Should Traditional Sports Betting Fans Get into eSports?

Posted by Eric Williams on March 8, 2016 in

If you’re an ‘old-school’ traditional sports betting aficionado you may or may not know what eSports are and whether or not the new-age betting venture is for you or not.

Well, thanks to this informative analysis on what eSports are and whether it’s for you or not, you’re going to have another potential route to making bankroll-boosting wagers, even if it does take you some time to learn the ropes of eSports betting.

With that said, let’s get started by defining just what eSports is.

eSports  (also known as electronic sports, eSports, e-sports, competitive videogaming, professional videogaming, or pro-gaming) is basically professional competitive videogaming, though there are some major differences between eSports and “normal” sports betting.

Today, there are numerous eSports gaming leagues like industry leaders, Major League Gaming, European Gaming League and Apex and the number continues to grow.

According to SuperData Research, there are over 134 million eSports viewers worldwide as of May 2015. The market in Europe is worth an estimated $72 million, while North America checks in at $143 million and Asia, by far, the largest at $374 million.

Not only that, but the growth of eSports gaming is suddenly bringing in a ton of sponsors and their money to the new venture.

Okay, now let’s get on to the difference between traditional sports betting and eSports betting.

Should Traditional Sports Betting Fans Get into eSports?

One of the biggest differences between a pro sports league like the NFL and an eSports gaming league is that eSports offers bettors multiple platforms to wager on. There are often upwards of five games being played at the same time at any eSports gaming tournament.

Wildly popular games like Activision’s shooter Call of Duty: Ghosts; on the second- largest, Blizzard’s strategy game Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm, fighting games like Nintendo’s Super Smash Bros. Melee, Warner Bros.’ Injustice: Gods Among Us, and Microsoft’s Killer Instinct have taken the eSports gaming world by storm.

In eSports however, the games can be extremely fast and difficult to follow, particularly for those that aren’t video gamers themselves.

“I think one of the issues is, eSports is just insanely fast compared to other sports, so keeping up with what’s going on is difficult,” Major League Gaming co-founder Mike Sepso said in one interview. “That challenge of, how do you get more people interested in understanding what’s going on on the screen, it’s not something unique to eSports. All sports have the same challenge.”

The main obstacle to becoming a successful eSports betting enthusiast is getting to know the pros playing the games and which ones are more successful than others, though eSports gaming leagues are now providing all kinds of statistical data similar to professional sports leagues.

In today’s eSports gaming industry there are numerous ‘teams’ that travel the world and compete in the biggest and best eSports tournaments around.

Teams like Optic Gaming and Evil Geniuses, just to name two, feature elite video gamers that specialize in certain games like Call of Duty, while other teams like Cloud9 and Team Curse compete in multiple games.

Getting to know the games and its players is paramount to your eSports betting success.

Just like today’s free agent-drive times in professional sports, eSports players often change teams, s staying abreast of who’s competing on which team is crucial.

There are also dangerous ‘free agent’ players that don’t belong to any particular team but are allowed to compete in ‘open brackets’.

Now, with several major sportsbooks offering bettors the chance to bet on eSports events, you have another route to making potentially winning wagers.

Global leading sports management agency WME | IMG is now representing numerous professional eSports players and teams while global marketing agency GMR has launched its own eSports consulting practice.

Major consumer brands are also helping the eSports industry explode exponentially and have already become a part of the eSports revolution.  Such brands include Coca-Cola, Red Bull and Monster, just to name three, have poured money into many of the most recent eSports events while a multitude of consulting firms are now interested in getting their foot in the door in the quickly growing eSports industry.

If you’re new to the world of eSports, my suggestion is that you take your time getting to know the ins and outs of the business while gathering as much advice as possible, particularly if you’re not a video gamer yourself.

However, make no mistake about it sports betting buffs, eSports is here to stay!