The esports industry evolves every year with a stronger cast of characters and more exciting innovations—here’s how to get started
Getting into the competitive spirit either with friends or by yourself becomes even more appealing with the evolving graphics and gameplays of video games. These games are accessible to most people with a PC or a console and an internet connection, but the professional side of the industry encourages players to invest in better equipment and time for training.
The emerging industry of esports has been gaining traction with the popularity of competitive gaming since the early 2000s. This involves tournaments and leagues across multiple websites that have amateurs and professionals competing in multiplayer games. Many of which were inspired by traditional sports leagues with similar infrastructures and rulesets.
A bulk of these tournaments and leagues take place online, but the bigger matches like the League of Legends World Championships take place in live venues where players from around the world descend on a certain location to compete against each other. Majority of online tournaments offer free registration to encourage newcomers and professionals to test their skills while also contributing to a growing community of gamers. In case you want to dive headfirst into esports, we’ve listed the different genres and subgenres of esports to help you better understand how this world works:
Multiplayer online battle arena (MOBAs)
This is arguably one of the most popular esports in the Philippines. The country even bagged a gold medal for Mobile Legends: Bang Bang at the 2019 Southeast Asian Games. When you play MOBAs, you’ll learn to strategize with your team consisting of multiple players with different assigned roles such as tank, support, carry, and jungler—all of which correspond to certain tasks and can be strengthened throughout the gameplay. The objective is to destroy the enemy’s base while protecting your own. Popular titles in this genre include League of Legends, Dota 2, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, and Minecraft.
First-person shooter (FPS)
If you see a floating gun with hands on your screen, a health bar, and accessories on the sides, you’re probably playing an FPS game. The objective is straightforward: Shoot your opponents. Although this varies across different FPS games, the common thread is to prevent your opponent from carrying out their objectives (whatever it may be). This genre is one of the first games to enter the competitive gaming scene with Doom and Quake back in the ‘90s. Popular titles now include Counter-Strike, Overwatch, Battlefield, and Call of Duty.
Taking place in a defined map, world or level, two players equipped with an equal amount of resources need to grow their army and protect their base while plotting to destroy and take over their opponent’s base. Definitive games of this genre are Starcraft and Warcraft.
Unlike an FPS, you get a bird’s eye view of the map, the computer-generated characters and stats that offer glimpses of who has the advantage. It’s a “real-time” game that ends when one takes over the base of the other and once the game starts, there are no pauses and breaks while both you and your opponent are moving simultaneously.
Player vs. player (PvP)
A joy to play for sports and fighting fans, this genre refers to games built as close simulations to real-life traditional sports involving two humans competing against each other. A concrete example would be what we see when two friends battle each other on a console like Xbox and Playstation.
Familiar games include FIFA, Madden, and Rocket League. On the other hand, fighting PvP games include titles like Tekken, Mortal Kombat, and Street Fighter. Some of these can also be found in arcades just in case you want to try them out before purchasing a console. Although PvP leagues are not as popular as other esports in terms of viewership, they still have a large audience in the industry.
As the newcomer in esports, battle royale offers an entertaining dimension to competition with its last-man-standing rule. Ever since Fortnite: Battle Royale’s release in 2017, the genre has been gaining popularity despite reviving an old survival game (H1Z1 released in January 2015).
The objective is to outlast all the other players (numbering even up to hundreds) dropped on a virtual island with nothing but their ability to strategically pick up gear, supplies, and weapons throughout the gameplay. Despite having similar objectives, different gaming companies try to inject variety by adding different features across their games that encourage players to be resourceful. Other popular game titles include PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) and Apex Legends.