According to a recent report from Nielsen Games, fans of eSports are rapidly growing in size, currently amounting to 14% of all Americans aged thirteen and up – almost double of last year when that number was only 8%. The report gives an interesting insight into the eSports market which seems to be overtaking the United States, as well as a comparing view of how eSport fans overlap with fans of traditional sports.
As the report states, 77% of all fans of eSports are male, with Millennials making up for most of the demographic, or 61%. The Millennial generation is often seen as the future of both online and land-based gambling, with casinos focusing on new ways to attract this elusive player base. However, while the online casino industry introduces novelties like VR gambling to attract Millennial players, eSports seem to have little trouble in getting their attention right from the start.
As to other interesting findings, fans of eSports games were found to be twice as likely to use streaming for traditional sports as opposed to those who aren’t fans of eSports, with 71% of the fan base preferring streaming, 40% having watched games on TV, and only 23% having attended a game in person. Fans of eSports were also three times likelier to be fans of Soccer, combat sports and racing – three of the most popular sport gaming niches.
Coinciding with the rapid growth of the fan base, eSport events and prize pools have been quickly expanding as well, with currently more than 16,000 tournaments played annually and more than 65 million in cash rewards. According to Nicole Pike, director of Nielsen Games, eSports can no longer be considered a “niche activity” as they have grown to become one of the fastest expanding parts of the sport industry.