The Evolution of competitive gaming: E-Sports

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On the day one caveman threw a rock as far as he could and turned to his friend shrugging as if to say “Yeah, beat that” competitive games have evolved alongside us.

The most impactful innovation has to be E-Sports; it has taken the notion of competition into a literal new world in the digital domain.

The reality is competition in the gaming world was built in when the first high score board was fitted to the first pinball machine sometime in the 1930s. Arcade games swept in and suddenly children and adults clutching coins strived to see their initials at the top. Possibly the most notorious competitor in these field is Billy Mitchell dubbed “probably the greatest arcade video game player of all time.”

Billy earned the first perfect score of 3,333,360 points on the original Pac-Man arcade game in July 1999.

The passion gamers have for video games leads them to extraordinary levels of proficiency in the games but their ability to compete was restricted by single player settings and distance.

Where are we now?

Passion and ability were never in question so with the advent of broadband and online gaming it was only a matter of time before players tested their skills against others in a real-time struggle for supremacy. Games like Counter Strike, Halo, Call of Duty, Overwatch, League of Legends and racing games have captured the energy of gamers.

Initially gamers ‘clanned up’ with friends to make a pretty good team, but this evolved into the best seeking out the best to make the ultimate team. These teams are often international in their membership as they strive to build the best team possible in order to annihilate all others.

The most competitive found themselves in the MLG Pro Circuit. MLG or Major League Gaming is the longest running E-Sports league in North America. It is within this organisation that gamers from around the world compete to be the best and win prize money. MLG has 9 million registered users and even more viewers.

As with traditional sport teams they have their rivalries and fans capturing the essence of the spectator sport. Access to online streams from anywhere in the world allow fans to watch a variety of E-Sports wherever they are avoiding the costly television subscription format.

This fan engagement is vital in securing E-Sport into the future and it’s pretty clear their base is as dedicated as traditional sports fans, even down to betting on tournament outcomes, for E-sport betting you can check out for the safest sites and best offers.

The gaming industry has always stretched its user base to be better so competitive gaming is most probably the natural evolution of that mind set. The industry has used its know-how to copy from traditional sports and used its tech ability to in some ways surpass it. Organisations like MLG have done a great job of increasing accessibility for the gamers so that they can enter a variety of events and know that they will be genuinely challenged and rewarded. As I’ve mentioned for any competitive sport a lot of the success lies in the fan base, again the organizations create an open and welcoming vibe that new users can get to grips with easily. I would say don’t underestimate the tips and tricks you can pick up for your own game style just by watching the Pros.

E-Sports are becoming increasingly popular and that is great, we’re already seeing it span out into live sports like Formula E with casual and league racers having the opportunity to race against the current crop of drivers. This branching out can only be good for the industry and user base.

It is important to remember that any form of video gaming used to be quite niche, but now everyone is casual gaming at some level, whether it be the occasional game of counterstrike or candy crush. Gaming has been in the culture a long time and has established itself as ubiquitous. So like all sports before it, it makes sense that the broad range of E-Sports should evolve into a viewing event with top tier professionals competing for money and prestige. So if you’re into a game or just like competition why not check a match out? Why not enter a tournament?

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