By: Breanna Marcelo
Seneca College will be sponsoring an Esports tournament next month at Waves E-Gaming. It will be held on April 7th between 4pm to 10pm. The main event will focus on the League of Legends tournament. The entire event will be streamed live on Twitch. Players and fans are welcome to join, for a day full of games, competition and prizes.
Esports is a growing gaming competition that has become a multi-billion-dollar industry around the world. From a casual hobby to a serious career, players can earn millions of dollars for every win as well as numerous brand endorsements. Esports involves players from different teams competing in the most popular games such as League of Legends, Fortnite, Call of Duty, Overwatch and more. Streaming services such as Twitch allow viewers to watch these gamers play live on screen. In turn, popular gamers are able to build a fandom, creating fame and fortune for themselves.
The League of Legends World Championships in November attracted nearly 100 million viewers for the finals. Market analysts say almost 500 million people worldwide will tune into Esports this year, surpassing both the NFL and the NBA’s viewership. Most fans and enthusiasts will be watching from North America, China and South Korea. Esports is expected to be a 180 billion dollar industry by next year. The world’s top players can earn seven figures within a year from tournaments giving millions in prize money. For example, US teen Kyle Giersdorf won three million at the Fortnite World Cup tournament last summer.
According to Seneca College’s, Tim Abbott, Professor and Program Coordinator of Event and Media Production,
“The barriers to entry can be high. Not everybody can afford a souped-up Esports rate. As long as we can reduce those barriers to entry, we can do that by adding clubs, Seneca has an Esports club and there are rental facilities like Waves on Steeles Avenue where you can pay by the hour to play, so as long as we keep the barriers to entry down, then I think we have a good thing going here.”
Based on its popularity and market, colleges and universities have created clubs for students to play and compete in tournaments. As previously mentioned, our very own Seneca College has an Esports club created by Steven Nguyen. As President, he hopes to share his passion of gaming with other students and create a place where students can play, compete and have fun. As Abbott said, Esports is an “excellent multicultural international platform that will bring people closer together.”