Global awareness of eSports was estimated to be over 2 billion people in 2020. That’s roughly ¼ of the population of Earth, and the statistic is still rising. Everybody knows somebody who is a “gamer” or is one themselves.
eSports encompass the world of professional gaming competitions. Gamers will pit their skills against each other in anything from head-to-head matches to huge team matches of over 100 participants or more. These tournaments’ largest overall prize pool has recently tipped the scales at over 40 million dollars for a Dota 2 event in 2021. With the rapid expansion of eSports in recent decades, top digital betting platforms have followed suit and now many of them accept cryptocurrencies.
What Is Considered An eSport?
Generally speaking, any organized competition between players of a video game can be considered an eSport. Some of today’s most popular eSports are Dota 2, Fortnite, Starcraft 2, PubG, League of Legends, CS: GO, Overwatch, and Call of Duty. This is by no means a comprehensive list, just some of the largest by attendance and prize pool. Online betting platforms that support eSports will have betting options for these games and their respective tournaments.
The top 10 largest overall prize pools for eSports games
|Rank||Tournament Name||Prize Pool||Game|
|1||The International 2021||$40,018,400||Dota 2|
|2||The International 2019||$34,330,069||Dota 2|
|3||The International 2018||$25,532,177||Dota 2|
|4||The International 2017||$24,687,919||Dota 2|
|5||The International 2016||$20,770,460||Dota 2|
|6||The International 2015||$18,429,613||Dota 2|
|7||Fortnite World Cup Finals 2019 – Solo||$15,287,500||Fortnite|
|8||Fortnite World Cup Finals 2019 – Duo||$15,100,000||Fortnite|
|9||The International 2014||$10,931,103||Dota 2|
|10||Honor of Kings World Champion Cup 2021||$7,728,000||Arena of Valor|
The number one ingredient for considering a video game a bonafide eSport is its popularity. Dota 2 (Defense of the Ancients) tournaments of recent years have reported prize pools of over 10 million dollars on multiple occasions, drawing massive attendance and publicity. Meanwhile, the venerable Starcraft 2 has become something of a national pastime in South Korea, with the country having its own dedicated competitive league.
Where Can I Bet On eSports Teams?
Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in eSports betting are relatively new to the gambling world. It is important to identify which online betting sites are both reputable and also accept crypto.
Sites accessible from most US states:
- BetOnline – A platform that offers a superb crypto betting experience. It hosts sports betting, poker, casino, and eSports.
- BetUS – This betting website offers higher odds than the industry average, has plenty of eSports markets and supports Bitcoin transactions.
- Bovada – One of the first US sites to focus on eSports. The sportsbook offers multiple eSports and cryptocurrency options.
Non-US crypto betting sites:
- Stake – An industry leader with a wide selection of eSports to bet on and multiple cryptocurrencies supported.
- Thunderpick – A hybrid betting site where fiat cash and multiple cryptos can be used for placing bets on various eSports.
- io – This bookmaker allows deposits and withdrawals in Bitcoin and features a large variety of eSports to bet on.
Understanding Crypto Betting
Crypto betting and normal betting are very similar. In their simplest form, a particular value is placed on a wager, and the payoff (or lack thereof) is dependent on the result. If you wager $100 on team A to win against team B, and the odds state team A is a +120 underdog. If team A wins, you stand to make your original bet of $100 back, plus an additional $120 for $220 in total. The “+120” in this example is the North American variant of displaying odds. Other countries may use different ways of showing odds, but it’s the same thing at its core.
Crypto betting is no different, but we would use that crypto’s designation of value instead of dollar values. Many crypto casinos and eSports betting websites will show you the dollar equivalent of your crypto bets. Others will require you to exchange your crypto into USD before placing bets. It all depends on that organization’s policy.
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