ESports and eSports betting are gaining so much popularity these days that these events manage to fill the entire stadiums with people. Moreover, talks are now in place that will determine whether eSports will be part of the Olympic games in 2024, something that South Korea, the biggest player in the industry, is strongly lobbying for. The number of eSports event is increasing year after year, and the winners at major tournaments are awarded a massive six-figure sum. The most popular games played at tournaments include League of Legends, Call of Duty, StarCraft, Dota 2, and Overwatch. So, if you have not heard of eSports it is time to get acquainted with the hype. Due to an increased amount of media coverage of eSports on channels such as YouTube and Twitch, the estimated amount of people watching eSports by 2019 will be around 427 million. As more companies get involved, more ideas begin to chime in with Skillz, for example, bringing competitive tournaments to mobile games. Up until now, we have seen eSports competitions solely on consoles and PC.
The earliest known eSports event was held in Stanford University where more than 10,000 participants partook in the Intergalactic Spacewar Olympics.
Fans of eSports have voiced their opinions of how they would not like music to be played during games as this would be a distraction. No one plays music during Wimbledon, at the World Cup, or even during a Chess game. It takes away from the intensity of the viewing and may bother the athletes in which case we don’t do it. Instead, there is room to play before and during intervals of eSports competitive games.
American pop and rock band Imagine Dragons, originating from Las Vegas, have gained huge publicity from performing in 2014 at the League of Legends World Championship and coming up with a beautiful animation to accompany their song Warriors. This animated short would generate more than 143,000,000 views which rivals any other chart-topping hit. The feeling is mutual, as plenty of fans absolutely enjoyed Imagine Dragons’ new single and could not have imagined a better song to accompany LoL – it literally became the anthem associated with the event.
Metallica performed at Blizzard’s 2014 Blizzcon and produced the soundtrack for the Counter-Strike Eleague Majors tournament.
eSports is a perfect opportunity for the discovery of new music due to the enormous amount of viewings the event attracts. Moreover, typically eSports events last two days, which is great in combination with music. Just recently Riot Games, the mastermind behind League of Legends, have decided to team up with MTV to launch both music and sports in Singapore – the event is called Hyperplay.
The managing director of Riot Games, in Greater China and Southeast Asia mad the following remark concerning music and eSprots: “Riot has been engaging in musical collaborations with great artists for years. A lot of gamers are also music fans, but it is exciting to see that a lot of talented musicians are also gamers, with whom we can create tailored music experiences within our game universe.”
The music industry can greatly benefit from collaborating with organizers of eSports events. So far, not a lot of bands embraced this huge new audience, but things are about to change very soon.