Although a significant portion of the world’s population still looks at it as a mystery, the video gaming industry has reached unbelievable heights over the last several years. The massive growth can best be viewed through the money involved in the business. Now, before we get to the main theme of the article, let’s just make sure everyone is familiar with the “gaming” term.
The easiest way to describe it would be to say that it is an activity of playing video games. Anyone who plays video games can be called a gamer. It is in our nature to compete with one another or with a computer. People have practiced this competition for decades in so many different areas.
Gaming or Esports appeared as an ideal opportunity for bringing the “competition” to the next level. People from all over the globe have embraced it by challenging each other in so many distinct video games, which is one of the main reasons for the niche’s aforementioned rise in popularity.
The constant technological advances and the availability of high-end mobile devices (Android and iOS ones in particular) have significantly contributed to the rise of both iGaming and eSports.
Nowadays, you can play any game (including the more complex ones) and access any online casino while lying on the sofa, simply by using your mobile phone or tablet.
What is iGaming?
While the two may sound similar to an outsider, iGaming and eSports are two quite different things. The concept of eSports, which we will touch on later, is connected directly to competitively playing classic video games. iGaming, on the other hand, is all about playing gambling-based games which you may find in casinos of the real world, online.
iGaming has been around for over 20 years but has truly exploded over the past decade, with hundreds of online casinos, online bookmakers, and poker sites opening their doors to players from all parts of the world.
The explosion of iGaming seems to be unstoppable, and there are several main types of iGaming that players seem to be enjoying the most nowadays:
- Online Casinos: Offering classic casino games such as video slots, video poker, blackjack, roulette, and much more, online casinos are the most comprehensive of all iGaming platforms and they get the most action as well. There are many different types of online casinos available, as explained here.
- Online Sportsbooks: Giving players a chance to bet on sports from their homes or on their mobile devices, online bookmakers are an easy way to get access to sports betting around the clock.
- Online Poker: Online poker has been in a massive uptick since the early 2000s and while the industry has slowed down just a bit now, poker players from all parts of the world still flock to online poker sites to test their skills.
What is eSports?
The core distinction between iGaming and eSports is quite great. While iGaming somewhat revolves around skills but does come with some risk, eSports are all about skills and competencies. The term itself is shortened from the “electronic gaming” phrase. It is referred to as competitive or professional gaming.
All eSports players started out as casual gamers, but only a handful of them have gone to the level of actual eSports players. If you are gaming, you are by no means necessarily an eSports athlete. Pretty much all of us have seen our parents play a game like Candy Crush Saga on their phones, but they most certainly were not competing in eSports. But who does?
Since the whole industry has grown significantly in the last decade, we’ve constantly been witnessing the emergence of more and more professional eSports athletes in the process.
I like to say wherever the money is involved, it has to be huge, and the famous League of Legends or Call of Duty competitions dish out prize pools that exceed millions of dollars. The list of eSports gaming genres is quite similar to the one described above in the iGaming section, yet containing important distinctions.
Again, it is essential to recognize the main difference – these games are not played for fun, the players compete against each other in professional competitions where the winners receive whopping cash prizes. Here is our list of the main types of eSports games:
- First-person shooters (FPS) – The first-person point of view in a game focused on gun combat. Counter-Strike series, Call of Duty series, Fortnite series, and Battlefield series are the most popular.
- Real-time strategy (RTS) – Two teams going head to head in an attempt to destroy the rival’s base. It is usually played team vs team or 1-on-1. Warcraft and Starcraft are the dominant figures here.
- Multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) – Essentially, it is somewhat similar to RTS games. League of Legends and Dota 2, each of which falls into this category, host some of the best-paid competitions in the world.
- Sports games – Although FIFA and PES have been all-time rivals in this department, FIFA made a massive breakthrough just thanks to eSports. FIFA tournaments have been incredibly popular lately.
- Role-playing games – These are based on impressive storylines and intensive character developments. Final Fantasy is the category’s shiniest gem
- Massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORP) –These are role-playing games played online against tens of thousands of other players. World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XIV are the most popular examples
There is a thin line between gaming and eSports, but this article should do the job of helping you realize the core distinction between the two. We look at it as a “combat” between generations.
The older generation will naturally lean much more towards casual gaming, while the youngsters will be much more attracted to the eSports. Those who prefer some risk with their gaming will likely turn to iGaming instead and play some casino games or bet on sports for their daily entertainment.