There has been a huge amount of success found in the growing world of esports particularly over the past few years, whilst in its current form, it has been around for the past two decades or so, it has only really been since around 2013 where the esports scene as a whole has been able to take off. This past year has seen the introduction of a new title in Valorant too, you can find a review of Valorant here as the newest big emerging title that certainly looks to be capturing a huge audience from other titles too, but there have been many questions around whether or not the esports scene is growing faster than the traditional sporting scene, and where the differences may be found.
The big comparison being drawn comes between two of the biggest sports in each category – one being the NFL and their big competition of the Superbowl, and the other from the biggest esports title of League of Legends and their yearly world championship event – the annual viewership of the Superbowl has suggested to peak over 100 million, but with an active concurrent viewership number of 5.7 million viewers it certainly is one of the biggest sporting events in the world. The figures for League of Legends certainly rival those numbers, however, and the big difference is within the concurrent viewer number – with a similar suggested 100 million viewers over the course of the event, in 2019 of those viewers there had been a suggested 44 million concurrent viewers, an incredible number in comparison.
With many traditional sports trying to enter the esports world with the likes of the NBA2K League and the direct support from FIFA for the growing interest in football esports, it certainly looks as if traditional sporting is trying to enter the space, particularly as it is seen how big the market as a whole is. It’s almost a certainty for some that esports as a whole is growing at a much faster rate, and with emerging markets starting to find their way into esports in developing countries for example, and have shown exciting opportunities for huge expansion.
An interest for many will now be where the next big games may emerge from, whilst Valorant is finding continued success, by its attachment to Riot Games and League of Legends it was bound to be successful, whether or not other more independent games are likely to be able to follow a similar path is yet to be seen as many haven’t tried, although examples with the likes of Rocket League certainly do give hope to those looking to emerge in the space and find success of their own, and also explore where the next big genre will be whether it’s within the existing MOBA or FPS space, or within something yet to be discovered.