Esports Betting Overview
Esports betting is a popular habit for many people. Since the explosion of Esports into the mainstream, betting sites as well as mainstream media have been playing catch up.
Until as recently as a few years ago Esports were being ridiculed in the press for not being a real sport, and talk show hosts such as Jimmy Kimmel were calling Esports boring and making fun of them on their shows.
This started a backlash against Jimmy Kimmel and his video in which he made fun of Esports is actually his most disliked video on YouTube. Now, however, Esports have broken into the mainstream and all the big betting websites have started to offer odds on a wide range of Esports.
The Esports betting scene is an incredibly mixed bag. Each betting website has different games, different types of bets and many other differences.
We have a number of individual site reviews so if you’re looking for more information you should check them out. The main reason for the diversity is because of the diverse nature of Esports.
Some Esports are far more popular than others. Others are completely niche and will only be offered by a very small amount of betting websites. Some betting websites offer very little significance to Esports and some won’t even offer them at all.
It’s highly recommended that you shop around a bit. You should attempt to find a betting website that offers your favourite games, your favourite types of bets and which offers decent odds.
What are Esports? (A history)
Before we get started, it’s best to cover the basics. Esports are a form of competition that is performed on some kind of electronic system. Esports are almost always video games and nowadays they are more often than not multiplayer games.
This was not always the case, however. The history of Esports comes from the competitiveness between players on offline games. People competing for the best score on arcade games to go into the Guinness Book World Records etc.
When the internet came into existence it brought with it an ideal opportunity to set-up Esports. With the internet came massively multiplayer games which introduced a new kind of competitiveness to the scene. Quake, Warcraft and Counterstrike are examples of the first games to have a pro scene.
The growth of Esports really happened in the 2000s. With the growth of video games in South Korea came a larger sense of competition.
In the 2010s Esports exploded, with both a massive increase in viewership and prize money. Where there is money, people normally follow and this has only led to larger and larger growth for the Esports communities.
In 2013, for example, the League of Legends World Championship sold out the Staple Center. In 2014 40,000 people attended the finals.
The main Esports games these days are: CounterStrike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), League of Legends, Dota 2, FIFA, Warcraft III, Starcraft II, Smite, Call of Duty, Hearthstone, Overwatch and World of Tanks. There are definitely many more games which have much smaller professional scenes, but these are the main ones.
How to place a bet on Esports
To place a bet on an Esport you must first decide which site you’re going to use. There are many different sites, please see the section below for more information about the choice which you’re facing.
You will then have to make an account which requires an email address. Once you have an account you have to choose whether or not you want to use a promotional offer and then make your initial deposit. To make a deposit you must first enter a payment method. Once you’ve made a deposit you can place a bet.
To place a bet go to the Esport site you selected. Then click on the match you want to bet on. Once you’ve clicked on it then click on the team you want to win. H2K could conceivably beat G2 if you look at current form and so let’s say you place a bet on H2K.
Once you’ve clicked on the team you want to win it should bring up a betting slip. Betting slips are designed to allow you to make multiple bets at once, it’s very similar to your shopping basket on websites which sell things.
This is what should come up, normally on a side bar. Once you’ve picked all the bets you’d like to make, simply press continue or place bet where it says Please login to place bet! On this picture.
Obviously, you will have had to deposit before placing the bet, and if you don’t have any funds at this point it’s highly likely you’ll be asked to make a deposit. Sports betting and Esports betting are no different so this guide is universal for all gambling types and websites.
Esports Betting Promotional Offers
The first thing any potential pundit looks at before deciding which company to place their bets with is the special offers that the website offers. This is incredibly important for you as it maximises your winnings.
If you’re only willing to gamble £10 but the website has a 100% deposit bonus, then you’re actually betting with £20. This can double your winnings and on a well thought out bet this could earn you a lot of money. Normally you will have to bet on reasonably high odds (around 1:1.75.) Promotional offers are a great way to earn extra money from your gambling.
Nothing in life is free. This is even true with your ‘free’ bets. All free bets come with strings attached and it’s highly recommended that you read all the terms and conditions before deciding whether or not to use a promotional offer.
Often the strings attach affect whether or not you can withdraw the funds, so this is a particularly important point. Normally it works like this: You’re given a free bet but all money you win with that free bet is ‘bonus money.’ You normally have to win around 25x the original bet in bonus money (£250) in order to withdraw it.
Other betting websites have different systems, some will simply take back their free bet from your winnings. It’s important to understand all the different promotional offers and their terms and conditions so please don’t just click ‘I accept’ without reading them first.
Esports Betting – Available Bets
With Esports betting you can bet on almost any game which you enjoy playing, provided they have a professional scene. Most multiplayer games now have some kind of a professional scene as it’s big money for the company who created the game.
It is site dependent, with some betting websites offering all games and some only offering a few. It also depends whether or not there is a tournament on at the time. Some websites will only offer bets on the largest and most famous tournaments whereas others will offer bets on much smaller tournaments.
One of the most interesting factors when it comes to Esports betting is the relatively unpredictable nature of it. Let’s have a look at an example. SKT are (arguably) the most dominant force in the League of Legends scene. As such, the odds on them to get first blood most games is about 1:1.2.
The odds for them to give away first blood is usually around 1:2. It’s actually a lot more likely than you may think for SKT to give away first blood to a much weaker team than themselves.
It’s not really the same thing as a very bad team scoring the first goal against the best team in the world in football. There are many different things to factor in, how aggressive are the opposing team in the early game? Who has drafted an early game team and who has drafted a late game team? Does the enemy team have an amazing jungler? It’s very hard to predict who will get first blood, so there’s definitely a chance to make some money with a bet on this.
Esports Betting Websites
If you’re wanting to bet with pre-existing, highly trusted and reliable bookies then the best choice would be the established sports gambling websites. The main advantages of these websites is that you know that you can trust them, they will have practically every imaginable payment method and they will have all the biggest games.
If you’re worried about using smaller, newer gambling websites then you should definitely check out something like Betway or Bet365. One of the disadvantages of bigger companies which start to cater to Esports fans is that their Esports sections are often incomplete. Not having a great knowledge of the industry as it’s fairly new leads to certain glaring holes. Some don’t offer all the right games and bets, for example.
Your other option is to place your bets on a newer website which was created specifically with Esports in mind. Ex-professional Esport athletes and enthusiasts, for example, created GG.bet. This website was created purely for Esports betting and you can tell this the moment you click on the website.
Normally the main advantage of these websites is that they offer a much broader game and bet choice. Furthermore, they often have very close ties with the industry. GG.bet helps fund Esports teams by giving a small percentage of any winnings from a successful bet to the company.
This helps smaller teams with funding. They also sponsor teams, which helps make Esports so large and popular. The main disadvantage of these smaller, newer companies is that they sometimes don’t have all the payment methods you would want. For example, GG.bet doesn’t accept PayPal at this time.
Esports Betting Withdrawal & Deposit Methods
Withdrawal and deposit methods are website dependent. They can vary massively from website to website. Most websites do offer the following methods:
PayPal, Neteller, Skrill, Visa, Mastercard, ecoPayz, bank transfers, cheque. There are many other different methods and some websites offer over 50 different ways to withdraw or deposit your cash. Scroll down to the bottom of a website to see their accepted payment methods.
If you’re thinking which payment method you’d like to use then you should first consider waiting periods. Most will not charge you for withdrawing or depositing your money. The biggest varying factor is the waiting times. Some are instant, some take a few hours, some take a few days and some can take almost a week.
Esports Betting Summary
Esports betting is a relatively new phenomenon. As such, it’s changing all the time. When a new game is released people no longer simply ask themselves if the game will be good.
They also consider whether or not there will be a pro scene which they can follow. If a pro scene develops you can bet that sites will soon begin to offer odds on it. The scene is constantly changing and with newer, smaller tournaments appearing all the time you won’t struggle to find something to bet on.
The main thing you have to consider is which website to use. This can be a difficult choice but the best things to look for are: Games on offer, odds on offer and website usability. If you can find a website which offers a good selection of games, fair odds and an easy to use website then you’ve found the perfect website for you.