Tech mistake |The world of video games has fast become the most lucrative community in the entertainment industry. With reports claiming that the video game industry is now worth more than film and music worlds put together, the dream of making money from playing video games has suddenly found itself as a very serious possible career option for gamers around the world.
None so is this more the case than in the Esports community, which has already managed to defy projections and creep past the $1 billion mark heading into 2021.
But what are Esports?
Put simply, Esports is the industry term for playing video games competitively. It encompasses everything from high profile sponsorships and industry partnerships, huge tournaments and events loaded with prize pools worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, to the professional players who make money from playing video games with the highest skill ceilings.
To help you better understand this whole new behemoth in the gaming world, here’s the full lowdown on the 5 biggest Esports in the world.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
The biggest first person shooter in the Esports community, Valve Corporation’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive was released in 2012 as the fourth major instalment in the company’s series. The game places much more emphasis on communication and precision, rather than the all out rampaging action present in fellow FPS franchises such as Call of Duty.
Featuring one of the most stacked competitive calendars in the Esports world, it is perhaps the most accessible title for newcomers to the scene, regularly topping the charts on online streaming platforms such as Twitch and giving gamers the ultimate blend of high adrenaline moments of action, and intense moments of deep strategy.
League of Legends
The world’s biggest massive multiplayer online battle arena, League of Legends is rightfully placed alongside the biggest and most influential titles ever made. Developed by Riot Games and released back in 2011, the game is all about strategy and planning with two teams of five fighting for control across the instantly recognisable Summoner’s Rift map and trying to destroy eachother’s Nexus.
The game has routinely blurred the lines between huge entertainment spectacle and hyper-competitive video game competition through its annual Worlds event, perhaps the biggest Esport event in the world right now and always a popular tournament for League of Legends betting fans right around the world.
Developed and released by Valve Corporation in 2013 as a sequel to the 2002 classic (which was in turn just a modification added on to Blizzard’s Warcraft III: Frozen Throne), Defence of the Ancients 2 is perhaps the mainstream Esport title with the highest skill ceiling of all.
Locked in a fierce rivalry with Riot and League of Legends for the honour of calling themselves the best MOBA title of them all, Dota 2 has the higher skill ceiling of the two games and can actually brag about possessing the biggest Esports competition in terms of prize pools in history. The International is hosted every year, and four of the top five biggest prize purses in history belong to an edition of the event. The 2019 International still stands as the biggest prize purse ever recorded, with its prize purse stretching past the $35 million mark by the time the tournament finished.
Rocket League is a vehicular soccer game, with players taking control of their very own rocket-powered kart, and thus creating its very own sport to bring into the world of Esports.
The game features giant footballs and pitches with sloped walls and a domed roof, which means that mastering when to boost with your rocket launchers and launch into the air is a vital skill to learn, showcasing that this is much more than just a wacky version of soccer.
And working out the angles on your car, the speed needed to reach the ball and the specific points you need to be hitting at all need to be considered, adding in a skill ceiling needed for a competitive scene to begin to thrive.
Though it hasn’t quite been making the splash it might have been making back in 2015, Hearthstone is Blizzard Entertainment’s foray into the world of digital collectible card games. The game is centered around the World of Warcraft universe, featuring all the characters and lore of the game and working its way how each of the classes and cards play out.
The game is absolutely free to play (a complete staple in the world of Esports), and whilst the vibrant colour palette and easy to grasp format makes it an appealing game for mainstream gamers, there’s still a whole load of subtle nuances in the game’s strategy that pro players can exploit to help them get ahead of the curve of the meta.