Definition of eSports
eSports (or electronic sports) stands for competitive gaming. On a professional level, eSports are played by so-called pro-gamers, who take part in professionally organised competitions that are usually sponsored by companies. Each game has different rules and formats, depending on the genre. Most eSports competitions, however, are played in teams competing against each other, usually on a PC or console. Games played on smartphones are expected to play a major role in shaping the future of eSports.
Counter Strike, League of Legends and FIFA shape eSports
Today, three genres in particular shape electronic sports: first-person shooters, real-time strategy games and sports simulations. The most influential first-person shooter is "Counter-Strike", which has one of the longest eSports histories. Despite various editions since the late 1990s, the basic game principle has not changed: Terrorists try to plant a bomb at certain locations and the counter-terrorists try to prevent this. The game is not only about "shooting", but also about tactics and good communication skills.
"League of Legends" is the most important eSports title of the current era. With over 100 million viewers watching the World Championship final, the multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) is at the top of the global eSports scene. Like most MOBAs, League of Legends is played from a bird's eye view and with two teams of five competing in a virtual battle arena.
The football simulation "FIFA" is considered the most played video game in terms of invested playing time. FIFA also enjoys a high level of popularity in the field of eSports, even if it is not quite enough for the eSports podium despite its very good sales figures and active community. Nevertheless, there are several competitions throughout the year; the highlight of the scene is the FIFA Interactive World Cup.
Companies and eSports
More and more companies are investing in eSports - also in Switzerland. They are founding or buying their own clubs, and signing up individual players or entire teams. Sports clubs have also discovered eSports for themselves. For example, FC Basel, FC St. Gallen and FC Winterthur have signed eSports players. They play not only FIFA, but also other eSports titles.