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The paper is going to look at various aspects of E-sports especially in China with reference to the South Korean country as a whole. Note that it gives an overview of a series of aspects that are discussed in this topic. E-sports also known as electronic sports are a form of competition that involves the use of video games. On most occasions, it does take the form of a multiplayer system with each side having professional players. Although it’s being organized in an online and offline platform lately, this kind of sporty has been there in existences for over a period of time. It has its own culture dating to the 90’s whereby it was only amateurs competing against each other. By the year 2000’s it had become a prominent feature thus taking a whole new dimension when professional gamers in online platform took it up to bring an upsurge of its popularity in nature (BBC Inc., 2017). By the year 2010, it had become a media household name in the gaming industry with over billion followers from all over the worlds. Note that many game developers took an active part in designing the games towards professional subculture of e-sports. As the year passed more advancement was made to the game modifying to fit out the market demands hence being largely accommodated and a string of tournaments afterward followed hence dubbed business entity for a collection of revenue. To date, this sport is being spearheaded towards being incorporated as one of the sports in the coming Olympic competitions. “It’s for a fact that the global e-sports market generated US$325 million of revenue in 2015 and was expected to make $493 million in 2016”(Heaven, 2014). There are a series of changes that are taking places each day as it passes with better and more sophisticated games being developed.
An overview of E-sports
“E-sports” is enjoyed by both adults and children alike, competitive with their computer gaming to be precise. Note that “E-sports is also termed as competitive video gaming or electronic sports. This is a form of competition whereby they compete via video games. In most cases, it takes the form of an organized or multiplayer video game competition more so between two professional players or even more of them. Just like any other normal sports, the e-sports players normally play computer games against another player. It can be done inside gaming halls, living rooms; that is between friends and families or even total strangers in love with the game. On the other hand, the big sports are arranged in big arenas where there is a large crowd (FUTIAN, 2018).
For over a decade ago, it has been on the rise in the world, having a series of titles that range from real-time strategies to the first-person shooter. While this sport took off in the early 2000’s, one of the earliest forms of this game can be traced back to about the year 1970s. That was when Stanford University students did compete in Intergalactic Spacewar Olympics, for their chance to win Rolling Stone, one year’s subscription. Major advancement to the sport came in 2002 when the Xbox was released thus it was able to bring the live gaming event to the console. Note that a series of sponsors did make the game to be lucrative in nature in regards to being a career choice. More live streaming became popular through a series of platforms such as Twitch thus allowing a steady income for gamers around the globe. The top games include “Defense of the Ancients 2 (DOTA 2)”,” Call of Duty”, “League of Legends”, “Counter-Strike: Global Offensive” and many more (Murray, 2018).
E-sports have a lot to offer in the coming years ahead as it has gunner a number of fans over the past few years. Note that the traditional sports organization and some of the major media outlets are now turning to e-sports. In addition to this aspect, big tournaments that consists of players that are well known and having a fan base from all corners of the globe may turn in to watch the action live and the competitors get paid even more handsomely. With players becoming more skilled and even in some cases have gained over a million fans computer games have now turned into more organized and competitive sports not forgetting the aspect of professionalism. Looking at the brighter side, some of the traditional sports are buying some of the e-sports players to represent them in the competitions being organized globally (Ramirez, 2018).
The development of e-sports in China–club/personnel/event
In 2001, July the first e-sports team was formed in China formally, although it did not survive for long it acted as a reference point for further teams that were established later. In 2003, November, electronic competition became official through approval of the National Sports Council which later brought about the rise of the China national electronic sports team in 2004. In2005, the national electronic sports game was launched in the country. As at present, there are over 64 e-sports clubs and only five that are considered to be professional clubs, over more than 1200 athletes have been registered while having over 26 million fanatics of the sports (Stevens, 2018).Note that some plans of profiting from the clubs do include commitment encouraging of investments in regards to the construction of e-sports stadiums, developing of various industrial parks for e-sport purposes that do bring in more of the international tournaments plus incubating the local brands of e-sports (Xinhua, 2018).
Much like any other well-run organization, e-Sports organizations has a number of team owners, giving contracts, and also partnerships that fund a number of teams in regards to the variety of games. Note that in regards to this aspect, they often do pay for amenities which are inclusive of housing, water, electricity, trainers and coaches plus food and various gaming peripherals. Note that e-sports does form the various contract with different leagues in order to generate a series of sponsorship and various media rights. Salaries do vary with players and also the team.
“According to the professional e-Sports organization Riot, each team in the League of Legends Championship Series receives an amount of money to provide salaries and help with operating expenses. And each player must be paid a minimum of $12,500 for the 28-match season”(Zhe, 2018).
This game has been taken to another whole new level, for instance, China was crowned the Arena of Valor Champion as they beat Taiwan in E-sports competition. Note that e-sport is becoming a major multi-billion sport as it marks its way to the Olympic Games. For instance, in Jakarta arena where competitors were huddled over their smart phones when dueling in supremacy in the “Tencent’s online game Arena of Valor (AOV)”(Xu, 2012). It’s now evident that it is becoming a recognized sport globally as events are organized now and then while in the long run brings back a handsome return of revenue being collected. Note that e-sports competition was on until date 31 Aug., with some the other five titles being featured including Tencent’s League of Legends and Clash Royale, Activision Blizzard’s Hearthstone and Starcraft II and Konami Holding’s Pro Evolution Soccer.
Looking at it from another perspective, in South Korea, this sport is an emerging sporting event with about 93% its players being male and about 56% of them being between the age brackets of 18 to 22 years. Note that most talent in this sector is not well natured as compared to that in China. In addition to this aspect, there are not suitable sports events within the region plus it is not well empowered in regards to the gaming industry as it is in China (Xinhua, 2018).
Whether e-sports belongs to sports
When one looks at e-sport and the normal sport there are pretty much differences that arise hence brings the debate whether it should be considered as a sport. At any given one point, one would say that when you do participate in sports, it’s not a must that you have to sweat. Note that when it comes to the aspect of gaming, a lot of the mental skills are being used rather than the physical aspect of it. In addition to this, there is a lot of the mental strength needed thus leads to tough training thus one might look at it from an angle of a sport like an event. When it comes to labeling e-sport as a sport it brings about a lot of controversial issues into the picture. At one point or the when it comes to the aspect of the definition, the name sports has been considered to undergo a series of experimentation that is yet to have a definite result with a substantial conclusion. Note that, most individuals do look up this definition in Oxford English Dictionary;“An activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment”(BBC Inc., 2017).
When wanting to be a pro-athlete one always has to have that desire and passion for doing something that they do love in particular. For instance, for hockey athlete, it requires one to start playing the sport at a young tender age and also regards it as something that they do enjoy in particular when participating in it. There is often a junior they often participate in junior league sporting events where they do praise and make perfection out of what they already have learned in regards to their skills. They often have a junior league coach teaching them more about the game and training them. For one to become a professional athlete there are a series of things that they have to do in order for them to succeed in what they are participating in. for example a having a diet plan that is healthy plus cutting of some of his free time in order to train, making a number of sacrifices here and there in order to have an experience that is worth it as an athlete. In addition to this one has to take time off and at one point even miss out on some part of their educational experience. For e-sport, it not that much different also, one has have that desire and interest for this kind of games early in their life. It rare to here that one has begun his career late in life vand has made it in life. Just like any other sports one has to be able to attain a given skill sets more those kind of skill set that involves eye-hand coordination in addition to various kinds of reflexes. They have to be in line with interest of their choice and can follow up to the level of professional. At the moment e-sport games are a few in numbers and not all can be played at the professional level plus does not have a large number of spectators in order for the players to make a living out of it. There are a number of challenges that esports faces. Unlike the traditional sports, esports has to worry about the life span of the game as it can raise, gain fame and once you get it at a professional level it can start to lose interest slowly in the community at large. But on the bright side if a player is deemed good at one kind of game it’s much easier for them to transition for it to a new game in town (hallmann & Giel, 2017).
E-sports have come to an age whereby by professional e-sports and traditional sports gap has been narrowed with each year as it passes. When it comes to the aspect of difference and similarities, it’s evident that there is a slight gap between the two. But generally, in my point of view, most of the sportspersons need to focus their mind on the game hence reduce the lag on physical activity that it does accompany an event in particular. Coaching, analytics, tournaments, and business are becoming the same on both sides. However, the electronic sports activities are moderately behind in the sense that they are affected by the league systems plus how amateur athletes become a professional athlete I that field. One may look at e-sports in terms of generally being unproductive in nature when being compared to their counterparts in traditional sports but times have drastically changed ever since. The physical health of both the e-sport athlete and the traditional athlete matters a lot in the aspect of competition. Note that both the two need to have determination and talent just like any other person competing in a competition. Things are changing slowly with time, although the traditional sporting events and games have not seen e-sport as a competitor yet, things are bound to change in the coming years with the growth of these sports.
I personally think that e-sports will be able to rise and become a global phenomenon like cable TV technology in the modern era and live broadcast via the Internet. It will reach the point where a series of matches will be held concurrently with those who must purchase tickets in order to participate in such organized competitions in order to rotate for the team they like. In addition, many people will start buying a variety of purchases and creating everything else that already exists in fan clubs and traditional sports. With the gradual legalization and standardization of e-sports, a large number of fan clubs have begun to appear, which is similar to the traditional sports fans organization, they are standardized and organized. In particular, the Fan Club organizes events outside the competition, which will greatly increase the visibility of the club and thus attract more fans to support the club. Fans can enjoy more benefits and value, which is very different from loose organizations. E-sports is still in a small profit stage, and the club’s income needs to come from many sources. Fans can purchase e-sports club related products, such as uniforms, hats, related accessories or daily necessities, through the club or fan community. These incomes will greatly help the club to achieve greater development. Although e-sports is just a rising sport, it will reach its peak in the long run. With the continuous development and advancement of technology, the future of sports is moving towards a new level and direction.
The e-sports club’s operating model is approaching traditional sports clubs, especially in the daily life and management of the club. With the increasingly perfect combination and management of e-sports, the internal model of the club is working hard to approach traditional sports. In my opinion, e-sports have passed the era of one person taking on multiple positions. Athletes only need to pay attention to competitions and training. There are more people in the club to help them deal with accompanying events, such as life, external interviews, and event arrangements. The analysis and processing of the game is entirely the responsibility of the coach, and the coach will have more assistants, which is similar to traditional sports. As time went on, the game became more formalized and more frequent, and e-sports clubs began to offer more positions, including medical teams, chefs, professional managers, and health workers. What I need to emphasize is that this is crucial to the development and performance of the club. E-sports and mobilization, like tradition and mobilization, require more energy to be put into competition and training, and a strong support team can provide high quality life guarantees. Please note that the e-sports club’s success and performance are closely linked, and the higher ranked teams can get more attention, and these concerns will be transformed into an economy through a series of activities. To achieve these successes, the guarantee of the quality of daily life is indispensable.
To sum it all up, e-sport has brought a whole new version of sports to the world. Video gaming has been in existence for over a long period of time. It’s just that as of now there is a tremendous advancement in technology has made the game more popular and easy to access as compared to the earlier years whereby only a few individuals had access to these resources. In addition to this what started out as leisure or recreational activity between a small circle of friends and families has turned out to be an excellent bonding sport that unites different nations from different parts of the world with only live streaming. Most of the players are now recognized upon getting to the professional level with a string of followers and fans. It has now become a leading multi-billion dollar entity that collects handsome revenue from government and organizations that have invested in it. A series of events are currently being set up in which acts as a stepping stone for the sport to be included in the coming Olympics tournament. With the new shape that is taking, having sponsors and investors it will soon be cmpeti8ng with other traditional sports at the same level has become well recognized. With teams mushrooming up from various corners of the global it will be one of the top most sports that will be enjoyed many and promotes all-round growth. Looking at it as it stems its routes in the Asian countries one would not fail to note that it is ever growing and soon it will be the next big thing in town with a bigger fan base.
- BBC Inc. (2017, April 5). Guide: What are eSports? Retrieved from Newsround BBC: https://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/37773832
- FUTIAN, S. (2018, July 17). Chinese gamers warming rapidly to esports. Retrieved from China Daily: http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201807/17/WS5b4d2be7a310796df4df6ca1.html
- hallmann, K., & Giel, T. (2017). Esports- Competitive sport or recreational sport. Sports managment review, 14-20.
- Heaven, D. (2014). Rise and Risse of Esport. New Scientist, 17.
- Murray, T. (2018, June 16). Tencent Report Shows Esports Market Size in China to Reach $1.5B in 2020. Retrieved from The Esport Observer: https://esportsobserver.com/tencent-report-china-market/
- Ramirez, E. (2018, May 16). China’s $32.5B Gaming Market Is Driving Mobile Esports To New Heights. Retrieved from Forbes: https://www.forbes.com/sites/elaineramirez/2018/05/16/chinas-32-5b-gaming-market-is-driving-mobile-esports-to-new-heights/#6700d3b66362
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- Xinhua. (2018, July 11). China’s eSports market to exceed $13b: analyst. Retrieved from CHINA DAILY: http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201807/11/WS5b4601f5a310796df4df5da0.html
- Xu, H. (2012). The Retrospective Analysis of China E-Sports club. SciVerse ScienceDirect, 690-695.
- Zhe, G. (2018, May 30). Esports attracts almost 1/5 Chinese people: report. Retrieved from CGTN.COM: https://news.cgtn.com/news/3d3d414f796b7a4e77457a6333566d54/share_p.html
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