A deadly shooting in a video-game tournament in Florida has brought attention to the competitive world of esports, where gamers play Madden NFL 19 chase $1.25 million in prizes by means of a series of events across the country.
The authorities say the 24-year-old David Katz of Baltimore killed two people and injured nine others before fatally shooting himself Sunday in a Madden tournament is held in a river in the Jacksonville mall.
Madden is one of the most popular sports titles in gaming, with the championships broadcast on ESPN and the fans on the streaming services such as Twitch.
Here are some questions and answers about the races and the larger world of esports:
WHAT IS ESPORTS?
Video gamers are competing for digital dominance from Pong and Pac-Man and the activity of the esports is especially popular outside the United States, in countries such as South Korea.
Market analyst Newzoo projects in the industry will do $1.7 billion in revenue by 2021.
The most competitive esports to be played on pcs, although many gamers play on An Xbox or Playstation 4. Some of the most popular esports titles include League of Legends, DOTA 2, Counter Strike and Overwatch, while there are other events to be developed for the hugely popular Fortnite.
HOW MADDEN GAMES IN THEIR WORK?
Madden is a football game that closely mirrors the chess match of the sport: the Players try to outwit each other play selections on offense and defense, and then compete to execute those plays on the field. Tournaments match competitors against each other often in the single-elimination games, putting pressure on the participants to win immediately or be eliminated.
The Florida tournament was one of the four feeder tournaments, award of $5000 in prizes and, more importantly, two places in the Madden Classic final scheduled to be held in Las Vegas in mid-October. That title, awards $25,000 to the winner, and is just one of the four “EA majors”, organized by the developer Electronic Arts.
WHAT IS CRAMP?
The Madden game on Sunday was streamed live on Twitch.
Twitch is an online network, owned by retail giant Amazon, which attracts millions of users to view live and recorded footage of others playing video games. Twitch.tv is one of the largest sources of internet traffic and the top streamers are able to maintain themselves simply by playing and streaming for users, earning advertising income and small fees for certain benefits.
IS ESPORTS REALLY TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE SPORT?
The opinions vary widely and it may not really matter. Video games require a physical skill. For each game there is a spectrum of natural abilities, with some players provides a better response and coordination. Games like Madden are heavy on strategy, while others rely on teamwork. People in the industry want to compare esports to a game of darts, billiards or chess.
Professional gamers get there on the basis of talent and hard work. Most games have multiple levels of competition, including lower-level leagues, tournaments, and invitationals. It is a grind, with most of the players practicing at least six days per week, six hours per day during their seasons.
For the industry, the argument is only of importance for the extent of influence on the visibility.
HOW IS ESPORTS TO RISE?
During the video game viewing might be a new concept in the United States, it is very common in some other markets. South Korea has entire television networks dedicated to the esports and gaming events routinely attract tens of thousands of visitors. Korean esports stars live lavish, celebrity lifestyle, with top players attaining a status comparable to that of LeBron James in America.
ESPN, Twitch and other networks want to attract more millennial and Generation Z audience, and competitive gaming seems an obvious point of connection. The International Olympic Committee is also exploring ways to work together with the esports industry, even hosting a forum this summer on the Overwatch League final to bring together gaming managers, players, sponsors and event organisers.