The year 2020 and the sports industry could easily be seen as the first few words of a bad joke. Sports betting fans around the world can attest to the fact that the sports industry went through some dramatic changes over the course of this abnormal year. Yet, surprisingly Not all has been bad for the sports industry in 2020 though.
The esports and video gaming industry has thrived through this year, scoring some of the best profit numbers it has ever seen. Even without their main tournaments being able to happen the competitive video gaming industry has seen significant growth, especially given the fact that in most places of the world people have seen their lives suddenly revolve around staying at home. While 2021 is being treated with slow but promising caution given the vaccination efforts around the world and other actions taken to eradicate the pandemic, will there be Esports tournaments in 2021?
Some Live Tournaments Will Be Back but Best To Look To 2022
While in real sports there have been efforts made to bring fans back into sporting events, the reality is that 2021 will most probably still be a year where the coronavirus pandemic still has a grasp on the reality of things. Fortnite creators Epic Games have already issued a statement telling fans that the company does not have any plans to host any in-person events in 2021 including the popular Fortnite World Cup. However, the company will continue to hold online events with their Fornite Championship Series with three-player teams becoming the standard size team. Other big title games such as EA Sports’ Madden and FIFA will not be hosting live events in the near future respecting the due coronavirus protocols but will still hold online tournaments to the joy of its fans.
On a different scope, video game developers Moonton, creators of the massive hit Mobile Legends: Bang Bang will be hosting the M2 World Championship in Singapore in early 2021. The event will be one of the first in-person global esport events in 2021 and one of the only live events to be held since the lockdown due to the pandemic began. The tournament will go on without public and a $300.000 prize pool will be in play.
So What’s to Expect Gaming Wise in 2021
While the reality of our days teaches us that the idea of live person events is not the safest idea and still far away from happening that hasn’t stopped video gaming companies from prepping to make 2021 a great year. Two games stand out at the top of the expectancy lists for pro gamers and fans all over the world.
On the one hand, “League of Legends: Wild Rift” one of the top titles in the mobile gaming industry which was supposed to debut in 2020 has seen its release date pushed back to 2021. It is expected that given the massive popularity of the League of Legends franchise, this new title will propel the franchise yet again to the top of the esports heap. One of the main goals that the League of Legends producers have is to finally breakthrough in the North American market by cross pollinating its brand partners across its titles, finally allowing League of Legends to establish a foothold in North America.
On the other hand, if there’s a game that has shaken the gaming industry to the core and will be expected to run through its competition in 2021 is Riot Games’ new shooter game Valorant. This new game, ready to make waves in 2021 has already managed to pull away pro players from such titles like “Overwatch” and “Counter Strike: Global Offensive”. It has also seen initial commitment from most of the major esports teams in the world as well as a growing positive impact in women’s esports with estimates of this game becoming a front row leader in women’s esports.