The Growth in eSports and Community-based Skill Gaming
25 March 2019 / Otra
Online casinos are like any other competitive field that is constantly moving forward. The online gaming industry has been able to survive through the years and stay successful in customer-focused environments. But in recent years, casino slot gambling revenue has had many ups and downs. As a result, online gaming platforms are looking for new ways to stay competitive, drive more traffic to their sites, and keep players engaged. With the constant rise of community-based skill gaming, online casinos are increasingly looking to add community-based games to their offering. That way, they can increase playing times and expand player demographics.
Skill- and Community-Based Games in Online Casinos
Online casinos are always attentive to their customer base, and looking to attract new audiences. So it’s not a surprise they are embracing skill-based gaming and adapting eSports to the online gambling scene. Research shows that millennials prefer community-based skill games as opposed to the traditional online slots and or card tables. The main reason online casinos are making a switch to eSports and community-based skill gaming is to help them spark and maintain players interest for a longer period, and wanting to come back to the platform to play more. Ensuring a viable future for the gaming industry.
Younger generations are tech-savvy and very involved in eSports, whether as players or viewers. Skill-based games are often feature-rich, and keep the experience interactive and engaging. eSports give players the thrill of competing against each other in tournaments. And this never-ending competition can be later used and incorporated into loyalty programs. So it seems that adding new skill and community-based games or revamping some old ones is like hitting the jackpot.
Are eSports the Future of Gaming?
Many people believed that video games and professional competitive gaming are only of interest to a small group of people. But in reality, these are two are part of a really big, really successful industry. Professional competitive gaming, also called eSports, is an industry with a growing fan base. What’s even more impressive are the large wins players can score. For example, major tournaments, like League of Legends World Championship finals, attract millions of viewers, while gamers battle to win millions in prize money. In fact, eSports are so huge that participants can get up to $25 million when winning, including money collected from sponsorships and appearance fees. It is estimated that eSports viewers spend over 20 million hours watching gaming in 2018. The industry is so big, that beside YouTube, there is another dedicated gaming channel – Twitch – that streams matches live, enables players to stream their own games, allows them to comment and engage in discussion. But eSports are not happening only online.
One of the main indicators that they are here to stay is when there is a real commitment by land-based and online casinos alike. Just like traditional sports, eSports also has its number of professional players, celebrities and commentators. What is more enticing though, is the total prize pool of eSports which exceeds $24 million. Compared to traditional sports, that’s more money than the prize pools of the US National Basketball Association – $13 million, and Golf Masters Cup – $20 million, put together. eSports and community-based skill games are attracting millions of players, but it takes great skill and strategy to win. It takes hours of practice a day, just like in traditional sports, to master the game. It’s challenging, unpredictable, and makes players keep coming for more.
The online gaming proves the immense growth of eSports, that can continue to thrive in this highly competitive industry. Finding an edge in a landscape that’s growing more crowded all the time, requires online casinos and gaming platforms to provide new experiences for players. And the emergence of eSports offers exactly that – a new challenge and a community of like-minded players that are eager to learn from each other and compete. On the other hand, the newness of skill-based games has its daunting challenges. Even though the industry of eSports is several years old, it is still in its early days as the product and platforms mature. So without performing a comprehensive analysis and setting a clear implementation strategy, it’s difficult to incorporate these type of games to an existing platform. But re-imagining some of the old games might be the first step in understanding what the path forward for adoption looks like.