What is LOL Esports?
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For those who aren’t familiar with the term, eSports stands for electronic sports. Electronic sport is a sport where participants compete against each other playing a video game. The first eSports tournament on a large scale was held in 1972, with Spacewar and Pong.
It is also known as competitive gaming or pro-gaming. On January 5th, 2015, League of Legends also known as LOL Esports officially announced its entry into this realm of sports. Competitive video games have been around for decades. However, they had never gotten this much attention than now. Every day more and more people are entering the world of eSports, which can be easily seen by looking at its revenue streams. According to Newzoo’s reports, in 2013, there were already over 113 million esports enthusiasts around the globe, while last year, that number increased to over 165 million. Also, Newzoo predicts that by 2017 eSports revenue will reach $465 million and grow further to $1.13 billion in 2020.
Many games offer competitions for amateur players, but the most significant three are League of Legends, Dota2, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. All these are First Person Shooters (FPS) games, which are most popular among gamers.
Talking about the base of LOL Esports:-
League of Legends LOL Esports is based on the same idea as chess. Two teams have to destroy the enemy’s Nexus while protecting their one. Some of the most competitive tournaments are League of Legends World Championship Series (LCS), Dota 2 The International, and Intel Extreme Masters for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. These events can gain a massive viewership on Twitch, YouTube, or other streaming services. The first two events mentioned are also broadcasted by major television networks worldwide.
The 2014 World Championship Series attracted 32 million unique viewers, which more than half-watched the finals on TV. The LOL Esports World Championships 2015 had an overall unique viewer number of 36 million, and 43 million unique viewers watched the 2016 World Championship Series.
For comparison, in 2014, the NBA finals between the San Antonio Spurs and Miami Heat were watched by 26.3 million unique viewers, while in 2015, it grew to 31 million people.
The numbers don’t even include Chinese viewership, where some events have over 60 million unique viewers. Any company would love to advertise during these events as it is on average watched by 106 million people each month, with an average of 134 minutes watched per viewer.
Revenue collected from LoL Esports:-
Altogether, that’s a lot of revenue generated just from ads during these tournaments. That only covers the free-to-watch part of eSports competitions. The hobby, for the other part, is the players’ prize funds. In 2015, altogether, there were over $60 million in prize money handed out, with League of Legends (~$14 million) and Dota 2 (~$18 million) taking most of it.
The revenue streams of the industry, on the other hand, have grown from $194 million in 2013 to $463 million last year. How big is the market right now, and how fast is it growing? According to a report by SuperData Research, eSports revenues will be reaching $1 billion as early as 2018. Even now more, and more companies are starting to take eSports seriously, including Amazon, which has acquired Twitch back in 2014 for almost $1 billion.
Talking about LOL Esports growing so fast:-
Well, the answer is quite apparent – video games have evolved dramatically over time, and they’ve become something much more than just a simple pastime. Today most of the top video games, such as LOL Esports or Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, are played by both professionals and amateurs alike.
In addition to that, it is an excellent way for companies to promote their products and make a profit from showing these tournaments on streaming services such as Twitch. This latter was one of the reasons why Amazon was so interested in Twitch in the first place.