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How Competitive eSports Changed the Outlook on the Gaming Industry

Just a few years ago, we couldn’t even project an eSports event with over 100 million online viewers and almost 200,000 live visitors. 

Nowadays, this is reality. During the 2017 IEM Katowice, the worldwide famous gaming event, we’ve seen around 173,000 live visitors and 46,000,000 online viewers. 

This is just one example, and the list of events alike is pretty long. League of Legends Worlds, CS:GO Majors, Dota 2 The International, you name it. 

Whether you like it or not, the gaming industry is bigger than ever before. Even professional gamers are now known as pro athletes, as their lifestyle is even more rigid compared to the traditional sports athletes’. And yes, when speaking about eSports, we often refer to regular sports as traditional sports. 

But what happened in the meantime, so that gaming evolved into a socially acceptable occupation, the opposite from what it used to represent a few years ago?

Let’s find out the answer. 

Even casual players can earn money or even make a career out of gaming

Gaming is now a multi-billion dollar industry. And as we say that you might associate the profit with companies making those games and making money from players around the globe.

Yet the truth lies somewhere else. Not only that the gaming companies are earning money from games, but even talented, funny, or unique individuals have the opportunity to earn a decent profit and even a career out of gaming.

Thanks to the video streaming platforms such as twitch.tv, anyone with a computer and a camera can produce gaming-related content and build a profitable brand out of it. Once you gain certain popularity, big companies will be giving sponsorships, job offers, and such. All you have to do is continue what you were doing until that moment. 

This was just one out of many examples where you don’t have to be a top-performing player or a software engineer, but still, be able to make a successful gaming career. 

Rules from traditional sports now also apply to eSports

In 2021, you can pick any segment from any sport of choice, and be assured that there is a parallel in eSports as well. 

Take professional competitions as an example. Just like there are leagues and divisions in football, so are in League of Legends. In the same way as Grand Slams are organized, there are CS:GO tournaments following almost identical formats. 

The trend even spreads towards sports betting. There are numerous online bookmakers associated solely with eSports. So, if you’re just a viewer and not a pro player, you’ll be able to wager real money on the winning of your favorite team.

CSGO Gambling

Counter-Strike went even one step forward by introducing betting with the in-game items known as skins. There are numerous sites for CS:GO skin betting making it possible for players to either trade or gamble with CSGO skin. And we’re not limited to third-party apps and services only. Some popular game titles introduced a dedicated betting market on their own, inside the game or inside the platform where the game is played. 

Pro eSports players are on a more rigid regime compared to professional football, basketball or tennis players

To stay at the top of the league in eSports, you need to grind hard. And by hard, we mean really hard.

Professional eSports players are known to have even 16 hours-long gaming sessions per day. Unlike traditional sports, there isn’t such a thing as physical tiredness and fatigue. Everything is inside your brain, and as long as your mind is sharp enough, you have to continue practicing. 

On the other hand, professional football players, for example, can’t have more than two training sessions a day. As these activities are physically consuming, the body needs some time to rest. In eSports, unfortunately for the players, this is not the case. 

Also, some of the greatest eSports organizations are having their training facilities where players are residing, sleeping, and more or less spending each spare minute practicing. 

Conclusion

These were just a few examples that demonstrate how the gaming industry has changed, mainly in the last decade. Together with the development of technology, we’ve witnessed how a procrastinating activity evolves into a career, hobby, or social gathering – but only behind the screen.

Nowadays, if you’re a passionate gamer it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re a nerd. Just the opposite. You might be the cool guy from the block that is popular on the internet due to the in-game achievements. 

All this happened primarily thanks to the popularization of gaming as competitive sports. Thus we’re having enormously large online and offline events, world championships, and so on. 

Professional gaming athletes are the new MVPs. Thanks to their worldwide popularity, parents might accept that it’s okay for a child to play computer games a bit more over the “recommended” one hour per day. 

In the end, this is just another way how careers or at least hobbies are made, now, in the 21st century. 

And if you still can’t accept that, you’re probably a bit too old. 

Photo by Axville on Unsplash

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