eSports is taking off right now. Global tournaments are bringing in audiences from around the world, either by filling stadiums or watching streams, all to peek over the shoulder at the screen of the kid that would have got bullied in another decade. These competitors take gamers to another level: to the level of athlete, with all the celebrity, merchandise, and investors that come with being a star athlete. So, what does it take? What are the transferable skills that the average sports fan can take into the eSports market? Take a look at our suggestions to find out why a gaming nerd and gym jock are really not so different.
There’s no way you’re going to become the best in the game without knowing anything about the game. Sure, like real world sports such as football and hockey, you learn by playing and watching. In the gaming world this looks like watching a few Twitch streams and YouTube videos or else picking up the controller and letting the tutorial do the teaching.
However, like real world sports, there is always something more to learn. Every game has some element of research to it. There are complex reasons that inform the odds that make up football betting and punters will try to understand these while seeking a reason for whether that’s a bet they’d take. For instance, while the home team might be favourite – despite their poor form – the away team may just have a playing style that causes the home team difficulty, meaning, while being the underdogs, it’s a favourable bet. Finding these angles in esports is possible.
Any real-world sport’s bread and butter is strategy. Everything from poker to paintball has an element of strategy to it – and eSports are no different. Your research into the game you’re playing and who you’re playing against will come in handy when it comes time to strategy. Just look at the similarities between the strategies of football and strategies of efootball. You can exploit weaknesses in your opposing teams, learn how to better use your strengths against them, and figure out ways to easier reach your goal. If you have a love of real-world sports and the mind games behind them, this is ultimately going to pop up in eSports. You can establish a strategy and either play out that strategy in gaming tournaments or shout them at the TV screen like any other real world sports fan.
Contrary to popular belief, being involved with – and furthermore, good at – eSports takes more than simply lifting the controller. That’s called a casual gamer. They lift it when they want some entertainment and drop it again when they need to get ready for work or a social engagement. There is no pressure beyond the social stigma of setting a narrative game to Easy mode, and they can enjoy it purely for the entertainment that it brings. Sure, other gamers enjoy the challenge of something like Survival mode, but “enjoy” is the important word there.
eSports athletes are athletes in that they are honing their abilities to their best. They are practicing every moment they have, usually dedicated to the one game so that they can grind as much as possible. Like real athletes that are commonly giving interviews talking about how they dedicated their lives to the sport, eSports requires a level of dedication too.
eSports is given the title “sports” for a reason. Physical interaction is just one element of sports, which becomes clear when you realise that there are sports that feature almost no movement (ahem, looking at you chess). Not to mention there are a lot of other activities that take a lot of physical exertion that are not considered a sport. eSports shares more than this core element. It shares a love of challenge, competitive nature, strategy, and dedication that few other activities can compete with.