Posted on Sunday, November 18th, 2012 at 12:47 PM by Guest
What are eSports? This question has become more relevant in recent years as the rise of eSports has truly gone to the next level. With partnership deals being struck between major eSports brands recently and more and more people flocking to view the latest events, I’d though I’d take the chance to explain to the newcomers just what eSports means.
eSports: Electronic Sports – The general term to describe the play of video games competitively.
Usually following strict rules and most often in a league or world championship format, eSports are where the best talents gaming has to offer compete for ultimate supremacy of their chosen field. There are often large cash prizes with general recognition for your talents within the community at stake.
The most recognisable and widely known eSports events are the StarCraft 2 championships and leagues. That is not the only game played at this highly competitive standard by far though. There are so many games played at the highly disciplined eSports level. Games like Street Fighter, Call of Duty, Halo, League of Legends, DOTA 2, Counter-Strike and even Fifa football have their own events, ladders and leagues.
The people who play these games are often referred to as Pro Gamers. The best of the best, spending literally 8 hours or more each day dedicating themselves to one game in order to remain at the required standard. These Pro Gamers are usually part of a team – a team will have many divisions with professional players of all the games listed above. This means that a team can have multiple members competing across the world at the same time.
So much like a professional racing driver or football player is paid to do what they do – pro gamers are paid to play games. This may sounds like a fantastic idea but remember they are expected to win at these events. Being part of a team in eSports means that the pressure is on. This isn’t like playing for in a clan you and a few friends created to play in game leagues together. If you don’t produce results, your time as a pro gamer will be short lived. But the prizes for a successful pro can be amazing; the DOTA 2 invitational this year had a grand prize of $1 Million.
So I can hear the question already – “this sounds great, I love to play games and I’m really good at them, where can I sign up?” Unfortunately it isn’t quite that easy. To get anywhere near the big time events you have to really put in the hours, and have to be able to do so before considering any pay. You need to show you have potential and I’m afraid your gold league status in StarCraft 2 or your 5.0 kill to death ratio in Call of Duty won’t cut it. You need to show a skill that dominates the competition by a large margin to even be considered in the large successful teams.
You also need to be out there already creating a team, if you have a clan with your friends that is a start. You need to be always improving and studying what went wrong and why it happened. You have to be willing to turn your hobby into a lifestyle and a career. Taking both the good and the bad sides of the coin along for the ride, sure you’re playing games for a living, but that is your sole job now. You can’t just leave it for the day if you are having a few bad games.
And that is what eSports are, competitive games played by dedicated professional gamers all around the globe. There are many types of games played at tons of events and only the best players will see the true rewards of this fairly recent phenomenon.
The greatest thing is that that we have only scratched the surface on what eSports and competitive gaming is. But have no fear – we will be diving further into the fast growing professional gaming scene each week to explore more about what happens and the history behind the games. Kicking off next week with looking at some of the current stars of eSports, if you don’t know your Evil Geniuses from your Tsquared or who is MrsViolence and Suppy, this is the place to be.