The e – sports have grown exorbitantly in popularity and reach globally. What until a few years ago could seem merely a hobby, today generates millions of dollars in advertising, tens of thousands of viewers on screen and a community eager for more news and to learn to master different video games like the professionals in the sector. Just as Lionel Messi inspires thousands of boys and girls to play soccer, e-sports are beginning to inspire a generation to approach the world of video games. With the news that e-sports may be awarded medals at the Asian Games 2022, it is a good time to explore the world of e-sports, what are they? How are they cataloged? Who are its greatest exponents?
The term e-sport
Electronic sports or e-sports (‘e’ for electronic, ‘sports’, sport in English) are part of recent dynamics in the world of video games. These are titles of various genres that are played at a competitive professional level, multiplayer in nature and with different types of rules according to the title and game model that is played.
The potential of esports was not long in showing, with a wide audience ready to watch their favorite players perform all kinds of feats in competitive video games, and even follow battles and duels between teams in titles as varied as Fortnite, DOTA2. or Counter-Strike Global Offensive , among others.
What requirements does a video game have to meet to be considered e-sport?
The video game industry is characterized by being very broad, and when defining what electronic sports are, it is necessary to fill in a series of specific characteristics that facilitate the professionalization of the players of that title.
1) The game has to allow the confrontation between at least 2, but there can be more, players. The competition must take place on equal terms, you cannot pay to obtain more experience or special items. What has to be demonstrated in the game is the skill of the player.
2) The e-sport must have a league and official regulated competitions, organized by companies or sponsors that give publicity and echo to the event in the media, as well as professional players and teams. An example is the VLP (Professional Video Game League) or the Orange Super League that carry out different tournaments and competitions throughout the year.
3) The e-sport must have a significant number of fans, who play or follow the competitions and generate the information demand in this regard. Today there are a good number of platforms that allow e-sports competitions to be followed via streaming. Twitch is the best known, belonging to the Amazon company, but other private channels have also joined the trend, such as Movistar TV or Gol TV, which have exclusive programs that talk about electronic sports. ‘
E-sports in figures
Understanding the phenomenon of electronic sports also implies talking about the figures and numbers that an industry such as the video game handles, added to the media possibilities offered by a competition between players from different parts of the world, either individually or in teams. . Some statistics allow us to understand a little more about the phenomenon, since those who consume e-sports usually do so in specific ways.
For example, the majority of the esports audience prefers to play on weekends (62%), while the remaining 38% prefer to play on weekdays. The e-sport has a strong component of relaxation and rest, that is why it is an activity more typical of rest on weekends and recreation.
The fans e-sports live actively and passively fanaticism. An important part prefers to “watch and play e-sports” (86%) while those who only play are 7.6% and those who only watch 5.7%. This reflects that the world of e-sport has scope for different types of public equally.
Most of the e-sports audience is made up of men, almost 80%, but the female representation has been showing very strong growth and analysts believe that it is a matter of time until they cover a significant portion of the sector. E-sport for women is a space where they can demonstrate their capabilities and break with stigmas and discrimination that still exist in traditional sport.
In Europe, Spain ranks as the third country in terms of growth in the sector. The importance of electronic sports is being strongly marked as a demonstration of the potential of the entertainment industry to adapt to the new times. Traditional sports channels are devoting more and more time on their screens to the results and movements of electronic sports leagues such as DOTA and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Interviewing players, exploring tactics and making the public aware of a trend that has only been generating more and more followers over time.