It is estimated that in 2021 the esports industry is worth over $1 billion and grows every year, this has led to another industry that dwarfs the actual gaming and that is estimated to be worth anywhere between $8 and $12 billion a year, the esports and gaming gambling industry is booming. With so much serious money to be made from gambling in esports, there has been a new type of bookmakers like VamosGG organizers of competitions with big prizes and that will give none competitors the chance to wage bets on individuals or teams playing the most popular esports.
It is a global phenomenon that anybody with a computer can get involved in and is highly competitive, with one on one esports and team events starting continuously 24 hours a day. People don’t just gamble money on electronic sports they also gamble Skins, best described as a virtual currency. Skins are ways of changing the look of guns for example and are in some cases extremely valuable, recently a skin for an AK-47 was sold for $150,000. Not all games can or tournaments are gambled on but the popularity of gambling has huge potential for the industry. Over 200 million people watched the League of Legends World Championship Final in 2018, to put that in comparison the Super Bowl the same year had an audience of 102 Million people.
The Biggest Esport Events you can Gamble On
With the esports competitions come big prize money for individuals or teams and the prize money for each competition increases each year, last alone over $160 million was given to the winners and runners-up of various tournaments. With the popularity of these events, the esports gambling industry is also thriving. Here are the most popular tournaments globally you should not miss if you want to place some bets:
- Dota2 – The International: The sequel to The Defense of the Ancients has become one of the most anticipated esports events for gamblers, taking place annually in August it attracts a lot of attention in betting circles.18 of the worlds best teams battle it out over 10 days for millions of dollars to the winning team and individual match winners. With the tournament being spread out it offers a wide range of betting options.
- League of Legends World Championship: Known also as “Worlds” has a huge following with over 100 million active monthly users. Lasting around 7 weeks the tournament is hugely popular with gamers and gamblers alike, the winners of the tournament can expect to receive about $1million from the prize pool. And with bookmakers offering a vast number of bets not just on the winner but also “the first team to kill Baron”, the potential for returns is high.
- Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Eleague Major: CS:GO is one of the most popular first-person shooters on the planet and each year tournaments are held all around the world. With up to 24 teams competing for large cash prizes often about $1million for the winner. CS:GO is a fast-paced game and there is plenty of potentials for gamblers to stake money on the tournament.
- The Overwatch League: In 2018 the first major tournament for The Overwatch League comprised 250 matches by twelve teams and lasted from January until July competing for a prize pool of $3.5 million with the winners taking home $1million. Because of the length of the competition and with so many matches as a gambler you can study form and tactics much like any other sport, improving the chances of winning your bets a huge boost.
These are some of the biggest tournaments to gamble on, offering a wide range of bets to suit everybody.
How the Covid-19 Pandemic has Boosted the Esports Gambling Industry
With the emergence of Covid-19 in 2019 in Wuhan, China soon spread across the world has currently infected over 5 million people globally. With the virus came travel restrictions between many countries in a halt to stop the spread of the virus. The majority of countries also imposed local travel restrictions to help contain Covid-19, Ireland for example has strict quarantine rules including only being able to travel 5 miles from your home to do essential shopping or for medical reasons. Whilst the quarantine measures vary around the world they are designed for our protection. If there is a positive from a negative from having to spend so much time in your home esports gambling has seen lots of benefits.
With so many major competitions delayed or canceled during 2020 esports have flourished and gambling has naturally grown with this surge in popularity. Gambling sites have had to adapt to this new normal and have begun to take the esports industry seriously to continue with their business. The sector boomed in 2020 and is expected to reach new heights in 2021 as Covid-19 continues to affect our way of life for the near future. The United Kingdom’s Gambling Commission recently released a report on the growth of nearly %3000
The Legal Aspects of Online Esports Gambling
Many countries are still trying to understand how they classify esports gambling and is not considered by many regulators as being the same as a traditional sport such as horse racing, football, baseball, or basketball. Some European countries including the United Kingdom, Denmark, Malta, Spain, and Italy do class betting on esports as gambling and have put in place the appropriate regulations to control the industry. It is a bit more complicated in the United States as gambling laws are determined on a local, state, and federal level, which many people see as hard to regulate.
In Asian countries where esports gambling is huge such as China, there is little regulation. But in some countries especially in South East Asian nations where Buddhism is the predominant religion gambling is completely prohibited and can come with heavy legal penalties if caught, Thailand and Laos are prime examples. It is best to check the local gambling laws in any state or country you are in for up-to-date information on the local laws to avoid any potential legal issues.
The huge rise in popularity of esports and online gaming has fuelled a relatively new gambling industry that is appealing to young and old. With the closure of many casinos due to the Covid-19 pandemic, people still want to gamble and esports is the perfect way to continue, of the 989 legal casinos in the United States alone it is estimated that half may struggle to re-open their doors after suffering huge losses when all casinos were forced to close. Although casinos have had to adapt to a new future one made headlines in 2018 in Las Vegas, the Luxor Casino announced it was opening the first purpose-built esports arena on the Vegas Strip.
Whilst the future looks grim for traditional gambling online esports gambling is enjoying the success of the major local and international tournaments and gambling on skins. Gambling on anything should be done with knowledge if you are taking it seriously and esports gambling is no different, do some research and enjoy some gaming time yourself to fully understand the esports you wish to gamble on before placing bets to avoid loss but really it is about enjoying yourself.