worldwide legitimate sport.
Video games are occasionally categorized as a mind sport but discussions are still taking place to where eSports really stand in sports.
In 2013, however, there was a Canadian named Danny Le who is a League of Legends player who was the first professional gamer to get a P-1a United States visa – a classification only designated for internationally recognized athletes.
It has also been said that in 2016, the French government is starting to work on regulating and recognizing eSports.
No matter where you look in today’s time, eSports is becoming more and more popular, whether people like it or not. While there is no clear and definitive line yet, but sometime in the future, eSports will definitely be regarded as a “true sport” at the rate it’s going.