As estimated by the most recent studies, the global eSports industry is expected to reach $1,5 billion in accumulated revenues by 2023 and this is quite spectacular considering this is one of the youngest iGaming industries. In recent years, iGaming including online casino gaming, online sports betting, and eSports have been the fastest-growing industries.
When it comes to eSports, it has transformed from a small niche to one of the most enjoyed entertainment forms with millions of loyal fans all over the globe. Before bursting into one of the most profitable industries globally, eSports was a small sports culture subset. Thanks to the amazing technological advancements, the eSports industry is fueled by the increasing usage of portable devices. In other words, with smartphones and tablets, there are no barriers for eSports fans to enjoy what the industry offers and it truly offers great opportunities.
From a small vibrant niche to one of the central entertainment forms on the internet, the industry of eSports has been and will continue to grow in the years to come. For the best eSports betting tips and advice, make sure you check out BettingBilly to increase your winning odds and have some fun as you do so. Further, we discuss the rise of eSports betting, the history of the eSports industry, and several key factors that fuel the growth of eSports in general.
The History of eSports
Before eSports was a thing, the very first video gaming competitions on the Spacewar game took place in 1972 at Leland Stanford Junior University. At the time, Stanford students were invited to take part in the university’s Spacewar competition and the main prize for a Rolling Stone subscription. Several years later in 1978, Space Invaders created by Tomohiro Nishikado has paved the way for many other exciting video games that were released in the following years.
One of these games was Asteroids released in 1979 which just like Space Invaders popularized the concept of high-score chasing. One year later after the Asteroids game was released, Atari held the Space Invaders Championship which attracted thousands of participants from all over the United States. The very first online video game that popularized two-player competitions was the Street Fighter II game released in 1991.
Before the Street Fighter II by Capcom was released, video games such as those previously mentioned determined the winning play based on the highest score. However, with iconic Street Fighter II, players challenged each other in a face-to-face competition. The amazing popularity of Street Fighter II fueled the launch of EVO or Evolution Championship Series back in 1996. Some of the biggest eSports tournaments from the 90s include the Nintendo PowerFest held in 1994 and Nintendo World Championships held in 1990.
- Launch of the Street Fighter II game in 1991
- The Evolution Championship Series in 1996
- StarCraft craze in 1997
- Evolution Championship Series in 2004
- Formation of the G7 Federation in 2007
- Championship Gaming Series in 2008
- League of Legends and Dota 2
- Launch of Twitch in 2011
eSports Since the 2000s
In the late 90s, the Professional Gamers League alongside several tournaments were established including the CPL or Cyberathlete Professional League and QuakeCon. The Cyberathlete Professional League gathered fans of StarCraft, Warcraft, and Counter Strike. One of the biggest factors fueling the growth of the eSports industry was the launch of broadband online networks. Several years later in 2006, the G7 Federation was formed by major Counter Strike teams.
The main goal of the G7 Federation was to boost the growth of the eSports industry by working with different eSports organizations and leagues. The G7 Federation was founded by Team 3D, SK-Gaming, NiP, Mousesports, Made in Brazil, Fnatic, and 4Kings. While it had a great start, the G7 Federation dissolved in 2009.
Television eSports was quite popular back in the 2000s especially in South Korea where regular Warcraft III and StarCraft competitions were held and broadcasted in real-time by MBCGame and Ongamenet. In the other parts of the world, televised eSports was not as popular as in South Korea but there were several eSports-dedicated channels in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and the United States.
In the United States, the Madden NFL competition was hosted on ESPN for three years from 2005 to 2008. The Game One channel from France, hosted Arena Online eSports matches while the GIGA Television from Germany covered several major eSports competitions until 2009 when it was shutdown. In 2007, the World Series of Video Games competition held in Kentucky was aired on CBS.
The Rise of eSports Betting
In recent years since the 2010s, the eSports industry has grown massively with more and more eSports tournaments taking place, more rewarding prize pools, and with more competing teams. Many very successful eSports tournaments were held in the last ten years including the Intel Extreme Masters, the World Cyber Games, and the Major League Gaming.
Thanks to advanced real-time streaming technologies, the growth of the eEsports industry and the rise of eSports betting have been tremendous. With the rise of the eSports industry, many renowned online sports betting sites decided to profit from the industry’s growth by offering their punters great eSports betting opportunities. All of the regulated, licensed sportsbooks allow their punters to place real-money wagers on the DreamHack Masters competition, Overwatch League, League of Legends European Championship, FIFA League, ESL One: Dota 2, and much more. What’s even more, players are getting involved with item and skin trading in various games, making a side income from this as well.
While several years back, traditional online sports betting sites did not associate in any way with the eSports industry, today the situation very much different. Online sports betting and eSports share a very interesting bond especially as almost all renowned, reputable online sportsbooks offer great eSports betting opportunities. Some bookies focus solely on eSports betting while others cover all sorts of sports markets including eSports.
The bottom line, the future of online sports betting in its relation with the eSports industry looks brighter than ever considering the eSports competitions being launched, new promising teams being formed, and more and more big companies deciding to sponsor the eSports industry and to fuel the growth of the eSports betting market. When examining the interesting intersection of eSports and online sports betting, it is not surprising to see the two perfectly complement each other today.