A Look Back on How COVID-19 changed the Esports Industry
Let’s admit we all had high expectations for 2020, am I right? Even though last year had its downfalls, it wasn’t all that bad, especially for the esports industry. As classes, work, and events switched over to becoming virtual, online games and esports continued to flourish compared to any other year with the exception of postposed and canceled events. The esports industry rose at the top while individuals looked for new and exciting ways to entertain themselves during the pandemic. Two main aspects changed drastically during this pandemic; adapting online and virtual sports.
As technology continues to advance, so will esports and the many innovations it has pioneered along the way. A considerable chunk of time people spent online was focused on entertainment. The rise of online gaming was no shock because individuals have been accustomed to staying online for such an extensive amount of time, more than we’ve ever experienced before. With the hyped-up interest in the esports community and increased user engagement, online gaming has impacted the switch of moving online. Inevitably, online users’ presence had gone up, especially with video content, online competitions, and products on the rise to entice them. Esports has been the driving force of pop culture, where it’s changed the way younger generations absorb entertainment. The cancelation of real-life sports has also introduced a new audience into the online gaming world.
While esports tournaments transitioned online, real-life sports had no such advantage. Those involved in physical professional sports needed to find a way to engage their audience by also continuing to make revenue, so why not get involved in esports? Many professional athletes saw esports as an opportunity to stay connected with their fans during the pandemic. The boost in demand for gaming peripherals and consoles gave esports companies a chance to sell their players, streaming knowledge, and more to those real-life sports teams. Sports fans also had minimal games to watch when the pandemic first started, whether it was baseball or football, but this gave them an interest in esports as it was the only game industry still running. Esports has a wide variety of sports-related games such as baseball, racing, and basketball gaming categories, which had attracted fans into playing online.
So what can we look forward to after the pandemic ends and the world returns to normal? One thing’s for sure, the esports industry’s growth won’t be slowing down anytime soon. As long as they remain innovation-driven, we will see more of esports and gaming take over.