Have Esports Made Gaming Far Too Serious?

Many professionals involved in the gaming landscape have had a front-row seat as the eSports industry has risen in visibility and popularity over the last few years.

As a sector, it’s powered by intense matches and gameplay and a community of exceptionally dedicated fans and it represents a world viewed by millions of people online.

For many it’s the very definition of ‘modern digital competition’, but for some, there’s a worry that it’s ruining the world of gaming and making it far too serious. Whether you’re a dedicated esports champion or someone who isn’t sure and would rather see what kind of casual games you can find out there instead - let’s examine the charge sheet!

It’s a diverse and burgeoning industry

The first thing to note is how remarkable it is in terms of the demographics it appeals to. It doesn’t just command the attention of younger people, but many older people too - and all seemingly bound together with a genuine love for gaming in all its different incarnations.

It could be argued that esports has reshaped our perspectives and helped to elevate the concept of gaming from something that’s simply done as a recreational pastime to something that’s recognized professionally and celebrated as a mainstay of mainstream entertainment.

The arguments in favor of esports

Over the last few years - and especially in the USA, the esports industry has seen unprecedented growth and it’s successfully transformed competitive gaming into a sport that is widely recognized and celebrated.

Its popularity shows how lucrative the market is and the potential for its global audience to grow in future years as the appetite for digital competition grows. In fact, the USA eSports scene has become a huge hub not only for developing talent and innovation - but also for attracting investment too - gaining media and brand sponsorship.

The cons of esports

However, there are some people out there who seem to think that the industry has hurt gaming, making it too serious and taking away the enjoyment from certain aspects of the hobby.

Some gamers feel that it takes away some of the enjoyment of proper gaming - because it often pits professionals against non-professionals, with a tendency for the latter to keep being roundly beaten by the former with little chance of the plucky underdog coming through. As a gamer, you have to sit back and ask the question - “are you fine playing a game with someone who constantly beats you and makes you feel lesser for it?”

There is also the argument from some gamers that many who play esports have a little bit of a superiority complex and in some cases toxic personalities - who get a thrill out of obliterating their competition or hurting other player’s feelings.

The third argument is that esports can get boring if you’re on a team and playing against someone who plays efficiently without giving anyone else a chance, or someone who wins all the points and carries the rest of the team home every game - making all the other players feel sidelined.

Think about the following - are you OK with gameplay in which someone on your team knows everything inside out and actually uses that to their advantage to manipulate the game? Effectively, that’s what competitive gaming has managed to do. There are players out there who will try and learn as many tips and tricks as they can to bend the rules to beat people - come hell or high water and that isn’t fair. Oftentimes, there isn’t even any skill involved, either and all they do is mimic what professional gamers do. There is a suspicion amongst many gamers that it’s all about winning - and not about enjoyment or taking part in anything for fun, which sucks the enjoyment out and ruins it for others.

The key takeaway is that esports might not be for everyone - but played in the right frame of mind they can be enjoyable.