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Japan Expansion Esports Economy 2025

Japan Expansion Esports Economy 2025 870 617 esctoday

Japan plans ambitious expansion of esports to boost economy through 2025

The government has an ambitious plan to expand Japan’s esports industry with the private sector to help revitalize regional economies and increase social participation by people with disabilities, with an eye to generating ¥285 billion ($2.6 billion) in economic benefits a year by 2025, sources close to the matter said.

The global esports market is estimated to be worth ¥100 billion, with the United States, China and parts of Europe seeing fast growth. In Japan, however, competitive gaming hasn’t really caught fire as a sports event, and the video game market remains dominated by single-player titles designed for smartphones and the gaming consoles of Nintendo Co. and Sony Corp.

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry will work with companies and legal experts to draw up guidelines for promoting Japan’s esports industry, which lacks expertise in organizing large tournaments and dealing with intellectual property rights and other legal issues related to game developers, the sources said.

Through these efforts, the ministry expects esports to generate at least ¥285 billion in economic benefits for regional economies from ticket sales, online viewing fees and advertising revenue, as well as from tournament hosting and corporate equipment supply by 2025.

According to marketing research and news service company BCN Inc., the size of Japan’s esports market is expected to grow from ¥6.1 billion in 2019 to ¥15.3 billion in 2023, propelled by the greater use of 5G telecommunications services and the entry of more game makers into the market. Its data consist of advertising revenue, which accounts for about 75 percent of the market, plus licensing fees, media rights, ticket sales, prize money and merchandise sales.

On a local level, there also have been attempts to use esports to provide health and social benefits.

A nonprofit organization near Tokyo, the Saitama City Citizens Social Network, has established an association to organize esports events for retired people to improve their cognitive health. It claims it is the first group of its kind in the world.

In Takasaki, Gunma Prefecture, an esports event for people with disabilities was held using special controllers customized for their different, individual needs.

Esports Coronavirus Quarantine Indoor Sports

Esports Coronavirus Quarantine Indoor Sports 618 410 esctoday

In the Quarantine Age, an indoor sport seizes center stage

Four men appeared on my television at 2 p.m. in neat rectangles. The backgrounds varied. Barren white walls in one, a few frames in another. A window, some furniture. They all had headsets. One wore a burgundy suit and tie. The others went more casual in the confines of their homes.

The gathering resembled the Zoom video chats we have staged with coworkers and friends since the coronavirus outbreak shut down pretty much everything. But this setting was different than our virtual happy hours and mundane meetings.

It was the broadcast for the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS). League of Legends, a multiple-player online battle arena game developed by Riot Games and released in 2009, is the most popular esports title in the world with up to eight million gamers logging on daily to play on their computers. The LCS, which was created in 2012, is the game’s highest level of competition in North America.

It is also one of the few remaining live entertainment options afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thousands were concurrently watching the stream, presented by a large mainstream advertiser, State Farm, on Twitch and YouTube. It was back online after a one-week hiatus, pushing forward when much of society had skidded to a halt. The matches, regularly held in West Los Angeles in front of a few hundred fans, were staged remotely.

“We feel like we’re weathering the storm pretty well,” LCS commissioner Chris Greeley said, “but obviously, as it is for everyone, it’s still a storm.”

I’m a casual gamer. Stick and ball sports were my preference growing up, though in recent years my time has been limited to playing shooters online with friends. It’s a social activity, and one of the few available since COVID-19 arrived. After downloading the game on my laptop, I tried following along with the ad hoc broadcast, curious and confused. I didn’t know the rules or the point of the game but, holed up in my apartment, I welcomed the live competition. The pickings have never been slimmer on a Saturday afternoon.

This should be one of the most exciting periods on the sports calendar. The NCAA Tournament going mad, the start of baseball season, battles for playoff seeding in the NBA, the Masters right around the next magnolia bush, even the XFL for a football fix if mock NFL drafts didn’t suffice.

But those events were postponed for the foreseeable future, if not canceled completely, leaving playing video games — and watching others play them — as two of the limited choices left to sate our social and entertainment thirst. As stadiums and arenas go silent, there is a growing din in a corner of the landscape that until now has largely been drowned out by more traditional, mainstream sports.

It’s coming from the more than 150 million Americans who identify as gamers, and not just the influencers who have become wealthy stars: Ninja, PewDiePie, PrestonPlayz, Markiplier. It’s NBA stars challenging each to other to Call of Duty; teens playing Fortnite at 3 a.m. on indefinite leave from school; 9-to-5 workers at home sneaking in FIFA games between Zoom meetings. It’s me.

Esports were built for the quarantine culture because, to some degree, isolation always has been a part of its DNA. And with hundreds of millions now shut in for the time being, an already robust community senses an opportunity.

“It is an absolutely terrible thing that’s happening around the world,” Ryan Friedman said. “Obviously, it’s a huge net negative, but with the cancellation of traditional sports, a lot of people who would have never given esports a chance are going to start at least looking into it and that’s a good opportunity for esports to draw in a bunch of new viewers.”

Friedman is the chief of staff of Dignitas, an organization with teams in various esports acquired by the Philadelphia 76ers in 2016. He is also the younger brother of Andrew Friedman, the Dodgers’ president of baseball operations. While Andrew’s team sat idle on opening day last week, wondering if Major League Baseball would have a 2020 season, Ryan’s franchise, one of the 10 in the LCS, stayed busy.

Esports — broadly defined as professional competition using video games — had several major events on the calendar canceled, but most entities have been able to continue competition knowing an amplified audience is available. Evidence of the opportunity is found on Twitch, the go-to streaming platform for casual and professional gaming.

People are streaming and watching streams more than ever since the outbreak began taking hold, according to and TwitchTracker.com and SullyGnome.com, which monitor Twitch audiences. The platform has set all-time highs this month in peak daily active users (22.7 million), average concurrent viewers (1.6 million), and number of streamers (65,000).

“In esports, the show can go on,” esports lawyer Bryce Blum said. “We can transition back to our roots.”

The increase has not, however, been as uniform for conventional esports events. A few esports have seen instant growth in viewers, such as Rocket League and the ESL Pro League, a 24-team Counter-Strike: Global Offensive competition that recently enjoyed its most-watched broadcast day in history. Conversely, League of Legends has experienced a year-over-year jump of around 20,000 viewers on Twitch this month, but has seen a dip since the LCS opened its spring season to great fervor in late January.

The industry is nascent but not new with consumers around the world. Money has flooded into the space over the last decade to fuel a booming enterprise that has eclipsed $1 billion globally. And plenty of that capital has been supplied by leaders in traditional sports.

In 2016, Dodgers co-owner Peter Guber and Ted Leonsis, owner of the NBA’s Washington Wizards and NHL’s Washington Capitals, led a group that bought controlling interest in Team Liquid, recognized as the most successful esports organization in history. Dan Gilbert, owner of the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers, invested in an organization and the Golden State Warriors founded one in 2017.

The infusion accelerated the industry’s expansion. Live competitions with massive audiences became common. Events filled Staples Center and Madison Square Garden. Millions of dollars have been awarded to players in different games, and several players boast career earnings of more than $1 million.

In recent weeks, traditional sports entities with esports partnerships have turned to the virtual world after their schedules were abruptly detonated. Leonsis’ Monumental Sports and Entertainment Group recently began airing one-hour video game simulations of previously scheduled Wizards and Capitals games on NBC Sports Washington. Formula 1 ran a race with professional drivers and gamers that aired on Twitch. On Friday, MLB held a tournament with four major leaguers on MLB: The Show 20 and steamed it on different platforms.

NASCAR aired a virtual version of the Dixie Vodka 150 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on FOX two Sundays ago with the participants using racing simulators remotely. The real-life NASCAR racers who participated were not rookies to the platform — racers have used virtual simulators as practice tools for the real thing for years. The results were proof.

Denny Hamlin, a three-time Daytona 500 winner, edged out retired driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the win in a $40,000 iRacing rig at his house, barefoot with his daughter cheering behind him. NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon was one of three people on the call for the 35-car race from a studio in Charlotte. The inaugural event drew more than 900,000 viewers, making it the highest-rated esports television program in history.

On Sunday, Timmy Hill, a 27-year-old pro driver who has never won a NASCAR Cup Series race, won the second virtual race at Texas Motor Speedway.

NASCAR chief digital officer Tim Clark said the plan is to continue staging virtual versions of its races, following the usual schedule, until its season resumes. As it stands, the on-track season is suspended until May 9.

For its part, the League of Legends Championship Series confronted the coronavirus outbreak like traditional sports leagues, realizing quickly that continuing as usual was irresponsible.

A day after announcing plans to proceed without a studio audience, media and non-essential personnel, the league on March 13 postponed that weekend’s competition entirely. Four days later, the league announced it was going remote for the foreseeable future.

Greeley, the commissioner, said the decision was not easy. In-person events not only make for better entertainment, but better competition. Playing remotely could lead to slower connections, which impacts gameplay. And players are less supervised, opening opportunities for cheating. The league spent the next week devising a plan to limit network issues and rule-breaking.

On Wednesday, LCS announced the rest of the season, including the finals, which originally were scheduled to be held in a 12,000-seat stadium at the Dallas Cowboys’ practice facility in Frisco, Texas, April 18-19, would take place online.

“We can play from home,” said Steve Arhancet, co-owner and CEO of Team Liquid, the reigning LCS champions. “That makes us a much more resilient entertainment industry when it comes to competitive sports.”

The 10-team LCS returned from its one-week postponement with five matches. The battles comprised Week 8 of the competition’s spring split. A team named Cloud 9 won both of its matches, improving its league-best record in the march toward a $200,000 prize pool to supplement player salaries that average more than $300,000.


Esports Expansion Through 2025

Esports Expansion Through 2025 666 479 esctoday

Japan to set ambitious target for esports expansion through 2025

The Japanese government plans an ambitious expansion of the domestic esports industry through cooperation with the private sector to help revitalize local economies and increase social participation of people with disabilities, hoping to realize annual economic benefits totaling 285 billion yen ($2.6 billion) in five years, sources close to the matter said.

While the number of players and spectators is rising in the global esports market currently estimated at 100 billion yen with the United States, China and parts of Europe seeing fast growth, the idea of competitive gaming as a sports event is catching on only slowly in Japan where titles provided for personal use on smartphones and home-use consoles of Nintendo Co. and Sony Corp. account for a dominant portion of the video game market.

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry will work together with companies in the gaming industry and legal experts to draw up guidelines for promoting the country’s esports industry, which lacks expertise in organizing large tournaments and dealing with legal issues such as intellectual property of game developers, the sources said.

Through such collaborative efforts, the ministry expects that ticket sales to spectators of tournaments, fees for online viewing and advertising revenue, along with economic effects on local economies from hosting such events and companies supplying related equipment, would amount to at least 285 billion yen in 2025.

According to marketing research and news service company BCN Inc., the size of Japan’s esports market is expected to grow from 6.1 billion yen in 2019 to 15.3 billion yen in 2023, propelled by the greater use of 5G telecommunication services and more game title providers entering the market. Its data consist of advertising revenue which accounts for about 75 percent of the market, licensing fees, media rights, ticket sales, prize money and merchandise sales.

There have been attempts at a local level in Japan to use esports for its health and social benefits.

A nonprofit organization near Tokyo, Saitama City Citizens Social Network, has established an association to organize esports events for retired residents with an aim of improving their cognitive health, claiming it is the first of its kind in the world.

n Takasaki, Gunma Prefecture, an esports event for people with disabilities was held using special controllers developed for their different individual needs.

eSports And Gaming Industry Thriving As Video Games

eSports And Gaming Industry Thriving As Video Games 878 592 esctoday

eSports and gaming industry thriving as video games provide escape from reality during coronavirus pandemic

While the sports world is at a standstill, pro athletes like Mavericks All-Star Luka Doncic and millions around the world have turned to video games.

DALLAS — WFAA’s Jonah Javad wrote this from his apartment balcony because he — like most of you — is staying home in an effort to limit the outbreak of coronavirus and to “flatten the curve.”

The COVID-19 pandemic flattened the sports world as we know it. The NBA is in timeout. The NHL put its season on ice. March Madness upset by “March Sadness.”

Almost every sport and league you can think of is on hiatus. “This is a great opportunity for more eyeballs to be attracted to eSports,” admitted Envy Gaming, Inc. CEO Mike Rufail.

The Texas native is in charge of Envy Gaming, which owns multiple eSports teams like the Dallas Fuel (Overwatch League) and Dallas Empire (Call of Duty League).

According to Forbes, Envy Gaming is the 8th most valuable eSports organization in the world.

For those unfamiliar to eSports: 

“It’s competitive video gaming,” Rufail explained. “It’s as simple as that.”

In traditional pro sports, there are different leagues for different sports. 

In eSports, there are different leagues for different video games.

“The gaming industry is certainly seeing a lot of growth and interest during this time,” said Rufail.

Verizon reported a 75% increase in video game activity during the first week of quarantine earlier this month.

Live streaming platforms like YouTube Gaming and Twitch saw a 10% increase in viewership.

Meanwhile, NASCAR found a way to draw eyeballs with iRacing.

Since last week’s Cup Series race was postponed, NASCAR replaced the television time slot with a virtual version as drivers competed from home.

The iRacing event drew more than 900,000 viewers on television — making it the most watched eSports TV program to date.

Keep in mind: Most views for eSports events come from the live streaming services like Twitch.

NASCAR returned to iRacing with a race from virtual Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday.

“The video game industry as a whole is probably in a very healthy state compared to other industries that had to shut down their business or other forms of sports entertainment because they cant hold live events,” said Rufail.

Live eSports events are on hold, too. 

However, Overwatch League resumed play on Saturday and the Dallas Fuel expects to follow suit next weekend with players competing from their homes instead.

“During this moment, we’re going to mint more families who become fans of eSports and can sit at home and watch it together and cheer for a team,” Rufail said.

Envy Gaming is a Dallas-based company located above our WFAA studios at Victory Park.

The American Airlines Center is next door, which is normally home to the Dallas Stars and the Dallas Mavericks.

Mavs All-Star Luka Doncic knows how to use a screen, literally and literally.

Turns out, #77 is a gamer on and off the court.

Since the NBA shutdown on March 11 due to the coronavirus pandemic, Luka has played a lot of video games.

“I’ll sign him to a contract right now, as long as Mr. Cuban lets me,” jokes Rufail. “Luka plays Overwatch so we’re trying to get him on to play some games.”

Now more than ever, pro athletes like Luka, along with millions of people around the world, have turned to video games to escape reality.

“Some of the most well known athletes in Dallas, right now, are definitely at home playing games and competing online,” said Rufail. “Honestly, there are benefits to them keeping their reflexes going when they can’y run around a field or a court right now.”

The eSports industry was already on the rise. The #StayHome orders will make it skyrocket.

What led to the surge in eSports interest and viewership?

“People are just attracted to human competition,” said Rufail. “That, combined with so many people who engage with video game content these days, has really fueled the growth our industry.”

The age gap between those who understand eSports (much less watch) and those who don’t is predictable.

“It’s kind of a shift in interest from generation to generation and eSports is one of those things the older generation didn’t have when they came through,” explained Rufail.

eSports brings in more than $1 billion in annual revenue.

By 2021, viewership is expected to top every major sports league in the world except the NFL.

“It’s only going to get bigger and better from here,” smiled Rufail.

The sports world is frozen.

The eyeballs are not.


Esports Offer An Alternative

Esports Offer An Alternative 753 552 esctoday

No NFL, NBA, MLB or NHL to bet on? These esports offer an alternative

With major sports on hiatus, many bettors are turning to what competitions are still taking place. Among them is esports. Though competitive gaming has boomed with live events in the past several years, its roots are online, with tournaments being organized remotely. In our current reality of social distancing and self-quarantine, many esports leagues and tournaments have rediscovered these roots.

Here is a primer on a few games that may eventually have widespread betting odds.


NHL 20

What is NHL 20?

NHL 20 is a hockey simulation video game put out annually by EA Sports. This isn’t NBA Jam or NFL Blitz; this is a true-to-life (as much as possible) version of what you see on the ice.

That means teams are weighted according to how good they are in the NHL: The Bruins, Capitals, Lightning and Penguins, for example, are all strong teams in the game.

What’s happening with NHL teams now that there is no season?

There are different content paths being taken by different teams in the NHL right now on how they are presenting regular-season games in NHL 20. Some are doing CPU vs. CPU simulations, while others are having the mascots join in. For this article I’m going to focus on what the Capitals are doing, involving their professional esports competitor.

Wait, the Capitals have a professional esports competitor?

Yep. His name is John “John Wayne” (yes, like the movie star) Casagranda, from Anchorage, Alaska. He grew up a die-hard Arizona Coyotes fan, but at the start of this season he was signed by the Washington Capitals’ “Caps Gaming” arm as the first NHL video game esports pro signed to a NHL organization. John Wayne is very good at the game; in both the 2018 and 2019 seasons of the NHL Gaming World Championship (the NHL’s official esports tournament for which 2020 qualifications are currently underway online), he placed third and second, respectively. He’s one of the highest earning “chel” (what the NHL video game is affectionately called by many) players out there.

So what kind of video game events are the Capitals putting on right now?

There are two things happening with the Capitals, the first of which you might have seen news for already. One is regular-season game simulations (CPU vs. CPU) for the Capitals and Washington Wizards in the NBA on the NBC Sports Washington television station.

What involves John Wayne, however, is what you would be more interested in as a sports bettor and what you will see lines for in American sportsbooks. John Wayne has been playing select regular-season games as the Capitals against other top chel competitors. The games are broadcast on Twitch (a platform on which people primarily stream video games live). When I say “games,” I mean a best-of-three series, which makes it longer and more entertaining for the viewers.

What can you tell me about the the upcoming series?

John Wayne has played four series so far. He opened with a tight 2-1 series loss against “Top Shelf Cookie,” who happens to be the 2019 NHL Gaming World Champion and beat John Wayne in the final. John Wayne bounced back with back-to-back 2-0 series wins against Dangs92 (Ottawa Senators) and 2019 NHL GWC runner-up Jr Pens (Pittsburgh Penguins). In his latest series, he fell in three games to St. Louis Blues emergency goaltender Tyler “Daddy Padre” Stewart.

There are two series coming up:

• Saturday vs. TactixHD (Detroit Red Wings)

I’m going John Wayne with confidence. JW is a more proven and accomplished competitor, and then you add in the struggling Detroit Red Wings, which will severely hinder TacTix, who is primarily a content creator. Luckily, he will make it entertaining while Alexander Ovechkin and the Caps hunt for goals.

• Monday vs. CoreyPerry1 (Buffalo Sabres)

The Sabres aren’t a very strong team in the game, and CoreyPerry1 (not the NHL player Corey Perry) has competed in a few qualifiers and ranked in the top 8 four times but has yet to earn money at an NHL esports event. This is another one where I would be looking at John Wayne as a prohibitive favorite and might add this as part of a parlay.

These are the announced games so far, but sources at Caps Gaming have told ESPN there might be more games added — so if you’re enjoying making picks here, there might be more coming.

On top of this and aside from official NHL teams, there are tournaments that are starting to pop up involving top competitors. When looking into these games, if lines appear, the two keys are: how good are the competitors, and how good are the teams they are controlling? 



What is NBA 2K?

NBA 2K is a basketball simulation video game developed by Visual Concepts and currently published by 2K Sports. The series has been released annually since 1999.

Wait, this isn’t EA Sports?

No. EA also has an NBA series, NBA Live, that has been around since 1994. However, some editions have been canceled, including the 2020 edition.

How realistic is the game?

It’s meant to be as realistic as possible. So, good teams should be good, bad teams should be bad, etc. It’s meant to be a true-to-form representation of the NBA.

What about the NBA 2K League? What’s that?

That is the official esports league for the NBA 2K video game franchise. Instead of NBA players in the game, esports competitors, in full teams, compete using their in-game avatars, representing NBA teams. Knicks Gaming, for example, is the NBA 2K League team of the New York Knicks; there’s Lakers Gaming, Celtics Crossover Gaming, and so on.

Season 3 was set to start in New York in late March but has been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

But I still see NBA 2K games online, such as the Phoenix Suns’ simulations. What gives?

The NBA season is suspended, but some teams, including the Suns, are simulating regular-season games. The Suns, in particular, are enlisting NBA 2K League players, actual NBA players and other athletes (they brought in NFL players Keenan Allen and Tony Jefferson for one game, for example) to play. You may not see too many lines here, however, because the announcements are usually made the day of the games.


League of Legends

What is League of Legends?

League of Legends is best described as a 5-on-5 game in which both teams start at their respective bases and the object of the game is to get to the other team’s base and destroy it (more specifically, destroy its “Nexus,” which is deep within the base and looks like a diamond shard lodged in a fountain).

This is the most popular esport in the world, a game that has been around since 2009 and continues to grow.

How many characters can players choose from?

There are almost 150 champions (as they are called in the game) players can use.

That’s a lot. How do I know who to pick?

The playing field, or map, is always the same every game. There are three major distinct pathways: the top, mid and bottom lanes. The triangular areas in between the paths are called the “jungle.” Based off this, there are five main positions in the game: Top Laner, Jungler, Mid Laner, Bot Laner (or AD Carry) and Support (a role that supports the bottom lane, so that lane usually has two champions in it). The champions in the game are mainly categorized by these roles, all with unique abilities. Some are bruisers that deal a lot of damage with their fists or weapons, some have a lot of armor and health to protect them, some use magic and special powers — there are tons of possibilities. The complexity of the game is matching these powers and combining them with other champions’ powers to create incredible teamfight scenarios (like plays in traditional sports).

What does a typical game look like?

It starts with a “draft.” Teams ban certain champions (maybe the team doesn’t like to play against that champion, or an opposing player is really good with a particular champion — it helps level the playing field a bit), then they take turns picking from what’s available and best for a strategy or team composition.

Once every player has made a pick, they begin the game. Players head to their lanes and begin gaining gold by eliminating “minions,” which are computer-controlled characters in the game. Players level up their champions until they feel they have an advantage over their opponent in their lane, then they attack. You can attack at any time, it just might not be advantageous to do so (some champions are stronger than others at different points in the game). Around the map there are computer-controlled characters that offer strong increases in power and gold that spawn throughout the game; teams might come together to try and vanquish them.

One interesting part of the game is the “last-hit” rule. It’s not the team that deals the most damage to these characters that will get the spoils, it’s the team that gets the “last hit.” That means one team can literally deal 999 or 1,000 of the damage necessary to eliminate a dragon, let’s say, but if the opponent swoops in and times that last hit perfectly, their team “steals” the kill and therefore the spoils. So the as game goes on, champions will battle champions. Sometimes there will be 2-on-1 plays with players moving over to another lane, and other times there are 5-on-5 teamfights. … Slowly but surely, both teams try to get to the other team’s base to claim the nexus and win the game.

Why is this game so popular?

Once you watch a few games, you understand the basic fundamentals of what’s happening, but the game is very complex, with infinite possibilities and scenarios. It keeps the game fresh and fun. There are items to buy, champion matchups that are fresh, strategies that emerge… not to mention every once in a while the game gets updated, which means some champions get statistics lowered or increased, making them stronger or weaker, new champions get introduced (like the latest champion, “Sett,” best described as a pretty boy backyard brawler and seen a lot in top-level gameplay lately). This all factors in.


Rocket League

What is Rocket League?

This might be the easiest esport to understand. It’s 3-on-3, cars hitting a ball. Literally, car soccer. You see it once, and you immediately understand what is happening.

So what makes it so interesting?

It’s easy to learn, difficult to master — the trick shots, the angles the pros are able to utilize during the game are incredible. You’ll see cars flying up walls, stop midair and change their trajectory just to be able to hit the ball at a certain angle such that the opponent is unable to make a save and the ball will sail into the goal. Lots of these goals are very impressive to watch.

High level Rocket League play can be mind-blowing. It’s no surprise that before the coronavirus pandemic, there was an esports event organized by Intel scheduled for a month before the Olympics in Tokyo, and one of the -two marquee esports titles selected was Rocket League. Its mass global appeal, simple-yet-complex gameplay and established, rabid fan base, position it well to become a top esport, especially with people who don’t follow esports.


vCounter-Strike: Global Offensive

What is CS:GO?

Imagine two teams of five people. One team, the offense, has a bomb it needs to plant at one of the designated bomb sites. The other team, the defense, is trying to stop them. If the offense can plant the bomb without its entire team dying or before the defense diffuses the bomb, the offense win the round. If not, the defense wins the round. Multiply this by 30 rounds (first to 16), and that’s CS:GO. No magic, no special abilities, just the chance to buy better weapons/loadouts along the way.

Keep in mind, that’s just scratching the surface. CS:GO might be the purest competition that exists in esports in many ways. It’s an intricate game and offers the right level of complexity that has made the game (and scene) stand the test of time.

Who are the best teams?

According to the HLTV rankings, the best teams are NAVI, Astralis, G2, mouseesports and fnatic. Astralis is a dynasty-type team and has won multiple world championships, despite showing some cracks recently.