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eSports Zone No. 1

eSports is, by any measure, a rapidly growing segment of gaming, live media and the event space. Research firm Newzoo keeps its fingers on the pulse of related data, and it found that the global eSports market is growing from $325 million in 2015 to $463 million in 2016. By 2019, that number will more than double to $1.1 billion in value. From our perspective, Events for Gamers, after all, includes events for pro gamers, too.

There’s plenty of news to share from the world of eSports, and we’re going to do our best to help you keep up with at least some of the stories from that past-paced world.

eSports in the Olympics?

ESPN reports that there’s a chance that eSports may become a recognized Olympics sport by as early as 2020. The International e-Sports Federation submitted a request to the International Olympic Committee on February 19, in pursuit of a pathway to recognition for competitive gaming in the Olympics. The request received a reply April 8, which now leaves the ball in IeSF’s court to respond to the IOC.

Does that potentially add up to seeing the likes of “League of Legends” and “StarCraft II” under the very big international spotlight at Tokyo in four years? We’ll see.

How about eSports in NFL stadiums?

Maybe you’re also ready for your favorite game competitions to hit major sports venues closer to home. According to an [a]list Daily interview with Mike Sepso, senior vice president at Activision Blizzard (and eSports industry veteran), Sepso anticipates eSports events to take place at NFL stadiums. If the eSports experience can sell out a smaller arena, it might be ready for a stadium, he suggests.

SteelSeries at PAX East

A well-known gaming gear company, SteelSeries, is loading up it gear for show-and-tell at the Boston-based behemoth, PAX East 2016. Among the holy PC-gaming accessory trifecta of keyboards, headsets and mice to be represented, there’s a new “tournament ready” keyboard in town. Namely, the APEX M500 tournament-ready mechanical keyboard, entering the clickety-clackety fray at $99.99, with anti-ghosting technology, cable management, Cherry MX Red switches and blue LED lighting.

Maybe we’ll see this keyboard used, or partnered with, at upcoming eSports tournaments. For now, it’ll be shown off at PAX East.

Kingston and ESL

There are a few sources of news from eSports more active than the stream of updates coming down the pipeline from the Electronic Sports League Pro network. Among the tournament events they organize, ESL One is one of the biggest.

Hardware heavyweight Kingston has just partnered with its 2016 mega-event tour. Kingston provides high-performance SSD and memory for the guts of the PCs used in the tournaments, while allowing fans to try out the HyperX Cloud and Cloud II gaming headsets.

Speaking of ESL …

ESL has no shortage of news from recent months. Still, from just the last couple of weeks alone, ESL One Cologne has been announced as a “Valve Major” for its $1 million major tournament, for 16 of the world’s best Counter-Strike Offensive Teams. The stadium event will be hosted in Cologne, Germany’s LANXESS arena July 8-10, 2016.

Thanks for reading the first edition of “eSports Zone”! We hope to see you for our next edition coming soon.


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