Once upon a time, people used to get together in arcades to face off against each other, but they can now compete with friends and strangers on opposite sides of the world with just one click of a button. The gaming industry has always been gargantuan and much of its success is owed to its ability to evolve.
Over the last decade, the gaming industry has acquired a certain air of glitz and glamor as, outside of the AAA titles being promoted like Hollywood blockbusters, professional gamers now compete in huge online competitions. Drawing in millions of spectators, the burgeoning eSports industry is now worth around $3.5 billion. Let’s explore how it has become so popular in recent years and its overall impact on the gaming industry.
What has made eSports so popular?
Competitive gaming is hardly a new concept: let’s not forget the famous Street Fighter tournament in 1994, which proved to be extremely popular at the time and remains a fond nostalgic memory for many avid gamers in the modern era. Perhaps, with this in mind, the rise of eSports has been inevitable for a long time coming.
Developers are also starting to see eSports as a key element of their games. Some multiplayer modes in First Person Shooters are designed with these contests in mind. Examples of this can be seen in the Cod series, as well as other established franchises such as Halo.
Who doesn’t love playing and watching competitions?
Similar to eSports, audiences across the world have found themselves hooked by live poker tournaments. The drama and tension on display have meant fans watch some of these events in their millions. Highlights of one particular encounter from 2012 have been seen over seven million times.
This level of excitement is now being replicated online by gamers themselves. With an ever-increasing number of people playing casino games on their desktop and mobile devices, there are poker matches taking place all over the world at any given time. The games differ slightly depending on where you are in the world, but there are a number of ways you can prepare for such tournaments in order to improve your odds.
For example, if you were based in Canada and wanted to work on your table game practice, it would be beneficial to play online. If you wanted to find the best online casino in Canada, you could browse through the NetEnt directory, which helpfully filters their table and casino games based on different types of bonuses, whether they provide free spins or the nature of their reviews from other players. With an easily accessible and comprehensive system like this at your fingertips, it’s certainly worth looking around so that you can get value for your money and time. Some websites offer something like a traditional experience of poker, while others like to play variants or dabble with live poker rooms.
Major sports teams such as Barcelona now have an eSports team and see it as a key part of their business and marketing plan. TV broadcasters now feature some of the bigger tournaments and the graphics and analysis are similar to what you would see in televised sporting events. The dreams that many have of representing sports teams have become a bit more realistic. Who will be the Lionel Messi of the virtual world?
What does the future look like?
It remains to be seen if popularity in eSports can increase on its current trajectory. You would have to argue that if the likes of FC Barcelona stay involved, the industry will continue to grow. Social media can play a part as it’s easy to engage with fans of teams and individuals
There are further questions to ask. Will people start to watch eSports even if they’re not big gamers? Similar to the way people might watch sports events without necessarily playing themselves.
Thinking outside of gaming, live online poker, and other card games will continue to have an audience, especially with the ways to play increasing. With both industries, it will be fascinating to see how they utilize further developments in technology and how gamers and viewers engage with them.