Betting on Esports: The Growing World of Competitive Gaming

Written by Jimmy Rustling


Esports has been around for decades, but it has seen a significant increase in popularity in recent years, becoming a billion-dollar industry. The rise of esports has been driven by a variety of factors, including advancements in technology and the increase of recognition and investment  in the industry. In this piece, we will delve deeper into the origin, rise and expansion of esports, examining the factors that have contributed to its growth and discussing its current state and future prospects.

What Exactly is Esports?

In a literal sense, Esports is short for electronic sports. This is a competitive form of video gaming in which professional organisations, teams and players compete against one another in events. These are held in various different formats, including but not limited to group stages, elimination rounds and one-to-one matchups.

When it comes to Esports, the most popular genre of games are typically first-person shooters (FPS), multiplayer online battle arenas (MOBA), and real-time strategy games, however, these are just a handful. These games have large and dedicated fan bases, with many players and teams competing regularly and professionally for both prize money and overall recognition.

However, Esports is not only a form of entertainment but also a form of actual sports, with many of the same physical and mental demands as traditional sports. As such, esports is also governed by a set of rules and regulations, and can even have bets placed on them as a result, however, we will be touching on this aspect a little later on. 

The Origins of Esports

To understand how this form of sports became so popular, we must first look back at its initial origins. Esports can be traced back a number of years to the 1970s and 1980s. During these periods, video games were starting to become increasingly popular, and as a result of this, early versions of esports began to take shape.

In the early 1980s, video arcades were a popular form of entertainment, and arcade game competitions began to take place. One of the most notable events was the National Space Invaders Championship, held by Atari in 1980. The event was held in multiple cities across the United States and drew thousands of participants.

As technology advanced, home computers and consoles became more powerful and popular, and gaming tournaments began to take place online. In the 1990s. The turn of the millennium saw the form of esports as we know it take shape, as streaming platforms and social media made the whole industry a lot more accessible.

The Expansion of the Esports Industry

The esports industry has seen a significant expansion in recent years, with a steady increase in popularity among both players and audiences alike. Linked to this, there are a few factors that have contributed to this growth.

One of these factors is the overall advancements in technology, which has dramatically increased the general capability of video games that are available to people. Games are now dramatically more realistic, visually stunning, and  even have more complex gameplay, making them more engaging and entertaining to watch overall. As a result, this has helped to attract a wider audience to esports and has also allowed for the development of more competitive and professional gaming.

As the esports industry has grown, it has attracted more investment in general. From venture capitalists to sponsors, and advertisers, this has led to an increase in prize money for competitions. Consequently, this helped to create more professional teams and leagues as esports has become a viable career path for many players.

Initially, esports wasn’t as recognized and accepted as an actual sport. However, in recent times, national organisations have helped to legitimise the industry and as a result of this, coverage by traditional media outlets has steadily started to increase, mirroring the growth of esports as a whole. 

What Type of Bets can be Placed on Esports?

As this recognition has grown , a wide variety of sportsbooks and bookmakers have begun to incorporate esports as one of their markets. Betting has become a viable option you could choose to venture into whilst watching esports. The markets available for esports are relatively similar to more conventional sport, however, are tailored for specific events, games and matchups.

For example, moneyline bets are the most common type of bets placed within the world of esports. If you’re unfamiliar with the world of betting, these bets simply involve the placement of a wager on a team or player who you predict will win a match or tournament. Due to this, moneyline bets are one of the easiest to understand, and therefore, are a good option for those new to esports betting.

Alternatively, proposition bets are not directly related to the outcome of a match or tournament. Instead, these bets can be placed on things like the number of points scored in a match, the first team to reach a certain score, or the total number of rounds played within a match or tournament.

Both of these types of bets can be applied in play also. This is commonly referred to as live betting, as it allows players to place bets on events happening during a match, all whilst it is ongoing. These bets are generally more time sensitive, relating to the next team to achieve one of these prior mentioned factors.

Like with any other sport, esports betting markets also include future bets, which are similar in terms of moneyline bets, but are more in reference to the final winners of a league or tournament. However, these are usually placed in advance of an event, as the corresponding odds are likely to change once it begins.


From humble beginnings to sold out arenas, esports is now a force to be reckoned with, especially when it comes to growing markets. The involvement of betting is just one factor that has helped this sector to increase dramatically, and due to the overall improvement in modern technologies, we can only expect esports to continue growing.

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About the author

Jimmy Rustling

Born at an early age, Jimmy Rustling has found solace and comfort knowing that his humble actions have made this multiverse a better place for every man, woman and child ever known to exist. Dr. Jimmy Rustling has won many awards for excellence in writing including fourteen Peabody awards and a handful of Pulitzer Prizes. When Jimmies are not being Rustled the kind Dr. enjoys being an amazing husband to his beautiful, soulmate; Anastasia, a Russian mail order bride of almost 2 months. Dr. Rustling also spends 12-15 hours each day teaching their adopted 8-year-old Syrian refugee daughter how to read and write.