For the class “Future Cultures” (BCM325) I have decided to explore the world of the future athlete. Now when we think of sport many people come to the idea of a physical game with long established codes, support and recognition. Now this outlook if fine, and correct to say the least. These are the most recognisable types of sport. But within the new generation new professional athletes are coming to the forfront. These are Esport gamers, the top players from there respective games and the ones who come together for some of the biggest competitions in recent history. My research project will look into what an Esport is, Which culture supports these players and how it impacts the lives of those around. The development of Esports is starting to grow in the modern day, and will continue to grow for many years to come.
The world of competitive video games isn’t something that is new. From the rise in video game technology we have seen many different people strive to perfect these games. The only difference in modern competitive gaming is the scale and recognition is has received by the global community. The first of the competitive gaming scenes major events was held on November 1st 1980 hosting 10,000 participants. This event was for the launch of the Atari 2600 and was recognized as the catalyst for competitive gaming in the modern era. Compare this to today’s Esport’s events such as the League of Legends 2017 world championship games which amassed a concurrent viewership of 33 050 499 individuals. The growth of Esports has also been highlighted in recent years, with a 43% increase in audience between 2014-2016. This popularity increase has even lead to people theorize that it could eventually become an Olympic recognised sport early as summer 2020.
Now the basic things to note upon Esports is that there is a large amount of different genres that have gained a massive following by themselves. Some of the more recognisable Esport games inclue:
- MOBA (Multiplayer online battle arena)
– League of legends
MOBA games are a subgenre of traditional strategy games. The top two most recognisable game in this genre are listed above. Both of these games have gained massive fan bases spawing across multiple countries. Dota is also known for having the worlds largest prize pool for competitive gaming standing at $24,687,919.00. League is the next biggest at only $5,070,000.00. Both of these are probably the most recognisable games in the Esport world.
- FPS (First person shooter)
– Call Of Duty
FPS games have been around for a long time. The first 3D FPS game been Doom (which is still been played at a competitve level today) marked the start of a new trend in gaming. Call of duty was one of the bigger names in Esport before the take off in MOBA games. Peaking in 2010-2014 and in both FPS style game mention above they started a different culture which was unique to most other Esports of the time, This came in the form of Clans (what would be teams in tradition sports terms) and new “star players” who would become recongnised across the globe for anyone who played the game. Two prime examples would be Matthew Haag “Nadeshot” and Seth Abner “Scumpii” who both represented OpTiC Gaming in their prime.
- RTS (Real Time Strategy)
– Starcraft 2
RTS games have been massive in there lifetime in the Esports circut. Though massivly popular these series had a massive following within South Korea where two different gaming channels ran different Starleagues. The interesting thing which seperated RTS games from the games listed about is that it had both a professional team vs team stage it also covered 1 vs 1. This allowed for people to not just follow massivly popular teams such as SKT1 but individual players who would play the ultimate end of year tournament.
- Fighting Game
– Street Fighter
– Super Smash Bros.
Fighting games are some of the oldest style of games on this list. They first came out in the arcade boom back in the early 1980s as the tradition 2d fixed screen game. No more type of genre has had quite as many ups and downs as the fighting scene has and has even come into scrutiny about its legitimacy as an Esport game genre. Though still not quite out of the race fighting games have been a main staple around Esports for a while even without the fanbase of many games above.
Esports gamers are the new genration of athletes who have taken their skill and knowledge and applied the into teh modern era to create a new style competitive sport.