What is Esports?

Esports stands for electronic sports. It’s a form of organized competitive team play using video games that attract audiences to provide entertainment. Esports is the same as traditional sports. Traditional sports encompass games like football, baseball, soccer, tennis, etc. With esports, we have games like: League of Legends, Rocket League, Call of Duty, Dota 2, etc. Just as you would see in traditional sports, esports builds soft skills like leadership, promotes community, and provides viewing entertainment.

Esports and other sports like football are 99-percent similar. The only difference is instead of the player playing on a court or field like stick and ball sports, they play on a stage with computers or consoles. We move from a baseball bat to a keyboard and mouse. The production level, project management, casting, stats, marketing, etc., is the same. Esports is a fast-growing industry. To illustrate this, below are revenue numbers of the gaming industry and its growth since 2020.

  • Gaming Industry Revenue Growth: 217.9B by 2023 (2020, NewZoo)
  • Esports Revenue 2022: 1,384M (2022, Newzoo)
  • Esports Revenue 2025: 1,866.2M (2022, Newzoo)
  • Esports Audience 2022: 532M (2022, Newzoo)
  • Esports Audience 2025: 640.8M (2022, Newzoo)

Why Does the UO Care About Esports?

The UO’s core fundamental values are student success, academic freedom, creative expression, and fostering equity and inclusion. We see esports as the platform to achieve these values and goals. Esports offers UO students a community of belonging and growth with their peers during their academic journey and beyond.

Fostering Equity and Inclusion

What does it mean to be a “gamer”? Well, if you have played a phone game like Candy Crush or a computer game like World of Warcraft, guess what, you are a gamer! In a 2019 report by Esports Scholastic Association, they discovered that 65 percent of those between the ages of 18–29 in the U.S. played a video game of some sort. Additionally, the gender breakdown of that survey was 55/45 split between men and women. Esports and gaming allow us to foster a community of diverse gamers. Who doesn’t like to relax, take a break, and play a video game? The value gaming and esports bring UO is obvious: fostering community, inclusion and equity, sense of belonging, creative expression; aligns perfectly with the UO’s core values and mission.