|eSports is the term
that describes organised multi-player video game competitions, particularly now
meaning competitions between professional players and teams. If you are new to
this idea then you may well be surprised to know players battle it out for cash
prizes and prestige, sometimes watched by millions of fans.
might be new to you the industry has been around since the late twentieth
century. However new technology, high transmission speeds and innovative
services such as Twitch, which allows eSports addicts to stream video of live
matches, is propelling the progaming world into the big time. Amazon think it
has a big future as not long ago they purchased Twitch for $1billion, about
£650. Sound investment maybe considering the sports rapid expansion which
can only be bolstered by Universal Pictures upcoming 2016 release of Warcraft,
a film totally based on World of Warcraft.
If a sport becomes popular
then someone will think they can create a book for it, and this is no
different. Well established online bookmakers are taking bets on a number of
eSport competitions, including three major European bookmakers. There are four
major eSports where markets are currently being made, DoTA 2, Counter-Strike,
Starcraft 2 and the most popular at this time, League Of Legends, commonly
known as LoL.
League Of Legends
LoL is a multiplayer online
battle arena video game developed and published by Riot Games. Riot Games
organises The Championship Series which consists of 10 professional teams on
each continent battling to stay in the league, the top three on each continent
progressing at the end to the World Championships with a first prize of $1
The most popular type of gameplay, also used in the
championship, is team versus team. Here the team start with a central building,
called a Nexus, protected by defensive structures and each player controls a
character, called a Champion. Players begin with little gold and health but
gain these through various actions in the game such as killing other champions,
destroying defensive turrets and dealing the final blow to the enemy.
Gold can be used to purchase items, which will provide beneficial
effects for a champion, such as being able to deal or absorb more damage and
thus be more likely to kill their opponents in combat. A champion will respawn
at their base not long after their death, with the delay increasing as the game
Follows of LoL can watch Championship matches through live
streaming and we recommend using an eSport betting site guide if you want to
bet on league of legends.
League of Legends has a large, active
competitive scene. In North America and Europe, Riot Games organizes the League
of Legends Championship Series. Similar regional competitions exist in China,
South Korea, Taiwan, and South-East Asia. These regional competitions culminate
with the annual League of Legends World Championship, which in 2013 had a grand
prize of $1 million and attracted 32 million viewers online.
This game is a military science fiction real-time
strategy video game developed and released by Blizzard Entertainment. At the
time of its release Starcraft 2 became the fastest selling real-time strategy
game of all time, selling over three million copies in the first
The game revolves around three species: the Terrans, human exiles
from Earth; the Zerg, a super-species of assimilated life forms; and the
Protoss, a technologically advanced species with vast mental powers. The base
version of Starcraft 2 is known as Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty, which
focuses on the Terrans, the first expansion, Heart of the Swarm, focuses on the
Zerg race and the forthcoming expansion, Legacy of the Void will focus on the
There are many professional competitions and leagues for
Starcraft 2, especially in South Korea where it is almost a national pastime.
They even have two television channels dedicated to broadcasting professional
Counter-Strike is a first
person shooter video game developed by the Valve Corporation. Set in various
locations around the globe, players assume the roles of members of combating
teams of the governmental counter-terrorist forces and various terrorist
militants opposing them. During each round of gameplay, the two teams are
tasked with defeating the other by the means of either achieving the map's
objectives, or else eliminating all of the enemy combatants. Each player may
customize their arsenal of weapons and accessories at the beginning of every
match, with currency being earned after the end of each round.
fourth game in the main Counter-Strike franchise is Counter-Strike: Global
Offensive, often abbreviated to CS:GO and this is the current format used in
the tournaments that betting takes place on.
Like the previous games in
the series, Global Offensive is an objective-based multiplayer first-person
shooter. Each player joins either the Terrorist or Counter-Terrorist team and
attempts to complete objectives or eliminate the enemy team. The game operates
in short rounds that end when all players on one side are dead or a team's
objective is completed. For most game modes, once a player dies, they must wait
until the round ends to respawn.
In CS:GO, in addition to normal
tournament circuits hosted by third-party organisations, Valve organizes or
co-sponsors a series of events itself, referred to as 'majors'. These events
are special in that they have large prize pools, which are crowdfunded by the
CS:GO community via in-game keys bought to open in-game cases, and special
in-game cosmetics - usually in the form of stickers that can applied to guns
with the qualified teams logo, or used to predict the results of the tournament
- are introduced into the game, and are purchasable from Valve during the
duration of the tournament.
As of March 18, 2015, Counter-Strike:
Global Offensive tournaments have awarded over $3.8 million in prize money,
with over $1.3 million won by Swedish players.
is a multiplayer online battle arena video game developed by the Valve
Corporation. It is the stand-alone sequel to Defense of the Ancients (DotA).
The game is available exclusively through Valve's content-delivery platform,
Steam. Steam provides the user with installation and automatic updating of
games on multiple computers, and community features such as friends lists and
groups, cloud saving, and in-game voice and chat functionality.
is played in matches involving two teams of five players, each of which
occupies a stronghold at a corner of the map. Each stronghold contains a
building called the "Ancient", which the opposite team must destroy to win the
match. Each player controls a "Hero" character and focuses on levelling up,
collecting gold, acquiring items and fighting against the other team to achieve
To ensure that enough DotA players would take up Dota 2 and
showcase the game's capabilities, Valve sponsored sixteen accomplished DotA
teams to compete at The International for a one million dollar prize in
In 2015, the Dota 2 Asian Championships were held in China with a
final prize pool of over US$3 million being raised through compendium sales.
The American Dota 2 squad Evil Geniuses emerged winners. As of July 2015, over
US$49 million in prize money has been awarded through Dota 2 tournaments, with
29 Dota 2 players winning the most money across all competitive video games and
57 of the top 100 eSports players by earnings having played Dota 2
To date (Jan 2017) the major Dota 2 tournaments have
scored the largest prize funds, the 2015 International having $18m and the 2016
International seeing $20.8m, currenty the record.
is no stopping the rise of eSports progamers and other titles will be joining
2013 saw the US Government issue the
first P-1 visas to League of Legend players making them officially players in a
professional sport. The visa finally stops the inevitable battle to gain entry
into the US and gives the holder the right to stay up 5 years and a whole team
for a period of 6 months.
The official League of Legends eSports
tournament League Championship Series was the first to be recognized as a fully
professional eSport by the U.S. State Department. Danny "Shiphtur" Le was the
first progamer to receive a visa acknowledging him as an "internationally
recognized" athlete. For Le, a native of Canada, the visa allows him to go to
the United States for training ahead of October's world championships.
Other eSports players have been granted visas previously, mostly for
one-off events, but Le was the first who was able to make a salary during his
stay. Convincing the visa bureau of gaming's legitimacy as a pro sport wasn't
easy. "We had to get endorsements from participants and prove that this is a
consistent, viable career path and people can make a living playing games,"
Riot Games VP Dustin Beck said.
The P-1 visa is applicable to aliens
entering the US to perform in a specific athletic competition as an athlete,
individually or as part of a team, at an internationally recognised level of