eSports Evolution-SXSWi

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Competitive gaming originated in the classic arcades of the 80s, but as gamers shifted to the Internet to connect and be entertained, a new generation has embraced eSports as a form of spectator entertainment. Following the trajectory of poker from being a niche pastime for players to a primetime sport for viewers, eSports represents a burgeoning market. The emergence of live streaming technology, in-game chat functionality and ways to monetize content enable players and spectators to connect in real time, contributing to the growth of a multibillion dollar industry. In addition, the ability to connect around gaming has driven the growth of a strong community, similar to that of sports enthusiast communities. With millions frequenting live video game streaming sites, the movement shows no signs of slowing. Join industry insiders from Twitch and eSports community leaders to explore and discuss the evolution of video games from pastime to spectator entertainment.


  • 1. How a Niche Past Time Is Taking the World By Storm

2. Foundation of eSportseSports growing popularity is mirroringthe rise of poker; 20 years ago fewimagined Poker would become aspectator sport, but it did because of thefollowing elements reflected in eSportscurrent trajectory: 1. Poker had a massive base of players alreadyenjoying it online 2. Invention of the hole cam enabled viewers tosee players hands; eSports use thespectator mode 3. Commentators narrating on-screen action toeducate novices and to add a dramaticnarrative 4. Distribution in the form of ESPN; Twitch isthe ESPN of eSports 3. eSports Now 170 Million gamers in the US 100s of events around the world with prizepools in the millions of dollars Gaming is YouTubes #2 category reaching150 million UVPM; 3x growth since 2011 Number two sport in South Korea 4. Future of the Movement $65 billion spent on gaming in 2011; expected to reach $115 billion by 2015 Further expansion of eSports popularity from Asia and Europe to N. America