What is ESports?

Electronic gaming, more commonly known as esports, is a relatively new area of sports. While competitive gaming has existed almost as long as video games, it has not gotten the attention of other sports until the last 15 years.

Esports is still tough to define, as unlike other competitive sports, there are many video games that can be considered "esports," each with their own rulesets and strategies. The vast majority of games that fall under this category are console games, meaning they are played on consoles or a computer, and therefore these games use controllers dependent on the console.

While all esports are video games, not all games make for great competition. Only games with a high skill ceiling can grow into a competitive game. A skill ceiling is a term used by gamers to define how much a skill it takes to be a top player in the competitive scene. Games with a high skill level typically have less random number generators, also known as RNG. If a game has too much RNG, that means there is more randomness in the game, leading to the skill ceiling being lower.

One on One Games

Typically, one on one fighting games make for good esports, with players taking into account the balance of the games' characters, the depth of the game, the skill ceiling, and the character matchups. However, there do exist many esports that involve teams, with many different and interesting strategies to implement.


Another less popular form of esports is speedrunning. Speedrunners attempt to complete a game as fast as possible, many of them utilizing glitches within the game in order to complete hours of gametime in minutes. Typically, speedrunners are competing against the world record time, however at many events two or more people will race to complete the game as fast as possible. There are many different categories of speedrunning depending on the game, with some runs requiring the player to complete the game 100% while other categories forbade the speedrunner from using glitches.

Because esports is so young, there is always growth. New games continue to change the esports landscape as the sport continues to reach new gamers every day.