Esport vs Sport
E-sport has shown a jump in terms of revenue and audience that is incomparable toany other conventional sport. Statisticssuggest that growth shown in the last decade in e-sport is equivalent to a century of growthin traditional sport. Right now,e-sport has an audience base that is equivalent to volleyball or ice hockey. Despite so much evolution,e-sportis still struggling to get a status comparable to regular sport. Let’s explore some similarities and differences between sport and e-sport. Also, let’s try to find out why e-sport and its players are still not recognized at international sport events.
Definition and characteristics
A sport is characterized by physical exertion and skill and is played for entertainment. Examples are football, hockey, cricket etc. E-sporttoo requires skill, fast reflexes and quick thinking. Examples are League of legends and Dota 2. Originally video games were mostly played at individual level and mainly to pass time. They were more popular among teenagers and considered fun activity. But all that has changed in the past decade. With internet access easily available e-sport has grown to become competitive and more of team plays. Large scale tournaments of such games are being held worldwide. Number of tournaments has increased from 10 in 2000 to 260 in 2010. Traditional sport is also all about competitive entertainment. Hence, e-sporthas skills, team play and competitions of the same level found in traditional sport.
Economics and insurance
Because of its infancy stage, e-sport does not boast of the same kind of financial advantages as regular sport.Professional players of regular sport get fees and a share of tournament profits. They are also provided insurance by their sport teams. They do not have to worry about arranging finances for their injury treatments. In case of e-sport, players do not profit from tournaments. There is also no health insurance for them. E-sport too has its own share of sport related injuries like wrist injuries caused due to repetitive strain. Players have to arrange for their own treatments in case of any injury. All this will hopefully change in future once e-sportgets same kind of recognition as regular sport.
Permanence and growth
One thing that differentiates e-sport from regular sport is the games permanence. Video games are evolving in nature. Sequels keep coming up. In case of traditionalsport like football or baseball, the game never changes. The rules followed by competitive community remains the same. In contrast, the life of individual e-sport game is not long. A particular game is replaced by its sequel. Rules of the game change as well as the competitive community changes. E-sport might be growing as a whole but that does not mean that each individual game is also growing. But this does not necessarily mean that this aspect of e-sport is bad. In fact, changes improve the game mechanics. They also keep people interested in the game and help in increasing its popularity.
What needs to be understood is that both sport and e-sport are subdivisions of “games for entertainment”. E-sport is still growing but, growing at a tremendous rate. Hence, it is high time that e-sports given the same level of professional status as a regular sport.