*Author’s Note – This is being written in the Fall of 2018. Fall is a notoriously bad time for eSports. Almost all Pro-Comp teams have ended season and will not be back until 2019.
That’s okay. That gives you plenty of time to do your homework.
Read now to get an idea of what you want to do. Bookmark it to come back. Until then, check out some of our other articles and links down at the bottom.
Exactly Why the eSports Industry is BOOMING Today
By itself, as an example, OverWatch has a current user base of 40 million users as of May 2018. One could say that you cannot find a gamer who isn’t at least familiar with the game if not playing it themselves.
Besides Overwatch, there is an estimated 1.2 billion gamers right now between Microsoft’s Xbox, Sony’s Playstation and PC players with 700 million of these players being online. This means serious business. The Big Bucks. To understand why that is, scroll down to the bottom and see why we would need to take a quick drive down History Lane. But! For right now…
Where Can I Bet on Video Games?
That’s a good question. Long gone are the days of wagering 5 bucks against your friends watching a LAN party. Casinos and Sportsbooks have started to really open up to the idea of eSports and luckily, you’re invited. Gambling is not for everyone. For those it is, why not combine it with your favorite hobby?
Here we’re going to start talking about the different ways to do this. We’ll talk about just a handful of Casinos for you to place your wagers at right now. However, check out all of our reviews before making your choice!
This one stands out very nicely. If you would like to combine your betting along with the excitement of Live Betting, this is the one for you.
Upon landing at the homepage of Sportsbetting the eSports page is east to find along the main menu. When navigating, the larger menu on the left lets you find “your game” which then drops down to asking you if you’d like to go “Live” in a very clear way.
As of right now, probably my personal favorite Sportsbook. BetDSI is not only open to eSports, but with their sub-section of hilarious “Entertainment”, they seem to be open to the idea of taking a wager on just about anything!
Like virtually any other Online Casino, when signing up make sure to check for any bonuses you can take advantage of! Right now you can snag a Welcome Bonus of up to $2500 for use with eSports.
BetDSI will take wagers in many ways including, head-to-head results, futures, props and live betting! They also offer odds in pretty much every league like Overwatch, CS: GO, Hearthstone, League of Legends and many more.
Right now Bovada has a standing as my boss’ favorite Sportsbook. In the interest of fairness, he’s been doing this much longer than I.
Admittedly, when going to Bovada, eSports are a little hard to find from their menus. They always have a lot of stuff going on for everyone. To find their eSports pages I had to go to the Main page > Sports > All Sports > and then click on the tiny little picture of the Game Controller.
But, once I found that, their sheets and slips are nice and clean and upcoming wagers are there all on one page for you to look through and see what the days odds are.
Another nice and clean site, very eSports friendly. This site also happens to take many different types of Cryptocurrency. Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dash, Ripple, Ethereum and Litecoin are all accepted.
At the time of writing you could collect a 50% Bonus with any of the listed Cryptocurrencies from $10, (the minimum deposit) all the way up to $50,000. Also, while not the only Online Casino to offer Live Tables they certainly are among the best.
Again, a little hard to find their eSports page, but they do offer it as well as some absolutely fantastic Bitcoin bonuses upon signing up.
While there waiting for matches to start or finish, be sure to hit up the casino and play some Slots. You can even play for free while you wait to see if you won big or not on your wagers.
What games can you bet on? (An Arguable List of 5 Greats)
Defense of the Ancients 2, (more commonly known as Dota2)
- FOX|Tokido (Akuma)
- PG|Punk (Karin, Nash)
- GGP|Kazunoko (Cammy)
- DNG|Itabashi Zangief (Zangief)
- Moke (Rashid)
- Liquid|NuckleDu (Guile)
- GRPT|MOV (Chun-Li) (Tied)
- SPY|Filipino Champ (Dhalsim) (Tied)
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (more commonly known as Counter-Strike: GO or just CS: GO
This is a hard part to write. Put any two gamers in a room and see how long it takes for the two of them to start fighting about which games are the best among the market. That’s part of the fun of gaming. So, we present to you our list of 5 greats. Your list may vary a little, it might vary greatly. That’s your choice.
Destroy their base while defending your own. Sounds easy enough, right? Players hop right into the game and start by choosing their character from a list of 116 Heroes. All of these Heroes have their own special “moves” but are mainly divided into 2 categories, “Carry” and “Core”. In other words, “Kick-All-The-Ass” or defend and help the teammate who is kicking all of the ass. You can’t really have one without the other, right?
Whichever Hero you choose is going to have at least 4 abilities to help on the journey to victory. Each of these becomes more powerful with time while they cross a river to destroy the base of their enemy. Oh, and do this while trying to ensure that nobody gets by in order to destroy your own base.
Combine all of this with a vision impairing darkness that only goes away in your immediate area and you’ve got a pretty exciting game.
It is all but guaranteed you already know this one. Straight up old-school fighting. Pick from a selection of beefed up fighters to go out and fight in a “best of 3” rounds match. Punch, kick and “Special Move” your foes into a knockout.
Here’s the list of current champions as of this writing. While American gamer Victor “Punk” Woodley climbed the ranks to almost take over, the matches are still heavily Asian dominated.
While still fairly new in the world of eSports it has risen quickly joining the ranks of classics already. A first person shooter like no other with its bright backgrounds, flashy colors and high rate of speed and turnover. Perfect for those who are able to not only handle themselves and stay alive, but able to watch for their teammates.
After a 10 minute training course you are thrust right into the action immediately. You are able to choose your soldier from a myriad of characters. You want an Old School Cowboy with a 6 shot revolver and deadeye aim? They have you covered. What about a female former Russian Weightlifter that lugs around a man-shredding Particle Cannon? They’ve got that. Not your bag? Well, there’s everything in between including an angry hamster. After choosing your hero, it’s action time.
It’s also a really exciting time to be an Overwatch Fan! As of this writing, (Fall of 2018) the 2018 season is over, no announcements on the start of 2019 season. But, it’s a great time because of the announcements that have been made.
First of all, we get the addition of 8 new teams with Atlanta, Toronto, Vancouver and more! Also, we get two saddened announcement for some teams themselves.
First, we get the news that the Shanghai Dragons fired all but 3 players and staff. 3 days later we get the news that the Florida Mayhem almost do the same, dropping 6 of their players. With no real news yet of replacements, this is like having 2 more new teams.
Essentially, Overwatch just doubled the amount of new players to keep an eye on. The upcoming 2019 season can go in any direction at all.
An absolute classic here. A multiplayer, first shooter person pitting two teams against each other, the Terrorists and the Counter Terrorists. Simple gameplay of killing off the other team while performing other side objectives as well. Plant a bomb, rescue AI hostages, defuse said bomb, etc.
A noticeable difference of CS: GO and other games of this sort is the need for player cautiousness during competitive games. There is no respawn here. When you die, you die. That was it.
The CS: GO league keeps chugging along never losing its excitement even now in mid-season. Gamblers could go as far as to filter the events they would like to wager on. Examples include, Major, International, National, Regional LAN, Local LAN and others.
Another relative newcomer to the competitive world, Rocket League is hands down the most original. No guns, no weapons, no space aliens bent on destroying your home. Just a soccer game. Played from cars. Rocket Powered Cars. That’s right. Rocket powered cars in an arena trying to score a goal with an oversized soccer ball into the opponent’s goal.
The previous paragraph pretty much tells you what you need to know about this one. But, with possible slight changes on game rules, customizable maps and beautiful skins, this one really sticks out.
Did I mention that you could in fact collect “Hot Wheels” cars to blow up your opponents cars? Do I need to mention more?
(Honorable mentions – Gears of War, Magic, Fortnite, League of Legends, World of Tanks)
Think of What You Want to Wager On
When you decide on which Sportsbook(s) you feel comfortable dealing with, you’ll get your account(s) all set up. After that, it’s all up to you. This will be your job, it’s part of the fun.
Your possibilities include stuff like, head to head wagers that are exactly what they sound like. Got your favorite player and have reason to believe they’ll clean up? Run with it. You’ve also got Team Wins, Individual Wins, Regional Champs, Local Champs, etc. Some of the better eSports friendly sites will break this down further factoring in the spread, possibility of OT and so forth.
Your Bet Slip will be very straightforward for you to place your wagers. Be sure to treat eSports like any other Sport. Do not take emotion into account. Do your homework. Ask yourself questions and look up those answers As an example, it’s fun to have “Your Team” and you always root for “Your team”. Well, what if they’re just not good?
Example; As someone from Atlanta, I am very excited about having an Atlanta Hosted team for Overwatch. Those are going to be “my guys”. I have no clue who’s going to be on the team yet. It would be silly to place any wager on them without learning who’s on the team first and then start doing my own homework based on current standings versus previous standings. Who are they going against? Will they be on a 6 hour jet-lagging flight to a competition where they’re expected to play before a good night’s sleep? Will I wager a bet against “my guys” because it would actually be the smart thing to do?
Again, this is part of the fun and that’s what this is all really about.
How to Get Started in the World of eSports Wagering
Now that you have your game in mind, the best thing to do would be to download “Twitch”, (available on pretty much anything with apps, including the TV itself).
With Twitch, find your game channel and just start watching. Virtually any pro player will have his or her own channel and from there you can watch them any time of day, Live or Recorded and watch their gameplay. Get used to them. Afterward, start to compare them to other players of the same game.
Compare their stats, (available if you dig around). Watch how much time they’re on playing (practicing). Do they always do great except for on one particular map? Like any traditional sport, all things you see can be taken into account.
Do you see a player that seems to be phenomenal but they sure do “talk a lot of shit” while streaming at home? Think they’ll keep it under control during a tournament and not get banned halfway through the season? Hey, it happens.
But Seriously, Is There Any Real Money to be Won?
There’s a reason we are going to talk about a “Super Quick History” here in a bit. It is to bring up numbers, those are going to be important. One of the more important of these numbers is the age of the average gamer.
As of this writing, the average age of a “gamer” is 31 years old. Another fact. There are more gamers over the age of 36 years old than there are aged 18-35. Why does this matter?
Every once in a while you’ll hear someone mumble something about “video games being for kids”. We know the average age of gamers now, but let’s look at sales. In the last 10 years an estimated 351.63 video game consoles have been sold with price tags reaching up to $500 + at times. These aren’t kids buying these. Nope. These are full fledged adults. Some people may not want to admit it, but facts are facts.
Now for the fun part of the read here. We now know the fact that most gamers are adults. Being an adult is great, isn’t it? You could run out and buy $50 bucks worth of Beef Jerky and eat it for dinner if you wanted. Nobody could stop you. I’m not saying you should do that, but you could if you wanted to.
One of the other perks of being a full grown adult is that we now have settled into our careers. You know what comes with careers for some lucky people? Disposable income. What better way to part with it than the chance of it coming back to you with some profit.
A Super Quick History – (Late 70’s, early 80’s)
In 1977 the Atari 2600 was released and did its job to keep children and teenagers hypnotized to the TV. They did this with super fun and great games like “Math” and “Spelling” and “Maze”. Give it another year and more engaging titles were released, many sports themed, but also a strong “homebrew” scene started to grow. The audience got bigger.
Video Game Arcades started to pop up everywhere along with stand alone machines in virtually every gas station and grocery store you went to. The audience got bigger.
Movie theaters would line their hallways with as many machines as they could fit to get their share of the quarters being shoved into the slots. Video Games were in fact, everywhere. The audience got bigger.
There was no way to deny the fact that Video Games were absolutely everywhere. However, there was still something soothing about the fact that you could in fact purchase the set-up needed to just stay home and play.
The giant plastic box next to the TV was for the family but snagged its core customers, the kids, and never let go. “Gaming” was still in its infancy, but it grabbed onto every child it could. It turned them into tiny consumers that Atari wasn’t losing anytime soon by creating brands you couldn’t get away from. The most famous of these 8-bit mascots had his own breakfast cereal for a while along with a Saturday morning cartoon. You know who I’m talking about. The audience got bigger.
The audience got bigger and then it all came crashing down. It simply got too big, becoming perhaps one of the top causes of the Video Game Crash of 1983. The market was faced with complete over saturation.
1986 – The Comeback of all Comebacks
Then, something happened. On July 15th, 1983 “The Famicom” was released in Japan with sales exceeding any expectations for the system. A few bad deals aside, this paved the way for the Nintendo Entertainment System, or NES, to be released in North America in September of 1986. This in itself caused quite a few things to happen, but we’re focusing on two in particular.
It brought back the love of video games, and hard. From that point there was no stopping it. Arguably, this is where the first “gamers” came into the picture, those people who decided early on, this was going to be main hobby.
As the years went on, new home consoles were released promising “bigger and better” everything. While some of these ‘flopped’, you cannot deny that the numbers here are still huge. The Dreamcast is considered to be one of the biggest flops, killing off an entire business structure because it sold ONLY 10.1 million units in the not quite 2 years it was available in North America. (In contrast, it took Nintendo a little over 6 years to sell twice that many consoles).
Now as for that second thing. While those years went by with introducing us to the bigger and better, people grew up with them. The big black boxes became small gray boxes and back to big black shiny beasts, and they’re family.
We haven’t even touched upon the most serious of the hardcore gamers, the PC Players, probably the back bone of the gaming industry.. That would go way beyond the scope of this article. It truly brings all those mentioned numbers way up by millions more.
Getting into eSports wagering can be a little daunting. In the big picture, you re taking your money and wagering that a “kid” from another part of the world will be better at a Video Game than another “kid”. If you go with a full team, it’s still possibly a group of “children”.
True, but think about this – I can all but guarantee right now that if you are reading this, you are not a Major League Baseball player. Doesn’t stop anyone from learning all they can about baseball and placing wagers and having a blast while doing it. The most important thing is to just have fun and not worry about anything too much.