Esports is an acronym for “electronic sports”, it includes all the digital platforms, PC, console and mobile games. As with a classic sport, either individual players or several teams compete against each other. A real hype has arisen around the virtual gaming industry since, in some cases, millions of fans watch live Esports events on PC and television. The rules of these games are determined by two parties, one of them is the respective game developer itself and the other one is the organizer of the competitions. The trend of Esports gained popularity in America and Europe only a few years ago, and the demand is constantly increasing. Since nowadays there are multiple multi-million dollar tournaments each year and millions bet on the games played in these competitions.
In theory, you can put all computer games in the “Esports” category, but corresponding eSport bets are only possible in a narrowly limited games portfolio. Over the years, the titles Dota 2, League of Legends (LoL), Counter-Strike (CS: GO), Hearthstone, PUBG, Fortnite and Starcraft 2 have established themselves as true beacons of Esports betting.
Different categories of Esports bets
The categories/types of bets you can place when it comes to Esports betting include:
- Money Line – It is amongst the most basic betting type, where gamblers predict which team will win.
- Handicap – This is very similar to general sports betting, where teams are either given a negative handicap (the higher-ranked side) and a positive handicap (given to the lower-ranked side). If the bettor wants to win the positive handicap, then that team/player must win the match, draw or lose by less than the handicap figure. A bet placed on a team with a negative handicap can only be won if that team wins by more than the handicap figure.
- Totals – This bet is placed on some limited events that take place during a particular game( e.g. the total number of kills in a CS: GO game, or total goals scored in a FIFA match)
- Specials – These bets have very high odds and include special events that can unfold in a game e.g. Player X will get 10 kills in a Dota 2 match.
- Outright – It is amongst the oldest betting types where a wager is placed on the overall winner of a tournament e.g. Team X will win the League of Legends world championship.
- Combo/Accumulator or Parlay bets – It is one of the riskiest bets, since it includes a group of several individual bets, if you should win, will allow the odds of all the bets to be multiplied together for a larger pay-out
- Live-Bets – in live or in-play bets, the bettors bet on the live events after the match has started e.g. the duration of an X Dota 2 game.
The History of Esports Betting
The history of Esports goes as far as the late 70s when two pioneers of gaming, Asteroids and Space Invaders were released. These titles marked the Arcade era of Esports. In those times the average time of the popularity of a game was between 4 to 6 months and since then the market got extremely competitive. As in the 1980s, game consoles and computers were more accessible to the public. LAN (local area network) parties became a popular trend amongst gaming enthusiasts. LAN events became increasingly popular in the 1990s with the release of Quake and Counter-Strike.
As internet services got cheaper, the popularity of online tournaments rose. Since players could globally connect to each other and team up to play as much as they want to. This led to the rise of modern-day gaming as professional teams came into existence. The viewership numbers rose due to online spectating services like Twitch and gambling platforms jumped in on the bandwagon. Since betting sites like pinnacle started hosting Esports bets in 2010. Earlier the betting markets were quite limited which included simple win/lose bets but as the popularity increased, more and more markets came into existence.
Esports Betting Today
Esports betting is extremely popular among the masses. Since high- profile betting providers are adding dedicated Esports betting sections. They are right in doing so, since it has been estimated that currently there are at least 350 million people across the globe who occasionally watch Esports and these figures are predicted to rise up to 550 million by 2021. Aside from the veteran Esports gambling platforms, there are new sites that are only dedicated to provide Esports services. Aside from offering bets on different gaming tournaments, these sites have an extensive variety of betting markets and also have Esports new sections to keep its members up to date with the latest trends. They offer services like chat and live streaming, casino services, and skin betting. There are some top-class online Esports casinos, where you can play games like Esports roulette, case opening, and Crash.
Future of Esports betting
Seeing the dynamic rise in the popularity of Esports, it is fair to say that the video game betting industry will flourish in the future. Since the tournament organizers and Esports league will continue to look for new methods to improve their services. These developments should have a positive influence on the gambling world.
More of everything
At the time of this writing, there are plenty of Esports games to bet on. It won’t be a shock to assume that the number of Esports titles will only rise in the future. More games will only boost the types of betting markets available to the public. We should also expect more betting options, at this time Esports betting can be done through real-life currency, Virtual skins, and cryptocurrency but in the future, we can expect more means of betting.
The majority of the world was unaware of Esports a decade ago. However, the activity has grown to the point where it’s now a popular trend that attracts millions of gaming followers. Professional gaming is yet to reach its optimal potential, Therefore, many changes are in store for Esports betting and gaming as a whole.
Nobody can make 100% accurate predictions about where video game gambling is headed, but one can make reasonable assumptions based on the industry’s current status.
There are some wonders in life, that can only make sense when seen. Rock Strider is one of those wonders. His fate was decided well before light graced his face. Amongst others, his hands can warp around any controller and his eyes adapt to flickering screens. His life as an OP gamer destined him to be a carry in all matches he entered. From FPS to Battle Royals, to some FIFA on the downlow – he’s conquered them all. Some say that he was drafted as a War Machine operator by the Russians – his reply, “There’s more money in Esports betting.”