The Rise of eSports

The Rise of eSports

The Rise of eSports


An evening with the boss

As much as I love BANTER and what I do it is always important to wind down after work and relax. This is as important as working hard throughout the day. Without proper time to recalibrate you will eventually become increasingly less productive. I am a big advocate of Gary Vee’s hustle mentality. He’s a guy who never takes time off and works almost 24/7. However, I feel that, for me, this can only happen in stints. If I don’t get some ‘me’ time at some points I just burn out.
So, at the moment, after work I like to work on the following skillset:

Mechanical skill

I practice these skills, which are all of paramount importance in business, in my evenings. Taking this into account you could argue that I work right through my evenings most week nights and weekends. However, I think I’d be kidding myself a bit too much if I tried to convince anyone of that.

Defense of the Ancient

How do I practice these skills? I play Dota 2, a game developed by Valve (creators of Steam) and one of the biggest esports in the world today. If you’ve never heard of Dota 2 here’s great video explaining it.

On a personal level, I’ve been playing video games since I was 5 years old but never have I become so engrossed in a game and a community as I have with Dota 2. The reason for this is, is due to the fact that it is so much more than a game. It is the leader in eSports, an industry that is growing momentum daily and could likely replace many more mainstream sports in the next 10 years.

ESPORTS – The rise of the Geeky Jock

The hype for e-sports is truly rivaling that of more mainstream sports. Here is the promo for the recent Manila Major where the prize pool was $3,000,000.

Competitive gaming has been around since the days of Ataris in the 1980s but the last 6 years have seen a rise so meteoric that the world of sports may never be the same again.
Just as Netflix has taken over live TV subscriptions for Millennials, Twitch and eSports is taking the ‘sports’ scene by storm.
If you’d like to see some actual Dota 2 gameplay then here are the highlights from the recent International 2016 where the prize pool reached the dizzying heights of $20,000,000 most of which was funded by the fans through the purchase of in game items.

The rise of E-Sports is documented amazingly in this documentary called ‘Free To Play’ from Valve

Why does this matter?

The landscape of sports is changing. The prize pools in Dota 2 are bigger than many top tier sports. The winners of this year’s TI won more money than:
FA Cup, Indy 500, Baseball World Series, Super Bowl, World Series of Poker, PGA Tour, Wimbledon and many more.
In fact the only tournaments with higher prize pools are the Champions League and FIFA World Cup.
Over 6 million people watched The International 2016 final on Twitch alone. Figures for those who were watching in-game haven’t been released.
With millions of people watching top tier professionals playing a game with a bigger prize pool than every sport other than football and with a very specific demographic of viewers it is only time before bigger organisations capitalise on this further and eSports moves firmly into the mainstream.
The issues surrounding this at present is that traditional methods of broadcasting don’t work with e-sports. E-sports fans have grown around their game completely absent from broadcast television and media sponsors for years. You can’t put e-sports on Sky Sports 2 as the kids who watch it would rather stream it on their phones, their parents won’t be interested in watching with them and it’s not the way that they consume their entertainment. It is for this reason that last year Amazon bought the leading e-sports streaming site Twitch. They have just introduce Twitch Prime to remove ads from Twitch for subscribers.
I believe this is the start of the mainstream take up of e-sports. If you have a business that is related to computers or millennials then e-sports is going to be an arena you see yourself in more and more over the next few years.

Never heard of Dota 2 or watched eSports?

One thing I know for certain, in 10 years time when the youth of today are adults having children of their own, you’ll start to see eSports being shown in pubs and bars around the world as demand grows.
Sport is changing, computers are coming and I love it!

Liam Wright Growth hacker, animal lover, @dota2 junkie, @manutd & @giants fan | Founder - @BanterMediauk | CoFounder - @team6t9 | CoFounder - @socialgrowthlab |