Over the past five years, the eSports sector has significantly swelled concerning annual revenues and attained audiences. In 2021, Fortune Business Insights, an Indian market research firm from Pune, estimated that this market surpassed the one-billion-dollar mark, standing at $1.22 billion in accumulated revenues, as this company projects that this industry is on track to grow at a compound yearly rate of a staggering 21% until 2029.
Along with the rise of the eSports sphere, betting on people playing video games is also gaining massive traction and is now an option at most online sportsbooks, featuring virtually identical functions to wagering on traditional sports. Moreover, skins-based betting sites are also a thing, allowing video game gambling enthusiasts to choose between these and cash-based ones when they try to put their knowledge of eSports to good use. Those new to this field but want to give video game betting a go should know that there is little to this hobby. They need to follow some basic strategies when starting to place bets and stay within what their instincts tell them.
Skins sites are rarer than money ones, usually requiring a Steam account for all members. If they do, they can leave digital items dormant in their gambling accounts’ inventories and bet these on head-to-head matches or winner-take-all contests. Below, we list the five most established games that gamblers can wager on and test their mastery of the Esports scene and luck. Note that the best options for eSports wagering are usually crypto sportsbooks, as these can offer anonymous betting fun and are more diverse concerning slip functions.
Essentially everyone into online multiplayer actions has heard or even played, at some point, Valve’s community-created mod for Warcraft III named Defense of the Ancients. In 2013, its sequel came out, for which development began in 2009. Despite reports that its player pool is slowly dwindling, in 2022, between 700,000 and one million people played Dota 2. Though this is lower than the 2016s highs this game notched, they are still respective figures that other franchises dream of pulling.
Concerning Esports gambling, this edition in the defense of the Ancients series draws substantial gaming action, with the International, the World Championship, and the ESL majors peaking eSports’ gamblers’ interests.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
Modern-day gamers are likely unaware of the attention that the original Counter-Strike garnered in the early-2000s when the Half-Life mod scene was booming, and fans developed highly-engaging legendary modifications such as Opera, PVK, Azure Sheep, and Cry of Fear. There was a first-person Half-Life soccer mod and a Dragon Ball Z one. Yet, these were far from reaching the status that CS attained.
In 2012, Valve released an advanced update of CS, labeled Global Offensive, which received significant praise from critics and players, and managed to bring CS’s fame into the Esports realm. Today, around one million players enjoy Global Offensive on Steam concurrently, and tournaments like the Major Championships sponsored by Valve list prize pools of at least a million dollars. Accordingly, these competitions are the ones that see the highest CS: GO wagering handles.
League of Legends
Commonly referred to as League or LoL, this Riot Games multiplayer online battle arena title inspired by Dota pits two teams of five gamers in player-versus-player combat, with each defending their half of a Warcraft III-like map.
Per ActivtePlayer, the LoL community’s gaming activity peaked in December 2022. That was when its pool of users surpassed the one hundred and fifty million benchmark. The LoL competitions that interest eSports gamblers the most are the World Championship and the Mid-Season Invitational.
Blizzard’s fourth major franchise, Overwatch, came after the cancellation of Titan, a massively multiplayer online game whose development took an unexpected turn that ultimately led to the project dying. Nevertheless, Overwatch filled its shoes, implementing a Team Fortress vibe that emphasized teamwork and battle arena action. Despite controversies regarding the sexualization of some characters, Overwatch instantly proved to be a staggering success for Blizzard, and it found its place in the Esports gambling niche.
The Overwatch League, a professional Esports competition with twenty city-based teams worldwide, is a famous attraction at crypto sportsbooks. Some of the best properties for betting on it include BetUS and BetOnline.
Rainbow Six Siege
The original Rainbow Six game, developed and released by Red Storm Entertainment in 1998, has some laughable graphics by today’s standards. But it sold more than 200,000 copies, bringing in $8.8 million in revenue and laying the groundwork for the Rainbow Six franchise.
Nowadays, R6 contests are staples at the IEM, ESL, PGL majors, and the World Championships, with many viewing Rainbow Six as an adequate alternative to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Over sixty million people actively play entries in the Rainbow Six series online, and the prize pools of R6 tournaments often reach $800.000 or above.